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Writing Contests, Grants & Awards

The Writing Contests, Grants & Awards database includes details about the creative writing contests—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, and more—that we’ve published in Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it. Ours is the most trusted resource for legitimate writing contests available anywhere.

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Sponsor and Award Entry Fee Genre Cash Prize Prize includes Application Deadlinesort icon
Nimrod International Journal
Nimrod Literary Awards

Two prizes of $2,000 each and publication in Nimrod International Journal are given annually for works of poetry and short fiction. The winners also receive transportation and lodging to attend...

$20 Poetry, Fiction $2,000 Publication 4/30/16
Glimmer Train Press
Fiction Open

A prize of $3,000, publication in Glimmer Train Stories, and 10 copies of the prize issue is given twice yearly for a short story. A $1,000 second-place prize is also given. The editors will judge. Using...

$21 Fiction $3,000 Publication 4/30/16
Glimmer Train Press
Very Short Fiction Award

A prize of $2,000, publication in Glimmer Train Stories, and 10 copies of the prize issue is given twice yearly for a very short story. Using the online submission system, submit a story of up to 3,000...

$16 Fiction $2,000 Publication 4/30/16
Sarabande Books
Morton and McCarthy Prizes

Two prizes of $2,000 each and publication by Sarabande Books are given annually for collections of poetry and fiction. For the Kathryn A. Morton Prize in Poetry, submit a manuscript of at least 48 pages...

$28 Poetry, Fiction $2,000 Publication 4/30/16
Late Night Library
Debut-litzer Prizes

Two prizes of $1,000 each are given annually for a first book of poetry and a first book of fiction published in the previous year. The winners are featured on the Late Night Library podcast series, and...

$25 Poetry, Fiction $1,000 Reading 4/30/16
Winning Writers
Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction and Essay Contest

Two prizes of $1,500 each and publication on the Winning Writers website are given annually for a short story and an essay. Arthur Powers will judge. Using the online submission system, submit a short...

$18 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,500 Publication 4/30/16
Bird Runner Wildlife Refuge
Jan Garton Prairie Heritage Book Award

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction published in the previous year that "illuminates the heritage of America's mid-continental prairies." Authors and...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 4/30/16
Ghost Story
Supernatural Fiction Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Ghost Story website is given twice yearly for a short story with a supernatural or magic realism theme. The editors will judge. Submit a story of 1,500...

$20 Fiction $1,000 Publication 4/30/16
Redivider
Beacon Street Prize

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Redivider will be given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Amy Gerstler will judge in poetry, Alexandra Kleeman will judge in...

$20 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 4/30/16
Arcadia
Dead Bison Editors’ Prize

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Arcadia will be given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Using the online submission system, submit up to 10 pages of...

$15 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 4/30/16
Leapfrog Press
Fiction Award

A prize of $1,150 and publication by Leapfrog Press is given annually for a short story collection, a novel, or a novella. Sara Pritchard and the editors will judge. Submit a manuscript of at least 22,...

$30 Fiction $1,150 Publication 5/1/16
Southwest Review
David Nathan Meyerson Fiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Southwest Review is given annually for a short story by a writer who has not published a full-length book of fiction. Submit a story of up to 8,000 words...

$25 Fiction $1,000 Publication 5/1/16
Sonora Review
Annual Contests

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Sonora Review are given annually for a poem or group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Mathias Svalina will judge in poetry, Molly Antopol...

$15 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 5/1/16
Los Angeles Review
Literary Prizes

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Los Angeles Review will be given twice yearly for a poem, a short story, a short short story, and an essay. Brynn Saito will judge in poetry, Tom...

$20 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 5/1/16
Maine Arts Commission
Individual Artist Fellowships

A fellowship of up to $5,000 is given annually to a poet, a fiction writer, or a creative nonfiction writer who has lived in the state of Maine for at least one year. Writers enrolled in a degree-...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $5,000 5/5/16
Del Sol Press
First Novel Competition

A prize of $1,500, publication by Del Sol Press, and 20 author copies will be given annually for a first novel. Madison Smartt Bell will judge. Using the online submission system, submit a manuscript of...

$30 Fiction $1,500 Publication 5/13/16
Academy of American Poets
James Laughlin Award

A prize of $5,000 is given annually for a second book of poetry by a living poet that will be published in the forthcoming year. The winner also receives an all-expenses-paid weeklong residency at the...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $5,000 weeklong residency in Florida 5/15/16
National Book Foundation
National Book Awards
Three prizes of $10,000 each are given annually to honor a book of poetry, a book of fiction, and a book of nonfiction written by U.S. writers and published in the United States during the previous year....
$135 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $10,000 5/15/16
Leeway Foundation
Transformation Awards
Awards of $15,000 each are given annually to women and transgender, transsexual, genderqueer, or otherwise gender-nonconforming poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers in the Philadelphia...
$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $15,000 5/15/16
Carve Magazine
Raymond Carver Short Story Contest

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Carve Magazine is given annually for a short story. Submit a story of up to 6,000 words with a $15 entry fee ($17 for electronic submissions) by May 15. Visit...

$15 Fiction $1,500 Publication 5/15/16
Ploughshares
Emerging Writer's Contest

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Ploughshares are given annually for a poem or group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Writers who have not published or self-published a book...

$24 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 5/15/16
Breakwater Review
Fiction Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Breakwater Review will be given annually for a story. Askold Melnyczuk will judge. Submit a story of up to 5,000 words with a $10 entry fee by May 15. All...

$10 Fiction $1,000 Publication 5/15/16
Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition
Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Cutthroat is given annually for a short story by a writer whose fiction has not appeared in a nationally distributed publication with a circulation over 5,000...

$15 Fiction $1,500 Publication 5/15/16
Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society
William Faulkner–Wisdom Competition

A prize of $7,500 is given annually for a novel. A prize of $2,000 is given for a book of nonfiction, and three prizes of $1,500 each are also given for a short story, a novella, and a novel-in-progress...

$40 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $7,500 5/15/16
New Letters
Literary Awards

Three prizes of $1,500 each and publication in New Letters are given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Submit three to six poems or up to 8,000 words of prose with a $...

$20 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,500 Publication 5/18/16
Artist Trust
Grants for Artist Projects

Grants of up to $1,500 each are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and nonfiction writers who are residents of Washington State. Students enrolled in a degree-granting program are ineligible....

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,500 5/23/16
Gival Press
Novel Award

A prize of $3,000, publication by Gival Press, and 20 author copies is given annually for a novel. Submit a manuscript of 30,000 to 100,000 words with a $50 entry fee by May 30. Send an SASE, call, e-...

$50 Fiction $3,000 Publication 5/30/16
Elixir Press
Fiction Award

A prize of $2,000, publication by Elixir Press, and 25 author copies is given annually for a short story collection or a novel. The editors will judge. Submit a manuscript of 120 to 500 pages with a $40...

$40 Fiction $2,000 Publication 5/31/16
Bridport Arts Centre
Bridport Prize

Two prizes of £5,000 (approximately $7,150) each and publication in the Bridport Prize anthology are given annually for a poem and a short story. Two second-place prizes of £1,000 (approximately $1,430)...

$13 Poetry, Fiction $7,150 Publication 5/31/16
BOA Editions
Short Fiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by BOA Editions is given annually for a short story collection. Peter Conners will judge. Submit a manuscript of 90 to 200 pages with a $25 entry fee by May 31. Visit...

$25 Fiction $1,000 Publication 5/31/16
Writers' Village
International Short Fiction Competition

A prize of £1,000 (approximately $1,430) and publication on the Writers’ Village website is given twice yearly for a short story. John Yeoman will judge. Submit a story of up to 3,000 words via e-mail...

$21 Fiction $1,430 Publication 5/31/16
University of Georgia Press
Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by University of Georgia Press is given annually for a collection of short fiction. Using the online submission system, submit a manuscript of 40,000 to 75,000 words...

$30 Fiction $1,000 Publication 5/31/16
Salamander
Fiction Prize

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Salamander is given annually for a short story. Submit a story of up to 30 pages with a $15 entry fee by June 1. Send an SASE or visit the website for...

$15 Fiction $1,500 Publication 6/1/16
Iowa Review
Jeff Sharlet Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Iowa Review is given annually for a work of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction by a U.S. military veteran or an active duty service member. A second-...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 6/1/16
American Short Fiction
Short Story Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in the winter issue of American Short Fiction is given annually for a short story. Submit a story of 2,000 to 6,500 words with a $20 entry fee by June 1. All...

$20 Fiction $1,000 Publication 6/1/16
Writer's Digest
Annual Writing Competition

A prize of $5,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to the Writer's Digest Conference in August in New York City to meet one-on-one with four agents is given annually for a poem, a short story, or an essay....

$25 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $5,000 6/1/16
Nowhere Magazine
Travel Writing Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Nowhere Magazine is given twice yearly for a short story or essay that "possesses a powerful sense of place." Porter Fox will judge. Unpublished and...

$20 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 6/1/16
Willow Springs Books
Spokane Prize

A prize of $2,000 and publication by Willow Springs Books is given annually for a short story collection. Submit a manuscript of three or more stories totaling at least 98 pages with a $27.50 entry fee...

$27 Fiction $2,000 Publication 6/1/16
American-Scandinavian Foundation
Translation Prizes
A prize of $2,500 and publication of an excerpt in Scandinavian Review is given annually for an English translation of a work of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction written in a Nordic language...
$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $2,500 Publication 6/15/16
Bard College
Bard Fiction Prize
A prize of $30,000 and a one-semester appointment as writer-in-residence at Bard College is given annually to a U.S. fiction writer under the age of 40. The recipient must give at least one public lecture...
$0 Fiction $30,000 6/15/16
Towson University
Prize for Literature

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction by a current resident of Maryland who has lived in the state for at least three years. Books published within the...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 6/15/16
Pulitzer Prizes
Prizes in Letters

Three prizes of $10,000 each are given annually to U.S. writers for books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction (including creative nonfiction) published in the United States during the current year. For...

$50 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $10,000 6/15/16
Carolina Wren Press
Doris Bakwin Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Carolina Wren Press is given biennially for a short story collection, a novel, or a memoir by a woman. Using the online submission system, submit a manuscript of at...

$20 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 6/15/16
Philadelphia Stories
Marguerite McGlinn Prize for Fiction

A prize of $2,000 and publication in Philadelphia Stories is given annually for a short story. The winner will also receive travel and lodging expenses to read at Rosemont College in October....

$12 Fiction $2,000 Publication 6/15/16
Crook's Corner Book Prize Foundation
Book Prize

A prize of $5,000 is given annually for a debut novel set in the American South. The winner is also entitled to receive a free glass of wine every day for a year at Crook's Corner Café and Bar in Chapel...

$35 Fiction $5,000 6/15/16
December
Curt Johnson Prose Awards

Two prizes of $1,500 each and publication in December are given annually for a short story and an essay. Anthony Marra will judge in fiction and Eula Biss will judge in nonfiction. Submit a...

$20 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,500 Publication 6/15/16
New Rivers Press
American Fiction Short Story Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication in the anthology American Fiction is given annually for a short story. Using the online submission system, submit a story of up to 10,000 words with a $16 entry...

$16 Fiction $1,000 Publication 6/15/16
New American Press
New American Fiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by New American Press is given annually for a book of fiction. Gina Frangello will judge. Using the online submission system, submit a collection of short stories or...

$22 Fiction $1,000 Publication 6/15/16
Rosebud
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Rosebud is given biennially for a short story. Roderick Clark will judge. Submit a previously unpublished story of up to 5,000 words with a $15 entry fee,...

$15 Fiction $1,000 Publication 6/15/16
The Writer's Center
Emerging Writer Fellowships

Three fellowships are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. Fellows who live within a 250-mile radius of the Writer's Center in Bethesda, Maryland, receive a $250...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $250 Reading 6/17/16
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