American Fiction Prize

January 31, 2009

Judge:  The Member-Guest and The Weatherman author and two-time American Fiction Prize winner Clint McCown

  • First Prize: $1,000
  • Second Prize: $500
  • Third Prize: $250

Entry fee: $12

American Fiction will revive this year with its American Fiction Prize
contest, a competition whose past judges include Joyce Carol Oates, Ann Beattie, Raymond Carver, Anne Tyler, Louise Erdrich, Tim O’Brien, and
Tobias Wolff.

This year’s judge, Clint McCown, teaches in the creative writing program at Virginia Commonwealth University and is a recipient of the Associated Press Award for Documentary Excellence for his investigations of organized  crime and corruption in Alabama politics, and the Society of Midland Author 

Award. His novel, War Memorials, was designated for Outstanding Achievement in Literature by the Wisconsin Library Association. McCown’s short stories and poems have appeared widely, and he has published two books of verse. He has worked as a screenwriter for Warner Bros. and as an actor with the National Shakespeare Company. He has edited several literary journals, including the Beloit Fiction Journal, which he founded in 1984.  

Contest winners and finalists will be published by New Rivers Press in Fall 2010 and distributed nationally by The Consortium.

Entries must be postmarked by March 15, 2009. 

Winners and finalists will be announced by September 2009.

Contest Guidelines:

We accept all genres of unpublished literary fiction. 

Entries must be: 

  • unpublished; 
  • strictly 7500 words or less; 
  • postmarked byMarch 15, 2009;
  • clearly marked “American Fiction Prize” 
  • on both the story and the outside of the envelope; 
  • accompanied by a $12 entry fee per story 
  • (make checks payable to American Fiction). 
  • Please include a cover page with your name,story title, mailing address, and email address. 
  • Do not include your name on the pages of the story. 
  • Please ensure all stories are typed,double-spaced, and that the title and page number appear on each page. 
  • In lieu of an email address, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.


We welcome multiple entries ($12/story). 

For entries outside the U.S.:

please send entry fee in U.S. currency or money order. While we cannot return manuscripts, we will forward a list of the winning stories to any entrant who includes an SASE; as well, we will e-mail contest updates to anyone who provides an active e-mail address. Entrants retain all rights to their stories.


Mail entries to:

American Fiction Prize 
5712 Briarwick Court
Hermitage, TN 37076

Please e-mail any questions to americanfictionprize AT yahoo DOT com. 

Thank you for your interest, and good luck!


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