ENTRIES are open for the 2020 Bass Coast Prize for Non-Fiction, one of the richest competitions for non-fiction in Australia, with a total of $10,000 in prize money.

The prize is sponsored by Phillip Island writer and activist Phyllis Papps to encourage and support local writers of non-fiction in an era of diminishing options for mainstream publication. The first prize winner will receive $5000, second $3000 and third $2000.

The inaugural competition last year attracted 42 entries from throughout Gippsland, ranging from personal memoir and true adventure through to biography, natural history and local history.

Ms Papps said the judges were gratified by the response from writers and impressed by the very high quality of the work submitted.

The competition has been brought forward this year with many writers at home with more spare time.

The prize is open to writers living, working or studying in Gippsland, or who have a strong connection with the Gippsland region.

Entries can be in the form of prose or poetry but must pertain to the Gippsland region, issues or people. The length is 4000-10,000 words.

The three judges are Bass Coast Post editor Catherine Watson, Waterline News editor Geoff Ellis and local writer Anne Heath Mennell.

The prize is auspiced by the Bass Coast Post and the Waterline News.

Post editor Catherine Watson said that while the generous prize money was important, most important to many writers was a deadline and a guarantee that their work will be read.

Entries close on September 4, 2020 and prize winners will be announced in November 2020.

The winning entries will be published in the Bass Coast Post and may be republished as an e-book or hard copy following consultation with the writers.

For more information and entry criteria, visit Bass Coast Prize for Non Fiction at basscoastprizefornonfiction.weebly.com or email Phyllis Papps at p.m.papps@waterfront.net.au.