Angry Ghost Poetry Competition

(Competition is currently closed for entries)

Can you imagine yourself as the ghost of a famous historical figure? Can you write an angry poem in their voice?

For example, you could write as Oliver Cromwell raging against modern-day Christmas celebrations, Emily Pankhurst railing against women who don’t vote, or Einstein decrying the creation of nuclear weapons.

Here is a list of other historical characters who would leave behind angry ghosts courtesy of the ‘Horrible Histories’ team and here are some other sources of inspiration from me.

Poems should be sent to by Monday 12th September 2022


A trophy for the winner

£20 book voucher for the winner and £10 for each of the two runners up

The opportunity to read your work at the prize-giving event at Cuppa in Felixstowe. Alternatively, you can ask for it to be read by one of the actors pictured below. (The ticket site will be active soon at

A poetry book (below) donated by Stillwater Books and homemade jam from Cuppa.

Signed copies of ‘Thirty Angry Ghosts’

Winning poems and poets to be featured in the local press and on local radio.

The winner receives a £20 book voucher, this poetry anthology (donated by Stillwater Books), homemade jam (donated by Cuppa) and a signed copy of Thirty Angry Ghosts.

Terms and Conditions

Entries must be sent to before Monday 12th September 2022.

The competition is aimed primarily at adults but younger poets are welcome to enter with the permission of a parent or carer.

Entrants must be able to travel to Cuppa (Felixstowe, Suffolk, UK) for the prize-giving on Saturday 8th October 2022. (Click here for Cuppa’s website.)

Poems must not exceed 300 words (no minimum)

Entries should not have been published elsewhere.

The copyright of each entry remains with the author, but by entering you give your consent for me to share winning and highly commended poems on social media and in the local press.

You can enter only one poem.

Entry is free but you may gain an advantage from reading Mai Black’s Thirty Angry Ghosts, which is available to buy at most bookshops and online here.

Poems should not take the voice of somebody already featured in Thirty Angry Ghosts.

Poems may use any style or form.

Poems may be rhymed or unrhymed.

The poem can either be attached as a Word or PDF document or pasted into the main body of the email.

Please include your name and contact details in your email, not on the attachment.

Entries will be judged anonymously by Mai Black with administrative assistance from Simon Black. No correspondence will be entered into except to thank you for your entry, share details of the prize-giving event, and to announce the winners.

Winning and highly commended poems will be announced on or before Friday 30th September 2022.

Good luck!

To keep up with competition news, related workshops and other Angry Ghost events, join ‘Suffolk Writers Group’ on Facebook and/or follow maiblackwriter on Instagram and Twitter.

To donate to the actors at the Cuppa performance on Saturday, October 8th, please use this link.

There will also be a monetary collection on the night.

The lineup for October’s Cuppa Performance
(To be followed by readings from the winners and shortlisted poets after the break)

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