Sunshot Poetry Prize
[2018 SUBMISSIONS OPENING SOON!]
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How many winners are there?
Finalists. 5-8 manuscripts will be chosen as finalists per contest.
Sunshot Poetry/Fiction/Nonfiction Prizes. One First Place Winner per contest.
Finalist Prizes. One Finalist Prize Winner per contest.
Single Poem Publication. Finalists will have one poem recognized with publication in the New Millennium Writings annual anthology.
"Best Of" Publication. All works, in all manuscripts, receive consideration.
How does the "Sunshot rePRIZE" work?
The core mission of the Sunshot rePRIZE is to ensure that the works of each winning author are set on a most advantageous and bold trajectory.
Sunshot Poetry Prize nominations currently include the National Book Awards, the Pulitzer Prize, the Warwick Prize for Writing, the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, and the Griffin Poetry Prize. If all eligibility requirements and availability were to be met, the total combined first place potential would be more than $125,000, with a finalist potential of more than $8,400, plus variable travel perks, guest teaching offers, and international notoriety.
Sunshot Fiction Prize nominations currently include the National Book Awards, the Pulitzer Prize, the Warwick Prize for Writing, the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut Fiction, and the Scotiabank Giller Prize. If all availability and eligibility requirements were to be met, the total combined first place potential would be more than $156,000, with a finalist potential of more than $8,500, plus variable travel perks, guest teaching offers, and international notoriety.
Sunshot Nonfiction Prize nominations currently include the National Book Awards, the Pulitzer Prize, BN's Discover Great New Writers Award, the Warwick Prize for Writing, and the International Rubery Book Award. If all eligibility requirements and availability were to be met, the total combined first place potential would be more than $70,000, plus variable travel perks, guest teaching offers, and international notoriety.
Sunshot rePRIZE nominations and awards are independent of, and have no association with, NMW/Sunshot, and therefore are subject to change. See Official Rules/Terms and Conditions for all Sunshot rePRIZE details.
How exactly does the judging and selection process work?
Our judges and readers are poets, novelists, essayists, playwrights, screenwriters, editors, professors, journalists, and MFA graduate students, and have included: Doris Ivie, Allen Wier, Marilyn Kallet, Laura Still, Nikki Giovanni, Pamela Uschuk, Maureen McLane, William Pitt Root, and others. Together they account for hundreds of published poems, stories, books, articles, columns, scripts, and many prestigious honors.
Judges and readers of the Sunshot Prize Series are also adequately compensated for their time, efforts, and dedication to an objective and diligent consideration process.
First Place Winners and Finalist Prize Winners will be chosen from a final selection of five to eight manuscripts and will be announced within 120 days of submissions closing. First Place and Finalist Prize Winners will be contacted by email and/or phone to confirm eligibility, standard publishing agreements will be mailed, and announcements will begin when completed agreements are returned, on sunshots.org, social media, to email subscribers, by press release, and in print and/or online.
Over two decades, New Millennium Writings (Sunshot's sponsor), has had the honor of judging more than 100,000 individual poems, short stories, and essays, publishing more than 1,700 writers and poets, and awarding more than $200,000. You are welcome to browse NMW's recent winners. [NMW Winners]
Is the judging process anonymous? (Code of Ethics)
Yes! We believe complete anonymity is fundamental to any successful writing contest. Therefore, contest abides by the following Sunshot Prize Series: Code of Ethics.
Our judges and readers are poets, novelists, essayists, playwrights, screenwriters, editors, MFA graduate students, professors, and journalists, and have included: Doris Ivie, Allen Wier, Marilyn Kallet, Laura Still, Nikki Giovanni, Pamela Uschuk, Maureen McLane, William Pitt Root, and others. Together they account for hundreds of published poems, stories, books, articles, columns, scripts, and many prestigious honors.
All judges and readers of the Sunshot Prize Series are also adequately compensated for their time, efforts, and dedication to an objective and diligent consideration process.
Can I make revisions to my manuscript?
No revisions will be accepted once the manuscript has been successfully submitted. Minor typos and/or grammatical errors will not negatively impact the judging of your submission. If we find any substantial issues with your manuscript file, we will contact you for resolution.
Before a manuscript goes to publication, we are happy to accommodate the occasional author's request for a minor revision or two.
NMW/Sunshot reserve the right to final edits, which may include small grammar or style edits to an individual poem's content and/or omission of one or more complete poems, if the edits are deemed to strengthen the overall impact, power, and influence of the collection.
Why should I submit my work to the Sunshot Poetry Prize?
Over the past two decades, we have read more than 50,000 poems in NMW’s cornerstone poetry contest, published more than 1,000 poets, and awarded more than $200,000 in cash prizes to poets and writers.
We've had the honor of working with an amazing roster of Guest Poetry Judges, such as Nikki Giovanni (Langston Hughes Medal), Pamela Uschuk (American Book Award), and Maureen McLane, a 2014 National Book Award poetry finalist who served on the National Book Critics Circle's Board of Directors, and received the NBCC's Balakian Award for Excellence in Book Reviewing.
We created the Sunshot Prize Series because we know that one poetry entry is only a tiny representation of a much larger body of work. We can't say how far Sunshots may take our authors, but we know how far we're aiming, and we hope you'll join us for the trip!
How can I make sure I don't miss the 250 submission window?
Your best bet to avoid getting shut out is to know the date and time submissions open (announced by email) and to make plans to submit as close to that date as possible. We highly recommend reviewing the guidelines and having your manuscript "submission-ready" prior to submissions opening.
Be sure to subscribe to The Sunshot Insider email list by entering your email below (here) and adding hello (at) sunshots (dot) org to your contacts or approved sender list.
What file format and name should my manuscript file use?
We strongly encourage manuscripts in PDF format (click here for help). If (.pdf) is unavailable, (.doc), (.docx), and (.rtf) formats are still accepted.
The file name of your manuscript should only contain up to the first four words of the collection title (if untitled, use the title or first four words of the first poem) and may only contain lower case letters, numbers, and hyphens (-). Do not include any blank spaces, any other characters or symbols, or any other information.
OPTIONAL: For your own record keeping you are allowed to add "sunshot" and/or any date "XX-XX-XXXX" to the end of the file name.
INCORRECT: Sunshot/Dreaming of Jack’s Future: Dec. 2 ’17.txt
Can I mail my submission to you?
To mail your manuscript, the following steps must be followed:
The last section of every book we publish includes a "Special Acknowledgements" page listing the names of the 249 poets and writers who helped make that book possible.
Two decades of hosting literary awards have made it clear to us that there is an under-recognized demographic, fundamental to literature's evolution: those who possess the boldness and tenacity to enter their work for consideration.
If a winner of our award goes on to win the Pulitzer, there are 249 other people who made that success possible. Their names deserve acknowledgment.