Writing Competition Information

The E.M. Fletcher Writing Award is a great way to share your family history stories.

2024 competition open now until 15 July - see here


E.M. Fletcher 1930-2016The E.M. Fletcher Writing Award is an annual short story writing competition on a family history / genealogy theme. The competition is judged to select the best short story between 1,500 - 2,000 words. The genre of writing is not limited and the broad theme allows plenty of scope for creativity.

The competition opens on 15th February and closes on 15th July each year. Entrants are in the running to win a $1,000 cash prize sponsored by Family History ACT, a runner-up prize of $500 cash sponsored by the University of Tasmania and an additional cash prize of $!00 for Family History ACT members.

Each year the Family History ACT (FHACT) Writing Competition Committee convenes a panel of three judges. Two judges are customarily drawn from within the FHACT membership, and one is an external judge. Judges for previous years include Cora Num, Mary Lynn Mather, David Coombe, Kerrie Gray, Professor Peter Stanley, Barbara Moore, Dr Erica Cervini, Pennie Pemberton, Kathryn Coughran, Wendy Paterson, David Wintrip, Craig Cormick, Jenny Higgins, Heather Garnsey and Bernadette Thakur.

The winning and short listed entries are published in the December edition of Family History ACT’s journal The Ancestral Searcher. Entries from the 2020, 2021 and 2022 competition are also published in a book series Every Family has a Story. If you’ve thought about writing your family story, these books could be the place to start for inspiration and motivation. Look out for the 2023 volume of Every Family has a Story coming this year. Copies of the books are available to purchase through our bookshop.


EFHAS 2021     2020 WritersComp cover smaller                   TAS journal covers


Read an extract from previous winning entries:

2023 Winner:     Glynis Cummins - Standing on New Ground

2022 Winner:     Beverley Richardson - I am Not In-Sane

2021 Winner:     Denise Newton - The Bitterness of their Woe

2020 Winner:     David Wintrip – A Lamb’s Tale

2019 Winner:     Kathryn Coughran – All at Sea

The E.M. Fletcher Writing Award was established in 2019 and named in honour of FHACT Fellow Eunice Fletcher, a long-time member who had significant input into the formation of the Society over many years.

Enquiries about the E.M. Fletcher Writing Award should be directed to here.