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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.

Sponsor and Award Entry Fee Genre Cash Prizesort icon Prize includes Application Deadline
Center for Documentary Studies
Documentary Essay Prize

A prize of $3,000 and publication in the Center for Documentary Studies online magazine is given biennially for an essay that demonstrates a "reliance on documentary methods, specifically immersive...

$40 Creative Nonfiction $3,000 Publication 2/15/17
Prairie Schooner
Book Prizes

Two prizes of $3,000 each and publication by University of Nebraska Press are given annually for a poetry collection and a short story collection. An editorial board will select finalists; Kwame Dawes...

$25 Poetry, Fiction $3,000 Publication 3/15/17
Bronx Council on the Arts
BRIO Artist Awards for Excellence

Grants of $3,000 each are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers who reside in the Bronx in New York City. Winners must complete a public service activity as part of...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $3,000 12/9/16
Friends of American Writers
Literary Award

A prize of up to $4,000 is given annually for a book of fiction or creative nonfiction published during the previous year by a writer who is a resident of the Midwest (or who previously resided in the...

$0 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $4,000 12/10/16
Virginia Commonwealth University
Cabell First Novelist Award

A prize of $5,000 is given annually for a first novel published during the previous year. The winner and the winner's agent will also receive lodging and travel expenses to attend the First Novelist...

$0 Fiction $5,000 1/14/17
Virginia Commonwealth University
Levis Reading Prize

A prize of $5,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to give a reading at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond is given annually for a first or second book of poetry published during the previous year...

$0 Poetry $5,000 Reading 2/1/17
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