Vermont Writers’ Prizes now Include both Prose and Poetry

This prestigious contest’s entry deadline is now extended to January 1, 2020.

Green Mountain Power (GMP) and Vermont Magazine set a new deadline to enter to win one of the state’s great literary honors: The Vermont Writers’ Prize. Writers now have until January 1, 2020 to perfect their entries, and this year, for the first time, there are two prizes – one for prose, and one for poetry. The winners’ work will be published in Vermont Magazine’s Early Summer 2020 Issue and the winning prose author and poetry author will each win $1,250.

“The increasing number of poems Vermont writers enter, and the amazing quality of the writing, convinced us that a separate prize for poetry was the right thing to do,” says Dotty Schnure, who manages the contest for GMP. “There is so much talent in this state, and it is inspiring to read the entries and see how writers highlight the essence of Vermont in their work.”

S.J. Cahill of East Burke, Vermont
S.J. Cahill of East Burke, Vermont

The award is a collaboration between GMP and Vermont Magazine and was created as a way to honor Ralph Nading Hill, Jr. who was a Vermont historian, author, and long-time GMP Board member. The contest is open to all Vermont residents, including seasonal residents and students enrolled in Vermont colleges. You can be a professional or amateur writer.

S.J. Cahill of East Burke, Vermont, won the 2019 Vermont Writers’ Prize with his story, “Family Ground.” His story features a man trying to return home to his Northeast Kingdom community after fleeing to Canada to avoid the Vietnam draft. Cahill says it stems from his own experience. “As a military veteran who didn’t serve in Vietnam, I was intrigued with the moral dilemma. Most people have forgiven those who refused to go but there are some who never will.”

Please submit only one entry per year by creating a Submittable account and logging in here.  

Submissions need to be essays, short stories or poems on the themes of “Vermont––Its People, Its Places, Its History or Its Values.” Entries must be unpublished and less than 1,500 words long. The winning entries will be selected by an independent panel of judges. Employees and subcontractors of Vermont Magazine or Green Mountain Power and previous winners are ineligible.

Green Mountain Power (GMP) serves approximately 265,000 residential and business customers in Vermont and is partnering with them to improve lives and transform communities. GMP is focused on a new way of doing business to meet the needs of customers with integrated energy services that help people use less energy and save money, while continuing to generate clean, cost-effective and reliable power in Vermont. GMP earned a spot on Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies in the World list three years in a row (2017, 2018, 2019). GMP is the first utility in the world to get a B Corp certification, meeting rigorous social, environmental, accountability and transparency standards and committing to use business as a force for good. J.D. Power’s 2018 and 2019 rankings put GMP among top utilities for customer satisfaction. In 2019, GMP was named “One of the Best Places To Work in Vermont” by Vermont Business Magazine and the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, and was the winner of the Deane C. Davis Outstanding Vermont Business of the Year Award.