American Fiction Short Story Award

New Rivers Press will publish approximately twenty short stories in American Fiction Volume 17: The Best Unpublished Stories by Emerging Writers. We seek well crafted, character driven literary fiction in any genre. $1,750 in prizes for short fiction ($1000 1st Place, $500 2nd, $250 3rd; each of the selected story authors will receive national publication and distribution, author discount, and two complimentary copies.). Publication date is set for October 2018. Finalist judge is TBA. Maximum 10,000 words per story. Reading Fee of $16 for each online submission from February 1 to June 15, 2018 at Submittable website. For more information about New Rivers Press, go to

About our American Fiction anthologies: After an 11-year pause, New Rivers Press revived its American Fiction anthology series with American Fiction, Volume 11: The Best Unpublished Short Stories by Emerging Writers, an anthology of stories selected through a national competition. We published Volume 11 in 2010, Volume 12 in 2012, Volume 13 in October of 2014, and Volume 14 in 2015. Volume 13 was named winner of the Midwest Independent Publishers Award for Fiction Short Stories/Anthology in 2014. We are currently in production with Volume 15, which will be released in October 2016. The series was originally carried by Birch Lane Press/Carol Publishing Group. Past judges have included Charles Baxter, Ann Beattie, Ray Carver, Wallace Stegner, Joyce Carol Oates, Tim O'Brien, Louise Erdrich, Clint McCown, Josip Novakovich, Michael White, Elizabeth Strout, and Steve Almond.

We're looking for manuscripts of creative nonfiction, essays, and mixed-genre work between 70 and 120 pages in length. Include contact information and a brief artistic biography with publication history. 

Submission Guidelines

  • Simultaneous submissions are allowed, but notify NRP immediately of acceptance elsewhere. If you fail to give such notification and your manuscript is selected, your entry gives NRP permission to proceed with publication.
  • Please include acknowledgements of individual pieces previously published in magazines, anthologies, or elsewhere.
  • You may submit more than one manuscript, but only if there is NO overlap in content.
  • Manuscript pages must be numbered.
  • All of the material included in your submission must be of your own composition and free from copyright restrictions. Should you be selected for publication, you will be responsible for securing releases.
If selected for publication, author(s) will receive:
  • Standard publishing contract with royalties
  • 25 author copies and an author discount on further copies
  • The opportunity to receive travel funding to visit Minnesota State University Moorhead campus to give a reading and/or a master class on craft of writing or the manuscript's subject matter