New Letters announced the winners of its 26th annual New Letters Literary Awards contest last week, awarding $4,500 in prizes to first-place contestants.
Doris Ferleger of Pennsylvania won the “New Letters Poetry Prize” for “Now That You Are Spirit and other poems.” Dana Fitz Gale of Montana won, the “Alexander Patterson Cappon Fiction Prize” for her story “Schooling.”
Lastly, Sara Flood of Virginia concluded the winner’s circle, winning “Dorothy Churchill Cappon Essay Prize” for her essay “Toward Oceans, 101.” Flood has an extensive writing career with published works in the Santa Monica Review, Bat City Review, and Prism Review, where she won the annual fiction contest. Still, “Toward Oceans, 101” is her first published essay.
“The New Letters Literary Awards contest has a long tradition of discovering fresh new voices in fiction, poetry and the essay,” Editor-in-Chief Robert Stewart said. “This year, we continue that tradition with amazing new writing by the three winners.”
The winners received $1,500 in prizes. Additionally, each winning piece will be published in an upcoming issue of New Letters, though all entries receive consideration for publication in a future issue.
Subsequently, runners-up receive a complimentary copy of a recent book from New Letters’ affiliate BkMk Press.
New Letters established the prize competition in 1986 “to discover and reward new writers and to encourage more established writers to try new genres or new work in competition,” according to its website.
In order to maintain fairness, the judging process is anonymously done by writers disconnected from the New Letters staff, with two rounds of judges overseeing the semi-final and final phases respectively. The 2011 final judges were Aliki Barnstone (poetry), Maureen Stanton (essay) and Hilary Masters (fiction).
The 2012 New Letters Literary Awards contest will begin Dec. 1.