2019 TCW First pages pitch contest

Our famous First Pages pitch contest returns this year. Always a highlight, the contest features the first few pages of manuscripts by aspiring or emerging authors, read out loud by a narrator, and assessed live by a panel of publishing industry experts.

TCW logo

This year a prize of $200 is on offer. Our thanks to our generous sponsor, TCW.

The session also gives other writers a chance to learn what attracts the attention of agents and publishers – and what doesn’t.

This year, our expert judges are Clare Hallifax (Scholastic Australia), Margaret Connolly (Margaret Connolly & Associates Agency), and Michelle Lovi (Odyssey Books). Rachel Nightingale will perform as narrator.

The First Pages pitch contest is on from 4.15 – 5.30 pm on Saturday 26 October.

Entrants remain anonymous – only the winner’s name is announced.


  • $200 prize money
  • Free associate membership of the Australian Society of Authors.

How to enter

Only the first 8 entries will be accepted. Pitch entries are now full. All places have been taken.

First, book your conference ticket and First Pages entry ticket. Then, email the following documents marked ‘HNSA First Pages’ to contact@hnsa.org.au  by Midnight 20 September AEST*

  • Cover sheet with your name and receipt numbers for your HNSA 2019 conference and First Pages entry tickets
  • First 500 words from your manuscript
  • 15 word pitch capturing the essence of your book, to ‘hook’ the judges
  • 50 word synopsis
  • Include your title in a word.doc file
  • Do not place your name on the excerpt.

The contest is open to aspiring or emerging authors who have not had a novel published or accepted for publication by a publisher. You must be attending the conference to enter – book a weekend conference or day ticket here.

*HNSA reserves the right to refund your money and allocate your place to the next person in the waiting list if the deadline is not met.

Preference will be given to early bird registrants.

Limit: 8 persons
Pitch entries are now full. All places have been taken.

Cost: $15

Rachel Nightingale, 2017 conference
Our narrator, Rachel Nightingale

See the full conference program here.

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