THE CONTEST OPENED OCTOBER 1, 2020!
The Women’s National Book Association is a 100+ year old venerated organization of women and men across the broad spectrum of writing and publishing. Our membership includes Editors, Publishers, Literary Agents, Professors, Academics, Librarians, Authors, Book Marketers and many others involved in the world of books.
We honor and celebrate women authors and diverse writers and hope to include YOU with our 2021 Effie Lee Morris WNBA-SF Literary Contest, launched October 1st and running through
March August 31st, 2021. <– NEW DATE!
The Women’s National Book Association San Francisco Chapter is pleased and proud to continue the Effie Lee Morris WNBA Literary Awards in honor of our founder. Ms. Morris was a pioneering Black librarian and the founder of this chapter of the Women’s National Book Association in 1968. She became the first female chairperson of the Library of Congress and was the president of the National Braille Association for two terms. She was dedicated to literacy for children as well as children in underserved communities, and those who learn differently.
Ms. Morris was the first Coordinator of Children’s Services at the San Francisco Public Library and established the Children’s Historical and Research Collection at the Children’s Center of the San Francisco Library. She went on to become the first African American president of the Public Library Association. In 1968, Ms. Morris founded the San Francisco Chapter of the Women’s National Book Association, which began in 1917. The WNBA SF Chapter is continuing our advocacy for the voices of women and diverse authors in tribute to Ms. Morris’s important work and legacy.
The Effie Lee Morris WNBA Literary Awards Contest is actually three contests in one:
Our nonfiction contest is named for our aforementioned founder, Effie Lee Morris.
Our fiction contest is named for Elizabeth Pomada who worked at David McKay, Holt Rinehart & Winston, and the Dial Press in New York City before moving to San Francisco in 1970 with her partner and husband, Michael Larsen. Together, they co-founded the San Francisco Writers Conference and started Larsen Pomada Literary Agents in 1972. Elizabeth Pomada served as President of the WNBA-SF Chapter for several terms.
Our poetry contest is named for Kathi Kamen Goldmark, who was an author, columnist, publishing consultant, radio and music producer, and songwriter. Kathi most notably founded the Rock Bottom Remainders featuring beloved authors such as Amy Tam, Stephen King, Scott Turow, James McBride, Barbara Kingsolver, Sam Barry Ms. Goldmark and more. Kathi Kamen Goldmark also served as President of the WNBA-SF.
Anyone writing in English from anywhere in the world may submit. We prefer unpublished work, though we do accept stand-alone excerpts from works seeking a publisher or agent. We accept simultaneous submissions, but if you are published elsewhere, please notify us immediately.
Please double-space your submission. We recommend that you use a 14-point font that is easy to read. Cambria, Arial, and Verdana are all good. If you forget, we may fix it for you. Do NOT include a cover letter is necessary, as all information we need is in the submission form, and judging is anonymous. We will request bios & photos from the winners.
Fiction and Nonfiction should be 500-2500 words.
Poetry should be no more than 40 lines per submission.
Participants may submit up to 3 pieces, but must pay a separate fee for each submission.
Submit your work by clicking the button below, starting October 1, 2020.
WNBA members $14.00 per submission
Non-members $20.00 per submission.
First Place earns $200; Second Place earns $100; Third Place earns $50.
Winners also get publication on the San Francisco WNBA website for 90 days. After 90 days the rights revert to the author, though if you publish it elsewhere please identify WNBA as the original publisher. If we publish your work, the rights still belong to you, though we ask you not to resubmit until 90 days after it appears on WNBA-SF and give us credit if it is published elsewhere.