DISCOVER - New writing from Turkey and the UK

The British Council in Turkey aims to build a bridge between Turkish and UK writers, facilitate dialogue between literary professionals in both countries, and create a platform to showcase works by Turkish and British writers to new audiences.

To support this initiative, the British Council has launched a short story competition, on the theme of ‘diversity’, in partnership with two literary institutions: ITEF-Istanbul Tanpınar Literature Festival in Turkey, and Word Factory in the UK.

Winning stories will be published on a new British Council digital platform, alongside specially-commissioned stories by established authors from Turkey and the UK. All the stories will be translated into the other language (English/Turkish). 


The winners of Discover short story competition have now been announced: 

  • Winner from the UK: Nadine Aisha Jassat, with  her story Jacaranda 
  • Winner from Turkey: Ayşegül Yazmacı, with her story Yasemin 

The stories and biographies of the winners will be published on our website soon.

UK and Turkey writers to take part in the project

  • Yekta Kopan
  • Seray Şahiner
  • Sandra Alland
  • Leone Ross

Please see the biographies of the UK and Turkey writers here.


  • 31 October - 31 December 2017 - Open call for one emerging/early career writer from the Turkey and the UK. 
  • 1st week of February 2018 - Open call winners assessed, selected and announced 
  • February 2018 - All stories translated and edited into English/Turkish 
  • 16 March 2018 – Online publication of the selected short stories on British Council Turkey website 



ITEF - Istanbul Tanpınar Literature Festival was initiated by Kalem Agency. The festival has taken place annually since 2009 and is organized by Kalem Culture Association.

It's the first international literary festival of Turkey focusing on a variety of genres, and to bring together writers, publishers, literary translators, critics, and journalists for a series of inspirational encounters. ITEF celebrates each year in the beginning of May the joy of all literary genres with its Professional Meetings Fellowship Program, Foreign Writers at School events, FABISAD (Fantasy and Science Fiction Arts Association) events, thematic readings and discussions along with parties and gatherings.

ITEF is a thematic festival aiming at a rich and diverse line up. The Festival has welcomed over 450 authors in nine years.


Word Factory has been described by The Guardian as “the national organisation promoting excellence in short fiction”. Founded five years ago by Cathy Galvin, former deputy editor of The Sunday Times magazine and founder of The Sunday Times EFG short story award, Word Factory runs a renowned mentorship award – The Apprentice Award. A monthly programme of events including readings, discussions, masterclasses and reading group, bring together writers from across the UK. Word Factory news and writing advice is available on its website and social media channels. Word Factory believes in developing relationships within literature to support excellence and inspiration.