Contests and awards of interest to writers, artists, illustrators, and publishers

Gemini Magazine

Gemini Magazine submissions for 2018 are now open. There is no fee for submitting and payment is $10 per published piece. They publish short stories, flash fiction and poetry.

Gemini Magazine now accepts entries for their eighth annual Poetry Open with a first prize of $1,000 plus five additional cash awards. The entry fee is $7 for three poems. Deadline: January 2, 2018. They welcome all styles of poetry on any topic.

Writer’s Block Prize

One first-place winner will receive $500, an opportunity to read at the 2017 Writer’s Block Festival in Louisville, Kentucky on October 21, and publication in The Louisville Review, the literary magazine of Spalding University’s nationally distinguished low-residency MFA in writing program. Please submit an original piece of creative nonfiction, such as personal or lyric essay, personal narrative, memoir, or any other form that involves a creative treatment of a nonfiction subject. Entries must be 4,000 words or less.

$12 ENTRY FEE. Deadline August 15, 2017.

The BookLife Prize

$5,000 Grand Prize. Each entry receives a brief assessment by a Publishers Weekly Reviewer.

The BookLife Prize is an annual writing contest sponsored by BookLife and Publishers Weekly. The prize seeks to support independent authors and discover great books in seven categories: Romance/Erotica; Mystery/Thriller; Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror; General Fiction; Memoir/Autobiography; YA Fiction; and Middle-Grade Fiction. The prize is judged by PW reviewers, editors, acclaimed authors, and publishing veterans, and awards are given to finalists in each category, with a grand prize going to the most outstanding finalist.

The grand prize winner of the BookLife Prize in Fiction will receive $5,000 as well as an author profile in Publishers Weekly.

All finalists will receive a blurb from a best-selling/award-winning author or professional editor serving as a guest judge for the contest, as well as mention in Publishers Weekly.

All entrants will receive a critic’s report, which includes a score as well as a brief written critical assessment of their novel by a Publishers Weekly reviewer.

There is a $99 non-refundable entry fee.

For all the details, go here:

The Scoop on Glimmertrain Contests

Find Glimmer Train on Submittable

NOTE: contest deadlines are always followed by a one-week grace period.

Short Story Award for New Writers (1st place – $2,500):
Welcome in January/February, May/June, and September/October.

Open only to writers who haven’t had any fiction appear (or scheduled to appear) in a print publication with a circulation over 5,000. (Entries must not have appeared in print, but previous online publication is fine.) Most entries run from 1,000 to 5,000 words, but any length up to 12,000 is welcome.

Very Short Fiction (1st place – $2,000):
Welcome in March/April and July/August.
Any length story from 300 to 3,000 words.

Fiction Open (1st place – $3,000):
Welcome in March/April and July/August.

Open to all subjects and themes. Most entries run from 3,000 to 6,000 words, but we invite stories from 3,000 to 20,000 words.

Family Matters (1st place – $2,500):
Welcome in November/December.
Calling for stories about families of all configurations. Most entries run from 1,000 to 5,000 words, but any length up to 12,000 is welcome.

Standard Category ($700):
Welcome in May and November.
Open to all. $2 processing fee. Maximum word count: 12,000. Any shorter length is welcome.

Formatting: They’re not fussy about that because when they read the story, they can change the font style and size if they need to. Double spacing is nice, but not necessary.

Contact info and page count: including that information at the top of your story is entirely optional; word count is helpful, but not required.

Pen name: If you use one, you’re welcome to list both your legal name and pen name, but that is not required.

Ventura County Writers Club 2017 Memoir Contest

The Ventura County Writers Club is accepting entries for its annual 2017 Memoir Contest. “We hope writers of all levels will submit their personal stories,” says contest chairwoman Shelba Cole-Robison. “It’s a great opportunity to write down those memories that you’ve always wanted to turn into a personal or family history.”

The club, founded in 1933, promotes the written word through free lectures, book fairs, workshops, and critique groups.

Deadline: August 15.

Contest place winners receive cash prizes ($150-1st Place, $75-2nd Place and $30-3rd Place) and are included in the club’s bi-annual hardbound anthology.

Entry Fee
VCWC members pay only $10 to enter and non-members pay $15.

Word Count
Stories are to be no more than 1,250 words.

Where to submit
Entries are accepted only through, an online contest site.

Go to for complete rules.

Call Sheli Ellsworth at 805.499.3490 for more information.