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New Writers Award

Calling CNY's young writers!


The Subnivean New Writers Award is a special opportunity for high-school-aged writers living in our headquarters' seven-county, Central New York region: the Subnivean New Writer's Award competition, open to young writers in Oswego County, Onondaga County, Oneida County, Herkimer County, Madison County, Cayuga County and Cortland County. Before entering it, please familiarize yourself with Subnivean's literary voice by reading several of our issues. You can also check out our editors' judging rubric. DEADLINE: DECEMBER 15

Five finalists will earn

  • two mentorship sessions, and editorial support, from an award-winning author

  • a blurb about your work by Subnivean's editorial staff

  • an invitation to read your work at a public SUNY Oswego event showcasing our competition finalists

The winning writer will earn all of the bulleted items above, as well as

  • publication in Subnivean

  • a $100 bookstore gift certificate

  • a $1,000 scholarship to attend SUNY Oswego as a creative writing or English major

To read about the prior winner, click here.

To read the prior winning works, click here.

But what about general submissions?
Yes, we read those year-round.

The stories and poems that we are looking for need not fit into a particular mold; rather, we're seeking work that breaks the mold, grinds it into a fine powder, pours it in a pot of water and brings it to a boil, schleps it up a steep mountainside, drizzles it across the snow and lets it cool, there, into the desired shape.

Subnivean Awards 

An international literary competition


The Subnivean Awards in fiction and poetry are now open. This international literary competition will be judged this year by Major Jackson, Final Judge in Poetry, and Gish Jen, Final Judge in Fiction. We look forward to reading work that will rock their socks off!



  • Junot Diaz once called Gish Jen "the Great American Novelist we're always hearing about." Perhaps that's because John Updike literally named her his 21st century successor...

  • Major Jackson may be an Absurd Man, but that didn't stop him from winning Guggenheim, NEA, Pushcart and many other awards.


Five finalists' work will be

  • forwarded on to the final judges in poetry and fiction

  • published in the summer 2024 issue


Two winners (one in poetry, one in fiction) will also receive

  • a blurb by the appropriate final judge

  • a $150 prize

  • an invitation to read their work at our hallmark Subnivean Awards event, which is promoted to thousands at SUNY and beyond


To read judges' blurbs about previous winners' work, click here.

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