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$20.00 USD

January 1 - May 31 2020

Publication, $1000 cash prize, and 25 contributor copies

This competition is open to original English language manuscripts in the genres of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. While previously published stand-alone pieces or excerpts may be included in a manuscript, the manuscript as a whole must be an unpublished work. Translations and previously self-published collections are ineligible. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable; please note that reading fees are non-refundable, and you must withdraw the manuscript immediately via Submishmash if it is accepted elsewhere. Please do not include cover artwork with your submission; black and white illustrations are acceptable so long as you’ve obtained the rights. The author must not have a close personal or professional relationship with any current or previous CutBank staff members.

Reading Fee
$20. Includes consideration and a copy of CutBank 93 upon its release in spring/summer 2020. We apologize, but CutBank is not able to send issues to international addresses without additional postage from the submitter.

What We’re Looking For:
Startling, compelling, and beautiful original work. We’re looking for a fresh, powerful manuscript. Maybe it will overtake us quietly; gracefully defy genres; satisfyingly subvert our expectations; punch us in the mouth page in and page out. We’re interested in both prose and poetry – and particularly work that straddles the lines between genres. Manuscripts should be cohesive and coherent; in other words, your manuscript should resonate and make sense as a book.

Guidelines for Electronic Submissions:
Submissions are accepted exclusively through Submittable. Entries must be received no later than midnight MST on May 31, 2020. Please submit 25 to 40 pages of typed prose in either DOC/DOCX/RTF/PDF format. For short prose, please include no more than one piece per page. Images are acceptable, but only in black and white; you must obtain reprint rights for any included images. Include page numbers, table of contents, and, if applicable, an acknowledgments page addressing where sections have been previous published. Submissions should include two cover pages as the first two pages of the document: one with the manuscript’s title, the other with the title, author’s name, address, and e-mail address. The author’s name should not appear anywhere else in the manuscript. Results will be announced via e-mail and posted at www.cutbankonline.com in late August 2020.

The Long and Short of It
The CutBank Chapbook Contest honors a book of original poetry, fiction or creative nonfiction by a single author; translations are not eligible for this award. The winning author receives a $1000 honorarium plus 25 copies of the published book. The winner will be announced by CutBank, the winning book will be featured on the CutBank website, and we’ll do our best to distribute it to regional independent bookstores. The contest will be judged by the CutBank editorial staff. Entries must be submitted between January 1 and May 31, 2020. All entries must be made through our submission manager. Manuscripts should be 25-40 pages in length of poetry (a cohesive poetry manuscript), fiction (either a short fiction collection or novella), or creative nonfiction (one long essay or a short collection of essays). Please indicate in the acknowledgements if any sections of the manuscript have been previously published, and where; the manuscript as a whole must be an unpublished work. Manuscript revisions are not permitted during the contest. Multiple entries are fine as long as each is accompanied by a submission fee (in which case you will receive an additional copy of CutBank). The author must not have a close personal or professional relationship with any current or previous CutBank staff members.

The CLMP Code of Ethics
CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines -- defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.

It is truly an honor to read your work. We wish you the best of luck!

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.