Trent Dalton, Paige Clark and more appear in The Big Issue’s 19th Fiction Edition

The Big Issue is back with its annual Fiction Edition, including original work by popular authors Trent Dalton, Paige Clark, Zoya Patel and Nina Wan, on sale across Australia from Friday 18 August.

The blockbuster issue also includes new short fiction from eight writers who were selected from an entry pool of 681 submissions from around the country.

Since it was first launched in 2004, the Fiction Edition has become the biggest-selling fiction magazine in Australia. The short story competition is a rare opportunity for emerging and established writers to see their work published in a national print magazine. There is no entry fee to the competition and each published author receives a prize of $500.

The Big Issue editor Amy Hetherington says that the beloved bumper issue isn’t only a highlight for readers and vendors, but an important and increasingly unique showcase of local talent.

“Aside from being a best-selling edition for our vendors, the Fiction Edition is quite an extraordinary opportunity for both big name authors and emerging writers who are just starting out,” she says.

“Literary competitions often have a few barriers to entry – such as lengthy application processes and submission fees – but the Fiction Edition is an accessible platform for anyone with a story to tell.”

The Fiction Edition – which boasts 16 more pages than usual editions – was made possible by the generous support of the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund. Submissions were anonymously judged by Melissa Fulton and Claire Cao, as well as The Big Issue editorial team. Original illustrations are by Melbourne-based artist Lynn Bremner. Read more about this year’s contributors here.

The Fiction Edition has provided a launchpad for writers who’ve gone on to have prolific literary careers. Crime writer Jane Harper was inspired to write her international bestseller The Dry after her short story ‘Spiders and Flies’ was published in the 2014 Fiction Edition. Melissa Manning’s 2018 story ‘Stone’ formed part of her Smokehouse collection, which won the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Fiction in 2022. Other writers discovered through the submissions process have gone on to win the Miles Franklin and Vogel Literary Awards.

Copies are available for $9 from The Big Issue vendors around the country. Vendors are equipped for cash, card and app payments. Readers who aren’t close to a vendor can purchase the magazine through our online store or subscribe and support our Women’s Workforce.


The Big Issue spokespersons, authors and judges are available for media. For more information and to confirm media opportunities, contact:

Maree Agapitos | Media and Communications Lead | (03) 9663 4533 | 0418 124 190

About The Big Issue
The Big Issue is an independent, not-for-profit organisation dedicated to supporting and creating work opportunities for people experiencing homelessness, marginalisation and disadvantage. The Big Issue is best known for its fortnightly street magazine, which has put more than $35 million collectively into vendors’ pockets.
Alongside the magazine The Big Issue has additional programs such as the Women’s Workforce, Community Street Soccer Program and The Big Issue Classroom. For more information visit

About the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund
The Copyright Agency is a not-for-profit rights management organisation that ensures artists, writers and publishers are fairly rewarded for the reproduction of their work.
The Agency’s Cultural Fund provides grants to creative individuals and organisations for a diverse range of projects which aim to enrich Australian cultural life. This project is supported by the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund.

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