The Best Unpublished Novel Contest is open for submissions!

The Best Unpublished Novel Contest, a partnership between James River Writers and Richmond magazine, is open for submissions January 1 through March 31, 2017.  For rules and information, see Best Unpublished Novel Contest.

The contest is part of a three-year sequence with the Best Self-Published Novel Contest and the Shann Palmer Poetry Contest.

 

Now Accepting Submissions for the Poe Inspires Contest!

Last year's judge, Bill Blume, with the coveted Golden Poes.

Last year’s judge, Bill Blume, with the coveted Golden Poes.

Need some inspiration to get you through the end of the year?

The Poe Museum and James River Writers are pleased to invite submissions to the second annual Edgar Allan Poe Flash Fiction and Poetry Contest.

Poe has been a major influence on authors as diverse as Arthur Conan Doyle and Neil Gaiman, and he continues to inspire new generations of artists. Has he been significant to your own development as a writer? Please send us poetry or flash fiction that demonstrate his influence, whether you’ve been inspired by Poe’s use of the grotesque, his theory of the unified effect, or his pioneering work in science fiction and the detective story. No matter what he wrote, Poe imbued his work with a relentless creative spirit—that’s what we’re hoping to find in your submissions.

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JRW announces its 2016 Award Winners

James River Writers is pleased to announce its 2016 award winners. We congratulate all of these winners. They represent the best of the Central Virginia writing community.

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Doug Jones

Doug Jones is the 2016 winner of the Emyl Jenkins Award. This award honors the memory of Emyl Jenkins, who passed away in 2010, by presenting an award to an outstanding individual who, as Emyl did, inspires a love of writing and writing education in Virginia. As stated in his nomination, Doug Jones is encouraging and thoughtful and has a talent for gently coaxing his students to explore and push their comfort zones with their writing. Jones holds degrees from the University of Chicago and the University of Virginia. He has taught at UVA, Theatre Virginia, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and the Virginia Opera, as well as in private schools in the Richmond area. Doug has also published short stories, poetry, nonfiction, and scripts for radio and video. He is a member of The Dramatists Guild and The Authors League of America.


Jo Allison receiving the Best Self-Published Novel Contest award at the JRW Conference.

Jo Allison receiving the Best Self-Published Novel Contest award at the JRW Conference. Photo by Caroline Brae.

The winners of the 2016 James River Writers’ Best Self-Published Novel Contest, judged by literary agent, Christopher Rhodes, with The Stuart Agency in NYC, are

First Place: Heaven Will Protect the Working Girl by Jo Allison

Second Place: Charlie Dead and the So-Called Zombie Apocalypse by Geoff Camphire

Third Place: Dust on the Bible by Bonnie Stanard

Of the first place winner, Christopher Rhodes said, “Jo Allison brings turn-of-the-century St. Louis alive with her fast-paced, historically accurate, and fiercely feminist Heaven Will Protect the Working Girl.” In addition to turning out her mystery series, Allison maintains a website dedicated to the micro-history of both 1910 and St. Louis: http://www.1910-stlouis-by-jallison.com. Topics range from what people wore to how they got around to the issues that they talked about. Allison also writes short stories and vignettes that support the novels—“between murders”—and those are available on joallisonauthor.com.

 


 

Zoa accepting the award for the Shann Palmer Poetry Contest.

Zoa accepting the award for the Shann Palmer Poetry Contest. Photo by Caroline Brae.

James River Writers and Richmond Magazine partner to announce Zoa as the winner of the Shann Palmer Poetry Contest, for his poem “A New Emotion.” Head judge and Virginia Poet Laureate, Ron Smith, said “Every time I come back to this poem, it moves me and intrigues me.” This contest, sponsored by James River Writers and Richmond Magazine, is named after Shann Palmer, a long-time JRW volunteer and board member, beloved poet, and a wild- and wise-hearted creative who shared her spirit and talents freely, inspiring and encouraging others in the literary community. She passed away in December 2013, and the contest (formerly “Best Poetry Contest”) was renamed in her honor the following year. A native of Ortonville, Michigan, Zoa earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and literature at Eastern Michigan University. He works as a copy editor at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

 

 

 

 

Emyl Jenkins Award Now Accepting Nominations – CLOSED for 2016

Emyl Jenkins 1941-2010To honor the memory of Emyl Jenkins, who passed away in 2010, James River Writers presents an award to an outstanding individual who, as Emyl did, inspires a love of writing and writing education in Virginia.

An advocate for writers and their readers, Emyl had a knack for connecting both people and organizations. She shared her time and expertise with everyone she encountered. She encouraged writers at all levels, especially fledglings trying to get those first words down on the page. Her generous spirit and enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone she touched, and, like ripples in a pond, her actions widened the circle of writing encouragement.

Award Details

Any Virginia individual is eligible, except for members of the JRW board of directors, the advisory board, or staff.

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Update on the Best Self-Published Novel Contest!

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James River Writers recognizes the writing talents and entrepreneurial skills of indie authors by continuing The Best Self-Published Novel Contest, which we started in 2014.

The contest will be conducted in alternating (even) years with the Best Unpublished Novel Contest.

Contest Details

One first-prize winner will receive $500 and a ticket to the annual James River Writers Conference. The winner will be announced in October 2016 at the James River Writers Conference. Press releases will also recognize the winner.

Two finalists each receive $200.

Rules

To pay the $25 entry fee with a credit card, use the “Register Today” button below. Once you have submitted payment, you will receive a receipt via email. Print your receipt and follow the guidelines below to mail in your submission. To pay with a check, follow the guidelines below.

Contest is currently closed. 

To submit an entry, the author must be a resident of Virginia, or a full-time student at a Virginia college or university, or a James River Writers member. (Out-of-state writers may enter the contest by becoming members. You may join at the same time as paying your entry fee by using the “Register Today” button above or by including an additional $40 in your check amount.) (more…)

Best Unpublished Novel Contest Winners Announced!

Robin Williams, 1st Place Winner of the Best Unpublished Novel Contest

    Robin Traywick Williams

James River Writers is pleased to announce Robin Traywick Williams of Crozier, for The Key to the Quarter Pole, as the first place winner of the JRW and Richmond Magazine 2015 Best Unpublished Novel Contest. Gail Giewont, and Vivian Lawry, both of Richmond, have been selected as finalists for Unguided and Nettie’s Books, respectively.

The Best Unpublished Novel Contest, initially held in 2008 and now offered every other year, is at the heart of James River Writers’ mission of connecting and inspiring readers and writers. In the alternating years, James River Writers offers the Shann Palmer Poetry Contest and Best Self-published Novel Contest, providing exposure and encouragement to a wide range of Virginia’s author talent.

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Emyl Jenkins Award Nominations Still Open!

Emyl Jenkins 1941-2010

To honor the memory of Emyl Jenkins, who passed away in 2010, James River Writers presents an award to an outstanding individual who, as Emyl did, inspires a love of writing and writing education in Virginia.

An advocate for writers and their readers, Emyl had a knack for connecting both people and organizations. She shared her time and expertise with everyone she encountered. She encouraged writers at all levels, especially fledglings trying to get those first words down on the page. Her generous spirit and enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone she touched, and, like ripples in a pond, her actions widened the circle of writing encouragement.

Award Details – Deadline Extended to September 1, 2016

Any Virginia individual is eligible, except for members of the JRW board of directors, the advisory board, or staff.

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Best Unpublished Novel Winner Now a Published Author!

Kirsten Lopresti

Kirsten Lopresti

Kirsten Lopresti, winner of the 2009 Best Unpublished Novel (BUN) Contest, credits the feedback she received from judge and author Susann Cokal for helping her elevate her winning entry into an acclaimed debut novel, Bright Coin Moon, published in November by Sky Pony Press.

Cokal describes Bright Coin Moon as “Anywhere But Here for a new decade. Lopresti hits all the high notes in a story that’s wrenching, ripping, and often laugh-out-loud funny.”

We caught up with Lopresti to learn more about her novel, talk about the impact of James River Writers, and highlight the power of contests for writers. (more…)

Best Unpublished Novel Contest – Final Judge Announced!

Maya Smart TCF (1)James River Writers is pleased to announce that the final judge for the Best Unpublished Novel competition will be Maya Payne Smart. Maya is a writer and literacy ambassador who shares reviews, interviews, and musings at MayaSmart.com and BookRiot.com. She served on the boards of the YWCA of Richmond and The Community Foundation serving Richmond and Central Virginia. She also raised funds and awareness for numerous local nonprofits including FRIENDS Association for Children and The Richmond Christmas Mother Fund. She is a former chair of James River Writers and served on the national board of governors of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. Her honors include Style Weekly’s 40 under 40 Award and an Excellence in Journalism Award from The Press Club of Cleveland. (more…)