Philip Levine Prize at Fresno State

There are presently no open calls for submissions.

Guidelines: Philip Levine Prize for Poetry 2020

Opens: July 1, 2020

Postmark Deadline: September 30, 2020

Final Judge: Cathy Park Hong

Award: $2,000 prize, and publication by Anhinga Press

The Philip Levine Prize for Poetry 2020 includes: a cash award of $2,000; publication of the manuscript by Anhinga Press; 25 author’s copies of the published book; and a public reading at California State University, Fresno.

Please read the complete guidelines before submitting your manuscript.

Who May Submit

The Philip Levine Prize for Poetry is open to any poet writing in English. Translations are not eligible for this prize, nor are previously self-published books. Current and former faculty and students of California State University, Fresno are not eligible. Close friends and family members of the final judge are also not eligible.

Manuscript Requirements

Submit a previously unpublished, full-length poetry manuscript. You must include a table of contents. Please paginate your manuscript (number your pages). Manuscript should be 48-80 pages in length (not including title pages, acknowledgements, table of contents, etc.) and each poem should start on a new page. No cover letters or biographical notes, please.

If you are submitting an online manuscript: Within the document, please include a single cover page with the title of the manuscript only, so that your manuscript document remains anonymous. Do NOT include your name or personal information in the file name or in the title of the manuscript. Within Submittable, for our administrative purposes, you can include your contact information (author name, address, telephone number, and email address).

If you are submitting a paper manuscript: Please include two cover pages. One cover page should include the title of the manuscript only, so that your manuscript remains anonymous. The second cover page, for our administrative purposes, should include the title of manuscript, author name, address, telephone number, and email address.

Individual poems in a contest manuscript may have been previously published in magazines, journals, anthologies, or chapbooks, but the work as a whole must be unpublished. If applicable, include with your manuscript an acknowledgments page for prior publications.

Simultaneous submissions to other publishers or contests are permitted, as long as you notify Levine Prize staff promptly if a manuscript is accepted elsewhere.

Ethical Principles 

The Philip Levine Prize for Poetry endorses and abides by the Ethical Guidelines of the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP):

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to:

1. Conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors;

2. To provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and

3. To make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public.

This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contest contributes to a vibrant literary heritage.

Notification of Receipt

To confirm receipt of your paper manuscript, include a self-addressed stamped postcard. Online submissions will receive automated notification of receipt. Please keep these for your records.

Please do not enclose a SASE for return of a manuscript. All paper manuscripts will be recycled at the conclusion of the competition.

Notification of Results

To receive mailed notification of the winner and finalists, you may send a self-addressed stamped envelope.

Results will be announced in early January 2021. We notify all entrants in three ways: via postal mail to those who included a SASE with their paper manuscript; via email to those who included an email address with their paper or online manuscript; and online via our MFA program’s website, social media, and elsewhere.


All entries must be certified by Submittable (online) or postmarked (hard copy) by September 30, 2020.

Entry Fee

There are two ways to pay your entry fee:

Via Submittable online: An entry fee of $28 (U.S.) must accompany each online submission. Multiple submissions are accepted, so long as each submission a separate entry fee accompanies each submission.

Via postal mail: An entry fee of $25 (U.S.) must accompany each hard-copy submission. Multiple submissions are accepted, so long as each submission a separate entry fee accompanies each submission. Checks or money orders can be mailed to the address below, and they should be made payable to “Fresno State – Levine Prize.”

Submit Your Manuscript

There are two ways to submit your manuscript:

Via Submittable online: Submissions are accepted July 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 only. Be sure that your document is complete and formatted correctly before uploading. Reminder: Do NOT include contact information in the body of your manuscript, in the file name, or in the title of the manuscript. Include a title page with manuscript title only and enter your contact information separately into Submittable so that the manuscript remains anonymous.

Via postal mail: The Levine Prize encourages online submissions to save paper, but we still welcome mailed manuscripts. Be sure to include your check or money order.

You can mail your submission to:

Fresno State, Levine Prize

Department of English

5245 N. Backer Ave., PB98

Fresno, CA 93740-8001

Contact Information

Mai Der Vang, contest coordinator:

Levine Prize staff: or 559.278.1569

Philip Levine Prize at Fresno State