The Knoxville Writers’ Guild is accepting submissions during September for the annual fiction contest. Submissions must be received electronically by 11:59 p.m. on September 30.

Please submit questions regarding the contest here, under the Contest category.

General Contest Guidelines

Please read the guidelines carefully.

Who can submit?

  • Anyone above the age of 18 EXCEPT KWG Board members and Contest Committee members. A first-prize winner may not enter for the following one-year period.

Is there a limit on submissions?

No, but see Submission Fees below.

What is a submission?

An unpublished work of fiction 5000 words or less. Submission of previously published works will result in disqualification from the contest and forfeiting the submission fee.

How do I submit my entry?

  • Using the appropriate link below:
    Member Submission (Free)
    Member Submission (Paid)
  • All submissions must be posted by 11:59pm Eastern Daylight Time on September 30, 2022, through the online submission process. Entries received via email or through the postal service will not be processed.
    • The title of your attachment should match the title of your submission.
    • Each submission must be entered separately as an individual submission with the applicable fee.
    • You will receive an automated email confirmation that the committee has received your entry. Please send a follow-up inquiry via the contact form linked above if you do not receive an email confirmation for receipt of your submission.
  • Specifications: Black text, white background, 12-point Times New Roman or Courier.
  • Do not include your name, pen name, or any other identifying information on the entries themselves. If you do, your entry will be rejected, and you will forfeit your entry fee.
  • Unpublished works only, please. Submission of previously published works will result in disqualification from the contest and forfeiting your entry fee.

What are the entry fees?

  • For members, the first submission is free, but thereafter the fee is $10 per submission.
  • For nonmembers, $15 per submission. If you’d like to become a KWG member, you may join here for only $30/year ($15 for students).
  • Submit your electronic payment via the online submission process. Checks or cash will not accepted.


  • First Place Prize, $300. Second Place Prize, $100. Prizes may not be awarded if an insufficient number of eligible entries are received.
  • Winners will be notified by phone and/or email.
  • The First Place winner will be invited to read the winning submission at the November 3, 2022, meeting of the Knoxville Writers’ Guild, when the winners will be announced. Prize checks will be mailed to the address connected to the submission unless otherwise notified. We hope the meeting will be in-person at Central United Methodist Church in Knoxville, but it is possible we will still be meeting remotely.
  • The Knoxville Writers’ Guild will publish the winning poems on its website for no less than two months unless the prize winner requests otherwise.


Thomas Atkinson

We are honored to have as our judge, Thomas M. Atkinson, an award-winning fiction writer and playwright. His most recent short story, “Kentucky Unicorn,” won the Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award—his sixth—and received an unheard of near-perfect score from three judges. His novel, Tiki Man, was published in fall of 2021. KWG featured Thom reading from this novel in a program last year, and it can be purchased through Regal House Publishing or at Amazon. His experience as a bar band rocker in the early 1980s inspired him to write his first novel, Strobe Life. Thom’s short stories have been anthologized in the US, UK, and Ireland, and have appeared in The SunDecemberSouthern Indiana ReviewNorth American ReviewTampa ReviewMadison ReviewFifth WednesdayIndiana Review and others. His fiction and drama have received numerous accolades and include a Samuel French Off Off Broadway Festival winning short play. He and his wife live in Ohio and have two sons.

We thank our sponsor, the Jonathan Taylor Memorial Fund, which was created by his colleagues at the Education Networks of America. “Jonathan was an enthusiastic science fiction fan as well as a keen writer in the genre. This fund honors Jonathan’s love of writing and helps other writers fulfill their passion as Jonathan did.”

Equal Opportunity:  The Knoxville Writers Guild does not discriminate against any person because of race, age, gender, handicap or country of national origin.