Wattpad Celebrates Underrepresented Voices in Literature with the 2018 Watty Awards


Wattpad’s annual writing competition kicks-off with a new category celebrating diversity

The Wattys are back and trailblazing for change! Wattpad, the global multiplatform entertainment company for original stories, is now accepting submissions for the highly anticipated 2018 Watty Awards, the company’s annual global celebration of stories. The largest writing competition on the planet, the Watty Awards have had more than 600,000 entries to date from writers all over the world. In 2018, the Watty Awards will celebrate, elevate, and empower diverse writers with a new category for underrepresented voices in literature.

This year’s Watty Awards will feature The Change Makers, a new category dedicated to diverse voices and perspectives. From life and love, to extraordinary tales, and everything in between, the Change Makers encourages fiction and non-fiction stories from and about people of colour, women, LGBTQ+ writers, and those in the disability community, with the goal of elevating all voices in storytelling.

“The Watty Awards are more than a competition: they’re a way to recognize the diverse, creative, and empowering stories we can’t stop reading,” said Ashleigh Gardner, Deputy General Manager, Wattpad Studios, Publishing. “Now more than ever, the world needs to hear from new voices. We all benefit from seeing things in new ways, and the Watty Awards create a space for different perspectives. We can’t wait to see entries for this year’s awards and the connections writers make with readers around the world.”  

Watty Award winners will have an opportunity to work with Wattpad Studios and partners to adapt their story for TV, film, digital video, or traditional publishing. Select past Watty Award winners include: Katarina E. Tonks’ (@katrocks247) Death is My BFF, which was recently acquired by Sony Pictures Television; Kara Barbieri’s (@Pandean) White Stag, which will be published by Macmillan’s Wednesday Books in January 2019; and Josh Saltzman’s (@JoshSaltzman) Strange Yarns horror anthology, which Wattpad is adapting into a series of short films with The Coup Company. The Kissing Booth, now a global hit film on Netflix, won a Watty Award in 2011.  

The Wattys received more than 280,000 entries in 2017, a 49 per cent increase in submissions from 2016. In the two-month entry period between June and August of 2017, millions of people spent more than 2.25 billion minutes reading Wattys entries across 10 languages.

Full 2018 Wattys categories:

  • The Change Makers: This award celebrates unique stories from underrepresented points of views.

  • The Originals: This award is for the trailblazers who changed the game, defied genres and categories, broke the rules, experimented with form, and created one-of-a-kind stories on Wattpad.

  • The Breakthroughs: This award is for the up-and-comers in storytelling who delighted readers and caused a stir on Wattpad.

  • The Storysmiths: This award recognizes the stories that wowed us with their commitment to the craft and demonstrated a mastery of style, plot, and character development.

  • The Hidden Gems: This award is for the emerging writers who inspired us with their potential!

  • The Worldbuilders: This award celebrates imaginative storytellers who constructed thrilling new places and transported readers to them.

  • The Heartbreakers: This award celebrates the writers whose mastery of tugging on heartstrings made us feel, for real.

  • The Heroes: This award celebrates the stories that introduced us to characters we related to, who made us feel for them, who showed us a new way of looking at the world. A great character stays with the reader long after the story’s done—these stories did just that.

  • The Contemporaries: This award is for the the highly popular, high-concept, well written stories on Wattpad.

  • The Revisionists: This award celebrates those who remix, reimagine, and reinvigorate fictional stories, worlds, or characters we know and love.

  • The Wild Cards: This award is for the stories that showed promise in many different categories but didn’t fit into any single category. The stories that had Wattpad HQ hooked and showed a promise and literary merit that could NOT be ignored.

  • The Poets: This award celebrates the poems that capture visceral feelings, vibrant imagery and a mastery of language.

In 2018, writers can submit stories until August 1. Winners will be announced in September.

For more information visit: http://wattys.wattpad.com/