Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest
Welcome to the 28th annual Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest. Submit published or unpublished work. $8,000 in prizes.
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Please submit during
October 15, 2019-April 30, 2020
- STORY: First Prize, $3,000
- ESSAY: First Prize, $3,000
- The top two winners will also receive two-year gift certificates from our co-sponsor, Duotrope (a $100 value)
- 10 Honorable Mentions will receive $200 each (any category)
- Top 12 entries published online
- Enter via Submittable
For this contest, a story is any short work of fiction, and an essay is any short work of nonfiction. Judge: Dennis Norris II, assisted by Lauren Singer Ledoux. Please submit as many entries as you like. All themes accepted. Entries may be published or unpublished. Length limit: 6,000 words maximum. No restriction on age of author. All countries eligible except Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Crimea (due to US government restrictions). Please click the Submittable button below for full details. Fee: $20 per entry. Read the winning entries from the 27th contest. The results of our 28th contest will be announced on October 15, 2020.
What to Submit
Short stories, essays or other works of prose. There are no restrictions on style or theme. Each entry should be your own original work. You may submit the same work simultaneously to this contest and to others, and you may submit works that have been published or won prizes elsewhere. (However, please do not submit work that has previously received recognition at Winning Writers.)
Prizes and Publication
First Prize, $3,000 cash
First Prize, $3,000 cash
Ten Honorable Mention entries will receive $200 cash each (any category)
All entries that win cash prizes will be published on the Winning Writers website and announced in the Winning Writers Newsletter (circulation 50,000+). Finalists may also be recognized.
Most Countries Eligible; English Language
Due to US government restrictions, we regret we are unable to accept entries from Syria, Iran, North Korea, or Crimea. All other countries are eligible. The works you submit should be in English. If you have written a work in another language, you may submit an English translation.
Entries are judged anonymously. Please omit your name and all identifying information from your entry. Please also omit any publishing credits from your entry. All the information we need is collected on our online entry form.
No Age Restriction
Writers of all ages may enter.
Your privacy is assured. We will not rent your information to third parties.
If your entry wins any cash prize, you agree to give Winning Writers a nonexclusive license to publish your work online. This includes possible publication in one or more ebooks. From time to time, selected winning entries may also be published in printed collections. If you win a prize, we may ask you for permission to include your entry in one of these books. You may accept or decline this invitation as you choose. Your entry will not be published in print without your consent, and you retain all other rights. You are free, for example, to publish your work in print or online elsewhere, and to enter it into other contests, whether or not you win a prize in this contest.
Generally entry fees are not refundable. However, if you believe you have an exceptional circumstance, please contact us within one year of your entry.
Contest founder John Howard Reid (d. 2018) won first prizes and other awards in prestigious literary events. A journalist and magazine editor, he published several historical novels, a collection of poetry, a guide to winning literary contests, and over fifty books of film criticism and movie history. For several years, Mr. Reid was assisted by Dee C. Konrad, a former Associate Professor in the English faculty of Barat College of DePaul University and Dean of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
If you have questions, please email the contest administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org.