Submission Period: 2/15 - 5/1 

The South Dakota State Poetry Society seeks chapbook-length poetry manuscripts for our Chapbook Contest, open to all South Dakota residents. The winner of the chapbook contest receives publication and author copies, and the chapbook is typically debuted at the annual South Dakota Festival of Books.

Past winners include:
  • Pen Pearson, "One Wing Should Float" (2023, judged by Ryan Clark)
  • Erika Saunders, "Hit or Miss Yields" (2022, judged by Sara Henning)
  • Todd Williams, "Objects in the Mirror are Closer Than They Appear" (2021, judged by Avery M. Guess)
  • Dana R. Yost, "In Your Head" (2020, judged by Stephanie Marcellus)
  • John S. Nelson, “West River”  (2019, judged by Nathaniel Hansen)
  • Daniel G. Snethen, “Bird”  (2018, judged by  Valerie Wetlaufer)
  • Whitnee Thorp, “Cicurate” (2017, judged by Fred Yannantuono)
  • Barbara Duffey, “The Verge of Thirst” (2016, judged by Gary Dop)


Information, Rules, & Guidelines

Fee: $15 for SDSPS Members; $20 for non-members

  1. Contest open to South Dakota residents only.
  2. Submit up to 30 pages of poetry. No more than one poem to a page, but a poem may be longer than one page.
  3. Individual poems may have been published elsewhere, but the chapbook as a whole must not have been published anywhere else. Poems may be on any subject and in any form other than prose.
  4. Chapbooks must be submitted electronically through Submittable.
  5. Poets may enter more than one manuscript, but each entry must be submitted separately and will be charged a separate reading fee.
  6. Manuscripts will be judged blind. Each manuscript should include:
    • Table of Contents with no personal information.
    • Title Page with just the chapbook title and no personal identification.
    • Manuscript with no personal information (only the poem title, page number, and the poem on each page).
    • An acknowledgments page listing poems that have been published previously, as well as the periodical, anthology or book, and date of publication.

Please also include a cover letter that includes a brief bio and the title of your chapbook entry.

Only one winning manuscript will be accepted for publication. Should the contest be canceled, all entrants will be refunded their reading fee. Rights return to the poet after publication.

Thanks, and happy submitting!



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