Gordon Square Review is pleased to announce a 2018 Prose Contest for Northeast Ohio writers submitting fiction or nonfiction up to 7,500 words. Each entry costs $8. The winner will receive $250, publication in Issue 3 of Gordon Square Review, an invitation to read at the Issue 3 launch party, and a voucher for one free Literary Cleveland class or workshop. One runner-up will also be selected for publication and invited to read at the Issue 3 launch party. The contest deadline is October 1, 2018.
To be eligible, writers must reside in Northeast Ohio—that includes the Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Youngstown, Kent, and Lorain areas—or must have a strong previous tie Northeast Ohio. Please note your location (or an explanation of your connection to Northeast Ohio—that you lived or studied here previously, etc.) in your cover letter.
Contest entries will be read blind. Please do not include your name or any identifying information anywhere on the document or in the document file name. (It is acceptable to include your name/personal information in your cover letter.)
The fee for each entry is $8. All entries will be also considered for publication.
Contest entries must be previously unpublished in either print or online venues, including personal blogs.
Entries must consist of a single short story, personal essay, or hybrid prose piece of no more than 7,500 words. (Please note this word limit is longer than that of our general submissions, so break out your longer pieces!) Entries that exceed the 7,500 word limit will be disqualified. Writers may submit more than one entry, but a separate fee is required for each entry. Please indicate the genre (fiction, nonfiction, or hybrid) in the document. Novel excerpts are permitted so long as they are self-contained.
Writers are welcome to make a separate general submission in addition to a contest entry (please note, however, that regular submissions are limited to 5,000 words). There is no need to submit the same writing to both the contest and the general submission pool, as all contest entries will be considered for publication. The editors will individually notify any contest entrants selected for general publication.
Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but we ask that you withdraw your work immediately through Submittable if it is accepted elsewhere. Entry fees will not be refunded in the event of a withdrawal.
All entries must be submitted via Submittable. Print or emailed entries will not be accepted. Entry fees are nonrefundable.
The winner will receive $250, publication in Gordon Square Review, promotion through Literary Cleveland’s channels, and a voucher for one Literary Cleveland class or workshop. Vouchers are non-transferrable and must be used within one year.
Gordon Square Review editors will read submissions blind and select finalists to send to the judge, Lucy Biederman, who will decide the winner and runner-up. Writers with a close personal or professional relationship with the judge (such as current or past students) are not eligible.
The contest deadline is October 1, 2018. Results will be announced in November 2018.
About Lucy Biederman: Lucy Biederman is a poet, fiction writer, essayist, and scholar. She is the author of The Walmart Book of the Dead (Vine Leaves Press, 2017) and four chapbooks of poetry. Her essays, short stories, and poems have appeared recently in AGNI, The Collagist, Ploughshares, Web Conjunctions, and Pleiades. Her scholarship, which has been published in The Henry James Review, Women’s Studies, and elsewhere, focuses on how contemporary writers interpret their literary forebears. She holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, where she specialized in American literature and creative writing, and an MFA in creative writing from George Mason University. She lives in Cleveland, where she is a lecturer in English at Case Western Reserve University.
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Thank you to all the writers who entered our inaugural contest. We received many strong entries and were honored to read your work! Our 2017 contest winners each received $250, publication in Gordon Square Review’s debut issue, and a voucher for one free Literary Cleveland single-session class. Please enjoy their winning submissions below and stay tuned for additional contest opportunities for Northeast Ohio writers.