This year’s Summer Short Story Award for New Writers is now open for your submissions through August 27! Jai Chakrabarti, author of the new collection A Small Sacrifice for an Enormous Happiness, will select this year’s finalists. The winning writer will receive a $3,000 grand prize, along with online publication and agency review. All submissions are considered for publication. Find all the details below or on our contest page, and submit today!
- The first-place winner receives $3,000, online publication, and agency review.
- The second- and third-place finalists receive cash prizes ($300/$200), online publication, and agency review.
- Submissions of fiction or nonfiction must be under 6,000 words.
- Submitted work must be previously unpublished. This includes personal blogs, social media accounts, and other websites.
- The entry fee is $20.
- Simultaneous and multiple submissions are allowed, though each submission requires a $20 entry fee.
- If your submission is accepted elsewhere, please withdraw your submission on Submittable, or contact us otherwise to let us know the piece is no longer available.
- We do not require anonymous submissions for this contest.
- This contest is for emerging writers only. Writers with single-author book-length work published or under contract with a major press are ineligible. We are interested in providing a platform to new writers; authors with books published by indie presses and self-published authors are welcome to submit unpublished work.
- International submissions are allowed, provided the work is written primarily in English.
- All submissions must be double-spaced with one-inch page margins and use Times New Roman or Garamond.
- The contest’s deadline is 11:59pm PDT on August 27, 2023.
- All entries are considered for publication in New Voices.
- Every submission will receive a response by the end of November. The winners will be announced by the end of the year.
- Friends, family, and associates of the guest judge are not eligible for this award. Consider submitting to the winter contest instead!
- A significant portion of the editorial letter fee goes directly to your feedback editor.
We don’t have any preferences topically or in terms of style. We’re simply looking for the best. We don’t define, nor are we interested in, stories identified by their genre. We do, however, consider ourselves a publication that focuses on literary fiction. Dazzle us, take chances, and be bold.
Jai Chakrabarti is the author of the novel A Play for the End of the World (Knopf ’21), which won the National Jewish Book Award, was the Association of Jewish Libraries Honor Book, was shortlisted for the Tagore Prize, and was longlisted for the PEN/Faulkner Award. He is also the author of the story collection A Small Sacrifice for an Enormous Happiness (Knopf ’23), which was a Good Housekeeping Book of the Month and which the New York Times described as an “exquisite collection.” His short fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, One Story, Electric Literature, A Public Space, Conjunctions, and elsewhere and has been anthologized in The O. Henry Prize Stories, The Best American Short Stories, and awarded a Pushcart Prize and also performed on Selected Shorts by Symphony Space. His nonfiction has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Writer’s Digest, Berfrois, and Lit Hub. He was an Emerging Writer Fellow with A Public Space and received an MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College and is a trained computer scientist. Born in Kolkata, India, he now lives in New York with his family.
Jai says: “I’ve often contemplated fiction as an empathy machine and the short story as its most essential technology by which we might become closer to each other, more intertwined in the messy and glorious lives of strangers and of ourselves. What captivates me about the form is its brevity which, at its finest, allows us to be in conversation with both the mundane and the ineffable. And I love the freedom—the risk taking, the possibility of experimentation, of meandering shapes and signs leading us on unexpected journeys.”
Editorial Letter Option
If you’re interested in getting feedback on your writing, utilize our editorial letter add-on option. Our response to your submission will be accompanied by a one- to two-page letter from an experienced guest editor, who will offer observations on the strengths of the piece as well as opportunities for revision, where a revised version of your story might be a good fit, reading suggestions, and other comments on craft. Though there is a reading fee for this option, a significant portion of the fee goes to your feedback editor. See a sample editorial letter.