Listed below are our current open calls. We are open for our chapbook contests from March to May, our open reading period for full-length poetry manuscripts from June to August, our broadside contest from September to November, and our open reading period for prose manuscripts from December to February. Our residency applications are open year-round. Other calls will be published here as they open.

Sundress Publications Open for 2024 Chapbook Contest

Deadline: May 31, 2024

Sundress Publications announces its 13th annual e-chapbook contest. Authors of all genres are invited to submit manuscripts during our reading period of March 1st to May 31st, 2024.

Poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and hybrid work are welcome as are visual poetry, poetry comics, and visual hybrid works. Manuscripts must be between twelve to twenty-six (12-26) pages in length, with a page break between individual pieces. Individual pieces may have been previously published in anthologies, print journals, online journals, etc., but cannot have appeared in any full-length collection, including self-published collections. Both single-author and collaborative dual-author manuscripts will be considered. Manuscripts must be primarily in English; translations are not eligible.

All of our chapbooks are available on our website for free digital download, which means these collections are more accessible to readers and more easily shared. Most of the Sundress chapbooks average over 1,000 downloads. Each title receives a full promotional packet, extensive social media coverage, as well as an organic readership from our website is highly trafficked. Please note that print publication of this collection is not an option.

From March 1-14, submissions to this contest are free for the first submission for any and all writers. Beginning on March 15th, the entry fee is $10 per manuscript, though the fee will be waived for all writers of color and entrants who purchase or pre-order any Sundress title. Authors may submit as many chapbook manuscripts as they like, so long as each is accompanied by a separate reading fee or purchase/pre-order. Entrants can place book orders or pay submission fees at our store.

The winner will receive $200, plus publication as a beautiful full-color PDF available exclusively online; the editor’s choice prize will receive $100 and publication. Runners-up will also be considered for publication.

All manuscripts should include a cover page (with only the title of the manuscript), table of contents,
dedication (if applicable), and acknowledgments for previous publications. These pages will not be
included in the total page count. Identifying information should not appear in any part of the manuscript. Authors with a significant relationship to the judge (friends, relatives, colleagues, past or present students, etc.) are discouraged from entering.

To submit, follow the instructions found here.

Simultaneous submission to other presses is acceptable, but please notify Sundress immediately if the manuscript has been accepted elsewhere. Multiple submissions are allowed, but a separate entry fee must accompany each entry; authors may only submit ONE manuscript during the free reading period. No revisions will be allowed during the contest judging period. Winners will be announced in fall of 2024.

This contest will be judged by Athena Nassar. Nassar is an Egyptian-American poet, essayist, and short story writer from Atlanta, Georgia. She is the author of the debut poetry collection Little Houses (Sundress Publications, 2023). She is the winner of the 2021 San Miguel Writers’ Conference Writing Contest, the 2021 Academy of American Poets College Prize, and the 2019 Scholastic National Gold Medal Portfolio Award, among other honors. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, Academy of American Poets, The Missouri Review, Southern Humanities Review, Pleiades, The Los Angeles Review, and elsewhere. She is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at Vanderbilt University.

Sundress Academy for the Arts Open for Fall Residencies

Deadline: May 15, 2024

Sundress Academy for the Arts (SAFTA) is now accepting applications for short-term writing residencies in all genres—poetry, fiction, nonfiction, playwriting, screenwriting, journalism, academic writing, and more—for their fall residency period which runs from August 19th, 2024 to January 5th, 2025. These residencies are intended to provide writers with the time and space they need to finish their creative ideas in a peaceful and effective environment.

Each farmhouse residency is $300/week, covering a private room as well as access to our shared kitchen, bathroom, office, and living area, plus wireless internet. Writers Coop residencies are $150/week and include your own private dry cabin in addition to access to the farmhouse amenities. Due to the low cost, we rarely are able to provide scholarships for Writers Coop residents.

Residents will stay at the SAFTA farmhouse, located on a working farm on a 45-acre wooded plot in a Tennessee “holler” perfect for hiking, camping, and nature walks. The farmhouse is a half-hour drive from Knoxville, a vibrant city with an engaged literary community. For writers seeking a rural retreat with urban amenities, SAFTA is ideal.

As part of our commitment to anti-racist work, we use a reparations payment model for our farmhouse residencies which consists of the following:

  • 3 reparations weeks of equally divided payments for Black and/or Indigenous identifying writers at $150/week
  • 3 discounted weeks of equally divided payments for writers of color at $250/week
  • 6 equitable weeks of equally divided payments at $300/week

Black and/or Indigenous identifying writers are also invited to apply for a $350 support grant to help cover the costs of food, travel, childcare, and/or any other needs while they are at the residency. We are currently able to offer two of these grants per residency period (spring/summer/fall). If you would like to donate to expand this funding, you may do so on our website.

For the 2024 Fall Residency Period, SAFTA will be offering the following fellowships:

  • Fellowships for Women & Nonbinary Writers: one full and one 50% fellowship for women and nonbinary writers
  • Fellowship for Black & Indigenous Writers: one full fellowship for Black and/or Indigenous identifying writers
  • Limited partial scholarships are also available to any applicant with financial need.

The application fee is waived for all writers of color. For all fellowship applications, the application fee will also be waived for those who demonstrate financial need. All other application fees will go directly towards travel grants for Black and/or Indigenous writers.

The application deadline for the fall residency period is May 1st, 2024. Find out more about the application process here.

Sundress Reads Looking for Recently Published Books to Review

Deadline: Rolling

As part of Sundress’ Publications’ ongoing commitment to service and the importance of highlighting work from other small presses, we are now accepting submissions for consideration for inclusion in our review series, Sundress Reads. We’re looking to feature reviews for any books published or to be published in 2023 or 2024.

We at Sundress champion writers whose work highlights human resilience and challenges misconceptions. We will not consider reviewing any book that promotes actions or includes language that contribute to oppression. Books by authors from LGBTQIA+, BIPOC, neurodivergent, disabled, immigrant, incarcerated, and otherwise marginalized communities are encouraged to submit. Recent titles we’ve reviewed include Alicia Mountain’s Four in Hand (BOA Editions), Teow Lim Goh’s Faraway Places (Diode Editions), and Noreen Ocampo’s Not Flowers (Variant Literature).

Authors or publishers of books published within this date range are invited to submit books, chapbooks, or anthologies in any genre for consideration by our reviewers who are standing by. Books must be published by independent presses, university presses, or small presses; we do not accept submissions from “the Big 5” or self-published collections. Submissions will be considered on a rolling basis.

Find out more here.