The Polari First Book Prize is seeking submissions for its third contest.

The award is open to any first book which “explores the queer experience” and has been published in the UK within twelve months of the February 1st 2011 closing date.

Poetry, prose, fiction and non-fiction are all welcome, as are self-published works in print or digital format.

A long list will be announced at the 2011 London Literature Festival at the Southbank Centre in July with a short list published at the end of September.

The winner will be announced in November at Polari’s 4th birthday.

Judges include Polari creator and author Paul Burston, literary critic and financial Times associate editor Suzi Feay and Rachel Holmes, head of literature and spoken word at the Southbank Centre.

Ms Holmes said: “Queer culture has come of age. The Polari First Book award recognises, encourages and celebrates the inventiveness, distinctiveness and excellence of the very best of queer writing in all its forms and in all its diversity.”