Annual Contests

The Austin Poetry Society (APS) is dedicated to promoting poetry through its monthly and annual contests. To be eligible to enter the contests, you must be an APS member. Click here to join the APS today.

*** The Annual Contests are currently OPEN. ***

*** Entries are due by APRIL 1, 2017! ***

 

APS Annual Contest Guidelines for 2017:

(To download a PDF copy of the 2017 Guidelines, click here:  annual-awards-contest-guidelines-for-2017 )

 

  1. Entry in an annual contest constitutes submission of the poem for publication in an anthology, Best Austin Poetry 2016-2017, to be published after the May 2017 Austin Poetry Society (APS) Annual Awards Ceremony. Only first place winners will be included in the chapbook. The APS acquires only the right to one-time use of first place poems and for subsequent non-exclusive use in any anthology of poems collected from the Best Austin Poetry series. All other rights return to the author after publication of the anthology. Rights to all other submitted poems revert to the poet after judging. In lieu of any payment for use of the winning poems, we will provide one copy of the anthology to each poet included.
  1. A copy of all poems which receive any award (first, second or third prize) may be provided as a courtesy to the sponsor of the contest and/or honorees specified by the sponsor.
  1. Only Honorary, Lifetime or dues‑paid APS members may enter. The entry fee is $10, regardless of the number of contests entered once. In the contest list, see information concerning the fee for entering Contest No. 1 more than once. Checks are to be made payable to APS.
  1. Each entry must be the original work of the contestant. Contestants may enter as many contests as desired, but only one poem in any one contest except for Contest 1, as specified in the list of contests. A poem entered in one contest may not be entered, in whole or in part, in any other contest.
  1. All poems that were entered in monthly meeting contests are eligible for the annual contests except for first place poems chosen by the judge.
  1. A poem which has, in whole or in part, been previously published in any form including electronic venues is not eligible.
  1. Entries may not be simultaneously submitted for consideration elsewhere.
  1. Any poem that has won a first prize in any APS annual awards contest will be ineligible for all subsequent APS contests.
  1. A poet may not enter a contest for which he or she won first prize the preceding year.
  1. Proofread with care before submitting. After submission, an entry may not be revised, nor may another poem be substituted.
  1. Poems must be typed or printed on 8.5” x 11” white paper, one side only, and single spaced. To maintain consistent form in the chapbook, typeface must be Times New Roman 12 point. Variant fonts cause scanning problems.
  1. All submissions must be in English except when specified otherwise in contest descriptions.
  1. Read each contest description carefully for special instructions (theme, form, length, etc.). Titles of one line will not be counted against the maximum line count specified; however, all extra lines (subtitles, epigrams, stanza break lines, introductory material, or footnotes) will be counted as part of the poem’s line count.
  1. Submit two sets of all your entries, one with your identification information and one without. Your name should appear only on the upper‑right hand corner of ONE copy of each poem. Any identification of the author on the other copy, to be sent to the judge, will disqualify the entry.
  1. Type the number and name of the contest in the upper left corner of each poem in both sets of copies.
  1. Arrange each set of the entry poems in order by the contest numbers, one set with author information and the other without. Each set should be clipped (not stapled) together.
  1. Staple together single poems exceeding one page to prevent loss or misplacement. In such cases, specify whether or not a blank stanza break line occurs at the bottom of the first page.
  1. Please do not send your only copy since entries will not be returned.
  1. Entries which fail to conform to the rules will be disqualified.
  1. Include a separate identification sheet with the following: “ A., your name, postal address, phone number, and if possible, e-mail address, in the upper left corner; and “B., a list in numerical order of the contests you have entered including the number and name of the contests you have entered and each poem’s title.
  1. Your submission envelope should include: two sets of poems (one set with author identification, the other without); identification sheet described in Item 20 above; and entry fee payable to Austin Poetry Society.
  1. A contest which does not attract at least five entries will be cancelled, and the prize money will be returned to the sponsor.
  1. All entries must be postmarked or received by April 1, 2017, and addressed to:

Austin Poetry Society Annual Awards
P.O. Box 41346
Austin TX 78704

Note: If you mail your entry less than one week before the deadline, please send an email to austinpoetrysociety@gmail.com to let us know it’s on it’s way.

To Submit Online:

Entries may also be submitted online via Submittable. If submitting online, entries must be received by April 1, 2017, with a time stamp of no later than 11:59 p.m. CST. To enter through Submittable, go to: https://austinpoetrysociety.submittable.com/submit.  

If you are submitting online, you still need to include one blank copy and one identification copy, as well as an identification sheet. You can upload them as separate files in Submittable. Please ensure that you do not include any identifying information in the file name of your documents.

For help with the online submission process, watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPiwt43xV5U&feature=youtu.be

Judges will be appointed by the Annual Awards Committee. The committee will give preference to well‑published objective judges with demonstrated competence. Contest sponsors may recommend a judge to be considered for their contest, but the committee makes the choice and keeps confidential until the announcement of winners the identities of judges. Judges’ decisions are final.

All matters concerning the annual awards are handled in the strictest confidence until the winners are announced at the May 2017 program. Award winners’ names and poem titles will be published in APS publications.

If you have questions about the submission process, email austinpoetrysociety@gmail.com with “Question about annual contests” as your subject.

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List of APS Annual Contests Offered for 2017:

(To download a PDF copy of the 2017 Contest List, click here:  2017-aps-annual-contests )

 

Contest No. 1: The Austin Poetry Society Award

Sponsor: The Society, in honor of past long-term members Ernest Glass and Lucia Trent, whose dedicated efforts initiated the recognition and designation of an annual Texas Poetry Day (October 15) and National Poetry Day (April 15)
Specifications: Any subject, any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $200, Second Place $100, Third Place $50

Eligibility: Any member who pays the $10 entry fee may enter one poem in each contest including this one. In this contest only, members may enter any number of additional poems, provided they pay an extra $5 fee per poem. Example: You want to enter 8 contests listed below and in addition you want to enter three poems for this Number 1 contest. The fee of $10 covers all eight below and one entry for this Number 1 contest. If you add two more poems as additional entries in the Number 1 contest, the added fee for each additional poem entered is $5, so your total fee would come to $20.

Contest No. 2: The Spoken Word Poetry Award

Sponsor: Austin Poetry Society
Specifications: Registration in advance by reporting a title for the presentation. Spoken performance of the poem, either read or memorized, not more than three minutes long, in the Annual Awards Ceremony, May 20, 2017
Prizes: First Place $75, Second Place $35, Third Place $15
Judge: Vote by all members present, excluding only entrants in the contest

Contest No. 3: The Nautilus Award

Sponsor: Susan Rooke
Dedication: In honor of Jules Verne and his boundless imagination
Subject: The world’s bodies of water, and/or what can be found in their exploration, whether real or imaginary
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $30, Third Place $20

Contest No. 4: The Gods & Heroes Award

Sponsor: Susan Rooke
Subject: A persona poem told from the point of view of a figure from any of the world’s mythologies
Specifications: any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $30, Third Place $20

Contest No. 5: The Funny Side of Life

Sponsor: Barbara Gregg
Subject: Any humorous or whimsical poem about human behavior
Specifications: Any form, 38 lines or less
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $30, Third Place $20

Contest No. 6: Repurpose, Reuse, Recycle

Sponsor: Barbara Gregg
Subject: The best cento
Specifications: A Cento is a found poem composed of single lines of poetry from different poets or different poems, using no more than one line from each source poem. Each line must be identified at the bottom of the poem with author and poem name. 24 lines max (not including attributions)
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $30, Third Place $20

Contest No. 7: The Road Trip Award

Sponsor: Barbara Gregg
Subject: A poem about a journey – real, virtual, imaginary, physical, mental, developmental
Specifications: Any form, 30 lines max including title and stanza breaks
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $30, Third Place $20

Contest No. 8: Fill in the Blanks

Sponsor: Barbara Blanks
Subject: Any
Specifications: Any form, 42 lines or less
Prizes: First Place $40, Second Place $20, Third Place $10

Contest No. 9: The Trick or Treat Award

Sponsor: Carie Juettner
Subject: A poem about Halloween
Specifications: Non-rhyming, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $30, Second Place $20, Third Place $10

Contest No. 10: The Animal Passion Award
Sponsor: Claire Vogel Camargo, in honor of Elsa
Subject:  An animal(s) in the wild – plight, preservation, joy, or other focus
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines maximum
Prizes: First Place $30, Second Place $20, Third Place $10

Contest No. 11: The Loyalty Award

Sponsor: Claire Vogel Camargo, in honor of Isabella
Subject: A dog or dogs
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $30, Second Place $20, Third place $10

Contest No. 12: The Elzy Marathon Thompson Memorial Award
Sponsor: Elzy Cogswell
Dedication: In honor of my father, who taught me to read
Subject: Reading
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 13: The Music in My Soul Award
Sponsor: Elzy Cogswell
Dedication: In honor of my mother, Pauline Cogswell Mullen, who taught me to play
Beethoven’s Minuet in G on the piano
Subject: Music
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 14: The Mary Oliver Award
Sponsor: Elzy Cogswell
Subject: Nature
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 15: The Something Happened Award
Sponsor: Elzy Cogswell
Dedication: In honor of anyone who serves poets and poetry, especially the APS Board.
Subject: A narrative about a kindness
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 16: Marianne Logan Award
Sponsor: Von S. Bourland
Dedication: To honor Marianne Logan for her many years of service to writing poetry, judging contests and encouraging fledgling poets
Subject: Any subject
Specifications: Wordsworth Sonnet: abbaabbacdcdcd, 14 lines, no breaks
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 17:  An American Muslim
Sponsor:  John Hoag
Subject/description:  A persona poem in the voice of an American Muslim and his/her life in the United States
Specifications:  Ghazal, seven to fifteen couplets composed in the monorhyme scheme.
Prizes:  First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 18:  The View from Here
Sponsor:  John Hoag
Subject:  Assisted memory (Alzheimer’s) care
Specifications:  Persona poem in the voice of the afflicted.  Any form, 40 lines or fewer
Prizes:  First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 19: The Haiku-Senryu Delight Award
Sponsor: Claire Vogel Camargo
Dedication: In honor of teachers, like Scott Wiggerman, who make learning and writing both doable and fun
Subject: Any subject
Specifications: Haiku or Senryu, 3 lines of 5-7-5 (or fewer) syllables
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 20: The Unexpected
Sponsor: Sonny Regelman
Subject: There is something unexpected, out of the ordinary, or unusual about this poem
Specifications: Any form (an unexpected form is also acceptable), 40 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $50, Second Place $35, Third Place $15

Contest No. 21: The World Peace Award
Sponsor: Judith Austin Mills
Subject: Visualizing the world at peace or in the process of achieving it
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or less
Prizes: First Place $40, Second Place $25, Third Place $15

Contest No. 22: The Post-Truth Integrity Award
Sponsor: Christa Pandey
Theme: Post-truth Integrity
Form: any form longer than a haiku or senryu (sonnet, villanelle, pantoum etc.)
Lines: depends on form (14 to 36)
Prizes: First Place $30, Second Place $20, Third Place $10

Contest No. 23: The Caregiver Award
Sponsor: Amy L. Greenspan
Dedication: In honor of her mother, Elaine Lebowitz
Subject: Taking care of someone who is elderly, frail or ill
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $25, Second Place $15, Third Place $10

Contest No. 24: A World Without Borders
Sponsor: Shubh Schiesser
Subject: A world without borders
Description: Particularly related to the worldwide migration of large groups because of border changes, consolidation, or conflicts. These cross-culture experiences help poetry understand globalization.
Specifications: Any form, 32 lines or fewer
Prizes: First Place $55, Second Place $30, Third Place $15

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To watch a short tutorial on how to submit poems via Submittable, click here.

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You may download the 2016 Annual Contest results here:

 2016 APS Annual Contest Results