Deadline: December 31, 2022

Entry fee: $25

About the competition

 The Michigan Quarterly Review has established this prize for fiction in honor of Helen Zell Writers’ Program alumna Jesmyn Ward and her significant contributions to the literary arts. One short story submitted for this prize will be awarded $2,000 and publication in MQR. All submissions for the prize will be considered for publication. The fee for submission is $25. When submissions for the prize are open, you can find details on how to submit by clicking the link below.

Competition guidelines

  • The Jesmyn Ward Prize will be awarded annually by the Michigan Quarterly Review to one short story submitted for consideration. The Michigan Quarterly Review has established this prize in honor of Helen Zell Writers’ Program Alumna Jesmyn Ward and her significant contributions to the literary arts.
  • Please submit one unpublished short story of 1,500-7,000 words. Simultaneous submissions are welcome but please withdraw your submission as soon as it is accepted elsewhere.  
  • We ask entrants not to include their names or contact information within the document they upload to Submittable, its title, or its file name.
  • First readers for the prize will be the Helen Zell Writers’ Program students who currently review submissions on behalf of the journal. 
  • Submissions will go through two rounds of consideration by graduate students before 10 finalists are passed on to the judge.
  • Current faculty and students and recent graduates (in the past 3 years) of the Helen Zell Writers’ Program will be barred from submitting. Close friends, relatives, and current and former students (in the past 3 years) of the Judge will be barred from submitting. MQR’s staff and editorial board, as well as their immediate family members, are also excluded from the contest.
  • The 2022 Judge will be Desiree Cooper. The winning story will be published in the Summer issue of the following year.
  • The prize will be in the amount of $2,000 and publication. All submissions will be considered for publication in MQR.
  • Submit your entry here.
VoW Research
Author: VoW Research

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