The Lifted Brow & RMIT non/fictionLab Prize for Experimental Non-Fiction is open to writers worldwide. According to the organisers “This prize seeks work that is unlike any other. We want to hear from writers we’ve never read before, and we want writers we already know and love to challenge themselves to create work unlike any they’ve previously produced.”

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Opportunities for Writers April and May 2016 Image

Each month we aim to provide a helpful round-up of writing competitions, fellowships, publication opportunities and more for writers at all stages of their careers. 

For new writers, or for anyone seeking a refresher, we highly recommend reading How to Submit Your Writing to Literary Magazines.

Deadlines and details do sometimes change, so please check the relevant websites (linked in bold) for all the latest details. For more opportunities and regular updates follow Aerogramme Writers’ Studio on Facebook and Twitter.

 

Granta
is accepting unsolicited submissions until 1 April. Granta publishes fiction, non-fiction and poetry. There are no strict word limits, though most prose submissions are between 3000 and 6000 words and the editors advise they are unlikely to read more than 10,000 words of any submission.

Colm Tóibín International Short Story Award
is open for entries until 1 April. Entries must be between 1,800 and 2,000 words in length and there are no restrictions on the subject matter. First prize is €1000.

Pennsylvania State University
Altoona Campus English Program is taking applications for a one-semester teaching residency in poetry and playwriting/screenwriting. The program is targeted at early career writers, preferably without a published book.

Quotable
is a quarterly print and online publication. Submissions are now open for its 21st issue on the theme ’Finale’. The editors are seeking flash fiction (up to 1000 words), short fiction (up to 3000 words), and creative non-fiction (up to 3000 words), as well as poetry and art. Submissions close on 1 April.

Norman Mailer Center and Writers Colony
offers Summer Fellowships for fiction, nonfiction and poetry writers at the Ucross Foundation located on a 20,000-acre ranch in northeastern Wyoming. Six applicants will be chosen and receives full tuition and housing for the entire three-week period of their stay. Applications close on 1 April.

Grain Magazine’s Annual Short Grain Writing Contest
offers prizes for both fiction and poetry and is open to writers worldwide. A total of CA$4500 in prize money is on offer. Entries close 1 April.

North American Review’s Torch Prize for Creative Nonfiction
offers a first prize of $500. Writers may submit only one piece of creative nonfiction, no longer than 30 pages. Entries close 1 April.

Headland
is a New Zealand-based international literary journal of short fiction & creative non-fiction. The journal is accepting submissions until 1 April for its sixth issue and the editors are encouraging writers from all over the world to submit their work.

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Portable Story Series

Portable Story Series is a new writing initiative “with an audio twist”. It aims to bring stories to life through high quality recordings while supporting social causes that deserve greater visibility. The project was founded by Grammy-winning engineer Charles de Montebello and has access to some very high-profile voice talent including Kathleen Turner, Isabella Rossellini and Lena Dunham.

Portable Story Series is currently accepting entries for its first fiction contest. The theme is Hunger and all entries must be between 2000 and 4000 words. The stories will be judged by celebrated novelist Kate Christensen.

The winning writer will have their story professionally recorded at CDM Sound Studios, and a behind-the-scenes video about the story will also be produced. The winning author also receives 75% of the proceeds generated from story submissions (or $250, whichever is greater). Recorded stories will be made available for free but listeners are encouraged to considering supporting one of the three charities supported by the contest (The Innocence Project, Steve’s Camp and Welcoming America).

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“Breakthroughs come from putting an inordinate amount of pressure on yourself and seeing what you can take and hoping that you grow some new muscles. It’s not really this mystical – it’s like repeated practice over and over and over again, and suddenly you become something you had no idea you could really be… .”

In this video produced by The Atlantic, acclaimed writer and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates provides an insight into his early struggles as a writer and shares the best advice he received in his early career.

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Ploughshares Emerging Writer's Contest 2015

Ploughshares literary magazine was established in 1971 and is widely considered to be one of the most prestigious magazines in the United States. Its writers have frequently been recognised by The Pushcart Prize and selected for The Best American Short Stories.

Ploughshares Emerging Writer’s Contest 2016 is open to writers of fiction, nonfiction and poetry who have not yet published or self-published a book. The winning story, essay and poems from the 2016 contest will be published in the Winter 2016-17 issue of Ploughshares, and each writer will receive $1000.

The contest is open to fiction and nonfiction pieces up to 6000 words; poetry entries must be between 3 and 5 pages.

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The Matador Review

The Matador Review is a new online literary magazine based in Chicago. We contacted co-founder and editor-in-chief JT Lachausse to find what this new publication has in store for 2016 and beyond.

What made you decide to establish the Matador Review?

I had been interested in the literary magazine communities for a while and felt that there was something my team could offer. I won’t say that there was anything missing, because the online and print culture is vast and diverse; however, we wanted to dig a hole – welcomed or not – into both the literature and art world. There are great publications out there, namely The Adirondack Review and Bat City Review, that are unquestionably doing the Magazine Lord’s work; we are just cocky enough to think that we could have a place behind them, if not beside them, or somewhere upon the landscape of what they do and represent. We sat at a little glass table in my apartment and began tapping out questions, ideas, hopes, issues, things like: “What if we were The Paris Review’s ‘evil, rotten twin’?” That’s what really started it. Yes, there are countless houses for alternative art and literature, but we wanted to build something really special of our own. We wanted a style for our magazine akin to the recognition level of, say, The New Yorker or Paper Darts; we believed and believe that there are not enough characters in the magazine world. It’s difficult to really go on about all of the conversations we had during the conception phase without sounding all jumped-up – and maybe that’s because we really are jumped-up about this project – but that’s the nature of this team. We saw enough big and beautiful dogs in the fight that we wanted to jump in with our own scrawny, overweening chihuahua. But enough of the caveats and metaphors; in summary, we want to assemble a publication of “alternative” art and literature, both forms represented equally in quality and attention, and we want the magazine to be of real significance to the communities we are working with.

You describe yourself as being an ‘alternative art and literature magazine’: why alternative?

For every piece of quality art or literature, there is a home. Some “homes” include work that is regionally or culturally inspired, and some are reserved for particular genders, sexualities, or ethnicities. This sort of exclusivity creates an environment for distinct voices, and due to its distinction, these magazines are considered “alternative” (syn: “different”, “nonstandard”). What we wanted to do was to open up a home for art and literature that is, in every capacity, unconventional; this could mean a “fresh” voice, or perhaps a peculiar style, or maybe a bizarre subject that would otherwise struggle to find a place willing to parade it. As stated in our “About” section: “…our purpose is to promote work that is thought-provoking and unconventional; we want the controversial and the radical, the unhinged and the bizarre; we want the obsessive, the compulsive, the pervasive, the combative, and the seductive.” The Matador Review wants all of your redheaded stepchildren, but we want them on a damn good hair day. And they better not behave.

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Writing from Memory with Ashley C Ford

Brooklyn-based Ashley C. Ford has written or guest-edited for The Guardian, ELLE, BuzzFeed, Slate, I-D, Lenny Letter, Matter, Design*Sponge and many other publications. She is current writing a memoir and co-editing the anthology Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture with Roxane Gay.

Ford has recently launched Creative Writing: Writing From Memory, a six-part short course for online learning community Skillshare.

The course is for writers of every level and aims to teach essential skills for writing from memory including reporting on yourself, what to do when you don’t remember something you want to write about, pulling memories into the present and sharing your memories with the world.

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