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$30.00 USD

Annual Chapbook Contest for 2020.
Open to writers residing in the United States.
Winners will receive the following: 1st Prize: $500 and $100 Duotrope Gift Certificate plus 20 copies of published chapbook and distribution of their winning title to all contest entrants. 2nd Prize: $150 plus 10 copies of their published chapbook. 3rd Prize: $100 plus 5 copies of their published chapbook.

  • Submission Period for Contest:  Feb 1 - Feb 28, 2020
  • Contest Judge: Amy Miller
  • Winner Announced by:  July, 2020
  • Publication/Release Date:  Winter, 2020/21


Submission Period: February 1 - 28, 2020
We welcome work from both established and emerging writers alike. Every submission starts out in the same pile and is judged merely on its own merit, not the reputation of the writer. We enjoy poems of all styles: formal, free-verse, metered, non-rhyming, experimental, nostalgic, political, erotic, abstract, lyrical, etc. We don’t censor or shy away from ‘tough topics’, however we do draw the line at poetry that discriminates against our fellow humans.

  • The Poetry Box Chapbook Prize honors a collection of original poetry in English by a single author; translations are not eligible.
  • Contest is open to poets residing in the United States.
  • The first place winning poet will receive a $500 honorarium and $100 Duotrope Gift Certificate upon publication plus 20 copies of the book. The winning chapbook will be distributed to ALL contest entrants. 
  • We will also choose  2nd and 3rd place winners for publication and cash prizes. 
  • The winning chapbooks will be published in Winter 2020/21 by The Poetry Box.
  • In addition, the winning book and author will be featured on the The Poetry Box website.
  • Entries must be submitted between February 1st – February 28th, 2020. (Midnight, PST)
  • All entries should be made via Submittable. (No email or snail mail submissions.)
  • Manuscripts should be 20 to 32 pages of poetry in length, submitted in one single file.
  • Accepted file formats: WORD (.doc or docx) or RTF (rich text format).
  • Please use a standard readable font  in 12pt. Do not embed your poems in graphics or imagery.
  • Each poem should start on a new page.  Poems should be single-spaced with double-spacing between stanzas.
  • The author’s name must not appear in the manuscript. Do NOT put your name on the entry. Manuscripts will be read anonymously.
  • The title page should contain the proposed title of chapbook and a brief synopsis/description of the collection and/or theme of the body of work. Author contact information is to be collected separately via Submittable. (do not include on title page)
  • Please include a Contents page listing the poems in order. (page numbers are optional)
  • Do not include your name, author bio, or any other identifying information in the manuscript.
  • Individual poems of the manuscript may have been previously published in magazines, journals, or anthologies, but the work as a whole must be unpublished. (Please provide acknowledgments of previously published poems.)
  • Simultaneous submissions are permissible, but entrants are asked to notify The Poetry Box via email (shawn@thepoetrybox.com) immediately if a manuscript becomes accepted/committed elsewhere.
  • If you win/place in our contest, please skip a year before entering the contest again. In other words, if you won the chapbook prize in 2019, you'll be eligible to enter again in 2021.
  • The entry fee of $30.00 is payable through Submittable (our submission manager system) and includes a free copy of the winning chapbook for 2020.
  • The winner will be announced by July 30, 2020.


If you have any questions, you can contact the editor, Shawn Aveningo Sanders via Shawn@thePoetryBox.com.

We look forward to reading your work!

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.