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Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize

Submissions accepted December 1 – January 30

The Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize, sponsored by the North Carolina Writers’ Network, honors internationally celebrated North Carolina novelist Thomas Wolfe. The prize is administered by the Great Smokies Writing Program at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. The winner receives $1,000 and publication in The Thomas Wolfe Review.

Eligibility and Guidelines

  • The competition is open to all writers regardless of geographical location or prior publication.
  • Submit two copies (if submitting by mail) of an unpublished fiction manuscript – short story or self-contained novel excerpt – not to exceed 3,000 words, double-spaced, single-sided pages (1″ margins, 12-pt. Times New Roman font).
  • Author’s name should not appear on manuscripts. Instead, include a separate cover sheet with name, address, phone number, e-mail address, word count, and manuscript title. (If submitting online, do not include a cover sheet with your document; Submittable will collect and record your name and contact information.)
  • An entry fee must accompany the manuscript: $15 for NCWN members, $25 for nonmembers.
  • The entry fee is per submission. You may submit multiple entries.
  • You may pay the member entry fee if you join the NCWN with your submission. Checks should be made payable to the North Carolina Writers’ Network.
  • Entries will not be returned.
  • The winner is announced each April.
  • Simultaneous submissions ok, but please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • When you submit online at https://ncwriters.submittable.com/submit, Submittable will collect your entry fee via credit card ($15 NCWN members / $25 non-members). (If submitting online, do not include a cover sheet with your document; Submittable will collect and record your name and contact information. For more information about Submittable, click here.)
    • To submit as a Member of NCWN ($15), click here.
    • To submit as a Non-Member of NCWN ($25), click here.
  • To submit by regular mail:

Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize
Great Smokies Writing Program
UNC Asheville
1 University Heights – CPO 1915
Asheville, NC 28804

Entries must arrive by January 30.

Questions? Please contact Lilly Danzis, ldanzis@unca.edu.

*“Published” means the work has appeared for public consumption in any form: print, online, digital, etc.

Has it appeared in a magazine or journal, of any size or circulation? Then it’s been published. Has it appeared on a blog, even one hardly anybody reads? Then it’s published. Audio book? E-book? Free download? ‘Zine, mimeographed and stapled in 1995? Published.

For our contests, we’re looking for new work, fresh work, work unseen by anyone outside your immediate family and/or critique group. Shine a light on your published work in your portfolio, and submit your new work for one (or more) of our annual prizes. Good luck.

Past Winners

First Place: Sallie Bingham, Asheville, NC
Honorable Mention: Diane McPhail, Highlands, NC

First Place: Alan Sincic, FL
Honorable Mention: James Corpora, CA

First Place: Lou Schlesinger, Shelby, NC
Honorable Mention: Andrew Scrimgeour, Cary, NC
Honorable Mention: Lisa Leyenda, Sewickley, PA

First Place: Rachel Taube, Wilmington, NC
Honorable Mention: Jason Gray, Cary, NC
Honorable Mention: Sarah David, Raleigh, NC

First Place: Leslie Kirk Campbell, San Francisco, CA
Honorable Mention: Beth Nixon Weaver, Orlando, FL
Honorable Mention: Andrew Scrimgeour, Cary, NC
Honorable Mention:Michael Gaspeny, Greensboro, NC

First Place: Theresa Dowell Blackinton, Durham, NC
Honorable Mention: Soma Mei Sheng Frazier, CA

First Place: Virginia Ewing Hudson, Raleigh, NC
Honorable Mention: Jane Shlensky, Bahama, NC

First Place: Alli Marshall, Asheville, NC
Honorable Mention: Heather Bell Adams, Raleigh, NC
Honorable Mention: Katrin Redfern, Brooklyn, NY

First Place: Mesha Maren, Alderson, WV
Honorable Mention: Elizabeth Oliver, Apex, NC
Honorable Mention: Roz Spafford, Toronto, Canada

First Place (tie): Susan Levi Wallach, Columbia, SC | Jude Whelchel, Asheville, NC
Honorable Mention: Gary V. Powell, Lake Norman, NC

First Place: Kevin Winchester, Waxhaw, NC
First Honorable Mention: Ashley Memory, Pittsboro, NC
Second Honorable Mention: Jacob Appel, New York, NY

First Place: Laurel Ferejohn, Durham, NC
First Honorable Mention: Elizabeth Brownrigg, Durham, NC
Second Honorable Mention: Kathryn Shaver, Louisville, KY
Second Honorable Mention: Kermit Turner, Hickory, NC

First Place: Kristin Fitzpatrick, Alameda, CA
First Honorable Mention: Lisa Gornick, New York, NY
Second Honorable Mention: Barbara Modrack, Brighton, MI

First Place: Paul Byall, Savannah, GA
Honorable Mention: Mark Connelly, Madison, WI
Honorable Mention: Tracy Knight , Raleigh, NC

First Place: Howard Carter, Chapel Hill, NC
First Runner-Up: Anne Clinard Barnhill, Garner, NC
Second Runner-Up: Bill Morris, Durham NC

First Place: Paul Mihas, Durham, NC
Honorable Mention: Gary V. Powell, Cornelius, NC

First Place: Billie Harper Buie, Asheville, NC
Honorable Mention: Jason Mott, Bolton, NC
Honorable Mention: Leslie McCray, Cartersville, GA

First Place: Sherry Shaw, Gastonia, NC
First Honorable Mention: Lis Anna, Asheville, NC
Second Honorable Mention: Therese Fowler, Raleigh, NC