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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 Prize Prize includes Application Deadlinesort icon
Poetry Foundation
Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowships

Five fellowships of $15,000 each are given annually to emerging poets. Writers who are U.S. citizens between the ages of 21 and 31 as of March 31 are eligible. Using the online submission system, submit...

$0 Poetry $15,000 3/31/13
Shenandoah
Bevel Summers Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Shenandoah's online issue is given annually for a short short story. Submit two copies of up to three stories of no more than 1,000 words each with a $3...

$3 Fiction $1,000 Publication 3/31/13
Carolina Wren Press
Poetry Series

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Carolina Wren Press is given biennially for a first or second book of poetry. Using the online submissions system, submit a manuscript of 48 to 72 pages with a $20...

$20 Poetry $1,000 Publication 3/31/13
Dayton Literary Peace Foundation
Literary Prizes

Two prizes of $10,000 each are given annually for a work of fiction and a work of nonfiction (including creative nonfiction) published in the previous year that “foster peace, social justice, and global...

$100 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $10,000 3/31/13
Four Way Books
Levis Prize in Poetry

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Four Way Books is given biennially to a U.S. poet for a poetry collection. The winner will also be invited to participate in a reading in New York City. James...

$28 Poetry $1,000 Publication, Reading 3/31/13
Inkubate
Literary Blockbuster Challenge

A prize of $5,000 will be given annually to an unpublished or self-published novel that combines elements of literary and mainstream fiction. A second-place prize of $2,500 and a third-place prize of $1,...

$0 Fiction $5,000 3/31/13
Sherwood Anderson Foundation
Fiction Award

A prize of approximately $15,000 is given annually to an emerging fiction writer. Writers who have published up to two books of fiction or a number of stories in literary journals are eligible. Submit a...

$100 Fiction $15,000 4/1/13
Hub City Press
New Southern Voices Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Hub City Press will be given biennially for a poetry collection. U.S. poets who have published no more than one book of poems and who have lived in Alabama, Arkansas...

$25 Poetry $1,000 Publication 4/1/13
Southeast Missouri State University Press
Vern Cowles Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Cape Rock will be given annually for a group of poems. Susan Swartwout will judge. Submit three poems of 120 lines or less, with a $20 entry fee by April 1....

$20 Poetry $1,000 Publication 4/1/13
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 center receive a $250 honorarium each, and others receive...

$0 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $250 Reading 4/12/13
Spoon River Poetry Review
Editors’ Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Spoon River Poetry Review is given annually for a poem. Submit two copies of up to three poems totaling no more than 10 pages with a $20 entry fee, which...

$20 Poetry $1,000 Publication 4/15/13
Omnidawn Publishing
Chapbook Competition

A prize of $1,000, publication by Omnidawn Publishing, and 100 author copies is given annually for a poetry chapbook. Gillian Conoley will judge. Submit a manuscript of 20 to 40 pages with an $18 entry...

$18 Poetry $1,000 Publication 4/22/13
Baton Rouge Area Foundation
Ernest J. Gaines Award

A prize of $10,000 is given annually to an African American author for a book of fiction published during the previous year. Thomas Beller, Anthony Grooms, Phillip Lopate, Francine Prose, and Patricia...

$0 Fiction $10,000 4/30/13
Winning Writers
Tom Howard/John H. Reid Short Story Contest

A prize of $3,000 and publication on the Winning Writers website is given annually for a short story or an essay. A second-place prize of $1,000 is also awarded. John Howard Reid and Dee Konrad will...

$16 Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $3,000 Publication 4/30/13
Fiscal Press
Henry Hazlitt Contest for Business Fiction

A prize of $500 and a $2,000 advance against royalties for publication by Fiscal Press will be given annually for a novel on the theme of business or entrepreneurship. The editors will judge. Using the...

$0 Fiction $2,500 Publication 4/30/13
St. Francis College
Literary Prize

A prize of $50,000 is given biennially for a third, fourth, or fifth published work of fiction. Self-published books and English translations are eligible. Peter Cameron, Kate Christensen, and Jonathan...

$0 Fiction $50,000 5/1/13
Sow’s Ear Press
Chapbook Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Sow’s Ear Press with distribution to Sow’s Ear Poetry Review subscribers is given annually for a poetry chapbook. The winner also receives 25 author copies....

$27 Poetry $1,000 Publication 5/1/13
Zone 3 Press
Creative Nonfiction Book Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Zone 3 Press will be given biennially for a work of creative nonfiction. Submit a manuscript of 150 to 300 pages with a $25 entry fee by May 1. Send an SASE, call, e-...

$25 Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 5/1/13
Hudson Valley Writers’ Center
Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Slapering Hol Press is given annually for a first poetry chapbook. Poets who have not published a book or a chapbook of poems are eligible. Submit a manuscript of 16...

$15 Poetry $1,000 Publication 5/15/13
Emergency Press
International Book Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Emergency Press is given annually for a book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction. Special consideration is given to submissions that are multi-media or cross-...

$20 Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction $1,000 Publication 5/15/13
Mudfish
Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Mudfish is given annually for a single poem. Charles Simic will judge. Submit up to three poems of any length with a $15 entry fee ($3 for each additional...

$15 Poetry $1,000 Publication 5/15/13
Montreal International Poetry Prize
Montreal International Poetry Prize

A prize of $20,000 and publication in the Global Poetry Anthology will be given annually for a poem. Don Paterson will judge. Using the online submission system, submit a poem of up to 40 lines...

$25 Poetry $20,000 Publication 5/15/13
Sonia Raiziss-Giop Foundation
Bordighera Poetry Prize

A prize of $2,000 and bilingual publication by Bordighera Press is given annually for a poetry collection written in English to be translated into Italian. The prize is evenly divided between the poet,...

$0 Poetry $2,000 Publication 5/31/13
University of Georgia Press
Flannery O’Connor Short Fiction Awards

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication by University of Georgia Press are given annually for collections of short fiction. Submit a manuscript of 40,000 to 75,000 words with a $25 entry fee by May 31...

$25 Fiction $1,000 Publication 5/31/13
Astounding Beauty Ruffian Press
Poetry Chapbook Award

A prize of $10,000 and publication by Astounding Beauty Ruffian Press is given biennially for a poetry chapbook by a U.S. poet. Submit a manuscript of 10 to 20 pages with a $25 entry fee by May 31. Visit...

$25 Poetry $10,000 Publication 5/31/13
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