Below are some pre-emptive FAQ’s. We will add to these questions as we receive them via email. Please email with any questions that you have.

Q: I have posted my work online/ have created a zine / short edition printed booklet – does this count as ‘previously published’? 

A:  Poems previously published online, in a magazine or in a pamphlet are acceptable for submission, however poems previously printed in book format are not. 

Q: What do you mean by ‘ongoing resident of Scotland’? 

A: Previous EMPAs required that entrants should have lived in Scotland for a minimum of 3 years. With this new criteria, we recognise that investment in a country, identity or place is not necessarily measured simply by time spent there. While we no longer dictate a minimum period of time spent living in Scotland, we expect that all applicants have an ongoing investment in/ connection to Scotland.

Q: Can I submit one 10-page poem rather than 10 individual poems? 

A: The guidance of 10 poems is to ensure that judges can get a wide sample of your work. The New Divan by Edwin Morgan may be considered to be one single poem of many pages, however his approach, format, subject and language changed and developed across the book. If you would like to include one 10 page poem, ensure that it has a reflects an overview of your writing style and practice.

Q: Does the Edwin Morgan Trust gain any ownership/ printing rights to submitted, shortlisted or winning entries? 

A: One or two poems from shortlisted poets will be put on our website in the lead-up to the announcement of the Award/s , however we do not ask for any ongoing copyright or publishing rights, other than for EMPA promotional use. 

Q: Who will be judging the award? 

A: We have assembled a panel of individuals and organisations who will be nominating, reviewing and awarding the EMPA 2022. Visit our website for further information. 

Q: What is the difference between ‘nominated’ poets and the ‘open-call’ process?

A: We understand that an ‘open call’ is not necessarily open to everyone – and some folk may not be in a position where they are able to/ feel welcome to apply or have not felt represented in our previous EMPA prizes. We want to be proactive about reaching different communities and have assembled a nomination committee to directly nominate poets that they feel are deserving of the EMPA. In addition to this nomination stream, we have an open call, which is reviewed and shortlisted by two Peer Reviewers (previous EMPA shortlisted poets). Shortlisted open-call entries and nominated entries will create a longlist of up to 18 poets which will be reviewed as a group by the full committee. The committee will collectively decide on the EMPA 2022 award winners (with £20,000 split between 1-4 winners).

Q: Can I apply with poems that I have submitted to EMPA awards previously? 

A: You can, but we strongly advise that poems should have been significantly re-worked and developed.

Q: I want to apply with sound/ footage. What is the best way to do this? 

A: Please upload your submission to soundcloud or vimeo and provide a link and password via the online submission form for the panel to access.  Please make sure that your name or other identifying features are removed from the video/ sound file to ensure anonymity.

Q: Can I submit poems in languages other than English Gaelic and Scots?

A:  Edwin Morgan wrote in a number of languages – even invented ones! Our format asks for ‘primarily’ English, Scots and Gaelic. If using other languages in your work please provide a gloss or a translation where appropriate.

Q: Does the 12 page word count include a cover page?

A: 12 pages has been allocated for your poetry only – a cover or end page is fine to include, as long as it does not form a core part of your poetry submission.

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