On Target Poetry Book Writing Contest

The On Target Poetry Book Writing Contest supports three outstanding poetry writers  from the United States and Canada.

These prizes award recognition and poetry book publication by Winn Publications poetry department Georgia Poe Lit

Selected from Winn Publications leadership Arilia Winn the first-place prize winner will receive a traditional publishing contract PLUS a growing prize purse starting at $100.00 USD. 

Submissions Now Open: January 9, 2023 

Last day to enter: Feb. 27,2023 , 11:59 PM EST

Winner’s Announced: March 18,2023 


Growing Prize Purse

Kicking off the poetry book writing contest on January 9, 2023, with $100 and adding $10 for every entry, Poets are encouraged to tell their friends to enter the contest and check back here often.  

$200 USD Final Cash Prize!
til we get to the finish line 93%

THE Categories

1st, 2nd and 3rd place poetry writers will be selected from the following categories

  • Rhymed
  • Free verse
  • Sonnet
  • Imagery
  • Elegies
  • Haiku 
  • Epic
  • Narrative

General Guidelines & Contest Rules

  • The submitted poetry manuscript must be complete and unpublished although excerpts/individual poems included may have been previously published in periodicals, chapbooks, or anthologies. This is not exclusively a first book contest; authors may be at any stage in their career. 
  • For all categories – the first 12 pages must be submitted for consideration. 
  • The writer must currently reside in the United States of America or Canada and write in English and be 18 and older.
  • Only online submissions will be considered. There is a $20 USD entry fee. You may submit multiple manuscripts as one entry. We will confirm the number of entries with you upon receiving it/them.  
  • The first place prize winner wins the growing prize purse that’s starting at $100 USD
  • Manuscripts that are co-authored are welcomed and only one entry is needed 
  • Tell us in a brief cover letter about your publication history (if applicable, don’t worry about it if not)
  • To ensure the protection of our volunteer readers, and to keep Winn Publications a safe space, please let us know in your cover letter if your work can be triggering in any way. This will have no bearing on your submission or a decision—we just want to ensure the best possible environment for our readers. Thank you for your understanding.
  • Because we are a smaller publishing company, only online submissions are accepted at this time. In the future, we hope to partner with a well-known contest entry program/system. 
  • Incomplete submissions cannot be guaranteed consideration for the prize. Winn Publications reserves the right to disqualify any entries deemed to jeopardize the integrity of the contest.

MANuscript formatting

To ensure fairness, submissions will be reviewed blindly/ anonymously. No identifying information may appear on the pages of the manuscript. If the author’s name appears within the body of the text, please delete it before submitting it to the contest.  However, please include a title page – with the author’s name deleted- and a table of contents. Pages must be numbered. Font: nothing fancy, Times New Roman 12 point font would be best. No manuscript revisions can be considered during the course of the contest, but the winning writer will have an opportunity to make revisions prior to publication.

Concerning Trigger Warnings

It also helps to research the common lists of triggers/content warnings. Here are a few:

  • Death
  • Sexual violence/ rape
  • Food and drink/ eating disorders
  • Paedophilia
  • Violence/murder
  • Sex/masturbation
  • Self-harm
  • Suicide
  • Homophobia, transphobia, sexism (any kind of discrimination)
  • Talk of dysphoria, body image and appearance

One last note

  • All decisions made by the judge regarding the winners are final
  • No contest entry fees will be returned
  • By submitting, you are agreeing to all contest rules
  • Contest rules are subject to change
  • $20 USD converts to $27 CAD