Milkweed Editions Poetry Contest Opens for Entries

Abby Travis, Engagement Coordinator at Milkweed Editions sends the following information about that organization’s poetry contest.

Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry

Postmark Deadline: March 1, 2016

The Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry is an annual regional prize, presented in partnership by Milkweed Editions and the Lindquist & Vennum Foundation.  Established in 2011 with the aim of supporting outstanding poets and bringing their work to a national stage, the prize will award $10,000 as well as a contract for publication to the author of the winning manuscript. The winner will be selected from among five finalists by an independent judge.

2016 Judge: A. Van Jordan

A. Van Jordan is the author of four collections of poems: Rise(2001), M-A-C-N-O-L-I-A (2004), Quantum Lyrics (2007), and The Cineaste (2013). Jordan has received a Whiting Writers Award, an Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, a United States Artists Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and, most recently, the 2015 Lannan Literary Award for Poetry. He is the Henry Rutgers Presidential Professor at Rutgers University-Newark.


A conversation between two winners of the prize can be found here.


  • Submissions for this regional prize will be accepted only from poets currently residing in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin.
  • The work must not be currently under consideration for publication by Milkweed Editions.
  • Simultaneous submissions are allowed, with the stipulation that poets alert Milkweed Editions immediately if a manuscript they’ve submitted to the contest has been accepted elsewhere.
  • The submitted manuscript must be unpublished, though individual poems may have been previously published.
  • Submissions for the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry will be accepted annually during a specified submission period. There is no entry fee.
  • Five finalists will be selected by the editors at Milkweed Editions. The prizewinning collection will be selected from among the finalists by a critically acclaimed poet who is to be named at the beginning of each prize submission period. All finalists will be notified.
  • The winning collection will be announced annually in April/May. The prizewinner will receive $10,000 and publication by Milkweed Editions. Prizewinning collections will be published annually the winter following announcement of the winner.
  • Poets should refrain from entering the contest if their relationship to the judge in a given year constitutes a conflict of interest, and Milkweed Editions reserves the right to disqualify any entries deemed to jeopardize the integrity of the contest. Poets published by Milkweed Editions within the preceding two years are not eligible to enter the contest. Submissions will not be accepted from employees of Lindquist & Vennum, LLP, The Minneapolis Foundation, or Milkweed Editions, their families, or relations.


  • Submissions for the 2016 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry are open through March 1, 2016. This year’s judge is A. Van Jordan.
  • All entries must be received in hard copy ONLY, and must be postmarked on or before March 1, 2016 in order to be eligible for the prize. Emailed submissions or those submitted via our online Submission Manager will not be considered.
  • Poets may submit one complete, book-length collection of poetry.
  • Please include a single loose cover sheet providing the following information:

Poet’s name:

About your submission
Title of manuscript:
Total page count:
Titles of the individual poems within that have been previously published:

About you
Please include a brief biographical paragraph.

  • No identifying information appear on the manuscript itself. The cover sheet will not be made available to the judge.

    Do not include the author’s name as a header or footer, or on title pages. (If the poet’s name appears within the body of the text, please omit it, line it out with permanent marker, or use a pseudonym.)

  • Manuscripts should be stapled or secured with a paperclip. Please include a title page (with author’s name omitted) and table of contents. Pages must be numbered.
  • Address all submissions for the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry to:

ATTN: Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry
Milkweed Editions
1011 Washington Avenue South
Open Book, Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55415

  • Improperly addressed or incomplete submissions cannot be guaranteed consideration for the prize.
  • Manuscripts will not be returned.

If you have any questions not answered here, please contact our office at (612) 332-3192.


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