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Malorie Blackman Scholarships 2021-22 - now open for applications

The Malorie Blackman Scholarships for ‘Unheard Voices’

City Lit’s Malorie Blackman Scholarships for Unheard Voices provide three annual awards worth up to £1000 each, to fund one year’s study within the Creative Writing department at City Lit.  The awards seek to support and encourage the creative and professional development of ‘unheard voices’ writing with the final award winners selected by acclaimed writer, City Lit fellow and Patron of the School of Humanities & Sciences, Malorie Blackman OBE.

The 2019 winners of the Malorie Blackman Scholarhips for Unheard Voices:

Osob Dahir (learn more >)

Celestine Fraser (learn more >)

Beena Nadeem (learn more >)

Malorie Blackman OBE

The 2021-22 Malorie Blackman Scholarships are now open for applications!

The award worth up to £1000 for each successful applicant is to be spent on creative writing courses within the year from August 31st 2021 to August 31st 2022, and can be used against a single course, or group of courses appropriate to the award recipient’s creative and learning aims.  Award recipients will have the opportunity to speak to a member of the Writing team who will advise and help organise a study plan to best support the development of each individual’s writing.

Selection criteria:

•The award is open to current or former students (applicants must have been enrolled on a course administered by the City Lit Writing Department taking place in the period following 31st August 2019) who have studied or are studying on beginner or intermediate level City Lit Creative Writing courses and who demonstrate talent and potential in their writing

•The award welcomes applications from ‘Unheard Voices’, and in particular to students from under-represented groups.  This includes (but is not exclusive to) those with disabilities, people from minority backgrounds and communities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, individuals from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, and BAME writers.

•All applications involve the submission of 1) a piece of original writing no longer than 500 words in length (for prose writing) or up 40 lines (for poetry), and 2) a completed application form including a statement of up to 300 words identifying how you feel you meet the selection criteria.

Click here to download the 2021 application form.

•Applications must be submitted by email directly to the Writing Department at writing@citylit.ac.uk

•All applications must be received by 23:59 on 31st January 2021

•The longlisting and shortlisting process will be conducted by a panel consisting of members of the City Lit Writing team, and will take into account 1) the quality and potential of the writing, and 2) the extent to which the panel agrees the applicant meets the selection criteria, and 3) a City Lit tutors’ recommendation (recommendations will be sought by the panel separately to the application, however applicants must identify their course tutor as part of their application).

•A shortlist of 10 applications will be sent to writer and award patron Malorie Blackman who will decide the final award winners.



Scholarship Applications Open: 19th October 2020

Submission Deadline:  23:59, 31st January 2021

Scholarship Winners Announced: May 2021 

Scholarships Valid:  31st August 2021-31st August 2022


Terms & Conditions:

•The scheme is open to past students or current students who have taken a City Lit Creative Writing course between the 31st August 2019 and the application deadline (applicants will need to identify their previous study and tutor in their application). 

•Applications are invited from those writing in any of the following genres (or a mixture of the following): Fiction (novel writing, short story writing, writing for children etc.); Poetry;  Creative non-fiction (autobiography, memoir writing, journal writing, etc.); journalism, playwriting & screenwriting.  We do not accept applications from those studying academic and business writing.

•All scholarship applications must be received by 23:59 on 31st January 2021. No applications will be considered after the deadline has passed.

•All applications will be reviewed by a panel consisting of members of the City Lit Writing team, and a shortlist of 10 will be sent to Malorie Blackman OBE for the final decision on the three award recipients.

•Awards of up to £1000 each valid for use on creative writing courses starting from 31st August 2021 – 31st August 2022 only, with no cash alternative. 

•Writing coordinators will advise on suitable programmes of study, and each recipient’s unique study programme will be decided and agreed through meetings with a member of the team.

•Award recipients will be subject to the usual selection processes on courses requiring applications.

•The decision of the Panel and Patron is final, and we regret that we will be unable to provide feedback or enter into discussion on unsuccessful applications.

•Awards cannot be used retrospectively on courses which recipients are already enrolled.

•Award recipients will be expected to participate/read at Late Lines and Writing Forum events, and be invited to share their learning and creativity at other City Lit events.

•Award recipients will be expected to have their writing included in the Between the Lines publication in the year of their scholarship.

•At the end of their awards recipients will be expected to be interviewed and provide a written review of their experience and what they have gained from their award.

•Award recipients will be required to give permission to be included in marketing, social media, blog and other activities surrounding City Lit and the award.

•Award recipients are subject to City Lit’s Student Code of Conduct and usual terms and conditions of study, any breach of which may result in the termination of the scholarship.

•Should the terms and conditions not be met, termination of the scholarship or award is at the discretion of the panel.


Download a printable version of this information here