The 2020 Alice James Award is open and submission are now being accepted via Submittable. Please note that Alice James Books does not accept unsolicited manuscripts outside of the award period.

The Alice James Award welcomes submissions from emerging as well as established poets. Entrants must reside in the United States.

The winner receives $2000, book publication, and distribution through Consortium. In addition to the winning manuscript, one or more additional manuscripts may be chosen for publication as the Editor’s Choice.

To submit electronically, visit our Submittable site. For details on submission guidelines and how to send a hardcopy submission, review our guidelines below:

Guidelines for Manuscript Submission:

 • Screening for the Alice James Award is blind. Because of this, no contact information is allowed within your manuscript, including within the filename, if electronically submitted. Electronic submissions will have contact information collected via Submittable, which is hidden from our screeners. Hardcopy submissions must include a separate title page, which lists the title of your manuscript and contact information (name, address, e-mail address, and phone number).

• Do not include any preambles, bios, or acknowledgements within your submitted manuscript.

• Manuscripts must have a table of contents.

• No illustrations, photographs or images should be included.

• Manuscripts must be typed in a no less than 12 point font, paginated, and 48 – 100 pages in length (single spaced). For hardcopy submissions, we accept double sided manuscripts.

• Individual poems from the manuscript may have been previously published in magazines, anthologies, or chapbooks of less than 25 pages, but the collection, as a whole, must be unpublished.

• Translations and self-published books are not eligible.

• No multi-authored collections, please.

• Entry fee for the Alice James Award is $30 for online and hardcopy submissions. Checks or money orders for hardcopy submissions should be made payable to Alice James Books.

Manuscripts may be submitted online or by regular mail.

Mail hard copy entries to: 

Alice James Books, Alice James Award, 114 Prescott Street, Farmington, ME 04938.

For online submissions (open until 11:59 PM EST on 11/1), click here.

About AJB’s Screening Process:

Manuscripts submitted to the AJA are screened anonymously. During the screening process, every manuscript is read by a minimum of two people, at least one of whom is a board member (the other is either an outside screener or another board member). With the assistance of screeners, submissions are winnowed to a group of finalists from which the editorial board chooses a winner. Manuscripts in the finalist group are not read anonymously. Our screeners, with very few exceptions, are published poets and/or MFA students.

Our Winner Selection Process:

Finalist manuscripts are read over a period of weeks by the Editorial Board in preparation for the finalist meeting where the winner is chosen.

Checklist for Entry:

For Electronic Manuscripts via Submittable:

  • PDF or Word doc Full-length manuscript with no contact information within

  • Title page that lists only the title of your manuscript—NO CONTACT INFORMATION.

  • $30 entry fee paid electronically via Submittable

For Hardcopy submissions:

  • Two (2) copies of title page, one page that shows only the title, the second which shows the title and your contact information (name, address, phone number, e-mail address, and an optional biographical note)

  • Printed manuscript that includes title page, table of contents and numbered pages

  • Use only binder clips. No staples, folders, or printer-bound copies

  • $30 entry fee enclosed

  • (optional) Self-addressed stamped postcard for notification of manuscript

  • (optional) Self-addressed stamped envelope for notification of award winner

  • MANUSCRIPTS CANNOT BE RETURNED. Please do not send us your only copy.


We will not be opening our regularly scheduled reading period in September 2019. Please check back for information regarding our translation query reading plans in early 2020.

Queries sent outside of the reading period will not be answered.

All manuscripts must be complete at the time of query submission.

Queries must consist of the following:

• A letter detailing the project, its impact/relevance to our literary community, and information about the poet and translator(s).

• A ten poem sample of the translations, including the original-language text.

• Name, address, email and phone number for the person submitting the query.

Response time for all inquiries is between 6-10 months, during which time the Translation Committee will review queries and make recommendations to the entire cooperative board for their further review. AJB will appreciate if you refrain from making inquiries regarding your manuscript during this time and thanks you for your patience with our process. If your manuscript is selected by another press for publication while under our review, we ask that you kindly notify us as soon as possible.

Queries should be submitted online via Submittable or in hardcopy.  Mail hard copy queries to: ATTN: AJB Translation Series Committee, Alice James Books, 114 Prescott Street, Farmington, ME 04938. Click here to submit your query online from September to March (.PDF files only).

There is no reading fee.

For acknowledgement of receipt of your hardcopy query, please include a self-addressed, stamped postcard. Regrettably, translation queries and query manuscripts submitted to Alice James Books cannot be returned, so please do not send your only copy. U.S. Postal Service Delivery Confirmation Receipt on package is strongly recommended.

CLMP Contest Code of Ethics

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believe that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines—defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.



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