Scholarships & Awards

Creative Writing

Each academic year the Department of English holds creative writing contests in the areas of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, and science fiction. The contests are open to all enrolled USF students in any major and level (with one exception, see Thomas E. Sanders Scholarship below). Awards usually include a modest monetary sum (scholarship) and are presented to the award winners at the annual department Scholarships & Awards ceremony near the end of the spring term.

Scholarships (which are not taxable) will be disbursed as part of the winners’ financial aid packages by the Office of Student Financial Aid. Therefore, in order to receive these scholarships, recipients must have a completed FAFSA on file and be eligible for financial aid. Students graduating at the end of the current academic year may not receive scholarship funds. For continuing students scholarships will be applied to your account in summer 2020, fall 2020, or spring 2021.

Deadlines: Submissions must be received by Friday, January 17, 2020. Winners will be announced in April.

Submission Process

  1. Entries are accepted by email only.
  2. The file that contains your manuscript must not show your name anywhere; we will use the title to identify your work.
  3. Please name your file “[Contest]-[Title]”; for example, a story titled “Mars” would be entered into the Anspaugh Science Fiction Contest by sending a file with the name “Anspaugh SciFi-Mars”. If you are submitting a portfolio of poems, please use the title of the first poem in the portfolio. If you are applying for the Sanders Scholarship, please include both the application letter and the writing sample in a single file; in this case only, your name may appear on the manuscript, and the file should be named “Sanders-YourName”.
  4. All submissions must be emailed as a file attachment to usfcreativewriting@gmail.com.
  5. In the body of the email, you must include all of the following
    • Your name
    • Address
    • Phone number
    • Email address
    • USF ID number
    • The name of the award/contest/scholarship you applied for
    • The title of the work submitted (in the case of a portfolio of poems, only the title of the first poem is needed)

 

Possible awards include the following:

Anspaugh Fiction Award

  1. All registered students at the University of South Florida are eligible.
  2. The work submitted must be previously unpublished prose fiction.
  3. Maximum length per entry: 5,000 words.
  4. Each contestant may submit one entry.
  5. Contestants must follow the Submission Guidelines above and title their files “Anspaugh-[Title]”.

 

Anspaugh Science Fiction Contest

  1. All registered students at the University of South Florida are eligible to compete.
  2. The work submitted must be previously unpublished prose fiction.
  3. Maximum length per entry: 5,000 words.
  4. A contestant may submit one entry only.
  5. Contestants must follow the Submission Guidelines above and title their files “Anspaugh SciFi-[Title]”.
  6. For this contest, science fiction will be considered as springing from a limited number of arbitrary hypotheses relating to the hard or soft sciences, along with realistic development of their implications. Fantasies (examples being Watership Down and the Tolkien stories) are excluded from consideration.
  7. NOTE: If no science fiction entry is deemed worthy of a prize by the judges, then no science fiction award will be given.

 

Knocky Parker Creative Nonfiction Award

  1. All registered students at the University of South Florida are eligible.
  2. The work submitted must be a previously unpublished piece of creative nonfiction.
  3. Maximum length per entry: 5,000 words.
  4. Each contestant may submit one entry only.
  5. Contestants must follow the Submission Guidelines above and title their files “Knocky Parker-[Title]”.

 

The Thomas E. Sanders Scholarship in Creative Writing

To read a brief bio about Professor Thomas E. Sanders, please click here.

  • Any undergraduate creative writing fiction or poetry major in the Department of English who has not reached the last term of academic residence is eligible.
  • Submit a letter that explains your qualifications for the scholarship, along with a sample of your creative work.
  • Contestants must follow the Submission Guidelines above and title their files “Sanders-[YourName]”.
  • Note: The recipient will be chosen by the creative writing committee. The scholarship is non-renewable; however, recipients may reapply in subsequent years.

 

USF Poetry Awards

  1. All registered students at the University of South Florida are eligible.
  2. The work submitted must be previously unpublished.
  3. To be considered for the Bettye, Esther, and Dorothy Newman Poetry Award, each contestant must submit a portfolio of four poems. The Newman portfolios will also be considered for the Zbar Poetry Award (no need to enter twice). Portfolios of one, two, or three poems will be considered only for the Zbar Poetry Award.
  4. Contestants must follow the Submission Guidelines above and title their files “Poetry-[Title]”.
  5. There will be two prizes awarded: the Bettye, Esther, and Dorothy Newman Poetry Award and the Estelle J. Zbar Poetry Award.