From Our Staff | September 23, 2011

As the contest assistant for the Editors’ Prize contest this year, a large part of my job involves answering questions sent to our contest question inbox. Since we are nearing the deadline to our contest (eight days!) I thought it might be helpful to post some of the most frequently asked questions I receive. That way, instead of frantically sending me an email at 2 a.m. when you’re ready to submit your work, and sitting at your computer biting your nails and waiting for my response all night long, you have an immediate reference to use instead.

So here you go – the most Frequently Asked Questions regarding our contest.

When is the deadline? 

October 1st . If you are submitting online, you must do so by midnight of the 1st. If you are submitting a printed manuscript through the mail, then it must be postmarked by October 1st. Otherwise you will be eaten alive by a pack of ravenous wolves.

When will the winners be announced?

The winners of our contest will be announced on our website and blog in January 2012. The winners will be notified befo­rehand, so there won’t be any surprises. (Although all the winners will be invited to Speer Morgan’s surprise birthday party. Shhh… don’t tell him.)

Can I submit more than one piece per genre?

Sure you can! If you submit them online, then just make sure to upload them separately, and be aware that you will have to pay an entry fee for each submission.  Ditto for mail entries.

Are international submissions accepted?

Absolutely!  We want ’em, so send ’em!

My short story was published in a student literary magazine (or on a blog). Can I still submit my work to your contest?

Unfortunately, no. If your work has been published in print or online, we cannot accept it. However, in the case of the blog, if you can remove your work from the blog, then we will still accept it. So take your masterpiece off your Tumblr and submit it!

Help! I tried to upload my manuscript, and my payment went through, but not my manuscript! What do I do?

Don’t you worry, now. Just email me (see below) with your manuscript as an attachment, and I will add it to our database. Consider that mystery Scooby-Doo’ed.

Can I put my name on my submission, or is this a blind contest?

Our Editors’ Prize contest is not blind. We ask that you include your name and contact information on the first page of your submission. Or, you can use a title page if you prefer. The formatting is really up to you. Just make sure your contact information is easy to read and does not distract from your writing. So that means no size 18 Wingdings headers and footers. Please and thank you!

I sent in the wrong copy of my story. Can I resubmit it?

Only if there are major differences between your original story and the one you submitted. Meaning, if the “wrong copy” of your story is wrong because you made a few typos, or forgot to rename your protagonist Steve instead of Prince William – then you don’t need to worry about resubmitting. Mistakes happen, even in the best writing. Your story will not be deemed unworthy of our prize because of a few comma splices.

However, if you sent your poetry collection “An Ode to Laguna Beach” when you meant to send “An Ode to Jersey Shore,” then absolutely, you may resubmit. Upload your new manuscript online, just as you did before. You will have to pay again, but we will give you a refund for the second payment. Simply email me and explain the situation, and we will take care of it. If you are unsure whether or not you should resubmit, then just ask me.

Will the contest accept simultaneous submissions?

Yes, we will. However, you must make sure to contact us immediately if your manuscript is selected for publication at another journal, so we can withdraw it from our contest. We don’t want to end up in a love triangle with your manuscript and another journal – it’s just too painful.

If you haven’t submitted to our contest yet, then hop to it! And if you have any questions, no matter how absurd or silly they may seem, please feel free to send me an email at contest_question@missourireview.com. If you don’t, then I will be out of a job.  So ask away!

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