Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Student Award Offers Online Submissions, Excellent Publishing Opportunity

Ohio college/university students and poets have an excellent opportunity to get a chapbook published through the National Federation of State Poetry Societies (NFSPS). Each year, as part of its slate of contests in the run up to the annual convention, the NFSPS includes a chapbook competition open to college poets. Two manuscripts are chosen as winners and receive publication, a cash prize, copies of the published work, a chance to read at the annual convention, and a stipend to attend the convention.

OPA encourages all Ohio poets who currently attend college as an undergraduate to submit their work. For more information and a bit of clarification, see the note from the NFSPS College/University Competition Chair, Shirley Blackwell, below. Or visit the competition web page at http://nfsps.com/college-university_competition.htm.


Dear State Presidents,

The 2015 annual NFSPS College/University Level Poetry Competition has a new twist, in that students will be able to submit their manuscripts either in electronic form through Submittable.com, the publishing industry's top submissions manager, or on paper, as they have in the past.

The contest opens on January 1, when the Submittable system will become available online and those sending hard copy manuscripts can mail their packages (postmarked no earlier than January 1). The electronic submission system will be in operation January 1 through February 14 only, and paper submissions must be postmarked during that same period.

Two award recipients will be announced by April 19, 2015. Winners receive $500 plus publication of their manuscript as a chapbook, which will be printed in time for the June 2015 NFSPS Convention. Each winner is also given 75 copies of the chapbook to sell at the Convention or elsewhere, or to give to friends and family. Recipients are invited to read from their work at the NFSPS Convention and offered a $300 stipend to offset travel expenses to that event.

Please help spread the word about this exceptional opportunity for undergraduate student poets. Encourage eligible friends or family to enter, and inform college or university teachers of creative writing about this program. We will rely heavily on word-of-mouth advertising until we can gauge the response to this new approach. We anticipate more entries with this new opportunity for electronic submission, so we are not advertising this year on the national stage. However, we want to make sure none of the states with NFSPS affiliates are left out, and you are our best ambassadors.

Anyone with questions about the competition is welcome to email me at sonneteer@earthlink.net.

Thank you all so much for promoting this worthy program and giving our up and coming poets the recognition and honor that will inspire their entire poetic careers.

Shirley Blackwell