Do you have a story to share with the world? Then The Zeenat Haroon Rashid Writing Prize for Women may be the platform for you!

Now in its fifth year, The Zeenat Haroon Rashid Writing Prize for Women was set up to honour Zeenat Haroon Rashid (21 Jan 1928 - 8 April 2017), a founding member of the Women’s’ National Guard at the time of Independence. 

The competition provides an opportunity for Pakistani women to express their voice through writing and supports those who wish to pursue writing as a career. The writing competition carries a cash award of PKR 100,000.

This year, the call for submissions is for short fiction on any subject or theme which uses Pakistan as a canvas or location. The competition is open to all women of Pakistani nationality or Pakistani heritage from ages 18 and above. Entries should be original prose writing in English of no more than 3000 words in length and not published anywhere previously. 

Literary luminaries make up the judging panel for this year’s competition and will look for writing with a distinct and original voice. The panel includes prominent Pakistani literary figures:

  • Mohammed Hanif, novelist. A Case of Exploding Mangoes, Our Lady of Alice Bhatti, and Red Birds
  • Aamina Ahmad, novelist and playwright. The Return of Faraz Ali, The Dishonored (play)  
  • Shandana Minhas, novelist. Tunnel Vision, Survival Tips for Lunatics, Rafina, and Daddy’s Boy.
  • Sarwat Yasmeen Azeem, Literary Editor, Books and Authors section of Eos Magazine, DAWN newspaper. 
  • Shan Vahidy, freelance editor, and permanent co-ordinating judge on the panel

Entries are now open! Submit your entries by 30 June 2023 to participate in the competition.

Full more details on how to enter, and for comprehensive competition rules, visit: