Announcement: Northwestern’s Drinking Gourd Chapbook Prize Series for Poets of Color

By Arturo R. García

Thanks to Northwestern University’s Poetry and Poetics Colloquium for the heads-up regarding a new annual competition geared toward unpublished poets of color.

The PPC is teaming up with Northwestern University Press for the inaugural Drinking Gourd chapbook poetry prize. A panel of POC poets will select the winning entry, and the first prize chapbook will be introduced by poet

Northwestern University’s Poetry and Poetics Colloquium (PPC) proudly announces a partnership with Northwestern University Press for the inaugural Drinking Gourd chapbook poetry prize, a first-book award for poets of color. Poet Ed Roberson will introduce the winner, and will also publish an accompanying chapbook of new work to launch the series.

The submission deadline is January 15th, 2012, and the winner will be notified by March 15th. The two chapbooks will be published in Fall 2012 by Northwestern University Press. Submission guidelines are under the cut.


  • Winner receives $350 prize money, publication by Northwestern University Press in Fall 2012, 15 copies of the book, and a featured reading. Results announced in March 2012.


  • Judging will be conducted by a panel of senior minority poets and scholars assembled by the Northwestern University Poetry and Poetics Colloquium.


  • Poets of color who have not previously published a book-length volume of poetry. Simultaneous submissions to other contests should be noted. Immediate notification upon winning another award is required.


  • Reading period begins January 15, 2012. Manuscripts must be received by January 15, 2012. To be notified that your manuscript has been received, please enclose a self-addressed, stamped postcard. The winner will be announced on March 15, 2012.


  •  Send two copies of a single manuscript. One manuscript per poet allowed.
  • Enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope to receive notification of results.
  • Author’s name should not appear on any pages within the manuscript. Copy One must include a title page with the author’s brief bio (200 words, maximum) and contact information: author’s name, postal address, e-mail address and telephone number. Copy Two must include a cover sheet with the title only.
  • Manuscript must be typed single-sided with a minimum font size of 11, paginated and 25-35 pages in length.
  • Manuscript must include a table of contents and list of acknowledgments of previously published poems.
  • Manuscript must be unbound. Use a binder clip—do not staple or fold. Do not include illustrations or images of any kind.
  • Manuscripts not adhering to submission guidelines will be discarded without notice to sender.
  • Due to the volume of submissions, manuscripts will not be returned.
  • Post-submission revisions or corrections are not permitted.

Reading Fee

  • $10. Enclose check with submission, made payable to Northwestern University.

Direct packet to:
Northwestern University Poetry and Poetics Colloquium and Workshop
Drinking Gourd Prize Chapbook Series
University Hall, Room 215
1897 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
Attn: Susannah Young-ah Gottlieb

  • Jaymee Goh

    So this is a dumb question, but, do international submissions count?