The Practicing Writer 2.0: January 2022
Current competitions and calls for submissions. No fees to enter/submit. Payment for winning/published work. Nothing limited to residents of a single city/state/province.
Welcome, new readers, and welcome back to the regulars!
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IN THIS ISSUE:
Current Contests, Competitions, and Other Opportunities (NO ENTRY OR APPLICATION FEES; PAYING OPPORTUNITIES ONLY)
Submission Alerts (NO SUBMISSION/READING FEES; PAYING CALLS ONLY)
1. EDITOR’S NOTE
Greetings, Practicing Writers:
I’ll keep this introductory note short and sweet, to speed you along to the FOUR subscriber success stories and everything else that awaits you in this issue. (Besides, I’m not quite ready to share any end-of-year thoughts about my own writing practice—check the Featured Resource below.)
May 2022 bring all of us—and our writing practices—health and happiness.
2. SUCCESS STORIES
From Elizabeth Trueblood:
I just wanted to say thank you so much for the Practicing Writer newsletter! I make a note of the opportunities that you mention in the letter each month, submitting if/when I can, and recently the endeavor bore fruit--I have a short story forthcoming from Typehouse Literary Review this May, and I never would’ve learned of the journal if not for The Practicing Writer. I’m still very much an emerging writer, so this is also my first paid publication. I wanted to share my little joy and thank you for all that you do for the community!
From Dana Sonnenschein:
Thanks for all the work you do organizing opportunities for all of us. I submitted to University of Western Australia’s journal Westerly, and they took my poem “Darning” for issue 66.2, which was released today. They pay incredibly well and offer the opportunity to “give back” by spending part of that money on a discounted subscription, which I did, and still saw a sizable amount deposited in my Paypal.
From Leslie Doyle:
Just wanted to send a note that I received a fiction acceptance to Cutleaf after seeing them in your newsletter. Thanks so much for all your efforts--really appreciated.
From F.I. Goldhaber:
I wanted to share a slightly delayed (until publication) success story. You listed the RCWMS 2021 Essay Contest in The Practicing Writer. I sent in an essay, “Searching for Identity: Finding Words.” It won third prize and now has been published, in the Winter issue of South of the Garden.
Please share news from your writing practice that may be connected with this newsletter or our other resources. I love to celebrate such successes in this space!
3. FEATURED RESOURCE
This one’s a little different. I’m going to take the liberty of reprising (with tiny tweaks) something that I included as a reflection in the January 2020 issue of this newsletter.
Longtime readers will recall that in the past, I’ve repeatedly invoked the appeal of author Lisa Romeo’s “‘I Did It!’ List.” As Lisa has explained (including in this blog post):
As writers, we are too quick to dismiss our small(er) accomplishments, the small steps or steady strides that carry us forward toward larger goals. Especially at this time of year, we may be tempted to focus on what we didn’t finish, didn’t get done, didn’t accomplish—and then shoot straight to a new MUST-DO list for the coming year, one that too often smacks of recrimination.
First, let’s pause to look back and take note of the ways we’ve already begun moving in the direction of our dreams. The list is a way of noticing ourselves as DO-ERS.
The emphasis on “small steps” and “steady strides” matters: As Lisa also notes: “The list is not (only) about what got published or where, what I earned, what job or gig I nailed. It’s wider, and deeper, or in some cases, shallower than that.” Her list’s more important purpose is “to pause and take note of all the small things, big things, and in-between things I could say I finished, learned, tried, succeeded at, explored, completed, was challenged by, overcame, and took part in over the year.”
In recent weeks, I’ve observed a kind of variation on the “I Did It!” list on social media, with people sharing pretty major professional (and/or personal) achievements for not just the past year, but also the decade. Somehow, that seems a little too daunting to me.
Maybe I’m just a creature of habit, but I’ve been inclined to return to Lisa’s model as I take stock of 2021 (my own effort is still in-progress). Maybe it’s something that you’ll find pleasing, too. Share what you come up with, or keep it to yourself. But give it a go, if it’s not already part of your practice.
4. CURRENT CONTESTS, COMPETITIONS, AND OTHER OPPORTUNITIES
BETHANY ARTS COMMUNITY APRIL POETRY RESIDENCY
Deadline: January 7. Six-day residency (April 4-9) in Ossining, New York, includes “room, board and $150 stipend.”
LONGLEAF WRITERS CONFERENCE SCHOLARSHIPS
Deadline: January 10. Two programs—the Sundog Scholarship for “emerging BIPOC, LGBTQA+ writers and poets (must not yet have a book published or self-published)” and the Celia Baker Scholarship for “emerging veteran (combat and peacetime) writers and poets (must not yet have a book published or self-published)”—provide “free tuition and accommodations (worth more than $2500)” at this conference in Seaside, Florida.
NOVEL SLICES CONTEST
Free submissions until January 10. For novel excerpts. Six winners will each receive “$175, a copy of the winning print issue, and prime literary agent & publisher exposure.” Judge: Jeanne Mackin.
ANDERSON CENTER DEAF ARTISTS’ RESIDENCY
Deadline: January 15. June 2022 opportunity “for 5 Deaf artists to come together in an ASL-centric environment to create, communicate and exchange ideas….Thanks to support from the National Endowment for the Arts, artists selected to participate in the cohort will receive a $1,100 stipend for the month, reimbursement of up to $500 in travel costs, and more.” (NB: January 15 is also the deadline for applications for the Center’s Jerome Emerging Artist Residency Program, open to applicants from Minnesota and the five boroughs of New York City.)
JANET HEIDINGER KAFKA PRIZE
Deadline: January 15. Prize honors Janet Heidinger Kafka, “a young editor who was killed in a car accident just as her career was beginning….Each year a substantial cash prize is awarded to a woman who is a US citizen, and who has written the best book-length work of prose fiction, whether novel, short stories, or experimental writing. We are interested in calling attention to the work of a promising but less established writer.” Entries, published in 2021, must be submitted by publishers; cash prize is $8,000.
LILITH’S ANNUAL FICTION CONTEST
Deadline: January 15. Seeks “quality short fiction full of heart, soul and chutzpah, 3,000 words or under.” First prize: $250 and publication. “We especially like work with both feminist and Jewish content, and are eager to read submissions from writers of color and emerging writers of any age.” (Hat tip to WinningWriters.com for the updated info.)
LEVIS READING PRIZE
Deadline: January 15 (received). “Awarded by the Department of English and its MFA in Creative Writing program at Virginia Commonwealth University, the prize is given annually in the name of the late Larry Levis for the best first or second book of poetry published in the previous calendar year.” It appears that entries must be made by publishers. “Traditionally, the winner receives an honorarium and [is] invited, expenses paid, to Richmond to present a public reading in the following fall.”
HINDSIGHT JOURNAL CLIMATE CHANGE CONTEST
Deadline: January 18. Sponsored by Mission Zero, this contest confers $600 (first place) and $400 (second place), plus publication, for creative nonfiction submissions on climate change.
ZÓCALO PUBLIC SQUARE POETRY PRIZE
Deadline: January 22. Recognizes “the U.S. writer of a poem that best evokes a connection to place.” Prize includes $1,000 and “the opportunity to deliver their poem at our spring book prize event. Zócalo will also publish the poem on our site alongside an interview with the poet.” NB: “The winning poem becomes the property of Zócalo Public Square, but the writer may republish the poem at a later date with Zócalo’s permission.”
100 DAYS OF DANTE POETRY CONTEST
Deadline: January 31. A collaboration between the Society of Classical Poets and the Calvin Center for Faith and Writing at Calvin University, this competition invites poems “of no more than 30 lines inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy.” Three awards of $300 will be conferred in categories for high school, collegiate, and post-college entrants; one “best overall poem” prize of $500 will also be awarded. Judges: Angela Alaimo O’Donnell, PhD, and James Sale.
AKO CAINE PRIZE FOR AFRICAN WRITING
Deadline: January 31. Awarded for “a short story by an African writer published in English, whether they reside in Africa or elsewhere. The winner is awarded a cash prize of £10,000, and the other four shortlisted writers will receive £500 each.” Publishers must submit entries, which “must have been published in the five years preceding the submissions deadline. For 2022 eligibility, the judges will only consider work published after 31st January 2017.”
VICTOR HOWES PRIZE IN POETRY
Submissions: January 1-31. Victor Howes “was a beloved teacher and advocate of poets and poetry. This prize, funded with a generous donation from his estate, honors and builds on his legacy.” Open to undergraduate English majors currently enrolled at 2- and 4-year colleges in New England, the prize confers “$1000 and an invitation to read at the Student Awards Reading at the Longfellow House-Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site.” NB: Postal submissions only.
JERRY JAZZ MUSICIAN SHORT FICTION CONTEST
Deadline: January 31. “Three times a year, Jerry Jazz Musician awards a writer who submits, in our opinion, the best original, previously unpublished work of short fiction.” Prize includes $100 and publication.
LUMIERE MAGAZINE WRITING CONTEST
Submissions: January 1-31. This annual contest welcomes “both poems and prose (fiction, nonfiction) from all writers. That said, we particularly encourage emerging writers, as well as those who identify as BIPOC, LGBTQIA, disabled, or other marginalized groups to submit to our contest….We seek submissions that have electrifying and inventive narratives, honest and visceral language, and a distinguished sense of craft.” Winners in poetry and prose will each receive $100 and publication. “We will also be shortlisting a few finalists in each category whose works will also be published.” Judges: Luther Hughes and Elaine Hsieh Chu.
ROADRUNNER PRIZES IN FICTION, NONFICTION, AND POETRY
Deadline: January 31. Offers $100 prizes and publication in each category. Open to current undergraduate and graduate students worldwide. (Hat tip to @Duotrope.)
SNARL PROSE & POETRY CONTESTS
Deadline: January 31. Per the website: “Any writer residing in the US and who identifies as marginalized, whether due to their economic status, race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, incarceration or immigrant status, or other oppressed group, is eligible for this contest.” Judges: Diane Glancy and Jason Baltazar. Per the Submittable page, where contest entries should go: “The winner of each contest will receive $300 and publication in Snarl Issue #4: Fall 2022! All entries to the contest will be considered for publication.”
JAMES WELCH PRIZE FOR INDIGENOUS POETS
Deadline: January 31. Awarded “for two outstanding poems, each written by an Indigenous U.S. poet. The prize is named for Blackfeet and Gros Ventre writer James Welch, whose early poems were featured in Poetry Northwest and who went on to become one of the region’s most important writers.” Note that “only poets who have not published more than one book-length collection are eligible; however, previous publication is not a requirement. Eligible contestants must be community-recognized members of their tribal nation.” In addition to a $1,000 award (confirmed via Twitter), “one of the two winning poets will be flown to Seattle to read with the judge as part of the fall Seattle Arts & Lectures series at Hugo House. The other winning poet will be flown to Missoula, MT (the city James Welch called home), to read with the judge at the Beargrass Writing Retreat. These two trips will include travel, lodging, meals, and a very celebratory welcome for the winners.” Judge: Elise Paschen.
PATERSON POETRY PRIZE
Deadline: February 1. Sponsored by The Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College, this is “a $1,000 award for a book of poems, 48 pages or more in length, selected by our judges as the strongest collection of poems published in 2021. The winning poet will be eligible for the monetary prize only if he/she participates in a reading at Poetry Center on the date specified.” (Note also the PATERSON PRIZE FOR BOOKS FOR YOUNG PEOPLE, with the same deadline, which offers a $1,000 prize in “each category: Pre-K - Grade 3; Grades 4 - 6; Grades 7 - 12.”)
PHILIP ROTH RESIDENCE IN CREATIVE WRITING
Deadline: February 1. “Named for Bucknell’s renowned literary alumnus and initiated in fall 1993, the Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing offers up to four months of unfettered writing time for a writer working on a first or second book of fiction or creative nonfiction. The residency provides lodging in Bucknell’s ‘Poets’ Cottage’ and a stipend of $5,000. In the spring semester of 2022, the Stadler Center will accept applications for the 2022–23 Roth Residences (Aug.–Dec. 2022 and Jan.–May 2023).”
REMINDER: Multiple opportunities that were listed in last month’s newsletter remain open at this time.
5. SUBMISSION ALERTS
Open (for new fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and translation) throughout January: NASHVILLE REVIEW. Pays: $25 per poem and $100 for prose and art.
34 ORCHARD similarly receives submissions during January. “We like dark, intense pieces that speak to a deeper truth. We’re not genre-specific; we just like scary, disturbing, unsettling, and sad….We are an international journal and welcome submissions from everyone, all over the world.” Payment: $50. “You will need to have a PayPal address to receive payment; we don’t use any other form of internet cash transfer service. If this doesn’t work for you, we’re happy to send you a paper check. If you are overseas, please ensure you have a PayPal account.”
January is also a fee-free submissions month for SPLIT LIP, “a literary journal that’s totally bonkers-in-love with voice-driven writing, pop culture, and the kind of honesty that gets you right in the kidneys”: NB: “Sometimes we have to shut free subs early due to a really-rad-but-also-overwhelming response.” No limits for submissions from Black writers. Pays: “(via PayPal) $50 per author for poems, memoirs, flash, fiction, and art, and $25 for interviews/reviews for our web issues. Payment for print is $5 per page, minimum of $20, plus 2 contributor copies.”
According to its Submittable page, A PUBLIC SPACE will be open for general submissions throughout January, too. Pays: “an honorarium.”
Re-opening for fiction submissions on January 1: Ireland-based SOUTHWORD. Pays: “€250 per short story published in our new print editions. Payments to contributors outside Ireland can only be made through Paypal.”
Also re-opening in January: THE THREEPENNY REVIEW. Pays: “$400 per story or article, $200 per poem or Table Talk piece.” No simultaneous submissions.
“Three times per year, TIN HOUSE offers a two-day submission period for writers to submit their work. Eligible writers must not currently have an agent, and must not have previously published a book (chapbooks okay).” From January 1-January 3, they’ll be open for submissions from debut novelists (including graphic novels).
BOA EDITIONS’ BLESSING THE BOATS SELECTIONS submissions will close on January 5. “Blessing the Boats Selections spotlights poetry collections by women of color. As the 2021-2023 Blessing the Boats Selections Editor-at-Large, Aracelis Girmay will read submissions and select the final manuscript for publication. Blessing the Boats Selections is named after Lucille Clifton’s National Book Award-winning collection, Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems (BOA, 2000), in honor and celebration of her enduring legacy.” Selected manuscript will receive $5,000 and publication (with standard royalties). NB: Submissions must be sent via postal mail.
NECTAR, “an online literary journal that began in response to the events of 2020 to create space for BIPOC & QT poets,” is open for submissions of poems and stories until January 7. Pays: “Writers will receive a $10 reward for publication, or they may elect to donate their winnings to select charities, in which case NECTAR will DOUBLE the contribution!” (Hat tip: @Duotrope.)
For the fourth “level” of its Elevator Stories series, THIRTY WEST PUBLISHING HOUSE seeks “unpublished, original stories of fiction, CNF, memoir, personal essay, or a hybrid of any,” on the theme of “Destination.” Pays: “$20 USD honorarium after publication. We distribute payments via Venmo or Paypal only.” Deadline: January 9.
THE CREATIVE PANDEMIC, “a space where readers discover creative writing from the queer community,” is open for submissions of short stories, poetry, and “blog-style brain dumps” until January 10. Current theme: “What does ‘chosen family’ mean to you?” Pays: £10.
SHENANDOAH has announced that they’ll be open for poetry submissions from January 1 to January 15. Pays: $100/poem.
Closing January 15: GREAT WEATHER FOR MEDIA, which seeks poetry and prose for its annual print anthology. “We welcome work from writers worldwide. Our focus is on the innovative and unexpected.” Pays (USA-based writers): “one contributor copy, plus $10.” International writers receive one copy.
January 15 is also the deadline for queries for the Look2 Essay series at PLOUGHSHARES, which “seeks to publish essays about underappreciated or overlooked writers. The Look2 essay should take stock of a writer’s entire oeuvre with the goal of bringing critical attention to the neglected writer and his or her relevance to a contemporary audience….The writer can be living or dead and from anywhere in the world (if there are good English translations available). Essays should make note of biographical details that are pertinent to the writer’s work.” Payment: “$45/printed page, $90 minimum per title, $450 maximum per author,” plus copies and a subscription.
ROOM, “Canada’s oldest feminist literary journal,” will also close its submissions window on January 15, for its upcoming “Audacity” issue. Payment: “All contributors will be paid upon publication: $50 CAD per page for all genres, to a maximum of $200 CAD.”
Still another January 15 deadline: ADI, “a new US-based literary journal rehumanizing policy,” seeks “political fictions,” short stories “that examine lives impacted by policy and politics. This should be interpreted expansively and imaginatively. Please familiarize yourself with the range and spirit of our archives; Adi tends toward creative, experimental approaches to political writing, with a particular focus on those on the margins and in the global south.” Pays: “For full-length stories, 2,500 words or more, payment is $500. For flash fiction, under 1,000 words, payment is $200.” (Thanks to AuthorsPublish for the introduction to this one.)
Re-opening for submissions on January 14: (MAC)RO(MIC): “We want stories that are worlds in words, pieces that tell a (mac)ro story in a (mic)ro word count….It has to be either flash fiction or creative nonfiction, 1,000 words or less.” Pays: $15.
ONE STORY will re-open for submissions on January 15. They seek literary fiction, “stories between 3,000 and 8,000 words. They can be any style and on any subject as long as they are good. We are looking for stories that leave readers feeling satisfied and are strong enough to stand alone.” Payment: $500 and 25 contributor copies.
Closing for submissions on January 31: GLASS: A JOURNAL OF POETRY. Pays: $10 (via Paypal or Venmo, on publication).
Open for pitches: DESI BOOKS REVIEW. Payment: $50 per review, “via Paypal within ONE business week of the review’s publication.”
Open for essays from emerging writers: Roxane Gay’s THE AUDACITY. (Scroll down to the “Essays” category.”) “I define emerging writer as someone with fewer than three article/essay/short story publications and no published books or book contracts.” Pays: “All essays are paid a flat fee of $2,000.” NB: Per this missive, submissions will remain open until 24 essays have been secured.
From Becky Tuch at LIT MAG NEWS: “Are you a writer and/or journal editor with something to say? Do you have a unique strategy of finding lit mags to submit to? Do you do a special ritual for every rejection (that somehow magically works)? Are you an editor who desperately wants to tell writers to please stop doing this one thing? Are there things you want to help people with, discuss, gripe about, seek clarification on, when it comes to literary magazines? I am excited to announce a new feature of this site, which will include articles from working writers and editors. These pieces could be serious. They could be instructive. They could be funny and absurd. Anything and everything is welcome.” Pays (per Twitter confirmation): $75/article.
Reminder: Make it a habit to check the CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL website, where titles in development are posted. “If this is your first time, please visit our Story Guidelines page.” Pays: $200 plus 10 free copies.
REMEMBER: Some venues listed in last month’s newsletter remain open for submissions.
6. BLOG NOTES
The newsletter is published just once each month, but there’s always something new on the Practicing Writing blog:
(Monday) Markets and Jobs for Writers (including opportunities that don’t make it into the monthly newsletter)
Midweek Notes from a Practicing Writer
(Friday) Finds for Writers
Please visit, and comment!
Interested in matters of specifically Jewish literary and cultural interest? Please also visit the My Machberet blog (“machberet” is the Hebrew word for “notebook”).
7. NEWSLETTER MATTERS
Information contained in The Practicing Writer is researched carefully but readers should always verify information. The Practicing Writer and its editor disclaim any liability for the use of information contained within. Thank you for following/reading.
We value our subscribers, and we protect their privacy. We keep our subscriber list confidential.
About the editor: Erika Dreifus is a writer, teacher, and literary consultant whose books include Birthright: Poems and Quiet Americans: Stories. A Fellow in the Sami Rohr Jewish Literary Institute and an adjunct associate professor at Baruch College/CUNY, she lives in New York. Please visit ErikaDreifus.com to learn more about her work and follow her on Facebook and/or Twitter, where she tweets “on matters bookish and/or Jewish.”