Archive December 2022

Submissions Open for Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry

Here’s a new year’s resolution for you: Give your book a fighting chance to get published! For poets in the Upper Midwest, there’s no better way to get the ball rolling than by submitting to Milkweed Editions’ Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry, which offers $10,000 and publication of a collection by a poet currently residing in Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, or Wisconsin.

Using only the online submission system, submit one unpublished poetry manuscript of at least forty-eight pages by January 15. There is no entry fee, and poets may be at any stage in their career. Maggie Smith will judge. View the website for complete guidelines.

Established in 2011, the Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry aims to support outstanding poets from the Upper Midwest by bringing their work to the attention of a national audience. In addition to the financial award and publication, the winning poet will receive a standard royalty contract, national distribution, and a robust marketing and publicity campaign by Milkweed Editions, a nonprofit literary press based in Minneapolis. The 2022 Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry went to K. Iver for Short Film Starring My Beloved’s Red Bronco, selected by Tyehimba Jess and featured in the current issue of Poets & Writers Magazine in Page One: Where New and Noteworthy Books Begin.

Upcoming Contest Deadlines

Celebrate the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023 in literary style by submitting to contests with deadlines of December 31 and January 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6! Don’t miss the opportunity to receive fellowships offering $43,750 for a nine-month residency at Colgate University, $72,000 and writing space at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City, and $15,000 alongside a yearlong stay in the Bay Area. All contests offer a cash prize of $1,000 or more and four are free to enter. Continue flourishing into the new year, writers! 

Boulevard
Short Fiction Contest for Emerging Writers

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Boulevard is given annually for a short story by a writer who has not published a nationally distributed book. The editors will judge. All entries are considered for publication. Deadline: December 31. Entry fee: $16, which includes a subscription to Boulevard.

Colgate University
Olive B. O’Connor Fellowships

Two nine-month residencies at Colgate University, including a stipend of $43,750, health benefits, and travel expenses, are given annually to poets, fiction writers, or nonfiction writers. The 2023–2024 fellowships will be awarded to a poet and a nonfiction writer working on their first books. Each fellow will teach one creative writing course per semester and give a public reading. Writers who have recently completed an MFA, MA, or PhD in creative writing are among those eligible. Deadline: January 6. Entry fee: none.

Florida Review
Jeanne Leiby Memorial Chapbook Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Florida Review is given annually for a chapbook of short fiction, short nonfiction, or graphic narrative. All entries are considered for publication. Deadline: December 31. Entry fee: $25, which includes a subscription to Florida Review.

Leon Levy Center for Biography
Leon Levy Biography Fellowships

Four fellowships of $72,000, writing space at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City, access to research facilities, and research assistance from a graduate student are given annually to nonfiction writers working on biographies. An additional fellowship, the Sloan Fellowship, is given annually to a writer working on a biography of a figure in the field of science or technology. Deadline: January 4. Entry fee: none.

Mississippi Review
Mississippi Review Prize

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Mississippi Review are given annually for a single poem, a short story, and an essay. Current or former University of Southern Mississippi students are ineligible. All entries are considered for publication. Deadline: January 1. Entry fee: $15 ($16 for electronic submissions), which includes a copy of the prize issue.

The Moth
Poetry Prize

A prize of €6,000 (approximately $6,128) and publication in the Moth is given annually for a single poem. Three runner-up prizes of €1,000 (approximately $1,021) each and publication in the Moth are also given. The four shortlisted poets, including the winner, will also be invited to read at an awards ceremony at the Poetry Ireland festival in Dublin in spring 2023. Louise Glück will judge. Deadline: December 31. Entry fee: €15 (approximately $15) per poem.

North Carolina Writers’ Network
Jacobs/Jones African American Literary Prize

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a short story or an essay that “seeks to convey the rich and varied existence of Black North Carolinians.” The winning entry is considered for publication in the Carolina Quarterly. Black writers who live in North Carolina are eligible. Deadline: January 2. Entry fee: $20 ($10 for NCWN members).

Poetry Society of America
Four Quartets Prize

A prize of $20,000 is given annually for a unified and complete sequence of poems published in the United States in a print or online journal, a chapbook, or a book during the current year. Three finalists, including the winner, will receive $1,000 each. Deadline: December 31. Entry fee: none.

San José State University
Steinbeck Fellowships in Creative Writing
 
Six yearlong residencies at San José State University in San José, California, which include a stipend of $15,000 each, are given annually to fiction writers and creative nonfiction writers. The fellows are required to give one public reading and may be asked to live in the Bay Area during the academic year, as public health guidelines allow. Deadline: January 3. Entry fee: none.

Tupelo Press
Dorset Prize

A prize of $9,000, publication by Tupelo Press, and 20 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. The winner also receives the option of either a weeklong residency at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Massachusetts, or a two-week residency at Gentle House in Port Angeles, Washington, both valued at $1,000. Diane Seuss will judge. All entries are considered for publication. Deadline: December 31. Entry fee: $30. 

Visit the contest websites for complete guidelines, and check out the Grants & Awards database and Submission Calendar for more contests in poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and translation.

Submissions Open for the Black Caucus of the American Library Association Literary Awards

The submission deadline for the annual Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA) Literary Awards is coming up! Given for a poetry collection, a first novel, a book of fiction, and a book of nonfiction (including creative nonfiction) by African American writers published in the United States in the current year, these awards honor literary works that depict the “cultural, historical, or sociopolitical aspects of the Black Diaspora.” Winners in the four categories will each receive $1,000. Books published by small, large, and specialty presses are eligible.

Publishers may nominate books published in 2022 by sending one copy of each title to be considered to members of the awards committee by December 31. There is no entry fee. Visit the website for complete guidelines and a list of jurors to whom books should be sent.

Now in its fifty-second year running, BCALA is devoted to advocating for the “development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources” for the African American community at large and provides professional development for Black librarians. The association’s literary awards, which were first presented in 1994 at the second National Conference of African American Librarians, acknowledge books that “portray some aspect of the African American experience” whether it be from the past, present, or future. Decisions for this year’s awards will be made in January 2023, and the winners will be presented at the American Library Association’s conference in June. 

Upcoming Contest Deadlines

As 2022 winds to a close, give your writing one last chance to shine this year by submitting to contests with deadlines of December 15 and December 30. Awards include a seven-month residency at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts; a weeklong residency at Millay Arts in Austerlitz, New York; publication of poetry and nonfiction books; and $3,000 for a published debut novel. All contests offer a cash prize of $500 or more. We wish you success, writers!

Center for Book Arts
Poetry Chapbook Contest

A prize of $500 and letterpress publication by the Center for Book Arts is given annually for a poetry chapbook. The winner will also receive 10 copies of their chapbook and an additional $500 to give a reading with the contest judge at the Center for Book Arts in New York City in fall 2023, and a free weeklong residency at Millay Arts in Austerlitz, New York, during the Wintertide Rustic Retreat. Deadline: December 15. Entry fee: $30. 

Codhill Press
Pauline Uchmanowicz Poetry Award

A prize of $1,000, publication by Codhill Press, and 25 author copies is given annually for a poetry collection. James Sherwood will judge. All entries are considered for publication. Deadline: December 30. Entry fee: $30.

Essay Press/University of Washington Bothell
Book Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Essay Press will be given annually for lyric essays, prose poems, and works of experimental biography and autobiography that “challenge the formal possibilities of prose.” The winner will also be invited to read at the University of Washington Bothell in downtown Seattle; all travel expenses will be covered. Collaborative, digital, and hybridized work, including text and art, are eligible. Deadline: December 15. Entry fee: $20 (or $25 to receive a copy of a previous or forthcoming Essay Press book).

Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown
Writing Fellowships

Fellowships for a seven-month residency at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts, are given annually to four poets and four fiction writers who have not published a full-length book in any genre. Each fellowship includes a private apartment, a monthly stipend of $1,000, and an exit stipend of $1,000. Deadline: December 15. Entry fee: $50.

Longleaf Press
Book Contest

A prize of $1,000, publication by Longleaf Press, and 25 author copies will be given annually for a poetry collection. The winner will also be invited to give a virtual reading in early 2024. Roger Weingarten, Longleaf’s editor in chief, will judge. Deadline: December 15. Entry fee: $27.

Story
Story Foundation Prize

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Story is given annually for a short story. Deadline: December 15. Entry fee: $25 (which includes a subscription to Story).

Virginia Commonwealth University
Cabell First Novelist Award

A prize of at least $3,000 is given annually for a debut novel published during the current year. The winner and two additional guest panelists (usually the winner’s agent and editor) also receive lodging and travel expenses to attend the First Novelist Award event night at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in fall 2023. A committee of VCU faculty and MFA candidates will judge. Deadline: December 30: Entry fee: none.

Visit the contest websites for complete guidelines, and check out the Grants & Awards database and Submission Calendar for more contests in poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and translation.