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Contests and Awards

NOTE: Contest information can now be found on the SPAWN blog. Please click the Contests and Awards category to see recent contests.

SPAWNews advises "caveat emptor" when dealing with venues, contests or promotions unknown to you.


The Poets & Writers site has an exhaustive list of contests and grants. Go to and click on Grants & Awards.


Biblioasis has just published what they've been billing as a bit of Christie on crack, a comic-noir slacker-cozy by Terry Griggs called Thought You Were Dead. To celebrate, they're throwing a Revenge-Lit Flash Fiction contest: 250 words on the death of a literary critic. Details at Deadline is June 17th.


The 2009 Hollywood Book Festival will consider published, self-published and independent publisher non-fiction, fiction, children's books, teenage, how-to, audio/spoken word, 'zines, comics, e-books, fan fiction, wild card (anything goes!), unpublished stories, screenplays, genre-based works and biographical/autobiographical works.

All entries must be in English. The grand prize for the 2009 Hollywood Book Festival Author of the Year is $1500 and a flight to Hollywood, CA for their gala awards ceremony.

Each entry must contain the official entry form, including your e-mail address and contact telephone number. All shipping and handling is borne by the entrant. Deadline submissions in each category must be postmarked by the close of business on June 25th. Entry forms are available online at Applications must be accompanied by a non-refundable entry fee via check, money order or PayPal online payment of $75 in U.S. dollars for each submission. Multiple submissions are permitted but each entry must be accompanied by a separate form and entry fee.

Entry packages should include one copy of the book; any relevant marketing material; a copy of your official entry form; and the entry fee or receipt from online payment. Entries should be mailed to: JM Northern Media LLC attn: Hollywood Book Festival 7095 Hollywood Boulevard Suite 864 Hollywood, CA 90028-0893 Phone: 323-665-8068


Poetry Contest. Winner receives full scholarship to workshop. Contest entries must be postmarked by June 27, 2009. 


Send 3 copies of each poem with your name removed. Include a separate cover sheet listing titles or first lines of each submitted poem, your name, address, phone number, email address, and any other relevant contact information. Line limit for each poem is 45 lines.

Submit Poems to: SBSPW Poetry Contest, P.O. Box 30302, Santa Barbara CA 93130

Contest fee is $12 for each 3-poem entry. Checks should be made out to SBSPW.

Note: If the contest winner is not able to attend the workshop, the prize will be offered to the second place contestant.  A refund will be given if the tuition has already been paid.


Miranda Literary Magazine would like to invite writers to submit for anthology projects. Each project is based around a topic or a concept. Anthologies will be in print form, published through Skinny Toe Press–the creators of Miranda Literary Magazine.

The first anthology will be “The Sea.” They are looking for poetry, creative non-fiction, fiction, essays, interviews, book reviews, and other writing where the ocean plays a significant role. Send in your work of 8,000 or less with the words “Sea Anthology” in the subject line to Deadline for submissions is June 30, 2009.


The University Interscholastic League (UIL) and the Texas Book Festival announce the 8th Annual Fiction Writing Contest. Texas junior high and high school students are invited to submit a piece of original fiction, no more than 2,000 words in length, to be judged by Texas authors, some of whom will appear at the 2009 Texas Book Festival, Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 in Austin.

Entries should focus on the theme, “In My Own Backyard.” Judges will look for excellence in use of dialogue, character development, setting, plot, conflict, and resolution. Submitted entries will be considered in three divisions: Grades 7-8; Grades 9-10; Grades 11-12. Authors will enter the division for which they were a student during the 2008-09 school year. Schools are limited to three entries per division. There is no entry fee. Entries must be double-spaced and formatted as a Microsoft Word document, accompanied by a completed contest entry form, then faxed to the Texas Book Festival office at (512) 322-0722 no later than July 1, 2009.

First place winners will be invited to Austin to receive an award and to read their works during the book festival. Winning entries will also be published on the web site. For additional information, contact Bobby Hawthorne at Entry forms are posted at or


NANO Fiction announces their first annual NANO Prize, to be awarded to a flash fiction piece, prose poem, or micro essay of 300 words or less. The winner will receive $500. Contest deadline is August 1, 2009. The entry fee is $12 for the first three pieces, and $2 for each additional piece. Fee includes a one year subscription to NANO Fiction. for complete rules.

While there will be only one winner of the contest, all submitted pieces will be considered for publication. Electronic entries will not be accepted. Mail all entries and cover letters with a check or money order to: NANO Prize, PO Box 667445, Houston, TX 77266-7445. Make all checks payable to NANO Fiction.


The Esquire Fiction Contest begins May 1 and ends August 1, 2009. Go to to complete and submit the entry form pursuant to the onscreen instructions. Limit (1) one entry per person and per e-mail address for the contest. You have to follow the rules. The first and most important rule—besides, of course, that the story has to be original—is that the story must be based on one of three titles provided. The titles are:

  1. "Twenty-Ten"
  2. "An Insurrection"
  3. "Never, Ever Bring This Up Again"

A date, a thing, and a statement. No exceptions.

Second rule—the story cannot exceed 4,000 words. Submit to where you can see the full list of rules and details about prizes.

First prize: publication in Esquire and $2,500.

Starting immediately, Esquire will be publishing great new American fiction exclusively online,


Deadly Ink is adding a second short story contest this year: Holidays Can Be Murder! Stories must have a holiday theme, a deadly incident, no more than 5,000 words. Profits from the sale of the anthology go to Habitat for Humanity and the American Red Cross. Prizes are $100/$50/$25. Deadline is August 15, 2009. There is NO entry fee.

For more information please go to:


To foster awareness of PAST LOVES DAY, Spruce Mountain Press is sponsoring its 3rd annual Past Loves Day Story Contest. No entry fee

Write your true story of an earlier love, in no more than 700 words. The story may be heart-warming or humorous. Just tell it as if you were talking to a good friend.

PRIZES: $100, $75, $50,Honorable Mention(s)

Winning stories will be posted (anonymously, if requested by author) on the website.

Entries must be sent by midnight, August 16, 2009.

By e-mail: Please include story in the body of your email. Regular mail: CONTEST , Spruce Mountain Press, 61 Katuah Rd., Plainfield, VT 05667


2009 Juked Poetry and Prose Contest

Winner in each genre receives $500 and publication in the upcoming print issue, Juked #7.

Submission Deadline:  August 31st, 2009. Entry Fee:  $10

Fiction: one story per entry, no length requirement

Poetry: up to five poems (no more than ten pages total) per entry

Complete guidelines at:


The 2009 Flash Fiction Contest is looking for works that are short in length but linger long in memory: small stories that pack a big emotional punch and make creative use of language. 

Deadline: Postmarked by September 1, 2009

Word Count: Short-short stories up to 1,000 words.

Prizes are $150 and publication, $100 and publication, $50 and publication, Honorable Mention: Publication for complete rules. Entry fee: $7 per story, 3 for $20

Mail manuscripts w/check or money order made out to Newport Review to: Newport Review Flash Fiction Contest, P.O. Box 65, Warren, RI 02885


New Voices Award is given for a children’s fiction or nonfiction picture book story by a writer of color. Open to US residents who have not previously published a children’s picture book. Prize $1,000 plus a publication contract. Submission period is May 1—September 30, 2009.


Angel Animals Network contest seeks true stories of remarkable women and dog companions who give service in extraordinary ways and fulfill their life's purpose. Each entrant will be considered for publication in Dogs and the Women Who Love Them, to be published by New World Library in Fall 2010. No entry fee. Deadline: September 30, 2009 postmark. 
Info:  (go to website for required entry form)


Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award for imaginative fiction. Submit unpublished, original work of fantasy, fiction, mystery and horror with an ideal length of 1,000—3,000 words. Editors are willing to consider submissions of stories that reach beyond the boundaries of those genres, take literary and creative risks and tell a good story. Entry fee $10 per entry. Prizes - $1,000 for 1st place, four runners-up $100 each and publication in Rosebud. Deadline October 15, 2009. for more information.


Cordon D’Or-Gold Ribbon International Annual Culinary Academy Awards – Crystal Academy Awards are presented in several categories including culinary literature, illustrated cookbook, cookbook cover and title, international travel cookbook, and self-published cookbook. Prize $1,000 to overall winner. Deadline October 31, 2009. or for more information.


Ten Minute Play Contest—open to US citizens or residents, one entry per person, submit a previously unproduced ten minute play of up to ten pages. No entry fee. Prize is $1,000 Heideman Award. Deadline November 1, 2009.


The Hammet Prize is an award to recognize work of literary excellence by a US or Canadian writer in the field of crime writing. Awards for novels, story collections or nonfiction by one author. No entry fee. Deadline December 1, 2009. Prize – The Thin Man trophy. Entries must be previously published. For more information, contact Mary Frisque at or see the website at


Glimmer Train contests are held monthly. Fees vary. Prizes range from $1,200 to $2,000 plus publication. All stories must be submitted online during the month noted. For more information— or the website



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