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 Deadline
Sponsor and Award Sustainable Arts Foundation
Writing Awards

Up to five awards of $6,000 each and up to five Promise Awards of $2,000 each are given twice yearly to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers with children. Writers with at least one...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $6,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/4/15
Sponsor and Award Dogwood
Literary Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Dogwood is given annually for a poem, a short story, or an essay. Submit up to three poems totaling no more than 10 pages or up to 22 pages of prose with a $...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/5/15
Sponsor and Award Les Figues Press
NOS Book Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Les Figues Press is given annually for an innovative book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction. Cross-genre collections are also eligible. lê thi diem thúy will...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/15/15
Sponsor and Award Drake University
Emerging Writer Award

A prize of $1,000 will be given annually for a first book of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or graphic poetry, fiction, or nonfiction, published in the last three years. The prize is given in...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Reading Application Deadline 9/15/15
Sponsor and Award John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation
Writing Fellowships

Fellowships of approximately $50,000 each are awarded annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers on the basis of achievement and exceptional promise. Residents of the United...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $50,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/18/15
Sponsor and Award Harvard University
Radcliffe Institute Fellowships

Fellowships of $75,000 each, office space at the Radcliffe Institute, and access to the libraries at Harvard University are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers to...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $75,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/23/15
Sponsor and Award Manchester Metropolitan University
Poetry and Fiction Prizes

Two prizes of £10,000 (approximately $15,550) each are given annually for a group of poems and a short story. The winners will be invited to an award ceremony in Manchester in November. Olivia Cole, Kei...

Entry Fee $27 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $15,550 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/25/15
Sponsor and Award New York Public Library
Cullman Center Fellowships

Up to 15 fellowships are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers whose work will benefit directly from access to the research collections at the New York Public Library...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $70,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/25/15
Sponsor and Award Glimmer Train Press
Family Matters

A prize of $1,500, publication in Glimmer Train Stories, and 20 copies of the prize issue is given twice yearly for a short story about families of all configurations. Submit a story of up to 12...

Entry Fee $18 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award University of Iowa Press
Short Fiction Awards

Two publication awards are given annually by University of Iowa Press for first collections of short fiction. Writers who have not published a book of fiction are eligible. Submit a manuscript of at...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Fiction Cash Prize Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award University of Massachusetts Press
Juniper Prizes

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication by University of Massachusetts Press are given annually for a first poetry collection, a poetry collection, a short story collection, and a novel or novella....

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award Hackney Literary Awards
Novel Contest

A prize of $5,000 is given annually for an unpublished novel. Submit a manuscript of any length with a $30 entry fee by September 30. Send an SASE or visit the website for complete guidelines.

Entry Fee $30 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $5,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award American Academy in Berlin
Berlin Prize Fellowships

Up to five residential fellowships are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers to spend one to two academic semesters in residence at the Hans Arnhold Center at the...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $5,000 Prize includes Residency Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award Ghost Story
Supernatural Fiction Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Ghost Story website will be given twice yearly for a short story with a supernatural or magic realism theme. The editors will judge. Submit a story of 1,...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award Key West Literary Seminar
Emerging Writer Awards

Three prizes valued at $4,000 each will be given annually to emerging poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers who have not published a book with a major publisher. The winners will each...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $4,000 Prize includes Workshop Application Deadline 9/30/15
Sponsor and Award American Literary Review
Literary Awards

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in American Literary Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Using the online submission system, submit up to three poems,...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Pulitzer Prizes
Prizes in Letters

Three prizes of $10,000 each are given annually to U.S. writers to honor books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction (including creative nonfiction) published in the United States during the current year....

Entry Fee $50 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $10,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Zoetrope: All-Story
Short Fiction Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Zoetrope: All-Story website is given annually for a short story. The winner and finalists are considered for representation by several literary agencies,...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Madison Review
Poetry and Fiction Prizes

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Madison Review are given annually for a group of three poems and a short story. The editors will judge. Submit three poems totaling no more than 15...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Boston Review
Aura Estrada Short Story Contest

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Boston Review is given annually for a short story. Jennifer Egan will judge. Submit a story of up to 5,000 words with a $20 entry fee, which includes a six-...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Southern Indiana Review
Mary C. Mohr Award

A prize of $2,000 and publication in Southern Indiana Review is given in alternating years for a poem or a short story. The 2015 award will be given in fiction. ZZ Packer will judge. Submit a...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $2,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Missouri Review
Editors' Prize

Three prizes of $5,000 each and publication in Missouri Review are given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Submit up to 10 pages of poetry or up to 25 pages of prose...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $5,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Crab Orchard Review
Special Issue Feature Awards

Three prizes of $2,000 each and publication in Crab Orchard Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay on a theme. This year's theme is "Family, Enemies, Friends: The...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $2,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Southeast Missouri State University Press
Mighty River Short Story Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Big Muddy, a literary journal published by Southeast Missouri State University Press, will be given annually for a short story. Submit a story of up to 30...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award Whitefish Review
Montana Award for Fiction

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Whitefish Review is given annually for a short story. Rick Bass will judge. Using the online submission system, submit a story of up to 5,000 words with a $...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/1/15
Sponsor and Award American Antiquarian Society
Fellowships for Creative Writers

Fellowships are given annually to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers for monthlong residencies at the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester, Massachusetts, to research pre-...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,150 Prize includes Application Deadline 10/5/15
Sponsor and Award Massachusetts Cultural Council
Artist Fellowships

Up to six grants of $10,000 each are given biennially to Massachusetts poets. Up to six finalists will also receive $1,000 grants. Using the online submission system, submit up to 15 pages of poetry by...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $10,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 10/5/15
Sponsor and Award University of Louisville
Calvino Prize

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Salt Hill Journal is given annually for a work of fiction written in the fabulist experimental style of Italo Calvino. The winner will also receive airfare...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/14/15
Sponsor and Award Alligator Juniper
National Writing Contest

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Alligator Juniper are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Submit up to five poems or a story or essay of up to 30 pages with a $...

Entry Fee $18 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/15/15
Sponsor and Award Indiana Review
Fiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Indiana Review is given annually for a short story. Laura van den Berg will judge. Submit a story of up to 8,000 words with a $20 entry fee, which includes a...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/15/15
Sponsor and Award A Public Space
Emerging Writer Fellowships

Three six-month fellowships of $1,000 each, publication in A Public Space, mentorship from an established author who has contributed to A Public Space, and optional workspace in the...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/15/15
Sponsor and Award Cutthroat
Writing Awards

Three prizes of $1,250 each and publication in Cutthroat are given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and an essay. Natalie Diaz will judge the Joy Harjo Poetry Award; Stuart Dybek...

Entry Fee $18 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,250 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/20/15
Sponsor and Award Sixfold
Short Story and Poetry Awards

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Sixfold are given quarterly for a group of poems and a short story. Using the online submission system, submit up to five poems totaling no more than...

Entry Fee $5 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/24/15
Sponsor and Award Omnidawn Publishing
Fabulist Fiction Chapbook Contest

A prize of $1,000, publication by Omnidawn Publishing, and 100 author copies is given annually for a work of fabulist fiction. Brian Evenson will judge. Submit a manuscript of one or more stories...

Entry Fee $18 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/26/15
Sponsor and Award Arrowhead Regional Arts Council
Career Development Grants

Grants of up to $3,000 are given twice yearly to allow Minnesota writers to take advantage of a specific arts opportunity. Poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers who are U.S. citizens...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $3,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 10/30/15
Sponsor and Award Glimmer Train Press
Very Short Fiction Award

A prize of $1,500, publication in Glimmer Train Stories, and 20 copies of the prize issue is given quarterly for a very short story. Using the online submission system, submit a story of up to 3...

Entry Fee $18 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/31/15
Sponsor and Award Dana Awards
Dana Awards

Three prizes of $1,000 each are given annually for a group of poems, a short story, and a novel or novel-in-progress. Submit five poems of no more than 100 lines each with a $15 entry fee, a short story...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 10/31/15
Sponsor and Award Tucson Festival of Books
Literary Awards

Three prizes of $1,000 each are given annually for a group of five poems, a short story, and an essay, or an excerpt from a novel or memoir. The winners will also be invited to take part in a panel...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Workshop Application Deadline 10/31/15
Sponsor and Award Red Hen Press
Fiction Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Red Hen Press is given annually for a short story collection or novel. Kate Gale will judge. Submit a manuscript of up to 200 pages with a $20 entry fee by October 31...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/31/15
Sponsor and Award Red Hen Press
Graphic Novel Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Red Hen Press is given annually for a graphic novel. Kate Gale will judge. Submit a manuscript of 75 to 200 pages with a $25 entry fee by October 31. Call or visit...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 10/31/15
Sponsor and Award American-Scandinavian Foundation
Writing Fellowships and Grants

Fellowships of up to $23,000 and grants of up to $5,000 are given annually to poets, fiction writers, creative nonfiction writers, and translators for study and research in Scandinavia. For travel in...

Entry Fee $60 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $23,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Briar Cliff Review
Writing Contests

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Briar Cliff Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. The editors will judge. Submit three poems totaling no more than six...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award South Carolina Arts Commission
Artist Fellowships

Two fellowships of $5,000 each are given biennially to a poet and a fiction writer or creative nonfiction writer. Writers who have been residents of South Carolina for two years prior to the application...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $5,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Fiction Collective Two
Catherine Doctorow Innovative Fiction Prize

A prize of $15,000 and publication by Fiction Collective Two, an imprint of University of Alabama Press, is given annually for a short story collection, novella, novella collection, or novel. U.S....

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $15,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Mid-American Review
Poetry and Fiction Contests

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Mid-American Review are given annually for a single poem and a short story. Submit up to three poems for the James Wright Poetry Award or a short...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Southeast Missouri State University Press
Nilsen Literary Prize

A prize of $2,000 and publication by Southeast Missouri State University Press is given annually for a novel, a novella, or a collection of linked stories by a U.S. writer who has not published a novel....

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $2,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Santa Fe Writers Project
Literary Awards

A prize of $1,500 and publication with the Santa Fe Writers Project is given annually for a short story or essay collection, novel, or memoir. Two runners-up will also receive $1,000 each and publication...

Entry Fee $30 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Washington Writers' Publishing House
Poetry and Fiction Prizes

Two prizes of $1,000 each, publication by Washington Writers Publishing House, and 50 author copies are given annually for a poetry collection and a short story collection or a novel. Writers who live in...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award Fiction Collective Two
Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Contest

A prize of $1,500 and publication by Fiction Collective Two is given annually for a short story collection, novella, novella collection, or novel. U.S. writers who have not previously published a book...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 11/1/15
Sponsor and Award New Rivers Press
Many Voices Project Competition

Two prizes of $1,000 each are given annually for a poetry collection and a book of fiction or creative nonfiction by an emerging writer. The winning works are published by New Rivers Press and...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 11/1/15