The launch of Emirates LitFest Writing Prize for 2021, also known as Montegrappa, is giving all aspiring writers an opportunity to get their story out and share it with the rest of the world. Writers will get a chance to be recognised by the region and possibly accelerate their publishing process with the help and support provided by the program.

In the past seven years, since it first started, this prize has created at least nine internationally published authors of 24 globally known books.

Your entry will be judged by international literary agent Luigi Bonomi, and the winner will also get a chance to discuss the rest of their novel with Luigi Bonomi.

Interested? Here’s what you need to know to participate:

  • You should be a first-time writer living in UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait or Oman.
  • You must be aged 21 years and above
  • You should not be the author of any previously published novel
  • Your novel must be fiction and in English
  • You may choose any theme for your novel
  • You need to provide the first 2000 words of a nearly completed manuscript
  • You need to provide a synopsis of 400 words
  • The last day to submit your entry is December 19
  • You need to pay a participation fee of AED200

As per the Emirates Literature Foundation, these are the previous winners and a glimpse into what this prize helped them achieve:

Polly Phillips – debut novel My Best Friend’s Murder is to be released next year by Simon & Schuster.

Charlotte Butterfield – just announced a second publishing deal, this time with Hodder & Stoughton, for her book, My Second-Chance Life, due out in April 2022.

Other winners of the competition include Annabel Kantaria, Farzeen Ashik, Lucy Strange, Karen Osman, Tamsin Winter, Rachel Hamilton and Jessica Jarlvi.