Thank you for taking the time to submit to Griffith Review. Please take the time to download and read our Writers' Guidelines. If you have any further queries, please contact us at

Is empathy, like water, in increasingly short supply?

Recent research suggests that the average person in 2009 demonstrated less empathy than in 1979. Can this really be the case? Does it indicate our reserves of kindness are evaporating? Can we detect a creeping desertification of human generosity? Or does the human capacity for joy continue to assert itself in moments of grace that can inspire and transform?

Griffith Review's eighth novella competition seeks to celebrate generosities and kindnesses, the uplifting and memorable experiences that can illuminate lives. We're seeking despatches from the frontlines of generosity – stories that mine the ongoing transformative power of the positive in the social spaces where we live, work and play?

Entries are invited in the genres of both fiction and creative non-fiction, ranging between 15,000–25,000 words.

This competition is supported by Copyright Agency's Cultural Fund.

Griffith Review 70: Generosities of Spirit – The Novella Project VII
Edited by Ashley Hay
Submissions now open
Submissions close: 11:59pm AEST 7 April 2020
Publication date: November 2020

Summary of Terms and Conditions of Entry 

Submissions close 11:59pm AEST 7 April 2020. Early submissions are encouraged. Late submissions will not be accepted.

Submissions are limited to Australian and New Zealand authors.

Original works of fiction and creative non-fiction only. Work between 15,000 and 25,000 words is preferable; however, exceptions may be made to these word lengths. 

Works must respond to the topic brief Generosities of Spirit, available here

Only one work per author.

All entries must be submitted electronically via the Submittable page. Emailed or posted entries will  not be accepted. 

Entry fee for the competition is $30 (including GST) for Griffith Review  subscribers and $60 (including GST) for non-subscribers. Entry fees must be paid via GriffithPay here. Entries that are submitted without corresponding payment will not be accepted. 

Griffith Review subscriptions start from $60 and can be purchased at Griffith Review. There is no charge for members of the Griffith Review Contributors Circle.

All potential entrants are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the type of work published by Griffith Review before submitting. 

It is anticipated that up to five works will be selected for publication, but the judges reserve the right to vary the number selected. 

Submissions will be evaluated by a panel of judges and the Griffith Review team in a blind reading. The decision will be final and there will be no correspondence with unsuccessful candidates about the merits of  the work submitted.

The winning works will undergo a professional editorial process prior to publication.

Winners will share the $25,000 prize pool. The amount awarded to each author will be determined by the  number of works selected for publication.

Successful applications will be notified no later than June 2020.

Publication date of The Novella Project VIII is set for November 2020.

Terms and Conditions of Entry

This competition is being conducted by Griffith University (through Griffith Review), (ABN 78 106 094 461), a body corporate established pursuant to the Griffith University Act 1988.

By entering the competition, all participants agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions of Entry.

1. Who may enter?

All persons (other than Griffith University staff who work on Griffith Review, and their immediate family members) may enter the competition. This includes students and graduates of Griffith University.

All entrants must be citizens or residents of either Australia or New Zealand.

Griffith Review reserves the right to invite submissions.

2. Conditions of entry

We require original works of fiction and creative non-fiction. Writers are advised that work between 15,000 and 25,000 words is preferable; however, exceptions may be made to these word lengths.

Each person may only make one submission to the competition, so please submit  your best work. 

The  submission must be your original work. If you are not the sole author of the submission, you must secure the necessary permission from the appropriate third parties prior to entering this competition and comply with these Terms and Conditions. Attach evidence to your submission, if applicable.

Unless  you have prior written consent from Griffith Review, previously published work, or work which is under consideration for other Griffith Review publications or competitions, will be excluded from  consideration. Griffith Review, acting in its sole discretion, may grant an exception to this exclusion in exceptional circumstances. 

Works written as part of a higher degree program in creative writing are eligible for entry if such entry is within the rules of the academic institution. 

Entry into this competition does not entitle the author of a submission to any fee or payment from Griffith University.  

Successful entrants agree to enter into a publishing contract with Griffith Review, outlined further in section 7 (‘Intellectual property rights and licence to publish’) of this document. 

3. How to enter the competition

A work (in Microsoft Word format) must be submitted via Submittable by no later than 11.59 pm AEST 7 April 2020. Your name must not appear on this document. This work must be supported by a short bio on a separate page. Your submission fee must be paid at the time of submitting. 

Early submissions are encouraged. 

All applicants will be notified about their submission by email by June 2020. There is no need to follow up your entry.

Unless you have been contacted by Griffith Review and personally invited to make a submission, you will be charged an entry fee of AUD $60 (or $30 if you hold a current print or digital subscription to Griffith Review) upon entry to this competition. The entry fee will be put towards the administrative costs of conducting this competition. All entrants who pay the full entry fee will receive a digital subscription to Griffith Review for one year. All payments must be made by credit card via GriffithPay here.      

To avoid any doubt, failure to pay the entry fee at the time of submission will mean that you are precluded from this competition, and your submission will not be read by the judges.

4. Selection of winners

Griffith Review will appoint a  panel of judges to decide upon the winners. The judges will select the  winners based upon the originality, creativity and quality of the submission. It is anticipated that five entries will be selected as winners of the competition, but the judges reserve the right to vary the number of works selected, based on the quality and length of submissions.

The  judges’ decisions will be final and no correspondence will be entered into with unsuccessful applicants. Applicants will be notified by June 2020. At  the discretion of the editor, Griffith Review staff may discuss possible future publication on a case-by-case basis with unsuccessful applicants. 

Chance/luck plays no part in determining the winners.

5. Notification of winners

The winning authors will be announced in June 2020. All winners will be contacted privately prior to the public announcement. Winning authors agree to co-operate in a timely fashion with the editorial processes and reasonable publicity requests of Griffith Review.

6. Prizes

The winning authors will share the prize pool of $25,000. Further, the collected pieces will be published in Griffith Review in November 2020.

This edition of Griffith Review will be distributed to subscribers and to bookshops and e-book retailers under the contract between Griffith Review and Text Publishing Company (TPC). The edition will also be offered for sale from the Griffith Review  online store.

7. Intellectual property rights and licence to publish

All  intellectual property rights in submissions are retained by the author. 

Commencing from the date a winning author is notified that his or her submission has been successful, the author grants to Griffith University:

a) an exclusive and unrestricted licence to publish and distribute the work (including online), for a period of three months (the Exclusivity Period), from 27 October 2020;

b) commencing immediately after the Exclusivity Period, a non-exclusive, perpetual and unrestricted licence to publish and distribute the work (including online); 

c) a perpetual licence to reproduce the work on the Griffith Review website;

d) a perpetual right to publicise this competition and the winning author’s name/s.

During the Exclusivity Period, the author must not publish, or cause the work to be published, other than as contemplated above. After the Exclusivity Period, the author is entitled to publish the work in or on other forums, provided that the author acknowledges, or enters into legally binding arrangements that require the subsequent publisher to acknowledge, that Griffith Review is the original publisher of the work.

8. Limitation of Liability

To the extent permitted by law, Griffith University is not liable for any loss or damage however caused incurred or suffered by or to a person or property in connection with this competition. 

Griffith Review | South Bank Campus, Griffith University

PO Box 3370, South Brisbane QLD | Australia 4101 

Phone: +61 7 3735 3071 | Fax: +61 7 3735 3272

Griffith Review invites applications from current Contributors Circle members for a week-long writing residency at Varuna, The National Writers’ House.

A Varuna residency provides a week’s accommodation, meals and a private workspace to further develop a work in progress in the beautiful Blue Mountains.

The 2020 Griffith Review Contributors Circle Varuna Residencies are supported by the Graeme Wood Foundation.

Entry guidelines

Griffith Review Contributors Circle members who are Australian or New Zealand citizens or residents are eligible to win one of up to five residencies at Varuna, The National Writers’ House in 2020. This includes a week’s accommodation, meals and a private workspace (please note that airfares/transfers are not included).

To apply for the 2020 Griffith Review Contributors Circle Varuna Residencies, submit the following before midnight, Monday 13 April 2020:
- a statement outlining how the residency would benefit you;
- a description of the work you would undertake during the week;
- an overview of the project and brief plan for its completion;
- and up to ten pages of the work in progress.

Entries will be judged by Griffith Review staff based on: creative strength of the proposal, including clear goals; originality of the work; and evidence of capacity to advance the project towards publication.

Entries must be submitted through the Submittable portal to be eligible for consideration.

Selected applicants will be notified by the end of April 2020. Griffith Review will forward Varuna’s contact details to the successful applicants, who must make arrangements with Varuna directly. The residency must be undertaken by August 2021.

Your Contributors Circle subscription must be current on 13 April 2020 to be eligible to apply for a residency. To renew your Contributors Circle subscription online select the Premium Subscription (Print + digital 1-year) package, select your favoured digital format (PDF, ePub, kindle-compatible) and use the promo code GRCONTRIBUTOR at the checkout. Alternatively, please contact us at or phone us on (07) 3735 3071. Tax invoices are forwarded via email.

IMPORTANT: Contributors Circle membership is available only to writers who have contributed to Griffith Review. Anyone who purchases a subscription using this code who doesn’t meet this criteria is not eligible for the residency program, and will have their Contributors Circle subscription converted to a regular subscription package.

Griffith Review