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G&A: The Contest Blog

Earlier this week the Jentel Foundation, sponsor of the Jentel Artist Residency Program, and the Pushcart Prize announced that they have teamed up to grant three residencies to winners of the annual award, which honors poems, stories, essays, and "literary whatnot" nominated by magazines and small presses. This year's recipients of monthlong residencies in the Bighorn Mountains of Sheridan, Wyoming, are Heidi Hart of Salt Lake City and New Yorkers Beena Kamlani and Tom Sleigh.

The residents were chosen from a pool of entries sent in by thirty Pushcart winners who were invited to apply by Pushcart Press editor Bill Henderson. Jim Charleton, a member of the Pushcart board and the application panel of Jentel’s residency program, selected the winners.

The nomination period has closed for the 2009 Pushcart Prizes. The next deadline for presses and magazines to submit outstanding works—all published in 2010—is December 1 of next year.

Jentel is currently accepting applications for its May through December residencies until January 15. U.S. writers who are at least twenty-five years old are eligible for monthlong stays, which include a private room and work space. Each resident also receives a four-hundred-dollar stipend.

 

Last night United States Artists (USA) announced seven writers as 2009 winners of the organization's fifty-thousand-dollar fellowship award, given annually to a total of fifty artists nationwide. The fellows are poets Ai, Brian Turner, and Kevin Young; fiction writers Antonya Nelson, Sapphire—also known for her poetry—and Justin Torres; and graphic novelist Gilbert Hernandez. Playwright Nelo Cruz also received an award.

The recipients were selected from a pool of writers nominated by fellow artists, critics, scholars, and other literary professionals. Nominated writers then submitted applications, and a peer panel chose the winners. This year's panel in literature was comprised of Jeff Chang, Anne García-Romero, Major Jackson, Alan Michael Parker, and Robert Polito.

Garcia-Romero made reference to Federico García Lorca's theory of duende—the power of the unknown that drives the creation of new things—in a write-up about the nominees and recipients of this year's award. "These writers provide us with a stirring collection of texts that reflect the complexity of twenty-first century life in this country," she says. "Infused with duende, these 'newly created things' will also have the potential to change the shape of the way we live."

According to USA, the organization has granted artists ten million dollars since the awards' creation in 2006. A poll of the inaugural winners showed that the majority of the funds were used to develop new projects, finish a project, purchase supplies, or facilitate work-related travel. Fellows also used their grants to volunteer for an arts-related cause or present their work to the public.

In the video below, fellow Brian Turner recites the title poem for his multiple-award-winning debut collection, Here, Bullet (Alice James Books, 2005).

The M Restaurant Group, China-based sponsor of the Shanghai International Literary Festival, is offering two three-month residencies in China and India to writers of any nationality working in English. One residency, in the bustling city of Shanghai, will take place before March 2011, and the India residency—located, by contrast, in a somewhat isolated area near the southern town of Pondicherry—will occur between November 2010 and February 2011. Both residents will receive one thousand dollars each in addition to airfare, lodging, and meals (or, in the case of the Shanghai resident, a stipend to cover meals). Poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers are all eligible.

The residents are encouraged to interact with their respective host communities by participating in at least two events—a workshop in a local school or a literary talk at a bookshop, for instance. The M group will assist writers in organizing their programming.

Details of how to apply are available on the literary festival Web site, but, in short, applicants should submit a project proposal, a personal statement, contact information for two references, and two writing samples totaling no more than five thousand words. An application and proof of residency are also required. All of the materials must be e-mailed to the M group contact, Cordelia Witton, by January 15. Residency recipients will be announced on March 5.

The Colorado Prize given by the Colorado Review, a fifteen-hundred-dollar award for a poetry collection that includes publication by the Center for Literary Publishing at Colorado State University, will be judged in 2010 by the journal's poetry editor Donald Revell. The poet, who has published thirteen collections as well as translations from the French of Arthur Rimbaud and Guillaume Apollinaire, is himself the recipient of a book publication award. Early in Revell's career, From the Abandoned Cities (Harper & Row, 1983) was selected by C. K. Williams for the 1982 National Poetry Series.

Revell's other collections include Gaza of Winter (University of Georgia Press, 1988), Erasures (Wesleyan University Press, 1992), My Mojave (Alice James Books, 2003), Thief of Stings (Alice James Books, 2007), and most recently, Bitter Withy (Alice James Books, 2009). He has also published a book of prose on the life of writing, The Art of Attention: A Poet's Eye (Graywolf Press, 2007).

To enter the Colorado Prize competition, poets may submit manuscripts of 48 to 100 pages by January 14. An entry fee of twenty-five dollars includes a subscription to Colorado Review.

The past Colorado Prize winners and judges are:
2008
Endi Bogue Hartigan for One Sun Storm
selected by Martha Ronk

2007
Craig Morgan Teicher for Brenda Is in the Room and Other Poems
selected by Paul Hoover

2006
Jaswinder Bolina for Carrier Wave
selected by Lyn Hejinian

2005
Karen Garthe for Frayed escort
selected by Calvin Bedient

2004
Rusty Morrison for Whethering
selected by Forrest Gander

2003
G. C. Waldrep for Goldbeater's Skin
selected by Donald Revell

2002
Robin Ewing for Chemical Wedding
selected by Fanny Howe

2001
Geoffrey Nutter for A Summer Evening
selected by Jorie Graham

2000
Sally Keith for Design
selected by Allen Grossman

1999
Stephen Burt for Popular Music
selected by Jorie Graham

1998
Michael White for Palma Cathedral
selected by Mark Strand

1997
Catherine Webster for The Thicket Daybreak
selected by Jane Miller

1996
Bruce Beasley for Summer Mystagogia
selected by Charles Wright

1995
Dean Young for Strike Anywhere
selected by Charles Simic

In the video below, Revell reads from his translation of Rimbaud's Illuminations (Omnidawn Publishing, 2009). A second video from the reading is available on YouTube.

The Academy of American Poets has extended the deadline for its Raiziss/de Palchi Book Award, a five-thousand-dollar award given for an English translation of a book of Italian poetry. Publishers may now submit books through January 30.

The judges for this year's prize are Jennifer Scappettone, a poet and professor of English at University of Chicago; Paolo Valesio, professor of Italian literature at Columbia University; and Lawrence Venuti, a professor of English who works in literary translation at Temple University.

The book prize alternates with a fellowship given to a translator of Italian poetry embarking on a specific project. Past winners of the awards (no winner was selected for the fellowship in 2009) are:

2008 Book Award
Patrick Barron
The Selected Poetry and Prose of Andrea Zanzotto

2007 Fellowship
Adria Bernardi
Small Talk by Rafaello Baldini

2006 Book Prize
John DuVal
Tales of Trilussa by Carlo Alberto Salustri

2005 Fellowship
Ann Snodgrass
Selected Poems of Vittorio Sereni

2004
Andrew Frisardi
The Selected Poems of Giuseppe Ungaretti

2003 Fellowship
Michael Palma
Selected Poems of Giovanni Raboni

2002 Book Prize
Stephen Sartarelli
Songbook: The Selected Poems of Umberto Saba

2001 Fellowship
Emanuel di Pasquale
Sharing a Trip: Selected Poems by Silvio Ramat

2000 Book Prize
John P. Welle and Ruth Feldman
Peasants Wake for Fellini's Casanova by Andrea Zanzotto

1999 Fellowship
Geoffrey Brock
Disaffections: Complete Poems 19301950 by Cesare Pavese

1998 Book Prize
Michael Palma
The Man I Pretend to Be: The Colloquies and Selected Poems of Guido Gozzano

1997 Fellowship
Anthony Molino
Esercizi di tiptologia by Valerio Magrelli

1996 Book Prize
W. S. Di Piero
This Strange Joy: Selected Poems of Sandro Penna 

This month, the Academy is also open to submissions to the Harold Morton Landon Translation Award for English translations, published in 2009, of books of poetry originally written in any language. The deadline is December 31.

PEN American Center and the French-American Foundation are also accepting entries to their respective translation book prizes. Publishers, agents, or translators may submit books published this year by December 14 for the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation, given for a poetry collection, and the PEN Translation Prize, given for a book of poetry or prose. The French-American Foundation awards two translation prizes for a book of fiction and a book of nonfiction (including creative nonfiction) originally in French; the deadline for translations published in 2009 is December 31.

For writers currently working on a translation project, the National Endowment for the Arts is open to applications for its translation fellowships of up to twenty five thousand dollars until January 7. Buona fortuna!

At a ceremony in London, the BBC announced the winner of the fourth annual National Short Story Award, a fifteen-thousand-pound prize (approximately $24,700) given for a single piece of short fiction by a U.K. writer. Kate Clanchy took the prize for "The Not-Dead and the Saved," which was selected from nearly seven hundred entries. Sara Maitland was honored as runner up, receiving three thousand pounds (approximately $4,900), for her story "Moss Witch."

The finalists were Naomi Alderman, winner of the 2006 Orange Award for New Writers, for "Other People's Gods"; Jane Rogers for "Hitting Trees With Sticks"; and Orange Prize winner Lionel Shriver for "Exchange Rates." All of the shortlisted stories were presented last week on BBC's Radio Four, where "the short story continues to hold its own," according to the BBC Web site. Podcasts of the readings are available on the site.

Novelist Dame Margaret Drabble, journalist Tom Sutcliffe, and singer Will Young were the judges.

For writers looking to submit to story competitions on this side of the pond, here's a rundown of this month's contests, all open for entries:
Crazyhorse
's Fiction Prize
Submit a story of up to 25 pages by December 15.

White Eagle Coffee Store Press's A. E. Coppard Prize
Submit a story of eight-thousand to fourteen-thousand words by December 15.

North Carolina Writers Network's Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize
Submit a story of up to twelve pages by December 20.

Boulevard's Short Fiction Contest for Emerging Writers
Submit a story of any length by December 31.

Glimmer Train Press's Fiction Open
Submit a story of two-thousand to twenty-thousand words by December 31.

Ruth Hindman Foundation's H. E. Francis Short Story Competition
Submit a story of up to five thousand words by December 31.

In the video below, the Radio Four recording of Kate Clanchy's story is excerpted: 

Carpe Articulum, a seven-year-old literary review that "embraces all of the peripheral literary arts, including nonfiction, poetry, screenwriting, novellas, short fiction, scientific papers, interviews with accomplished writers, and even photography" has opened its contest for a novella. The winning work will be published in the magazine, and the writer will receive a prize of one thousand dollars.

Novellas of 26 to 150 pages are eligible for submission before January 7. A twenty-five dollar entry fee includes a three-month digital subscription to the journal.

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, a poet and fiction writer, will be the judge. According to her Web site, the author of the novel The Palace of Illusions (Anchor, 2009) and the short story collection Arranged Marriage (Anchor, 1996) often writes on "women, immigration, the South Asian experience, history, myth, magic and celebrating diversity." She teaches writing at the University of Houston.

In the video below, Divakaruni talks about the risks she took in writing her novel The Mistress of Spices (Anchor, 1997).

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