Trapeze, Gingerbread and The Pool are launching a new writing competition to find an aspiring writer who will celebrate single parent families.
The "One in Four" competition aims to uncover "exciting new talent" whilst also "raising awareness of single parent families". The name of the competition reflects the fact that one in every four families with children in England and Wales are headed by a single parent.
Despite this make-up of our society, according to Gingerbread chief executive Rosie Ferguson, single parent families are "often unrepresented in story-telling".
To enter, participants will be encouraged to submit the first 5,000 words of a novel that celebrates single parent life. The winner will be offered a publishing contract with Trapeze worth £10,000, as well as three hours of mentoring by author Tilly Bagshawe.
Bagshawe, who is also on the judging panel, was a single teenage mum herself and called the competition "a unique chance (for writers) to foster their talent and allow their voices to be heard". She will judge the prize alongside fellow novelist Jem Lester, Trapeze editorial director Sam Eades, Gingerbread chief executive Rosie Ferguson and Marisa Bate, journalist at The Pool.
Ferguson said: “Single parent families make up one in four families with children, but their voices are often unrepresented in story-telling. We’re very excited to be working with Trapeze and The Pool to offer this unique opportunity for an aspiring writer to showcase their talent and shine a light on the brilliant job single parents do.”
Bate, senior writer of The Pool, added that as the daughter of a single parent herself "I'm only too aware of the incredible work single parents do, day in, day out".
"Both myself and The Pool are delighted a platform has been created to help an aspiring writer, as well as educate others around the unique challenges single parent families face,” she said.
Eades, editorial director of Trapeze, added “At Trapeze our aim is to publish books that start conversations, and I couldn’t be prouder to work with the teams at The Pool and Gingerbread to launch this competition to find a new voice that celebrates the single parent family experience."
The cut-off date for the competition is the 4th of December, with applicants invited to send their submissions to OneInFourSubmissions@orionbooks.co.uk.