Ruminate is excited to announce our fifth annual VanderMey Nonfiction Prize! The Nonfiction Prize has gained national recognition, with our 2013 recipient receiving a Pushcart Prize and appearing in the 2013 Pushcart Prize anthology. The winner of the VanderMey Nonfiction Prize will receive $1500 and publication in the Summer 2014 issue. The runner up will receive $200 and publication. We will announce the final judge in the coming months.
The submission deadline for the prize is midnight February 20th, 2015.
The entry fee is $20 (includes a free copy of the Summer 2015 Issue, which will include the winning piece).
You may submit one nonfiction piece per entry and it must be 5500 words or less. There is no limit on the number of entries per person.
$1500 and publication in the Summer 2015 Issue will be awarded to the winner. The runner-up will receive $200 and publication in the Spring 2015 Issue.
A blind reading of all entries will be conducted by a panel of RUMINATE readers, who will select 10 nonfiction finalists. Those 10 finalists will then be read for our final judge who will select a winner.
Close friends and students (current & former) of the final judge are not eligible to compete, nor are close friends of the RUMINATE staff.
All submissions must be submitted via our online submission form manager. We will not accept mail or email submissions. We do not accept previously published entries.
All submissions must be previously unpublished.
You may enter simultaneously submitted work.
You may submit any type of creative nonfiction–personal essay, short memoir, literary journalism, etc.
Winners will be announced in the Summer Issue, June 2015.
We will be notifying all entrants of submission status in mid April, 2015.
Please remove your name, bio, and any contact info from the file that you submit.
We strongly recommend ordering a past copy of Ruminate to better understand the type of work we are looking for.The 2012 Nonfiction Prize winning piece “Father of Disorder” by Jessica Wilbanks and selected by judge Leslie Leyland Fields appears in Ruminate’s Issue 24: Heirlooms and was selected to appear in the2013 Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses anthology. The 2013 VanderMey Nonfiction winning piece “The Girl in the Photograph” by Craig Reinbold and selected by judge Brian Doyle appears in Ruminate’s Issue 28: Not Forgotten. PDF versions of the magazine are available for $5 each.
Please Note: Ruminate adheres to the following Contest Code of Ethics, as adopted by the Council of Literary Presses and Magazines, of which Ruminate is a proud member: “CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.”