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The Bergen International Essay Competition

The Bergen International Literary Festival for Non-Fiction and Fiction is held in February every year in the Norwegian city of Bergen and attracts writers from every continent. We are looking for new, excellent writing and are pleased to announce the Bergen International Essay Competition open to everybody under the age of 30.

Theme: My generation

What characterises your generation? Write an essay from your standpoint. What encourages you, what enrages you?

We give equal emphasis to literary quality and content. The winner and runners up will be announced at the Bergen International Literary Festival on 11-14 February 2021.

  • One entry per contestant
  • The contestant must be born in 1990 or later
  • The essay can be written in any language, but a translation into English must be provided with the original text 
  • The essay must be no more than 2000 words in the English version
  • The deadline for entries is 1 October 2020

The winner will receive EUR 2 500. 

Three runners up each receive EUR 500. 

The winning essay and the runners up will be published both online and in a printed format.

To upload your essay, please see below.

If you have any questions, contact

The jury will base its evaluation on the English version.


  • Alisa Ganieva (Russia), author
  • Leila Guerriero (Argentina), author and journalist
  • Sandra Lillebø (Norway), author and critic
  • Daniel Medin (USA/France), editor and professor at the American University of Paris
  • Jonny Steinberg (South Africa/UK), author and professor at the University of Oxford
  • Ece Temelkuran (Turkey), author and commentator


Disclaimer: The jury may decide, at its sole discretion, not to select a winner or runners up.


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