The Journal Non/Fiction Prize
New and forthcoming Titles:
Zoo World: Essays
Our Sister Who Will Not Die: Stories
The Age of Discovery and Other Stories
Sign Here If You Exist and Other Essays
Jill Sisson Quinn
Out of Step
Brief Interviews with the Romantic Past
Landfall: A Ring of Stories
The Deer in the Mirror
The Journal, the literary magazine of The Ohio State University MFA Program in Creative Writing, selects one booklength collection of short prose each year for publication by Mad Creek Books. The prize carries a cash award of $1500 and publication by The Ohio State University Press Mad Creek Books Imprint under its standard contract.
The winning entry will be chosen by Michelle Herman. Michelle Herman is the author of three collections of personal essays, a collection of stories and novellas, and four novels, including her newest, Close-Up. Her essays and short fiction have appeared in The Sun, American Scholar, O, the Oprah Magazine, Ploughshares, Creative Nonfiction, Conjunctions, The Southern Review, and many other journals, and she writes a weekly column for Slate. A co-founder of the MFA program at Ohio State, where she has taught since 1988, she also founded and directs a graduate interdisciplinary program across the arts at OSU.
Submission window: February 1st–March 11th
- The award is open to writers of fiction and creative nonfiction, whether or not they have previously published a book.
- The award is open to writers in English, whether or not they are citizens of the United States. Translations are not eligible.
- The Ohio State University employees, former employees, current OSU MFA students, and those who have been OSU MFA students within the last ten years are not eligible for the award.
- Eligible submissions include an unpublished manuscript of short stories or essays; two or more novellas or novella-length essays; a combination of one or more novellas/novella-length essays and short stories/essays; a combination of stories and essays. Novellas or novella-length nonfiction must be part of a larger collection. Manuscripts may be no fewer than 150 and no more than 350 typed double-spaced pages, 12-point font. Prior publication of your manuscript as a whole in any format (including electronic or self-published) makes it ineligible. Individual stories or essays that have been previously published may be included in the manuscript. Each submission must include a list of acknowledgments of previously published work (title and magazine/journal/anthology) included in the manuscript.
- All submissions must be accompanied by a $23 entry fee, or $11.50 for BIPOC writers.
- All manuscripts will be judged anonymously. The author's name must not appear anywhere on the manuscript. All identifying information will be submitted through the online submission manager only.
- Manuscripts may also be under consideration by other publishers, but if a manuscript is accepted for publication elsewhere, the submission should be promptly withdrawn from consideration.
- Authors may submit more than one manuscript to the competition as long as one manuscript or a portion thereof does not duplicate material submitted in another manuscript and a separate entry fee is paid.
- Manuscripts must be received between February 1st and March 11thst via our online submission manager: https://thejournal.submittable.com/submit
- No hard-copy manuscript submissions will be considered.
The Journal Non/Fiction Prize Winners
|2021||Rebecca Bernard||Our Sister Who Will Not Die: Stories|
|2020||Becky Hagenston||The Age of Discovery and Other Stories|
|2019||Jill Sisson Quinn||Sign Here If You Exist and Other Essays|
|2018||Katherine Zlabek||When: Stories|
|2017||Anthony Moll||Out of Step: A Memoir|
|2016||Kathryn Nuernberger||Brief Interviews with the Romantic Past|
|2015||Julie Hensley||Landfall: A Ring of Stories|
|2012||Cary Holladay||The Deer in the Mirror|
|2010||Diane Simmons||Little America|
|2009||Matt Debenham||The Book of Right and Wrong|
|2008||Paul Eggers||The Departure Lounge|
|2007||Ric Jahna||True Kin|
|2006||Morgan McDermott||Owner’s Manual|
|2005||J. David Stevens||Mexico Is Missing: And Other Stories|
|2003||Gerald Shapiro||Little Men: Novellas and Stories|
|2002||Trudy Lewis||The Bones of Garbo|
|2001||William J. Cobb||The White Tattoo|
|2000||Wendy Rawlings||Come Back Irish|
|1999||Molly Best Tinsley||Throwing Knives|
|1998||Steven Polansky||Dating Miss Universe|
|1997||John Clayton||Radiance: Ten Stories|