Seán Dunne Young Writers' Awards

Awards Criteria
Following a review of procedures the organisers have decided to further invest in the creative potential of young writers by now offering the winners awards of residencies with accommodation for the Waterford Writers’ Weekend (including two workshops) as well as one-to-one mentoring for a 6 month period and the traditional award which is €1,200 to the senior nation-wide winner, €500 for the overall local Waterford winner and €350 as a nation-wide junior award.

Extracts of the winning entries may be read during the Waterford Writers’ Weekend in March. All entrants are automatically invited to the Awards Ceremony which will be held in Greyfriars' Municipal Gallery in Waterford on Thursday March 21st, 2024.

Conditions of Entry: (please read carefully)

The Categories are:
Poetry (Maximum 40 lines and 1000 words)
Prose (Fiction/Non-fiction, Maximum 2000 words)
Drama/Screenplays (Maximum 5000 words)
• 1. All entries must be previously unpublished.
• 2. Winners must attend the awards in order to claim their prize.
• 3. All entries must be typed on A4 paper.
(E-mail or Fax entries will not be accepted)
• 4. No alterations can be made to a work once it has been submitted.
• 5. There is no entry fee, but no more than two pieces can be submitted   
by any individual and they must have separate applications (see below).
• 6. Writers will only be eligible to win one award.    
• 7. – (A)  the title of the work(s) should appear on the top of each page.
(B)    The identity of the author must not appear on the piece - a small envelope should be stapled to the back of each submission into which should be placed a sheet containing the Name, Address and Phone number of the author.
(C)    The title andthe category of the submission
should be written on the outsideof the envelope along with the age of the author.
• 8. All entries must be submitted between December 12, 2023 and January 31, 2024.
• 9. Work submitted will not be returned - so please keep a copy!


National Entries (Senior)

For the nation-wide awards entries will be accepted from writers who are 30 years or under on January 31, 2024 and who were born or are resident in Ireland. Submissions can be in Irish or English.

National Entries (Junior)
For the National Junior Sean Dunne Young Writers’ Awards, entries will be accepted from writers who are between the ages of 12 and 16 years by January 31, 2024 and who were born, or are resident in, Ireland. Submissions can be in Irish or English.

Local Entries

Entries will be accepted from writers who are 21 years or under on January 31, 2024 and who were born, or are resident in, the Waterford City and County area. Submissions can be in Irish or English.

A panel of established writers will judge entries. The decisions of the judges are final and no correspondence can be entered into regarding that decision. The prize-winners will be notified by mid March 2024, and the awards will be bestowed at the Waterford Writers’ Weekend, March 2024.

Copyright will remain with the entrant, but Waterford City Council reserves the right to arrange the first publication, broadcast or dramatisation of the selected work as they see fit. Submission of a written work implies the entrant’s acceptance of the conditions set out above.

Postal address for entries: 
Seán Dunne Young Writers’ Awards,                                              
The Arts Office,
Waterford City Council,
City Hall,


For further information Telephone 051 849983 or email: [email protected]

Seán Dunne. 1956-1995
Sean Dunne - Poet and Writer

Who was Seán Dunne ?
Seán Dunne was a poet born in Waterford, Ireland.

Seán Dunne's collections of poems have all been well received, and in order of release are: "Against the Storm" (1985), "The Sheltered Nest" (1992) and "Time and the Island".

The account of his childhood "In My Father's House" was released in 1991, and was a bestseller.