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Welcome to Our March Newsletter

Adam Cohen

We found 40+ free poetry and prose contests with deadlines between March 15-April 30. LOGIN HERE and check them out! Need assistance? Need a password? Let us help. Follow us on Twitter at @WinningWriters.

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest

Deadline: April 1 - No Fee
Our 13th annual humor contest is free to enter. Judged by Jendi Reiter and Lauren Singer. $2,000 in prizes. Submit one poem of any length online.

Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest
Deadline: April 30
In its 22nd year, now sponsored by Winning Writers. Accepts all styles and genres, published and unpublished. Arthur Powers will judge. $16 fee for each entry of up to 6,000 words. $3,000 in prizes. Submit online.

Also open now, our Sports Fiction & Essay Contest, with $3,000 in prizes.

Advertisers: We send this newsletter to over 50,000 subscribers. Ads are just $150 each. On a tight budget? Pressed for time? Advertise to our 22,000 Twitter followers for just $30 per tweet or less. Get the details.

Enter Writing Contests at

Participate in an active online writing community. Improve your writing and get motivated. Get detailed feedback for every poem, short story and book chapter that you write. See how your rank compares to other writers. Over 50 new contests every month. Always free to paid members. Participate for cash prizes. Click here for more information.

Contests open now: Sonnet Poetry Contest (deadline tonight!), This Sentence Starts the Story, Nonet Poetry Contest, Acrostic Poetry Contest, Naani Poetry. Learn more...

Writing Contests at

Recent honors and publication credits for our subscribers

Congratulations to Ruth Hill (featured poem, "The Difficulties"), John Kolyav, Rick Lupert, Maureen Sherbondy (featured poem, "What the Prince Doesn't Know"), Terri Kirby Erickson, Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé, Helene Pilibosian, J.M. Northrup, David Kherdia, Aliyah Jacobs, Elizabeth Wright, and Lesléa Newman. Get more details on their success.



Read a Free Award-Winning Story from 'A Hero For The People'

If you want to write short stories, the best thing you can do is read short stories. A Hero For The People by Arthur Powers, judge of the 2014 Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest, is a collection of highly crafted, highly readable award-winning stories. Read "The Bridge" now for free.

"Arthur Powers is more than a totally captivating, adventurous storyteller, he is a wonderfully accomplished writer who enriches the reader's experience of life. In short, Powers is in that rare company of authors who are impossible to put down."  ~John Reid, founder of the Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest

Arthur Powers - Calls for Submissions

We are a free online resource to help you find paying markets for your poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Updated daily, we report on editors and publishers who are actively seeking submissions, pay standard or competitive rates, and do not charge reading fees. Founded in 2001, is edited by freelance writer Brian Scott (@busyguru). Learn more...

Hope Clark Announces Release of Book Three: Palmetto Poison

Palmetto Poison

Politics turns poisonous in Palmetto Poison, the latest release in The Carolina Slade Mystery Series from award-winning author and editor C. Hope Clark and Bell Bridge Books. Set in rural South Carolina, the series follows the adventures of Carolina Slade, a smart, focused, sometimes over-thinking woman who's learned she's more than a Federal bureaucrat. She likes justice, just her own way.
"Carolina Slade is the real deal—Southern charm, a steely determination, and a vulnerability she'll never admit to. Slade is at her absolute best in C. Hope Clark's Palmetto Poison!"
~Lynn Chandler-Willis, best selling author and winner of the 2013 Minotaur Books/PWA Best First Private Eye Novel Competition

Delizon Annual Short Story Competition

Entries must be received by March 30. Enter the 2014 Annual Short Story Competition sponsored by Delizon Publishers. Awards include:

  • A first-place prize of $1,200
  • A first runner-up prize of $600
  • A second runner-up prize of $120
  • The prize for the fourth through tenth places: $60
  • The 11th to 25th places will receive a gift certificate

We are looking for a story that is bold, brilliant, yet brief. Send in your best work of 1,500 words or less. Click for the complete guidelines and read about our 2013 winners.

Delizon Annual Short Story Competition

E.M. Koeppel $1,100 Short Fiction Award

Writecorner Press

Deadline April 30. Submit unpublished fiction on any theme, up to 3,000 words per entry. Winner receives $1,100. Editors' Choices will receive $100 each. 10 stories will be named Stories of Distinction.

The winning short story and editors' choices are eligible to be published online. Learn more and read "Too Many Stones", last year's Editors' Choice story by Rodney Nelsestuen...

Nimrod International Journal's Literary Awards for Fiction and Poetry

Nimrod International Journal - Awards 34

Deadline: April 30. It's time to enter the 36th annual Nimrod Literary Awards: The Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry and the Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction. The Awards offer first prizes of $2,000 and publication, and second prizes of $1,000 and publication. One of the oldest "little magazines" in the country, Nimrod has continually published new and extraordinary writers since 1956. 

  • Poetry: 3-10 pages of poetry (one long poem or several short poems)
  • Fiction: 7,500 words maximum
  • Fee Per Entry: $20 payable to Nimrod, includes a one-year subscription (two issues)

Winners will also be brought to Tulsa for the Awards Ceremony in October. All finalists will be considered for publication. For complete rules, visit Nimrod's website:

Learn more and read an excerpt from "Boys on the Moskva River", our winning fiction entry in 2013...

Dancing Poetry Festival Contest

Deadline: May 15. Three Grand Prizes will receive $100 each plus their poems will be danced and filmed. All winners will be invited to read at our 21st Festival at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco, September 20, 2014. Each Grand Prize winner will be invited onstage for photo ops with the dancers and a bow in the limelight. Learn more and enjoy "Birth of Writing" by Patricia Wellingham-Jones, a 2007 Grand Prize winner...

Dancing Poetry Festival

On The Premises Short Story Contest (no fee)

On The Premises

Deadline: May 30. The premise of our 23rd contest is "Decisions, Decisions". Submit a 1,000-5,000 word story where one or more characters face an especially difficult decision. Winners receive $40-$180 and publication. There's no fee to enter.

Any genre except children's fiction, exploitative sex, or over-the-top gross-out horror is fine. We will also never accept parodies of another author's specific fictional character(s) or world(s). No exceptions!

Click for details and instructions on submitting your story. To be informed when new contests are launched, subscribe to our free, short, monthly newsletter. On The Premises magazine is recognized in Duotrope, Writer's Market,, and other short story marketing resources.

The Backwaters Prize

Deadline May 31. The Backwaters Prize is an annual award, open to all poets working in the English language, given to the author of the best submitted manuscript of original poems. The prize is $1,000 cash and publication of the winning manuscript. Our judge this year is Patricia Smith. We adhere to the CLMP code of ethics for administering a literary contest. Submit online.

We congratulate our 2013 winner, Zeina Hashem Beck, for To Live in Autumn. Final judge Lola Haskins chose her manuscript from nearly 200 submissions. Zeina’s book will be published in September 2014. Learn more and enjoy "Fresco" from Ms. Beck's manuscript, along with comments from Ms. Haskins...

The Backwaters Press

'Save the Earth' Poetry Prize

'Save the Earth' Poetry Prize

Congratulations to the winners of our 2013 'Save the Earth' Poetry Contest:

  • Olivia Zhao / Blue Valley West High School, KS
  • Stefani Kuo / Deerfield Academy, MA
  • Serafima Fedorova / Miami Arts Charter School, FL
  • Joanne Zapata / Notre Dame High School, NJ
  • Charlotte Zaininger / Princeton Day School, NJ
  • Juliette Kang / The Chapin School, NY
  • Ariana Yeatts-Lonske / Thomas S. Wootton High School, MD

Our 2014 'Save the Earth' Poetry Contest is for 11th and 12th grade students and runs from March 1 through May 31. Visit our website to read the 2013 winning poems and learn more about the contest:

Sponsored by:
John Felstiner, Professor Emeritus, Stanford University
Charles Weeden and the Weeden Foundation

Tiferet Journal Writing Contest

Deadline June 1. $1,200 will be awarded in prizes.

  • $400 for the best poetry submission
  • $400 for the best short story (fiction)
  • $400 for the best essay or interview (nonfiction)

Tiferet is a non-sectarian, non-dogmatic publication and community at the nexus of literature and spirituality.

We publish high-quality poetry, prose, and art that further meaningful dialogue about what it is to be humane and conscious in today's often divisive world.

Learn more and read about our contest judges...

Tiferet Journal

The MacGuffin's 19th Annual National Poet Hunt Contest

The MacGuffin

Deadline June 3. The MacGuffin will award a first prize of $500 in its 19th annual National Poet Hunt Contest. Pulitzer Prize Winner Carl Dennis will judge. Please submit up to 3 poems, an index card with author and poem info, and a $15 check/cash entry fee (checks payable to Schoolcraft College). See our contest flyer.

Mail your entry to:

The MacGuffin
Attn: Poet Hunt Contest
Schoolcraft College
18600 Haggerty Road
Livonia, MI 48152-2696

PSA: Applications Now Being Accepted for ProLiteracy's National Book Fund Grants


Deadline: April 15. Applications are now being accepted for grants from ProLiteracy's National Book Fund (NBF), which supplies books and materials to ad_lt literacy and basic education programs. The resources available through the NBF are from ProLiteracy's publishing division, New Readers Press.

In addition to New Readers Press materials, National Book Fund grants may also be in the form of ProLiteracy's online self-paced professional development courses.

Get more information and apply here.

Calls for Submissions

New at Reiter's Block

Good Christians Don't Feel...

"The liberal church, which prioritizes social harmony and benevolence, may struggle to have a nuanced conversation about anger. As we Episcopalians unpack our legacy of establishment privilege, we should take a fresh look at our checklist of sins from the perspective of the oppressed—those who 'hunger and thirst after righteousness', those whose anger has a just cause and represents a step toward self-determination. In a paradigm where there are only benefactors and sufferers, this perspective goes unheard." [more]

Jendi Reiter is the editor of Winning Writers. Follow her on Twitter at @JendiReiter.

Jendi Reiter

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