Able Muse Press

publishing the new, the established

2016 Able Muse Write Prize

Able Muse Write Prize in Poetry & Flash Fiction

Able Muse Write Prize (for Poetry & Flash Fiction) -- 2016

(2011 Results HERE) | (2012 Results HERE) | (2013 Results HERE) | (2014 Results HERE) | (2015 Results HERE)

 $500 prize for the best poem, and $500 prize for the best short story (flash fiction), plus publication in Able Muse (the print journal).
Finalists in each category will also be considered for publication.

Entry deadline: March 15, 2016 ** Now EXTENDED to March 17, 2016 **

Final Judge - Poetry:
Patricia Smith - Final Judge
Patricia Smith

 

Final Judge - Fiction:
Stuart Dybek - Final Judge
Stuart Dybek

 

Guidelines:

  • Blind Judging by the Final Judges (Patricia Smith for poetry, Stuart Dybek for flash fiction).
  • Initial screening by the Able Muse Editors.
  • Entries may not be previously published.
  • Simultaneous submissions accepted as long as we're immediately notified if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • Unlimited entries per person for one or both categories
  • For poetry entries, all styles are welcome (metrical or free verse).
  • For poetry entries, each entry may contain 1 to 5 poems maximum, but all the poems combined should not exceed 10 pages per entry.
  • For fiction entries, each entry may contain 1 to two stories maximum (each story should be flash fiction/short-short-short under 1,500 words each, typed double-spaced).
  • We prefer online entries, however, paper/snail mail entry is available for those who insist on the traditional submission method.
  • If you wish to enter in both cateogries or if you enter more than once in one or both categories, then a separate entry fee and submission form must be completed for each entry.
  • If you're entering by paper/snail mail, the manuscripts cannot be returned so, do not send us your only copies.
  • For paper/snail mail entries, include an SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) to receive the announcement of the winners.
  • The contests will be judged blind by the final judge, so:
    • Author's name should only appear on cover page and nowhere else.
    • Initial screening will be done by the editors of Able Muse.
      1. The final judges will received anonymized manuscripts (five to ten each depending and the number of total entries and their quality).
      2. The final judge will be instructed to disqualify any work that he recognizes. The entry fee the work thus disqualified will be refunded.
    • Include on your cover page ONLY:
      1. the category of your submission— i.e. "poetry contest" or "fiction contest"
      2. the poems/stories titles
      3. the total number of lines for all poems combined / total word count for all stories combined. (For deriving line or word count, do not include, blank lines, the poem or story title, epigraphs in the line/word count.)
      4. the poet's/writer's name
      5. address
      6. phone number, and
      7. email address.
    • For paper/snail mail entries, send manuscripts in duplicate.
  • Final Judge (Poetry): Patricia Smith
  • Final Judge (Flash Fiction): Stuart Dybek

Entry Methods:

  1. Preferred method is our online entry form
    1. DO NOT type or copy and paste your entry in the poem/fiction text box. Rather, upload your submission file from the upload field (accepted formats are: Text, RTF, Word, Wordperfect, PDF, HTML).
    2. Only send one file attachment with 1 to 5 poems or 1 to 2 stories in a single file, with the cover page prepared as described in the blind judging section above (do NOT attach a separate file for each poem or story! And the cover letter can be included in the same file as the poems or stories, but in the introductory page(s).)
    3. There should be no identification in the section of the manuscript pages that contain the poems or stories as described in the blind judging section above.
    4. Enter at http://www.ablemuse.com/enter-contest online.
  2. Second favorite entry method is via e-mail
    1. Follow the instructions for the online submission method in (1) above, in addition to the following:
    2. Again, do not type your submission in the body of the email. Rather, attach your submission file to the email (accepted formats are: Text, RTF, Word, Wordperfect, PDF, HTML).
    3. The subject of the email should be: "<Your Name>: Poetry Contest" for poetry entries, or "<Your Name>: Fiction Contest" for fiction entries.
    4. Email your entry to submission@ablemuse.com without any identification in the manuscript file itself as described in the blind judging section above.
  3. Least favorite entry method is paper by snail mail
    1. The manuscript should be without any identification as explained in the blind judging section above.
    2. The cover page should be prepared as explained in the blind judging section above (on a separate sheet of paper, included with the poems or stories submitted).
    3. The manuscript should be in duplicate as explained in the blind judging section above.
    4. Send your entry to:

      Able Muse Review
      (Poetry or Flash Fiction) Contest
      467 Saratoga Avenue #602
      San Jose, CA 95129
      USA

Entry Fees:

  • $15 for each entry which should contain a minimum of 1 poem, a maximum of 5 poems, but all the poems combined should not exceed 10 pages per entry).
  • $15 for each entry minimum which should contain a minmum of 1 story, a maximum of 2 stories (stories should be flash fiction/short-short-short under 1,500 words each, typed double-spaced).
  • No matter how you choose to enter (online or email or snail mail) you may choose to pay:
    1. Online ( right below!), OR,
    2. By check: Able Muse Review, and sent to the contest address indicated above.
    3. To enable us to match your payment to your entry, be sure to indicate the name you entered with (i.e. your pen name, etc), if it's different from the one under which payment was made, and this applies for online as well as check payment by snail mail.

Pay Entry Fee & Enter Contest Now:

 

ENTER THE ABLE MUSE WRITE PRIZE CONTEST NOW:

After payment, submit your poetry or fiction online at:
http://www.ablemuse.com/enter-contest .
Or, enter by email/snail mail as explained above:


 

Comments

Submitted by Simone (not verified) on

The link which you say will take to a place where I can pay simply sends me to a page where I can start the entry form from and tells me to pay and that if I have not paid I should click on a link which sends me back to this page. I've gone in circles several times now looking for a way to pay online. Could you please provide a working link to where I can pay the entry fee?

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Simone (and everyone else entering):

** 2014 update: please ignore the instructions below. We now use WePay and the payment, and their payment page and process is straightforward and self-explanatory, unlike the now defunct Google Checkout ****

 

---

Please, click the green 'Add to Cart' button above, and then, follow the instructions. After payment go to: http://www.ablemuse.com/enter-contest to submit your contest entry for poetry of fiction.

If your browser is not behaving properly, you may want to try a different one if you have one installed. Most of the time, that resolves the problem. If not use the 'contact us' link at the top to report any further problems.

Best,
...Alex

Best,

...Alex

 

Submitted by Matthew Schlissel (not verified) on

Just to clarify, if we're sending poems for submissions, will they judge the poems collectively or inidividually....I just want to know if it'd be best to send my best one, or since I'm allowed to send a total of 5, I should send 4 more...but I don't want to hurt my chances with older (lesser) poems, lol.....
Thanks...
-Matthew s.
 
 

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Matthew,
Each poem is judged individually (not collectively as a package).
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Roberto (not verified) on

When will the contest winners be announced, or winners notified?
 

Submitted by Administrator on

We expect the winner to be announced by yearend or earlier.
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Administrator on

Yes, it's open to all, worldwide.
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Administrator on

Yes, it's open to all, worldwide.
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Jeff Avants (not verified) on

I made the mistake making my payment after submitting my poems.  Do I need to resubmit my poems?
 

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Jeff,
 
No, you don't need to resubmit. We'll match your payment to your submission (assuming the name on both, and/or  the email use match in the payment and submission information).
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Jie (not verified) on

I pay by on Google checkout with my sister's card,  I wrote her name and the Google order form number, is that alright? Then I had sent  the poems with my email. Is that ok?

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Jie,
 
That's all right. Just indicated in your entry the name under which the payment was made so that we can match the the entry to the payment.
 
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Jie,
The results for last year's (2012) contest were announced around mid-August last 2012 and all the contest entrants were notified directly of this by email. If you had entered the contest and somehow missed this, you can find the announcement here.
Best,
...Alex

Submitted by Jie (not verified) on

Is the winner already select?? because I didn't saw where or when?

Submitted by Robert W. King (not verified) on

I can't find an 'open new Google account' at the top of the page (as stated in administrator reply to Simone above). Thus, I can't pay yet. Will hold the poems until I/we figure this out.

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Robert,

We now use WePay and the payment, and their payment page and process is straightforward and self-explanatory, unlike the now defunct Google Checkout. So, ignore the 'Simone' instructions above.

Best,

...Alex

Submitted by Robert W. King (not verified) on

There is NO "sign up for Google payment' at the top of the Google payment page when I click it. I don't have an account and can't figure out how to get one.
R. King
 

Submitted by Administrator on

HI Robert,

 

When you get to the Google payment page, you should see the credit card payment form, OR a sign in/login form. If you find the login, it means you already have a Google account that you’ve used on that PC (e.g. Gmail, Google+, Google Wallet, etc.), and in that case simply login to the Google account to see the credit card payment form. 

If the above doesn't work, then it might be a cookie problem with your browser/PC, and using a different browser/PC often resolves the problem.

 

OR,

 

If all that fail or you're not comfortable paying online, then you can simply pay by check/money order through snail mail – for that, from the above listed contest link (http://www.ablemusepress.com/ablemuse-write-prize#enter_contest), simply scroll up to item 3. Where the snail mail address is indicated.

 

Best,

…Alex

Submitted by Mary (not verified) on

Am I correct in thinking that if submit 4 poems, the fee will be $60.  Or is it $15 for all four?

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Mary,
No, that's not correct. You may submit anywhere from 1 to 5 poems for only $15. Any additional batch of 1 to 5 poems will require another entry for another $15 fee, etc.
Best,
...Alex
 
 

Submitted by Richard (not verified) on

I have a manuscript of Poetry that is 46 pages long. There are approximately 25 lines of Poetry per page. Can I enter this manuscript, or do I have to adapt it to attain 50 pages?
 
Richard

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Richard,
That sounds like a borderline case, but it sounds just long enough to qualify. So, go ahead and enter. Note though that this page is for the Write Prize. You need to enter the Book Award contest at http://www.ablemusepress.com/ablemuse-book-award .
Best,
...Alex

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Hi can we just mail a check for this entry fee? I am having trouble and I have read all of the troubleshooting guidelines. It's just not letting me make the payment.

Submitted by Administrator on

Yes, you can pay by check. That information is included in the guidelines. Just scroll up to item 3 above in the guidelines for the payee and snail mail address for check/money order entry.
Still, here's an important note about Google Checkout for those having problems with it:
 
IMPORTANT: When you get to the Google payment page, you should see the credit card payment form, OR a sign in/login form. If you find the login, it means you already have a Google account that you’ve used on that PC (e.g. Gmail, Google+, Google Wallet, etc.), and in that case simply login to the Google account to see the credit card payment form. 
If the above doesn't work, then it might be a cookie problem with your browser/PC, and using a different browser/PC often resolves the problem.
OR,
If all that fail or you're not comfortable paying online, then you can simply pay by check/money order through snail mail – for that, from the above listed contest link (http://www.ablemusepress.com/ablemuse-write-prize#enter_contest), simply scroll up to item 3. Where the snail mail address is indicated.
 
Best,
…Alex

Submitted by Caitlyn Pezza (not verified) on

After work is submitted through the online entry form, are we to get a confirmation email? I recieved one for payment, but not for the submission and I was worried it didn't go through. Does anyone know if a confirmation is sent out?

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Caitlyn,

 

Use the contact form (http://www.ablemusepress.com/contact) to query us privately, including your identifying information, and we'll check our records and make sure it was properly received.

Best,

...Alex

Submitted by Larry Dunn (not verified) on

Hello, I've workshoped my work on various online writing forums. Can I still submit to the contest?
Larry Dunn

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Larry, 
If it's a workshop that periodically prunes workshop posts, then it's fine to submit to the contest, and we don't consider the material published.
However, if it's a workshop that permanently archives the posts online, meaning that it's forever accessi ble online, then we consider the material published and won't accept it for the contest.
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Pamela (not verified) on

How can I confirm that my submission was received? After I entered my information, the screen simply brought me back to the beginning. I did receive notice that the fee was paid. Thank you!

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Pamela,
 
Use the contact form (http://www.ablemusepress.com/contact) to query us privately, including your identifying information, and we'll check our records and make sure it was properly received.
Best,
...Alex

Submitted by joAnna Scandiffio (not verified) on

how can i resubmit my submission.  the alignment is really off and that means I just wasted $15 dollars. Please help.

Submitted by Administrator on

Just resubmit, Joanna, and we'll use the newest version of your submission.
Best,
...Alex
 

Submitted by Brian Allgar (not verified) on

Alex, there may not be time for me to receive a reply to this before the new closing date, but I'm a little confused by the archived/non-archived distinction. More specifically, are pieces that have appeared on the Eratosphere Metrical board eligible or not? Regards, Brian

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Brian,
Workshopped posts at Eratosphere qualify as not-previously published -- workshop forums there are pruned periodically (not archived).
Best,
...Alex

Submitted by Andrea Hollander (not verified) on

Dear Alex,
I thought I would pay my contest fee by check, so I indicated this on the contest form, then submitted my entry. Later I decided to pay by Google Wallet, which I then did. Thus, my contest entry will appear one way, but the payment was already made, and therefore no check will arrive. How do I get my Google Wallet receipt number to you for verification?
Andrea

Submitted by Administrator on

Dear Andrea,
 
It's no problem. Your Google Wallet payment has already been confirmed and matched to your entry. Good luck!
Best,
...Alex

Submitted by Victor (not verified) on

Any chance of paying via Paypal? That way I don't have to disclose CC info to yet another third party.

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Victor,

Unfortunately, there's no Paypal payment method. However, if you don't want to disclose your credit card information to WePay (the third-party credit card processor), you can pay the old-fashioned way by check/money order: Just go to http://www.ablemusepress.com/ablemuse-write-prize#enter_contest and scroll slightly up from there -- in brief, it's $15 per entry, check payable to Able Muse Review and snail-mailed to:

Able Muse Review
(Poetry or Flash Fiction) Contest
467 Saratoga Avenue #602
San Jose, CA 95129
USA

Best,

...Alex

Submitted by Ben (not verified) on

I entered or think that I have entered into this contest.  I paid some money and sent my poems online, but am unsure if they were received properly.  I am wondering how I check on my submission status.

 

Ben 

Submitted by Rosalind Brenner (not verified) on

<p>I submitted five poems, paid on line, tried to submit as docx, but refused, so I changed file to rtf. I then got an email that said error, completely garbled words followed. Did you get my submission?</p>

<p>Thanks.</p>

<p>Rosalind Brenner</p>

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Rosalind,

Your entry was correctly received, and we can read it fine through the submission system (even though it might look garbled at your end).

Best,

...Alex

 

Submitted by Aaryan Khanna (not verified) on

Hi Alex. Another question on payment, because it is very confusing. Since you now have two separate avenues for payment and submission(the 3rd party WePay), how do they merge? I'm ready to use WePay, but it still asks for the Google Checkout thing in the online form for submission, and it can't be skipped. So what do I do to prevent double payment?

PS- I can't very well send the payment by snail mail from India now, just saw it today. Please reply ASAP

Submitted by Karen Bowden on

As you can see below, users are told that files with "docx" extension are not allowed, and then "docx" is listed after "please upload a file with . . . .  So which is it?  I tried "docx," the extension for the most recent version of Word.  Didn't work, so I saved the submission as a 97-2003 version and that one was accepted.  This conflicting instruction may be reason other folks are experiencing some difficulty.  Also date on my submission is yesterday.  On the bright side, very nice, this ability to communicate with administrator and resolve problems quickly.

~~Subject field is required.
Files with the 'docx' extension are not allowed, please upload a file with a gif, jpg, png, bmp, tif, psd, txt, rtf, html, pdf, doc, avi, mov, mp3, wav, gz, rar, tar, zip, .mp4, .docx, or .wpd extension.

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Karen,

The .docx upload problem is a bug in the submission software. Please try sending by email attachment as indicated in the email option of the submission instructions (to:  ).

Best,

...Alex

Submitted by Ed (not verified) on

question: for  poetry  submission, single  or  double  spacing?

 

                                                                                             thanks,

                                                                                                           Ed

Submitted by Administrator on

Hi Ed,

It's single spacing for poetry (and double spacing for fiction).

 

Best,

...Alex

Submitted by Rory (not verified) on

Hi

 

I want to enter your Fiction Contest, but heck if I can see how to pay you my entrance fee!! I went to WePay but it is all aimed at someone with a brand or service they want to get paid for. No result searching for Able Muse. Why can't you just put a payment link on the Entrance Form page? Alex writes above "Please, click the green 'Add to Cart' button above, and then, follow the instructions." What add to cart button? Where? Not on this page or the entrance form page.

Help!!

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