The 2014 Fineline Competition for Prose Poems, Short Shorts and Anything In Between


Final Judge: Lindsay Hunter
First Prize: $1,000 and publication in MAR Volume XXXV, Number 1.
Ten finalists: Notation and possible publication

Contest deadline is June 1, 2014. Contest is for previously unpublished work only—if the work has appeared in print or online, in any form or part, or under any title, or has been contracted for such, it is ineligible and will be disqualified. There is a 500-word limit for each poem or short. A $10 entry fee (payable online for online submissions, or check or money order made out to Mid-American Reviewfor submissions by post) is required for each set of three prose poems/short short stories. Entry fees are non-refundable. All participants will receive Mid-American Review v. XXXV, no. 1, where the winners will be published. This is our first 35th anniversary issue, and we will be celebrating the flash fiction/prose poem form! Submissions will not be returned. Manuscripts need not be left anonymous. Contest is open to all writers, except those associated with the judge or Mid-American Review, past or present. Our judge's decision is final.

Note: All pieces submitted in verse form—i.e., poetry with line breaks—will be automatically disqualified, as will previously published work or pieces over 500 words.

For online submissions and online payment, please use our Submissions Manager.

Send all postal entries with check or money order to:
Mid-American Review
Department of English
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403

About the Judge: Lindsay Hunter is the author of Don't Kiss Me: Stories (FSG, 2013) and Daddy's (Featherproof, 2010). Her work has been described as fierce and diamondlike, and she is a master of the "fast fiction."

2013 Fineline Competition Results
Congratulations to Jennifer S. Cheng for being selected as the winner by Richard Garcia, for her piece "from Letters to Mao." Garcia writes: “I like the American and very contemporary mix of place, time and culture in this piece—Texas/China, Greek myth/Shanghainese opera. It has an intriguing epistolary conceit: could Mao be the actual intended recipient, and if so, why? It adheres to its own inner logic of free association, and is also rather odd. I go for the musical flow of the prose and the way it doesn’t really make any sense. There is an old definition of poetry one never sees any more, that a poem cannot be completely paraphrased. This definition is no longer used because so many poems paraphrase themselves, or they can be reduced to a thematic truism. “Letters to Mao” not only takes me to a place I’ve never been, but it leaves me confused and intrigued at the same time. That is where I like to be after reading a poem. And I can’t quite paraphrase it."
Thank you to all of our entrants!