The deadline for all contests is Wednesday, March 5
A separate entry form must be submitted for each contest entered. Entries should be submitted to the English Department Office, 202 Andrews. Michael Page, Contest Coordinator (contact me if you have questions, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Entrants should complete an entry form specific to the contest(s) they are entering. (Entry forms are available in the English Department Office, 202 Andrews Hall.)
No past winner of a first prize in any contest is eligible to enter that contest again, except undergraduate Vreeland winners may enter again as graduate students. No more than one prize award will be given to any individual in the same year.
Entrants should submit two typed copies of all entries (single spaced for poetry, double spaced for prose, 1” margins, Times New Roman 12pt font, black ink) and attach the copies to the entry form. Note: Vreeland Award entries need only submit one copy.
Authors’ names must not appear anywhere on the submitted manuscripts. All manuscripts will be recycled after judging.
These contests are open only to currently enrolled UNL students. Students who are UNL employees will have federal and state withholding deductions reflected in their award check. UNL students of any major are eligible for all contests except as specified above.
All winners of these contests will be honored at a public reading in the Dudley Bailey Library, Andrews 229, on Monday, April 28 at 3:00 pm and at the English Department’s Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, April 30 at 1:30 pm in the Bailey Library.
Winners will be announced on the English Department Website by April 18.
The Vreeland Awards
The competition is open to undergraduate and graduate students majoring in English. Up to two prizes: undergraduate $1,000 and graduate $2,000. Material: A portfolio of representative creative writing in single or various genres. Prose portfolios are limited to 50 pages of text, double-spaced (approximately 12,000 words). Poetry portfolios are limited to 20 pages or 20 individual poems. Portfolios consisting of both poetry and prose should not exceed the 50 page/12,000 word overall limit. Literary essays may be included, but the award must be based on achievement in creative, not critical, work. Applicants should prepare brief statements (250 words) of their experiences and aims as writers for attachment to the entry.
Mari Sandoz/Prairie Schooner
Awards for Short Story
The competition is open to graduate students in English. Three prizes: First Prize $400, Second Prize $100, Third Prize $75. Each entry is limited to two pieces, totaling no more than 7,000 words.
Marjorie Stover Awards for Short Story
The competition is open to undergraduate majors in the College of Arts and Sciences currently enrolled in the English Department. Two prizes: First Prize $300, Second Prize $100. Each prize is to be awarded for an outstanding original short story. Outstanding children’s stories are especially welcome. Entries are limited to 20 pages of prose (approximately 5,000 words). Each entry is limited to two pieces.
The Susan Atefat Peckham Fellowship
The competition is open to graduate students in English. One prize of $500. Submit either one creative nonfiction piece (limited to 20 pages of prose – approximately 5,000 words) or a maximum of 200 lines of poetry in any combination.
*Full-time employees or lecturers are not eligible for fellowships.*
Gaffney/Academy of American Poets Award for Poetry
The competition is open to graduate students in English. Three prizes: First Prize $400, Second Prize $200, Third Prize $100. Each poet may submit no more than 200 lines of poetry in any combination. Winner of first prize will be included in the Academy’s announcement of winners, which appears in the summer issue of American Poet, the Academy’s journal. In addition, as funds permit, the Academy will arrange to publish selected winners in anthologies or nationally distributed literary journals.
Undergraduate Student Awards
The competition is open to undergraduate majors in the College of Arts and Sciences currently enrolled in the English Department. Three prizes: First Prize $800 (the Irby F. Wood Prize for Undergraduate Poetry), Second Prize $150 (Gaffney Prize for Undergraduate Poetry), third Prize $100 (Gaffney Prize for Undergraduate Poetry). Each entry is limited to no more than 200 lines of poetry in any combination.
Wilbur Gaffney Essay Contest
Open to undergraduates only. Two prizes: First prize $300, Second Prize $100. Entries are limited to 5,000 words in length. Topic open; personal, academic (critical/research), or creative nonfiction essays welcome. Essays should demonstrate originality, clarity, and rhetorical purpose and effectiveness.
Ted Kooser Awards for Outstanding First-Year Writers
The competition is open to students nominated by their first-year writing teacher for this award. Instructors may nominate only one student from each first-year writing section (both spring and fall semester). The nominated submission will consist of up to ten pages of written work. A monetary prize of $300 will be awarded to the recipient and $100 will be awarded to the instructor. The prizes will be presented at the English Department Awards Celebration.
The Ted Kooser Ballad Contest
The competition is open to all members of the UNL English department community – faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students. The winner will receive a $250 prize. Entries should be submitted directly to Ted Kooser’s mailbox or the English department offices. Deadline for this contest is April 1