Category There is only one category: the Story. There is truth in any story, and the reason you choose to tell a particular story may be the most important story of all. But, before we get too philosophical, here's the point: submissions should tell a story. It doesn't matter if you consider it fiction, nonfiction, or poetry—if it tells a story, it fits. Prizes Grand Prize: $1,000 and a 2-year ($100) gift certificate to Duotrope. Five additional prizes of $200 will be given for stories that excel in the merits of Humor, Passion, Depth, and (any form of) Love. An additional $200 prize will be awarded in a wild card category, to be determined by the entries. We'll call this one the Bonus category. Additionally, winners and Honorable Mentions will be published in and receive a free copy of the annual Stories That Need to Be Told anthology.
Word Limit 10,000 words Entry Fee $20 per entry. That includes $20 per poem (because every entry has the potential to win the same cash prizes). There is no limit on the number of times you may enter. If you withdraw your entry as noted below, the entry fee is nonrefundable.
Deadline August 15, 2019* 11:59 p.m. Pacific
*If you are mailing in your payment, your entry must still be received by the deadline above and your payment must be postmarked by August 15. Announcing the Winners The semifinalists will be posted on this page by October 1st. The winners and Honorable Mentions will be contacted and posted on this page by October 10th. All entrants will also receive an email notification when these have been posted.
The Anthology The estimated release date of the Stories That Need to Be Told 2018 anthology is November 1st. Reprints and Simultaneous Submissions Entries for these contests should be previously unpublished material, including online, and you must own the copyright. Simultaneous submissions are okay, but if your work is accepted elsewhere it is up to you to notify us. In the event you withdraw your submission, the entry fee is nonrefundable.
Eligibility Friends, family, and past or current clients of TulipTree's founder are not eligible to enter TulipTree contests. Legal Stuff By entering the contest you are stating and agreeing that (1) the work is your own original work, (2) no one else owns the rights to publish said work, and (3) if you are one of the winners of a cash prize, you grant TulipTree Publishing, LLC (TulipTree) the right to publish said work, unless you withdraw your work prior to TulipTree's announcement of winners. TulipTree does not retain rights to your work after we publish it.
How to Format Your Entry
Entries should be in .doc or .docx format (Mac Pages is okay, too, and PDFs are acceptable for poetry only). The title of the document should be the title of your story.
Prose entries should be in standard industry format: 12 pt Times New Roman, double-spaced, 1-inch margins.
Poetry format should be 12 pt TNR, but line spacing and margins are open style.
Include your name, mailing address, email address, and title on the first pageof your story (no separate cover sheet needed).
How to Enter
Purchase your entry fee via PayPal below or mail your payment (cash or money order only) to TulipTree Publishing, PO Box 723, Canon City, CO 81215. Please note in your submission email that you are paying by mail. Note that even if you mail in your payment, you should still email your submission.
Email your entry as an attachment to email@example.com. You will receive a confirmation email when your entry has been received and logged into our system.*
* Two things: (1) Note that these are entered by hand so if you don't get an email confirmation instantly, don't freak out—we're (probably) getting to it. (2) If it's been more than a day or two and you still haven't gotten a confirmation, maybe start freaking out because we either didn't get your entry, our emails are going to your spam folder, or our emails are blocked by your email provider. As we do our crucial communicating through email (i.e., letting you know if you won and confirming your work is still available), you'll want to make sure we're getting through.
PAST WINNERS 2018
GRAND PRIZE: Just So, by Lish Troha
CATEGORY WINNERS PASSION: Pablo Neruda and the Caffeinated Madness of Love, by Chris Morgan DEPTH: Jimmy's Fish Market, by Pearly D. Keller HUMOR: Eunice Buys a Doll, by Jim Gish LOVE: A Good and Simple Meal, by M. B. McLatchey BONUS: A Thousand Kisses Deep, by Deborah L. Levine
HONORABLE MENTIONS A Vague Recollection, by Erica Stisser A Woman of a Certain Hue, by Shanteé Felix At the Falling-Off Point, by Roxy Runyan Bead by Bead, by EA Luetkemeyer Chasing Dragons, by Lynette Benton Confrontation and Cojones, by Mario René Padilla Country Poor, by Katrina Hawley Coven, by Samantha Barron Fetching the Payroll, by P. Jo Anne Burgh Fruit Punch, by Jake Teeny Get Off Track, by Timothy Scahill Hello and Goodbye, by Robert Pope Hope Walker, by Jamer Interview with Kalief Browder, by Alex Greenberg Life on the Road without Any Brakes, by Don Carter Nonspeaking, by Isabelle Jay One-Eyed in Juarez, by Morgan Smith Pre-Glow of the Neo-Apocalypse, by Genevra Levinson Rubbing the Chips, by Pat Anthony Soviet Skatepark, by Jonan Pilet Stretch Marks, by Simone Martel Swim, by Eric Roe The Things My Afro Knows, by AE Wynter The Toll, by Simone Kern Toes Touching Sand, by Courtney Lee Hall Turn Right at the Tree House, by Avy Harris Vignette between Now and Morning, by Kai Mawougbe Where to Be, by C. Witzling
2017 GRAND PRIZE: Mary's Story by Georgia Baddley
CATEGORY WINNERS PASSION: Le Château Possoniere by Mario René Padilla DEPTH: No Superhero by Lisa Poff HUMOR: Beats by Jon Shorr LOVE: Annotated Love Letter by Alexander Joseph BONUS: Run Amok by Laura Eddy
HONORABLE MENTIONS A Bus Poem, Cameron Moore A Monster’s Eulogy, Rekha Rangan An Inconvenient Death, Gabriella Buckner Daddy's Tears, Jacob Paul Patchen Dangerous Fish Days, Robert Hambling Davis Dear Demeter, Audrey Larkin Disrupting History, Mariya Taher Eight Steps Down, Steven Fromm Freddy, Julie Dearborn Getting Our Flickers, Nick Swartz Heroes, Calvin Hennick I Told You Not to Move, Allison Flom Jay, Will Schick Lovers Last Journey, Bob Blake Naturally, Mika Hunter Pobrecito, Nina Joy Silver Strato-Christmas '66, Jimmy Searles The Corner of My Heart, Victoria Sylvander
2016 GRAND PRIZE: Mending by Enid Harlow
CATEGORY WINNERS HUMOR: Alumni by Michael Fischer PASSION: Mr. Thoughtful by Christopher Spencer LOVE: A Very Special Occasion by Ana Maria Owusu DEPTH: Ictal Life (A Song for Epilepsy) by Brandon Ellis
HONORABLE MENTIONS A Baseball Lesson, Mark J. Rogovin A Beer in Bastille, Kenneth John Holt A Place You Love, Lones Seiber Alumni, Michael Fischer An Adulterous Meeting, Jeremy King Brave, Stephanie L. Harper Bunny Swung the Axe at Charlie, Harry Beach Chucky’s in Tucson, Brant Vickers Closing the Door, Marianna Crane Confession, Patricia Hawley Dreams and Other Sleights of Hand, Michelle Perez How to Live the Rest of Your Life in 100 Days, Elias Renaud It Seems Like It Should, Kerime B. Toksu Keeper of the Gate, Mario René Padilla My Father Wants I Should Know, Jean Ende Solitary Grace, Beka Tuitasi The Cure, Cynthia Walker The Randall Knife, Morgan Smith Ties That Bind, Michael Twist Tumors Humors, Beverley Catlett When I Find You Close, Amy S. Lerman
2015 1st place: Africa Weeping by Jerry Eckert, posthumous 2nd place: Love Underground by Andrew Jack Foster 3rd place: These Are the Things by Chris Connolly
Labor Day, Darla Klein Meant to Be, Monica Vickers This Is for Keeps, Molly Steen So Many Rivers, Sandra McGarry Peas and Queues, Richard Key My Dad, Sandy, and the Tri-Pacer, William J. McIlwain Kinky and Gruen, Diane Simkin
You can find the 2015 stories in the Winter issue of TulipTree Review.