Palettes & Quills 5th Biennial Poetry Chapbook Contest

I am not a reader for this contest, but I do help to promote it, and I do the layout and design of the winning chapbook, such as Michael Meyerhofer’s Pure Elysium (2010), Meg Cowen’s If Tigers Do Not Come (2012), and  Carine Topal’s Tattooed (2014).


Palettes & Quills

5th Biennial Poetry Chapbook Competition

With Judge Alan Britt

Open to All Writers


Palettes & Quills Logo


Prize: A $200 cash award plus 50 copies of the published book. Additional copies will be available at an author’s discount. All finalists will receive one free copy of the published book. All contest entrants will be offered a special discount on the purchase price of the published book. Deadline: September 1, 2016. Manuscripts postmarked after September 1 will not be read.


A complete submission should include:

  • Manuscript between 14-48 pages. Poems must be typed on 8 1/2″ x 11″ paper and bound with a spring clip. Use a standard 12 pt. font, such as Garamond, Arial, or New Times Roman. Manuscripts should be in English and contain no illustrations. Please do not submit your only copy. Manuscripts will not be returned.
  • A cover sheet with the contest name (The Palettes & Quills 5th Biennial Chapbook Contest), your name, address, telephone, email, and the title of your manuscript.
  • You must also include a statement that all poems are your own original work.
  • A title page with just the title of the manuscript. Your manuscript’s first page should be the title page but without your name. Your name should not appear any place in the manuscript. The next page of the manuscript should be a complete table of contents.
  • An acknowledgements page. Poems included in your manuscript may be previously published, but the book as a whole may not. Please include an acknowledgements page listing specific publications.
  • A complete Table of Contents.


Two Submission Options:

  • Mailed Submissions: Mail your entry to Donna M. Marbach, Palettes & Quills Chapbook Contest, 1935 Penfield Road, Penfield, NY 14526-1434. Include a $20 check or money order made payable in U.S. dollar and made out to: Palettes & Quills. You may also pay for your mailed copy online at http://palettesandquills.simplesite.com/ (In header, click More, then click Reading Fees). Please include receipt number in cover letter. An email will be sent to you upon reception of manuscript. If you do not have email and want confirmation of receipt, please include a self-addressed stamped postcard. (International submissions must include an IRC.)
  • Online submissions: Email entry to: palettesnquills@gmail.com. Subject line: “Chapbook Contest. [Last Name].” Include two attachments as Word docs or PDFs: Attachment one: cover sheet, acknowledgements, and statement of originality. Attachment two: your manuscript. Online entry fees is $25. You may pay online at: http://palettesandquills.simplesite.com/ (In header, click More, then click Reading Fees), or you can mail your entry fee to the above address by sending a check or money order made out to Palettes & Quills.
  • All payments are non-refundable.
  • We prefer hard copy submissions, but accept emailed submissions.


Manuscripts by multiple authors will not be accepted. Translations will not be accepted.

Simultaneous submissions are accepted. If your manuscript is accepted for publication elsewhere, you must immediately notify Palettes & Quills. Multiple submissions are accepted but must be submitted individually.

Winners will be announced on the Palettes & Quills website in December 2016.


Alan_BrittFinal judge is Alan Britt. Britt teaches poetry/creative writing at Towson University. His recent books include Parabola Dreams (2013), Alone with the Terrible Universe (2011), Hurricane (2010), Greatest Hits (2010), Vegetable Love (2009), Vermilion (2006), Infinite Days (2003), Amnesia Tango (1998), and Bodies of Lightning (1995). He also served as editor at Black Moon.


To download the guidelines as a PDF, click here.


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