Prose & Poetry Contest

The Carve Magazine Prose & Poetry Contest (formerly Premium Edition Contest) seeks the best fiction, nonfiction, and poetry from writers all over the world. A guest judge in each genre selects one winner to be awarded a $1000 cash prize.

The contest is open October 1 - November 15 and winners are published in our spring issue in April.



  • Submission Dates: October 1 - November 15.

  • Prizes: $1000 each for one winner in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.

  • Winners announced February 1, 2020 and published online in Spring 2020.

  • Honorable mentions and semi-finalists will be listed online for up to 6 months.

  • All work submitted will also be considered for non-contest publication.

  • Entry Fees: $17 for fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.

  • One poem, essay, or short story per entry. No limit to number of entries.

  • Story, essay, or poem must be previously unpublished (including online).

  • 10,000 maximum word count for fiction and nonfiction; 2,000 maximum for poetry.

  • We accept entries from anywhere in the world, but the work must be in English.

  • No genre works (romance, horror, sci-fi, etc.); literary prose and poetry only.

  • Winners of the past two Raymond Carver and Prose & Poetry contests are ineligible.

  • Submitting online: no cover page or author info in document. We will consider all contest submissions without identifying information.

  • No mailed submissions accepted for this contest.

until the contest closes.

For additional questions about the Prose & Poetry Contest, please contact us.

Submit online via Submittable.


Spread the word! Download our PDF to share with friends.


2019 Guest Judges (1).jpg


Lydia Kiesling is the author of The Golden State, a finalist for the Cabell first novelist prize, and a 2018 National Book Foundation “5 under 35” honoree. She is a contributing editor at The Millions and her writing has appeared at outlets including the New York Times Magazine, the New Yorker, and The Guardian.

Alex Lemon 2018


Benjamin Busch is a writer, filmmaker, and illustrator. He served 16 years as a Marine Corps infantry officer, with two combat tours in Iraq, and played Officer Anthony Colicchio for three seasons on the HBO series The Wire. He is the author of Dust to Dust (Ecco), and his essays have appeared in Harper’s, the New York Times Magazine, Guernica, River Styx, and NPR. His poems have appeared in North American Review, Prairie Schooner, Five Points, Epiphany, and Michigan Quarterly Review, among others. He teaches nonfiction in the MFA program at Sierra Nevada College and works a farm in Michigan.

Carmen Giménez Smith 2018


Analicia Sotelo is the author of Virgin, the inaugural winner of the Jake Adam York Prize, selected by Ross Gay for Milkweed Editions, 2018. She is also the author of the chapbook, Nonstop Godhead, selected by Rigoberto González for a 2016 Poetry Society of America National Chapbook Fellowship. Her poem “I’m Trying to Write a Poem About a Virgin and It’s Awful” was selected for Best New Poets 2015 by Tracy K. Smith. Poems have appeared or are forthcoming in the New Yorker, Boston Review, FIELD, Kenyon Review, New England Review, and The Nation. She is the recipient of the 2016 DISQUIET International Literary Prize, a Canto Mundo fellowship, and scholarships from the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and the Image Text Ithaca Symposium. Analicia holds an MFA in Poetry from the University of Houston.


Past Contests

View winners and results from past Prose & Poetry, Premium Edition, and Esoteric Awards/Contests.