Dorothy and Wedel Nilsen Literary Prize for a First Novel
The annual Dorothy and Wedel Nilsen Literary Prize for a First Novel is endowed by author and editor, Wedel Nilsen. The competition is to identify and publish completed fiction manuscripts of high literary quality by authors who have not previously published a full-length novel or novella.
Submissions: Previously unpublished novels, novellas, and collections of closely linked short stories may be submitted for the competition. We do not accept manuscripts that have been self-published. The competition is open to unpublished novelists who are U.S. residents writing in English.
Manuscripts submitted to the contest will be read and judged anonymously. A final judge will choose the winning manuscript from a pool of finalists.
Award: The Prize includes a $1000 cash award and publication by Southeast Missouri State University Press. The winning author will be invited to present a reading at the University.
Entry Fee: A $25 check/money order, made payable to Southeast Missouri State University Press, must accompany each entry. Multiple entries are allowed as long as they are each mailed with a $25 reading fee.
Deadline: Entries must be postmarked no later than November 1, 2011. Send hard copies of the entries to
Southeast Missouri State University Press
One University Plaza, MS 2650
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
Format: The manuscript must be typed and double-spaced, each manuscript-page numbered, with the following information on the title page:
title of contest
e-mail address (if available)
This information must be nowhere else on the manuscript.
Failure to follow manuscript guidelines may disqualify entries.
Receipt of manuscript will be acknowledged only if the submission is accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped postcard. No manuscripts will be returned.
The winner will be notified in May 2012.
If you would like to be informed of the contest results, check our website in May at www6.semo.edu/universitypress, or enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope with your manuscript submission.