2018 Essay Collection Competition

Judge: brian Blanchfield

* now closed *


The Cleveland State University Poetry Center welcomes submissions for our Essay Collection Competition; the winner will receive $1,000, publication, and a standard royalty contract. This year’s contest will be judged Brian Blanchfield.

Brian Blanchfield is the author of three books of poetry and prose, most recently the essay collection Proxies, published by Nightboat Books in 2016, and by Picador UK in 2017. For Proxies he was awarded a 2016 Whiting Award in Nonfiction, and for his books of poetry he has received the 2014 James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets and a 2015 Howard Foundation Fellowship. His recent nonfiction has appeared in Harper’s, BOMB, Brick, Conjunctions, and The Oxford American, among other journals and magazines. He teaches creative writing and literature at The University of Idaho.


1. All essay collections are welcome, regardless of author’s previous publications; manuscripts should be approximately 100-300 pages in length. Translations are not eligible.

2. Intimate friends, relatives, or current and former students of Brian Blanchfield are not eligible to submit. Faculty, staff, students, and alumni of Cleveland State University or the Northeast Ohio MFA Program (NEOMFA) are not eligible to submit their work.

Guidelines & Notes

1. Make sure to record your most current information (name, manuscript title, address, phone number, and email address) in your Submittable account; this is the information we will use to contact you. No other cover page or biographical information should be included in your submission and your name should not appear elsewhere in the manuscript. You may include an acknowledgments page that lists previously published poems.

2. Multiple submissions are welcome and simultaneous submissions are acceptable (please inform us immediately if the manuscript is accepted elsewhere).

3. The CSU Poetry Center reserves the right to consider all entrants for publication; a list of winners and finalists will be posted on the Poetry Center website in late summer/early fall of 2018.

To Submit

1. Upload your manuscript as a .docx or .pdf to Submittable (mail submissions are not eligible).

2. There is a $28 reading fee, which must be paid through Submittable. As a token of our appreciation for your readership and support of innovative literary publishing we will mail each writer a book from our 2018 spring catalog (which will include these titles). Books will ship in April; please make sure that the address listed in your Submittable account is up to date.

3. Email poetrycenter@csuohio.edu with any further questions.