Temperatures have certainly started rising, but there’s no excuse for falling into the summer doldrums just yet…These contests should kick your mind into high gear, and you can truly relax once you’ve submitted your best work!
Our own contest is just about to begin, and we’re here to give you an excellent head start! The Masters Review is looking for stories under 7000 words, written by emerging writers who have a knack for nouns and a facility with phrases! The winner receives $3000, publication, and agency review, and the runners-up also receive cash prizes, publication, and review. Don’t let this chance slip by! Details here.
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: July 31
Now open, Boston Review’s Annual Poetry Contest is a big one, with the winner receiving $1500 and publication. Submissions should be kept to five poems, on ten pages or less, and any poet writing in English is eligible! Judged by the astute and insightful Mary Jo Bang. Submit here.
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: June 1
There’s only a little time left to enter Southern Indiana Review’s writing contest for short prose! Each submission should only be 40-80 pages, whether it is a novella, a novel excerpt, or a creative nonfiction piece. The first-place winner is awarded $2000 and their collection will be published by Southern Indiana Review Press. Judged by David H. Lynn. Don’t miss it!
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: June 1
Offered through Suffolk University, Salamander is working with Molly Antopol to discover amazing new fiction! Each submission must be less than 30 pages, include a two-page cover sheet, and be entirely unpublished. First prize is $1000, second prize is $500, and all entries are considered for publication. Check it out!
Entry Fee: $15 Deadline: June 4
American Short Fiction and brilliant judge ZZ Packer are looking for writers who are confident, concise, and creative—could that be you? Stories must be between 2000 and 6500 words, but multiple entries are allowed. First place receives $2500 and guaranteed publication in an upcoming issue! Details here.
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: June 15
This amazing prize is offered to a promising emerging writer through Bard College, and the winners receive a stipend of $30,000, an appointment as writer-in-residence on campus for one semester, and the opportunity to give a public lecture. Be aware, though, they’re looking for writers who are 39 years old or younger. You’ll need to have published a book in order to apply, but this is the chance of a lifetime! Learn more here.
Entry Fee: FREE Deadline: June 15
This annual short fiction contest is made possible through the generous support of the McGlinn and Hansma families, and they are looking for superbly crafted short stories! The winner will receive $2000 and an award dinner on the campus of Rosemont College, second place receives $500, and third place receives $250. Entries should be 8000 words or less, and simultaneous submissions are allowed. Learn more here!
Entry Fee: $15 Deadline: June 15
Willow Springs Books could be the perfect home for your newest manuscript of short stories, if you have enough nerve to try! Each submission needs to contain at least three distinct stories, totaling at least 98 pages, as well as a cover letter. First place wins $2000 and publication, under the direction of poet Christopher Howell. Submit here.
Entry Fee: $27.50 Deadline: June 15
The Moth is looking for short stories, less than 5000 words, with little constraints beyond that! Only unpublished short stories are eligible, but authors may submit multiple times. The winner receives €3000 and publication in the autumn issue, second place receives a week-long writing retreat, and third place receives €1000. Judged by Kevin Barry. Learn more here.
Entry Fee: €12 Deadline: June 30
In this threefold contest offered by Autumn House Press, contestants can submit manuscript entries for fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The categories are judged by Dana Johnson, Daisy Hernández, and Kimiko Hahn, respectively. Not only do the winners in each contest receive $2500 in prizes and publication, but promotional help as well! Make sure to choose the correct category when you submit, and good luck! Find more details here.
Entry Fee: $30 Deadline: June 30
If you have been hoping for a chance to show the world your talent for poetry, your wait is definitely over with this competition! Judged by the incomparable Ada Limón, the best previously unpublished manuscript of poetry in English will receive $1500 and publication. Each collection should be between 50-80 pages, but you are allowed multiple submissions. Don’t wait!
Entry Fee: $28 Deadline: June 30
This contest has some very stringent requirements, but the prize is almost beyond belief! In order to be eligible for the University of Pittsburgh Press’ award, you must have been published by a reputable journal, magazine, or publisher, before you can submit your collection of short fiction for consideration. The winner of this award, however, will have that manuscript published, and then receive $15,000! Details here.
Entry Fee: FREE Deadline: June 30
Here is a great chance for writers of all stripes, as the Los Angeles Review’s contest rewards authors in creative nonfiction, short fiction, flash fiction, and poetry! Sarah Cannon judges creative nonfiction, Doug Lawson judges short fiction, Ron Koertge judges flash fiction, and Douglas Manuel judges poetry. The winner in each category receives $1000 and publication. Make sure you submit to the correct category! Submit here.
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: June 30
Occurring three times a year, this is the summer installment of Glimmer Train’s contest! It’s only open to writers whose fiction has not appeared in a print publication with a circulation over 5000, and entries are capped at 12,000 words. The winner receives $2500 and publication in Glimmer Train Stories, along with 10 copies of that issue. Submission guidelines here.
Entry Fee: $18 Deadline: June 30
by Kimberly Guerin