Submit Your Work! Writing Contests for the End of 2013

A great way to gain credibility as a writer/author is by submitting to writing contests. Maybe you haven’t finished your book yet or are in between books. There are lots of great contests and journals that are accepting submissions right now for many different types of work, including fiction, non-fiction, fan and flash fiction, essays, short stories, and poetry. These types of contests can help you keep your writing and publishing momentum going. Below is a list that we put together to help you as you think about submitting your work. The following contests have submission deadlines in October, November, and December. We will continue to keep you updated on writing contests in the coming months.

Some of the contests have nominal entry fees and specific deadlines for entry, which you need to pay attention to. We’ve tried to include them here to the best of our ability.

Nonfiction Contest, Judged by Cheryl Strayed

Online deadline: October 15, 2013

“…the raw truth of life: it isn’t always simple or pretty.” -Geoff Bendeck, LUMINANonfiction Editor. Each year, LUMINA hosts a national literary contest in a single genre. This year’s contest genre is nonfiction and the winner will be chosen by Cheryl Strayed. Grand prize: $500 and publication in LUMINA Volume XIII. We’re looking for pieces under 5,000 words and there is an entry fee of $12. Send us your best work and surprise us with your form. For further guidelines, information and to read more about what our nonfiction editor is looking for, go towww.luminajournal.com/contest.

The Briar Cliff Review poetry, creative nonfiction and fiction contest

Deadline: November 1, 2013

$1000 & publication. Submit unpublished story, essay or 3 poems w/ $20. Entrants receive issue. No name on mss. Include cover page with title(s), name, address, email, phone. Deadline: Nov. 1. SASE for results only. Briar Cliff Review Contest, 3303 Rebecca St., Sioux City, IA 51104. www.briarcliff.edu/bcreview

Dogwood Multi-genre contest, $1000 grand prize

Online submission deadline: October 15, 2013

Dogwood welcomes entries in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction for its annual contest with a $1000 grand prize for one winning entry. The grand prize winner will be chosen from winners in nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Winners in the other two genres will receive prizes of $250. Entry fee is $15; all submissions considered for publication in the 13th annual edition of this print and e-pub journal. Only anonymous submissions accepted. Submissions accepted online between August 1 and October 15, 2013. Please use our online submission manager for your submissions at dogwood.submittable.com/submit.

Glimmer Train

Submission deadline: Family Matters: October 31, 2013

Short Story Award for New Writers: November 30, 2013 (open only to writers whose fiction has not appeared in a print publication with a circulation greater than 5000)

One of the most respected short-story journals in print, Glimmer Train is represented in recent editions of the Pushcart Prize, O. Henry, New Stories from the South, New Stories from the Midwest, and Best American Short Stories anthologies. Submit online: www.glimmertrain.org.

$5,000 Miller Williams Arkansas Poetry Prize

Postmark deadline: October 31, 2013

The University of Arkansas Press will accept submissions for the Miller Williams Arkansas Poetry Prize in September and October. One winner and up to three finalists will be published. In addition to publication, the winner will receive $5,000. The series is open to all book-length manuscripts by a single author of 60 to 90 pages, except translations. Individual poems may have been published in chapbooks, journals, and anthologies. There is a $25 reading fee. For more information, visit www.uapress.com or call 800-626-0090.

Truman State University Press
Poetry Prize & Short Fiction Prize

Online/Postmark deadlines: October 31, 2013 (poetry)

T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry: annual award for the best unpublished book-length collection of poetry in English. The winner will receive $2,000 and publication of the winning collection. All entrants receive a copy of the winning book. Reading fee: $25.

The Chariton Review Short Fiction Prize: annual award for the best unpublished short fiction, any theme up to 5,000 words in English. The author will receive $1,000, and the winning story, along with finalists, will be published in the spring issue of The Chariton Review. All U.S. entrants receive a copy of the prize issue. Reading fee: $20. tsup.truman.edu/prizes.asp

Creative Nonfiction: Mistakes Wanted for Themed Issue

Online/Postmark submission deadline: November 1, 2013

For a special issue, Creative Nonfiction is seeking new essays about mistakes—major or minor, tragic or serendipitous, funny or painful. $1,000 for Best Essay & $500 for runner-up. Essays must be true stories, factually accurate, previously unpublished, and no longer than 4,000 words. There is a $20 reading fee (or send a reading fee of $25 to include a 4-issue subscription to Creative Nonfiction—US submitters only). Submit online or by regular mail. Full guidelines at www.creativenonfiction.org/mistakes.

Coal Hill Review Chapbook Competition

Submission deadline: November 1, 2013

Coal Hill Review is interested in publishing a wide range of poetry. We ask that all submissions come through our annual contest. Please review the complete guidelines on our website carefully before submitting. The winner will receive $1,000 and publication in an edition of 200 copies available through Autumn House Press, as well as online in the Spring issue of Coal Hill Review. Manuscripts should be submitted electronically or through the US mail from August 1 to November 1. The final judge is Michael Simms, founder and editor-in-chief of Autumn House Press.

Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Writing Contests

Online/Postmark submission deadline: November 1 and November 15, 2013

One-Act Play and Short Fiction. $1,500 prize each, plus VIP passes ($500 each), reading/staged reading at 28th annual Festival (March 19-23, 2014), and more. $25 entry fee. Deadlines: 11/1 and 11/15 (postmarked). Writing Contest, 938 Lafayette St, Suite, 514 New Orleans, LA 70113. Guidelines and online submissions: www.tennesseewilliams.net/contests.

Anna Davidson Rosenberg Poetry Prize 2013

Postmark deadline: November 15, 2013

Anna Davidson Rosenberg Poetry Prize 2013 on the Jewish experience. Please submit 1-2 one-page poems, single space, submit in quadruplicate hard copy, cover page with contact information and list of poems. No email submissions. Deadline: November 15, 2013. NO FEE. For more information, visit www.poeticamagazine.com.

The Fiddlehead: Special Subscription Offer & Annual Contest

Postmark Deadline: December 1, 2013

Special Subscription Rate for Creative Writing Faculty & Students: Subscribe now to The Fiddlehead, Atlantic Canada’s International Literary Magazine, and save an additional 25%! Click on the image to access the .pdf order form. But hurry—this special offer ends January 31, 2014. Take a shot at literary fame & fortune! Enter The Fiddlehead’s 23rd annual contest in poetry and short fiction. Prizes: $2000 CAD for the winners + publication payment and $250 CAD for the honourable mentions + publication payment. Entry fee: $30 for Canadian residents/$36 all others. Visit thefiddlehead.ca for more details.

The Harper’s Bazaar Short Story Prize

Deadline: December 13, 2013

The Harper’s Bazaar Short Story Prize is open to published and novice writers alike. Entrants should submit an original short story (up to 3,000 words) on the subject of ‘spring.’ http://www.harpersbazaar.co.uk/going-out/who-what-where/short-story-competition

Press 53 Award for Short Fiction

Online submission deadline: December 31, 2013

Awarded to an outstanding, unpublished collection of short stories. Reading Fee: $30. Award: Publication of winning short story collection, $1,000 cash advance, travel expenses and lodging for a special reading and book signing party at Press 53 headquarters at the Community Arts Café in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina, attendance to the 2014 Press 53/Prime Number Magazine Gathering of Writers, and ten copies of the book. Enter September 1, 2013–December 31, 2013; finalists announced March 1, 2014; winner announced on May 3, 2014 (National Press 53 Day). Complete details at www.Press53.com.

Tartt First Fiction Award, Livingston Press

Postmark deadline: December 31, 2013

Tartt First Fiction Award’s tenth annual contest is now open. American authors who have not yet published a story collection are eligible. One thousand dollar award, plus publication in trade paper, hardcover, and Kindle. Author receive 100 copies. Manuscript should fall between 150-275 pages. Open to all themes, styles. Twenty-dollar entry fee. Mail to Livingston Press, Station 22, The University of West Alabama, Livingston, AL 35470. We notify all entrants of receipt in January, of the winner in late May. Keep a copy of your manuscript, as we do not return entries. www.livingstonpress.uwa.edu

If you’re interested in learning more about how to maximize your exposure and gain credibility through third-party reviews or by entering contests, contact SDP Publishing. We have extensive experience working with authors to submit their work to third-party reviewers and contests to help expand their marketing potential.

To receive your free 45-minute consultation, send us a one-paragraph book synopsis, a brief author bio, a list of comparable titles, and the first three chapters of your manuscript. SDP Publishing Solutions will review and set up time to talk with you to provide direction and recommendations on what you need to do to publish your book and get it on the market!

SDP Publishing Solutions, LLC (formerly Sweet Dreams Publishing of Massachusetts) offers optimal self-publishing solutions for authors worldwide. From literary agency representation to worldwide marketing – including international rights – and independent publishing, we provide the best solutions for authors. Our services include developmental editing and copy editing, custom cover design and layout, book marketing, query letter and book proposals, literary agency representation, print and e-book development. We provide the best exposure for your book!

Maximize Your Exposure as an Author: Enter Writing Contests!

We’ve talked a lot about how important it is to get professional reviews to maximize exposure for your independently published book. Another great way to get exposure and gain credibility for your book is to submit your self-published book to book contests. A number of SDP Publishing’s authors have had some great success with both professional reviews and book contests. However, you don’t have to limit yourself to book contests!

Another great way to gain credibility as a writer/author is by submitting to other types of writing contests. Maybe you haven’t finished your book yet or are in between books. There are lots of great contests and journals that are accepting submissions right now for many different types of work, including fiction, non-fiction, fan and flash fiction, essays, short stories, and poetry. These types of contests can help you keep your writing and publishing momentum going. Below is a list that we put together to help you as you think about submitting your work. The following contests have submission deadlines in August and September. We will continue to keep you updated on writing contests in the coming months.

Some of the contests have nominal entry fees and specific deadlines for entry, which you need to pay attention to. We’ve tried to include them here to the best of our ability.

2013 Cobalt Writing Prizes

Submission Deadline: August 15, 2013

Fee: $10

Details:

2013 has been a very busy year for Cobalt. As you may know, we are now utilizing Kickstarter to fund the launching of our book press. We also hosted a baseball writing prize and just released our first all-baseball issue (two parts, on cobaltreview.com). Unfortunately, we didn’t have as much time to get the word out for our 2013 Writing Prizes. In an effort to make the contest more competitive, deadlines have been extended for 30 days (August 15) and entry fees have been discounted 25%. Win money, get published, and support our new press! Submit today www.cobaltreview.com/submit.

Book Contests: Prose & Poetry

Submission Deadline: August 15, 2013

Fee: $20

Details:

Subito Press is now reading for our annual Book Prize for full-length collections of poetry & prose. Julie Carr is the final judge in poetry and Stephen Graham Jones is final judge in prose. Reading fee is $20. There is no page limit for either of our contests. The winning manuscript will be published in October 2014. More info here: subitopress.submittable.com/submit.

Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Poetry Contest

Submission Deadline: August 15, 2013

Fee: $20

Details:

A single entry is 2-4 unpublished poems of any theme with combined length of up to 400 lines. Prize: $1,000, public reading, VIP Festival pass ($500 value) at 28th annual Festival (March 19-23, 2014), and publication. Judge: Robert Pinsky. Poetry Contest, 938 Lafayette Street, Suite 514, New Orleans, LA 70113. Guidelines and online submission:www.tennesseewilliams.net/contests.

Eat This Poem Launches Inaugural Poetry Contest

Submission Deadline: August 15, 2013

Fee: Free

Details:

Are you a hungry writer? Submit your poems to Eat This Poem’s inaugural contest! Poem must have food reference of some kind. Guidelines and prizes listed on website www.eatthispoem.com/contest.

Submit to Gold Line Press’ 2013 Poetry & Fiction Chapbook Competitions

Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

Fee: $15

Details:

Submit to Gold Line Press’s Fiction and Poetry Chapbook Competitions! Send 7,500-15,000 words of fiction, 20-30 pages of poetry. Writers of winning chapbooks receive $500, and 10 copies of the perfect-bound chapbook with ISBN. Gold Line sends an additional 30 to respected literary venues for review. Reading period is July 15-August 31. Trinie Dalton to judge fiction, Susan McCabe to judge poetry. Visit www.goldlinepress.com for complete guidelines.

Gulf Coast’s Barthelme Prize for Short Prose Now Accepting Entries

Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

Fee: $17

Details:

Gulf Coast is now accepting entries for the 2013 Barthelme Prize for Short Prose, judged by Robert Coover. The contest is open to pieces of prose poetry, flash fiction, and micro-essays of 500 words or fewer. Established in 2008, the contest awards its winner $1,000 and publication in the journal. Two honorable mentions will also appear in issue 26.2, due out in April 2014, and all entries will be considered for paid publication. All entrants will receive a one-year subscription to Gulf Coast with their contest fee. Entries accepted both online and via postal mail. Visit gulfcoastmag.org/contests for more information.

The Backwaters Prize

Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

Fee: $25

Details:

The Backwaters Press offers The Backwaters Prize: publication of a book-length (up to 80 pg.) manuscript of poetry. Deadline extended to August 31st! Prize $1000 cash, perfect-bound publication and distribution of winner. 2013 Final Judge: Lola Haskins. See website www.thebackwaterspress.org for complete details and to submit.

The 10th Annual USA Best Book Awards

Submission Deadline: Enter before August 31, 2013, and receive a bonus four-month full-color listing on USABookNews.com;  Final Entry Deadline is September 30, 2013. (All entries must be postmarked on or before September 30, 2013.)

Fee: $69

Details:

The 10th Annual USA Best Book Awards are specifically designed to not only garner MEDIA COVERAGE & BOOK SALES for the winners & finalists but to PROMOTE awarded books to the PUBLISHING & ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRIES! The publishing industry is rapidly evolving and The 2013 USA Best Book Awards puts your book in the center of the action! A printed book is no longer just a printed book.

http://www.usabooknews.com/2013usabestbookawards.html

Gemini Magazine 5th Annual Flash Fiction Contest

Submission Deadline: Postmark/Email submission deadline: August 31, 2013

Fee: $4 entry fee ($3/each additional).

Details:

Knock us out in 1,000 words or less! $1,000 prize. Any subject, style, or genre. Entries are read blind, so everyone gets an equal chance. Second place: $100. Four honorable mentions: $25 each. All six winners will be published online in the October 2013 issue of Gemini. Read previous winners and enter at www.gemini-magazine.com/contest.html.

Short Story Award for New Writers

Submissions Deadline: August 31, 2013

Details:

Open to any writer whose fiction has not appeared in a print publication with a circulation greater than 5,000. 1st place has been increased to $1,500 and includes publication in Glimmer Train. 2nd/3rd: $500/$300, consideration for publication. Results announced November 1. Word count generally ranges 1,500-5,000, though up to 12,000 words is fine. One of the most respected short-story journals in print, Glimmer Train is represented in the Pushcart Prize, O. Henry, New Stories from the South, New Stories from the Midwest, and Best American Short Stories anthologies. Submit online: www.glimmertrain.org.

Red Hen Press Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award

Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

Fee: $25

Details:

Established in 1998, in honor of the poet Benjamin Saltman (1927-1999), this award is for a previously unpublished original collection of poetry. Awarded collection is selected through an annual competition, which is open to all poets. This year’s final judge will be Mark Doty. Award is $3,000 and publication of the awarded collection by Red Hen Press. Name on cover sheet only, 48 page minimum. Send SASE for notification. Entries must be postmarked by August 31. For address and complete guidelines see website: redhen.org/awards-2/bsa/.

Black Warrior Review’s Ninth-Annual Contest is now open!

Submission Deadline: September 1, 2013

Fees: Each entry is $15 and comes with a one-year subscription to BWR.

Winners in each genre receive a $1,000 prize and publication in BWR 40.2, our Spring/Summer 2014 issue. For more information please visit bwr.ua.edu.

Naugatuck River Review 5th Annual Narrative Poetry Contest

Online submission deadline: September 1, 2013

Fee: $20 contest fee includes a .pdf of the journal

Details:

Naugatuck River Review’s Fifth Annual NARRATIVE POETRY CONTEST will be judged by Susan Deer Cloud. First prize is $1,000, second prize $250, third prize $100. Go to naugatuckriverreview.com/contest for guidelines and to link to our online Submission Manager. All winners, finalists and semi-finalists will receive a print copy and be published in the journal. Susan Deer Cloud is the author of five books of poems, most recently Borscht Belt Indian, New and Selected, and Braiding Starlight.

Les Figues Press: NOS (Not Otherwise Specified) Book Contest

Submission deadline: September 15, 2013

Fee: Reading fee: $25

Details:

Guest judge Aimee Bender will select a manuscript of 64-250 pages for publication by Les Figues Press. Eligible submissions include previously unpublished manuscripts of poetry, novellas, prose poems, innovative novels, anti-novels, short story collections, lyric essays, hybrids, and work not otherwise specified. Prize: publication and $1,000; all entrants receive a Les Figues title of their choosing (anthologies excluded). Multiple and simultaneous submissions allowed. See www.lesfigues.com/submit/ for full guidelines.

Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Awards: A Short Story Competition from Writer’s Digest

Submission Deadline: Early-Bird Deadline:  September 16, 2013; Deadline:  October 15, 2013

Fee:  $20 (early bird)

Details:

Choose your favorite genre and enter your best in 4,000 words or less. Genres include Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult Fiction, Romance, Crime, Horror

Prizes include:

  • A chance to win the Grand Prize, including $2,500 and a trip to the 2013 Writer’s Digest Conference in New York City
  • A chance to win one of the six $500 Category First Prize
  • Get a feature about you in Writer’s Digest and on WritersDigest.com
  • Win $100 off a purchase at www.writersdigestshop.com
  • Receive a copy of the 2014 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market

http://www.writersdigest.com/popularfictionawards

The Second Annual Thomas Morton Memorial Prize in Literary Excellence

Submission Deadline: September 30, 2013

Fee: $10

Details:

The Puritan is proud to announce the return of the Thomas Morton Memorial Prize in Literary Excellence! Two winners in the fields of poetry and fiction will receive a generous prize package, including cash ($900/fiction and $600/poetry) and a collection of books (approx. $600 for each winner) from Canada’s most celebrated publishers (including Coach House Books, House of Anansi, ECW Press, and many more). The winning entries will also appear in The Puritan Issue XXIII: Fall 2013 and be honored at a launch party. See our website, www.puritan-magazine.com for submission details! Brave the frontier today!

Short Story Collection Contest, Georgetown Review Press

Submission Deadline: September 30, 2013

Fee: $25 entry fee

Details:

$1,500 and publication for a previously unpublished book of short stories. Manuscripts must be between 150 and 300 typed pages. Please include a cover letter that includes the manuscript’s title and the author’s mailing address, email address, and telephone number. Send to: Short Story Collection Contest, Georgetown Review Press, 400 East College, Georgetown, KY 40324. For full guidelines or to submit electronically, please go to our website: www.georgetowncollege.edu/georgetownreview/.

Diana Woods Memorial Award

Submission Deadline: September 30, 2013

Details:

Lunch Ticket is honored to serve as the host for the Diana Woods Memorial Award in Creative Nonfiction. Creative nonfiction authors are invited to submit an essay on the subject of their choice. Winners will receive a cash prize and their work will be featured in the next issue of Lunch Ticket. Please visit lunchticket.org/the-diana-woods-memorial-award/ for submission guidelines. Reading period is August and September for publication in December.

Juniper Prize for Poetry

Submission Deadline: Submissions will only be accepted between August 1 and September 30

Fee: $25

Details:

The Juniper Prize for Poetry is awarded annually for an original manuscript of poems. The University of Massachusetts Press publishes the winning manuscript, and the author receives a $1,500 award upon publication. During even-numbered years (2014, 2016, 2018), the judges will consider only manuscripts by writers who already have published at least one full-length book of poetry. Chapbooks do not count as published books. During odd-numbered years (2013, 2015, 2017), and THIS is an odd-numbered year, the judges will consider only manuscripts by writers who have not previously published a book of poetry.

All manuscripts will be judged anonymously by a panel of distinguished poets. The competition is open to all writers in English, whether or not they are U.S. citizens. Mailed manuscripts must have a postmark between August 1 and September 30. http://www.umass.edu/umpress/contact/juniper-prize-poetry

If you’re interested in learning more about how to maximize your exposure and gain credibility through third-party reviews or by entering contests, contact SDP Publishing. We have extensive experience working with authors to submit their work to third-party reviewers and expanding their marketing potential.

SDP Publishing Solutions, LLC (formerly Sweet Dreams Publishing of Massachusetts) offers optimal publishing solutions for authors worldwide. From literary agency representation to worldwide marketing – including international rights – and independent publishing, we provide the best solutions for authors. Our services include developmental editing and copy editing, custom cover design and layout, book marketing, query letter and book proposals, literary agency representation, print and e-book development. We provide the best exposure for your book!