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New Submission Period for the 2020 Doris Betts Fiction Prize Open Now

Josephine Humphreys © NCLR
Greenville, NC—The 2020 Doris Betts Fiction Prize is now open for submissions. After a brief, planned hiatus, the North Carolina Writers’ Network and North Carolina Literary Review have moved this Network-sponsored competition to the fall.

The deadline is October 31.

The competition is for previously unpublished short stories up to 6,000 words and is open to any writer who is a legal resident of North Carolina or a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. North Carolina Literary Review subscribers with North Carolina connections (lives or has lived in NC) are also eligible, even if they live out of state.

Find the full submission guidelines, and submit, here.

The winner receives $250 and publication in the North Carolina Literary Review. Thanks to a donation from a Network board member, there is also prize money now available for any other stories accepted for publication in NCLR through this competition.

This year’s final judge is Josephine Humphreys, author of the North Carolina-set Nowhere Else on Earth, an historical novel inspired by Henry Berry Lowrie and his wife Rhoda Strong Lowrie.

Humphreys was born and raised in Charleston, SC. Nowhere Else on Earth received the Southern Book Award for Fiction. Her other novels include Dreams of Sleep, winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for Best First Novel; Rich in Love, which was adapted into a feature film, and Fireman’s Fair, which takes place in the aftermath of Hurricane Hugo. A recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship and the Lyndhurst Prize, she served as the final judge of the 2012 Thomas Wolfe Prize. She is a graduate of Duke and Yale University and taught at Charleston Southern University.

Katey Schultz of Cleo won the 2019 Doris Betts Fiction Prize for her story “Something Coming,” published in NCLR 2020, released in June.

For over twenty years, East Carolina University and the North Carolina Literary & Historical Association have published the North Carolina Literary Review, a journal devoted to showcasing the Tar Heel State’s literary excellence. Described by one critic as “everything you ever wanted out of a literary publication but never dared to demand,” NCLR has won numerous awards and citations.

Doris Betts was the author of three short-story collections and six novels. She won three Sir Walter Raleigh awards, the Southern Book Award, the North Carolina Award for Literature, the John Dos Passos Prize, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Medal for the short story, among others. Beloved by her students, she was named the University of North Carolina Alumni Distinguished Professor of English in 1980. She was a 2004 inductee of the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame.

Submit here.

The nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to writers at all stages of development. For additional information, visit