The Carter Brown Foundation in conjunction with Brio Books and Stark House Press is delighted to announce a new award for mystery writing.

The competition is open to all writers over the age of 18 writing novella-length adult crime/mystery fiction (around 20,000–50,000 words).

Entries are now CLOSED. The winner will be announced in February 2019 and the winning entry will be published in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand later in 2019.


The competition is named in honour of prolific Australian author Alan Geoffrey Yates (aka Carter Brown). Born in England in 1923, Yates married and settled in Australia in 1948. He worked as a film technician, a salesman and in public relations for Qantas before taking up writing full-time. He wrote more than 350 novels and was a huge international success with reportedly 100 million books sold, second only to The Bible in terms of the number of languages they were translated into. There was a comic book series, the “Carter Brown Murder Mystery Hour” on radio, three French films, a Japanese TV series, and a French literary award for “The most whiskies drunk in a single novel”. He was also rumoured to be one of John F. Kennedy’s favourite authors. Yates died in 1985 in Sydney. In 1997, he was posthumously awarded a Ned Kelly, Australia’s leading literary award for crime writing, for his lifelong contribution to the art.

Terms and conditions

  1. Submissions open 9 am AEST 1 August 2018 and close 5 pm AEST 31 October 2018.

  2. The manuscript should be a work of adult crime/mystery fiction of 20,000 – 50,000 words.

  3. The winner will be notified in strict confidence in January 2019, at which time the winner must agree to keep this news confidential until the official announcement in February 2019.

  4. Pending acceptance of the publishing contract, the winning entry will be published in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand in May 2019.

  5. Entrants must be aged 18 years and over.

  6. All persons, other than immediate family members of Brio Books Pty Ltd, Stark House Press and Carter Brown Foundation staff, may enter the competition.

  7. Submissions must be made electronically in Word format via Submittable.

  8. The manuscript must be an original work, written entirely by the entrant and it must be written in English.

  9. No more than 10 per cent of the manuscript can have been previously published in print form, or in electronic form, on a commercial basis.

  10. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. If, in their opinion, no entry is worthy of publication, no winner shall be chosen. No entrant may win the award in successive years.