Ends on October 8, 2017

$5.00 USD

Join Our Voices for Social Justice

VoiceCatcher is excited to “Join Our Voices for Social Justice” with our first-ever nationwide writing contest. In a time when Charlottesville is current news, writers have an even stronger obligation to create, resist, and come together in respect and in all our diversity to open more space for dialogue and understanding.

If you identify as female, and your poetry, fiction, or nonfiction grapples with issues of divided communities, privilege, racial inequalities, or disparity, we want to hear from you. Let’s join our voices in tribute to the victims of Charlottesville, and those around the nation, who fight and struggle every day.

The contest runs from September 4th to October 8th, 2017, and it is open to all female-identified writers within the United States. There is a $5.00 submission fee for entry, with half of the proceeds to be donated to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Please submit no more than 2,500 words for prose or no more than five poems for poetry entries. The guest judge will determine the winner, who will receive a $50.00 prize and publication in the fall issue of VoiceCatcher. (Please see the full submission guidelines, below, for more information.)

Please meet Diana Garcia - Contest Guest Judge

A native of California’s San Joaquin Valley, poet and writer Diana Garcia was born in a farm labor camp owned by the California Packing Corporation.  Formerly a single mother on welfare, she earned both her BA and MFA in creative writing from San Diego State University. Until her retirement, she was on the creative writing faculty and co-director of the Creative Writing and Social Action Program at California State University Monterey Bay. Her poetry collection, When Living Was a Labor Camp, won an American Book Award.  She, along with Frances Payne Adler and Debra Busman, co-edited the anthology Fire and Ink: An Anthology of Social Action Writing. 

In 2009 she was invited to be a featured poet for the Smithsonian’s National Museum of History Poetics of Labor “Bittersweet Harvest: Cosecha Amarga, Cosecha Dulce” exhibit in Washington, D.C.   In March 2016 she, along with then-U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera and Santa Clara County Poet Laureate Arlene Biala headlined “Poets Unite: UFW 50th Anniversary and Dolores Huerta” at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.  

A former judge for the Connecticut Commission of the Arts’ poetry competition, she taught for California Poets in the School, co-founded the Border Voices Project in San Diego, and founded the Central Connecticut Poetry Project. In spring 2005 she was inducted into the “Latinas: The Spirit of California” exhibit as part of the California Museum for History, Women, and the Arts. She was named Connecticut Poet of the Year in 1998. Her poems, stories and essays appear in numerous anthologies and journals. 

        Submission Guidelines

Submissions are open for VoiceCatcher's first national contest, "Join Our Voices For Social Justice." Send us your prose and poetry from September 4 – October 8, 2017.

Submissions are blind and accepted electronically through Submittable. Please read the guidelines carefully before hitting Send.

VoiceCatcher publishes new writing that has not appeared in print or online. If you’ve published a piece on your own website, blog or self-publishing site, please remove it before submitting to us.

We accept simultaneous submissions, but ask that you notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.

We only accept submissions from female-identified and non-binary writers and artists.

If your work is accepted, you agree to grant us First North American Serial Rights and Electronic Archival Rights. At publication, all rights revert back to you. If your work subsequently appears in print or online, you agree to give credit to VoiceCatcher. We agree to contact you for permission to reprint your work.

The What and How

We accept electronic submission through Submittable. Edit and proof your work before submitting. In the body of the Submittable form, please include:

  1. A short bio – 100 words or less – written in third person.

  2. Your written piece(s) as an attachment, in a single Word document. Use the title(s) of your work as the file name of your document.

  3. Submissions are blind. Please remove all identifying information from your document.


In a single Word document, submit up to five poems. Each poem should not exceed 50 lines.

Keep submissions blind. Use the title of your work as the saved file name on the document, NOT your own name.

Single space your poems for stanza breaks.

Insert page breaks between poems.

Use Times New Roman 12pt font.

If lines in your poems are indented, please use the SPACE BAR (NOT the TAB Key) to indent. This helps us keep the correct visual format.

If your poem has a “justified right margin,” we will do our best to preserve the line breaks, but there may be some variance due to font styling on the website.

Prose (fiction, creative non-fiction, flash fiction, memoir)

Submit one piece of prose in a single Word document.

Include the word count of your piece. No more than 2,500 words.

Double space and indent paragraphs by half an inch.

Use Times New Roman 12pt font.

Keep submissions blind. Use the title of your work as the saved file name on the document, NOT your own name.

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