The Southern Collective Experience is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion across the mediums of visual art, music, poetry, and prose. In this, our second poetry chapbook contest, we focus upon voices of empowerment from the LBGTQ community. We wish to hear and learn from your journey: your struggles, and your triumphs. Our goal is forever to affirm, nurture, and celebrate the experiences and work of those who make life shine.
The judges for this contest are Nickole Brown and Jessica Jacobs.
Nickole Brown is the author of Sister, first published in 2007 with a new edition reissued by Sibling Rivalry Press in 2018. Her second book, Fanny Says, came out from BOA Editions and won the Weatherford Award for Appalachian Poetry in 2015. The audiobook of that collection became available in 2017. She is the Editor for the Marie Alexander Poetry Series and teaches at the Sewanee School of Letters MFA Program and the Great Smokies Writing Program at UNCA. She lives with her wife, poet Jessica Jacobs, in Asheville, NC, where she periodically volunteers at three different animal sanctuaries. Currently, she’s at work on a bestiary of sorts about these animals, but it won’t consist of the kind of pastorals that always made her (and most of the working-class folks she knows) feel shut out of nature and the writing about it—these poems speak in a queer, Southern-trash-talking kind of way about nature beautiful, damaged, dangerous, and in desperate need of saving. A chapbook of these poems called To Those Who Were Our First Gods recently won the 2018 Rattle Chapbook Prize, and another sequence called The Donkey Elegies was published as a chapbook by Sibling Rivalry Press in early 2020.
Jessica Jacobs is the author of Take Me with You, Wherever You’re Going (Four Way Books), named one of Library Journal’s Best Poetry Books of the Year and a current finalist for the Julie Suk and Gold Crown Literary Awards. Her debut collection, Pelvis with Distance (White Pine Press), a biography-in-poems of Georgia O'Keeffe, won the New Mexico Book Award in Poetry and was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award and Julie Suk Award. An avid long-distance runner, Jessica has worked as a rock-climbing instructor, bartender, and professor, and now serves as the Chapbook Editor for Beloit Poetry Journal. She lives in Asheville, NC, with her wife, the poet Nickole Brown, with whom she co-authored Write It! 100 Poetry Prompts to Inspire (Spruce Books/PenguinRandomHouse), and is at work on parallel collections of essays and poems exploring spirituality, Torah, and Midrash.
All those who enter must be a member of the LGBTQ community.
The entry fee is $25.00.
No more than 20 pages of poetry. A page of acknowledgements and/or dedication is not counted in the 20 pages.
Please note in acknowledgements any previously published poems
The contest is blind. Please put your name and contact information in the cover letter.
1st Place receives 100 copies of the book and $200.00.
2nd Place receives $100.00.
3rd Place receives $50.00.
All those who place will be interviewed in the Blue Mountain Review and on the NPR show, Dante's Old South.
Honorable mentions will be noted on the winner's announcement.
The announcement of winners and honorable mentions will be January 5, 2021.