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 Awardsort icon Entry Fee Genre Cash Prize Prize includes Application Deadline
Sponsor and Awardsort icon A Room of Her Own Foundation
Orlando Prizes

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Los Angeles Review are given twice yearly for a poem, a short story, a short short story, and an essay by a woman writer. Submit a poem of no more...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Arcadia
Nonfiction Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Arcadia is given annually for an essay. Using the online submission system, submit an essay of up to 10,000 words with a $15 entry fee by August 15. All...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Ashland Creek Press
Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature

A prize of $1,000 and an offer of publication from Ashland Creek Press will be given annually for a book of fiction or creative nonfiction that focuses on the environment, animal protection, ecology, or...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Astounding Beauty Ruffian Press
Poetry Chapbook Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Astounding Beauty Ruffian Press is given biennially for a poetry chapbook by a U.S. poet. The editors will judge. Submit a manuscript of 10 to 15 pages with a $20...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center
Poetry Contest

A prize of $1,000 is given annually for a poem. Winners and finalists will be invited to read their poems at Beyond Baroque in April 2016. Submit up to four poems of no more than 40 lines each with a $20...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Black Warrior Review
Writing Contests

Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Black Warrior Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay. Heather Christle will judge in poetry, Alissa Nutting will judge...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Carlow University
Patricia Dobler Poetry Award

A prize valued at $2,000 is given annually to a woman poet over 40 years of age who has not published a book in any genre. The winner receives $1,000; publication in Voices From the Attic, the...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $2,000 Prize includes Reading Application Deadline 9/5/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Cincinnati Review
Robert and Adele Schiff Awards in Poetry and Prose

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Cincinnati Review are given annually for a poem and a piece of fiction or creative nonfiction. Don Bogen will judge in poetry; Michael Griffith will...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Crab Orchard Series in Poetry
First Book Award

A prize of $2,500, publication by Southern Illinois University Press, and a $1,500 honorarium to give a reading at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale is given annually for a poetry collection. U....

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $2,500 Prize includes Reading, Publication Application Deadline 7/8/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Delaware Division of the Arts
Individual Artist Fellowships

Established Professional Fellowships of $6,000 each and Emerging Artist Fellowships of $3,000 each are given annually to Delaware poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. Writers who have...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $6,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 8/3/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Dogfish Head Brewery
Poetry Prize

A prize of $500, publication by Broadkill River Press, and two cases of Dogfish Head beer will be given annually for a poetry collection written by a poet living in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/7/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon 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 Awardsort icon Fairy Tale Review
Awards in Poetry and Prose

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Fairy Tale Review are given annually for a group of poems and a work of prose influenced by fairy tales. Joyelle McSweeney will judge in poetry, and...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Farmingdale State College
Paumanok Poetry Award

A prize of $1,500 and travel and lodging expenses to give a reading at Farmingdale State College is given annually for a group of poems. Submit three to five published or unpublished poems totaling no...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Reading Application Deadline 9/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Gemini Magazine
Flash Fiction Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gemini Magazine is given annually for a short short story. The editors will judge. Submit a story of up to 1,000 words with a $5 entry fee ($4 for each...

Entry Fee $5 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Gival Press
Short Story Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Gival Press website is given annually for a short story. Submit a story of 5,000 to 15,000 words with a $25 entry fee by August 8. Send an SASE, call, e-mail, or...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/8/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Glimmer Train Press
Short Story Award for New Writers
A prize of $1,500, publication in Glimmer Train Stories, and 20 copies of the prize issue is given quarterly for a short story by a writer whose fiction has not been published in a print...
Entry Fee $15 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon 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 short short story. Using the online submission system, submit a story of up to 3,...
Entry Fee $15 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Grayson Books
Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Grayson Books will be given annually for a poetry collection. Mekeel McBride will judge. Submit a manuscript of 50 to 80 pages with a $25 entry fee by August 15....

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Great Lakes Colleges Association
New Writers Awards

Three prizes are given annually to a poet, a fiction writer, and a creative nonfiction writer to honor their first books. The winners each receive an all-expenses-paid trip to several of the 13 GLCA...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $500 Prize includes Application Deadline 7/25/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Gulf Coast
Barthelme Prize for Short Prose

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gulf Coast is given annually for a piece of short prose. Steve Almond will judge. Submit a prose poem, a piece of flash fiction, or a micro-essay of up to...

Entry Fee $17 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Gulf Coast
Prize in Translation

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Gulf Coast will be given annually for a work of translation into English. The prize alternates between poetry and prose; the 2015 prize will be given for...

Entry Fee $17 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Hunger Mountain
Creative Nonfiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication on the Hunger Mountain website is given annually for a work of creative nonfiction. Submit an essay of up to 10,000 words with a $20 entry fee by September 10....

Entry Fee $20 Genre Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/10/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Indiana Review
"1/2 K" Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Indiana Review is given annually for a poem or a work of flash fiction or nonfiction of up to 500 words. Kim Chinquee will judge. Submit up to three poems or...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Journal of Experimental Fiction
Kenneth Patchen Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Journal of Experimental Fiction/Depth Charge Publishing is given annually for an innovative novel. Derek Pell will judge. Submit a manuscript of any length...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Ledbury Poetry Festival
Poetry Competition

A prize of £1,000 (approximately $1,540) and a course at Ty Newydd, the National Writers' Centre of Wales, will be given annually for a poem. Deryn Rees-Jones will judge. The winner will also be invited...

Entry Fee $8 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,540 Prize includes Application Deadline 7/9/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Leeway Foundation
Art and Change Grants

Project grants of up to $2,500 each are given twice yearly by the Leeway Foundation to women and transsexual, transgender, genderqueer, and Two-Spirit poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $2,500 Prize includes Application Deadline 8/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Literal Latté
Poetry Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Literal Latté is given annually for a poem. Submit up to six poems of no more than 2,000 words each with a $10 entry fee ($15 for up to 12 poems) by July 15...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Malahat Review
Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 Canadian (approximately $830) and publication in Malahat Review will be given annually for an essay. Jane Silcott will judge. Submit an essay of 2,000 to 3,000 words with a $40...

Entry Fee $40 Genre Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Mark Twain House & Museum
Royal Nonesuch Humor Writing Contest

A prize of $1,000 will be given annually for a humorous short story or essay. Excerpts of the winning piece will be published on the Mark Twain House & Museum website. Ben Yagoda will judge. Submit a...

Entry Fee $22 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 7/10/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Mudfish
Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,200 and publication in Mudfish is given annually for a poem. Edward Hirsch will judge. Submit up to three poems of any length with a $20 entry fee ($3 for each additional poem) by...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,200 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Munster Literature Centre
Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition

A prize of €2,000 (approximately $2,180) and publication in Southword, an online literary journal published in Cork, Ireland, is given annually for a short story. The winner also receives a...

Entry Fee $16 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $2,180 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Narrative
Spring Story Contest

A prize of $2,500 and publication in Narrative is given annually for a short story, a short short story, an essay, or an excerpt from a work of fiction or creative nonfiction. A second-place...

Entry Fee $22 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $2,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Narrative
Poetry Contest

A prize of $1,500 and publication in Narrative is given annually for a poem or group of poems. The poetry editors will judge. Using the online submission system, submit up to five poems with a $...

Entry Fee $22 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/20/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon New Guard
Poetry and Fiction Contest

Two prizes of $1,500 each and publication in New Guard are given annually for a poem and a short story or novel excerpt. Roger Bonair-Agard will judge the Knightville Poetry Contest; Adam Braver...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction Cash Prize $1,500 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/20/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon New Millennium Writings
New Millennium Awards

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in New Millennium Writings and on the journal's website are given twice yearly for a poem, a short story, a short short story, and an essay that have...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon North Carolina Humanities Council
Linda Flowers Literary Award

A prize of $500 and a weeklong residency at Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities in Southern Pines, North Carolina, is given annually for a work of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction that...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $500 Prize includes Residency Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Ohio Arts Council
Individual Excellence Awards

Grants of $5,000 are awarded biennially to Ohio poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. Writers who have been residents of Ohio for one year prior to the application deadline and are not...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $5,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Omnidawn Publishing
First/Second Book Prize

A prize of $3,000, publication by Omnidawn Publishing, and 100 author copies is given annually for a first or second poetry collection. Claudia Rankine will judge. Submit a manuscript of 40 to 120 pages...

Entry Fee $27 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $3,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon PEN Center USA
Emerging Voices Fellowships

Fellowships of $1,000 each are given annually to emerging poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers who lack access to financial and creative support. Each fellow participates in an eight-...

Entry Fee $10 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 8/10/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon phren-Z
Morton Marcus Memorial Poetry Contest

Sponsored in collaboration with Santa Cruz Writes, a prize of $1,000 and publication in phren-Z is given annually for a poem. The winner will also be invited to give a reading at the sixth...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Reading, Publication Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Press 53
Award for Poetry

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Press 53 is given annually for a poetry collection. The winner will also receive an all-expenses-paid trip to give a reading in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, in...

Entry Fee $30 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Reading, Publication Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Rattle
Poetry Prize

A prize of $10,000 and publication in Rattle is given annually for a poem. A Reader's Choice Award of $2,000 is also given to one of ten finalists. Submit up to four poems of any length with a $20...

Entry Fee $20 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $10,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Red Hen Press
Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award

A prize of $3,000 and publication by Red Hen Press is given annually for a poetry collection. Carl Phillips will judge. Submit a manuscript of 48 to 96 pages with a $25 entry fee by August 31. Call or...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $3,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Red Mountain Press
Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Red Mountain Press is given annually for a poetry collection. Denise Low will judge. Submit a manuscript of 48 to 72 pages with a $30 entry fee ($27 for electronic...

Entry Fee $30 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Rosebud
X. J. Kennedy Award for Creative Nonfiction

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Rosebud is given biennially for an essay. Roderick Clark and Robert Wake will judge. Submit an essay of up to 4,500 words with a $10 entry fee by August 15....

Entry Fee $10 Genre Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon 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 7/24/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Slippery Elm
Poetry and Prose Awards

Two prizes of $1,000 each and publication in Slippery Elm are given annually for a poem and a short story or essay. Using the online submission system, submit up to three poems of any length or...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Snake Nation Press
Serena McDonald Kennedy Award

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Snake Nation Press is given annually for a novella or short story collection. Submit a novella of up to 50,000 words or a short story collection of up to 200 pages...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Snake Nation Press
Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry

A prize of $1,000 and publication by Snake Nation Press is given annually for a poetry collection. Submit a manuscript of 75 to 100 pages with a $25 entry fee by August 31. E-mail or visit the website...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Southern Humanities Review
Auburn Witness Poetry Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Southern Humanities Review will be given annually for a poem of witness in honor of the late poet Jake Adam York. The winner will also receive travel...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Stone Canoe
Literary Awards

Three prizes of $500 each are given annually to a poet, a fiction writer, and a creative nonfiction writer who have a connection to upstate New York. A prize of $500 is also given annually to a U.S....

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $500 Prize includes Application Deadline 7/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon StoryQuarterly
Nonfiction Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in StoryQuarterly is given annually for a work of creative nonfiction. Leslie Jamison will judge. Using the online submission system, submit an essay of up to 6...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 8/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon 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 Awardsort icon The Story Prize
The Story Prize

A prize of $20,000 is given annually to honor a short story collection written in English and first published in the United States in the previous year. Two runners-up will receive $5,000 each. The $1,...

Entry Fee $75 Genre Fiction Cash Prize $20,000 Prize includes Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon The Word Works
Tenth Gate Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication by the Word Works is given annually for a poetry collection by a U.S. poet who has published two or more books. Leslie McGrath will judge. Using the online submission...

Entry Fee $25 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon University of Notre Dame
Ernest Sandeen Prize in Poetry

A prize of $1,000 and publication by University of Notre Dame Press is given biennially for a poetry collection. Writers who have published at least one poetry collection are eligible. Joyelle McSweeney...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 9/1/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Utica College
Eugene Paul Nassar Poetry Prize

A prize of $2,000 is given annually for a poetry collection by a resident of upstate New York. The winner must also give a reading and teach a master class at Utica College in April 2016. Submit two...

Entry Fee $0 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $2,000 Prize includes Reading Application Deadline 8/31/15
Sponsor and Awardsort icon Verse
Tomaž Šalamun Prize

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Verse will be given annually for a poetry chapbook by a poet who has published no more than one poetry collection. Translations into English of works by...

Entry Fee $15 Genre Poetry Cash Prize $1,000 Prize includes Publication Application Deadline 7/15/15