About the George Garrett Fiction Prize

This contest honors award-winning author George Garrett (1929-2008), a master storyteller who never quite received the recognition he deserved. The wide range of Garrett’s interests and subjects is often blamed for his lack of recognition, and for that reason, we do not restrict this contest with regard to subject. We do, however, look for technical proficiency. Disregard for grammar or mechanics will see an entry disqualified faster than anything else. We want to read a compelling story, well-told. We want to meet characters that come alive, and while we value originality, we tend to favor traditional story-telling over abstract styles. George Garrett judged the contest up to the time of his death in 2008. Eric Miles Williamson judged for us from 2009 to 2016.

Michael Gills--photo credit: University of UtahOur final judge for this contest for 2018 is Michael Gills, the author of Go Love, a novel, story collections The House Across from the Deaf School (Texas Review Press)Why I Lie, and The Death of Bonnie and Clyde (Texas Review Press), and White Indians, a collection of creative nonfiction essays. 15 BYTES, Utah's art magazine, named The House Across from the Deaf School its 2017 fiction award winner. Gills is associate professor of writing for the Honors College at the University of Utah.

photo credit: University of Utah

We are pleased to announce the 2017 George Garrett Fiction Prize winners

The Winner: Pitchman’s Blues
a short story collection
by Jim Kelly from West Bloomfield, Michigan.

Runner-up: Posing Nude for the Saints
a short story collection
by Elizabeth Genovise from Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Our final judge was Steve Yates, associate director / marketing director at University Press of Mississippi in Jackson.

Our preliminary judge was Michael Gills, lecturer/ professor in the Honors College at the University of Utah
(He read all 97 entries! He has also agreed to be our final judge for 2018. Details soon)

Submission Guidelines

  • Manuscripts may be novels or short story collections with a total word count of between 40,000 and 120,000 words.
  • All submissions must be made electronically through our Submittable account.
  • The author's name should not appear anywhere on the manuscript.
  • All entries should be double-spaced, in 12-point Times New Roman font, with page numbers.
  • A cover letter should be included with your entry. This is to be copied and pasted into the Submittable entry form, not included with the manuscript itself.
  • A reading fee of $20 must accompany each manuscript.
  • Winning manuscripts will be published the year after acceptance.
    (Upon acceptance for publication, Texas Review Press acquires first North American serial rights; copyright reverts to author upon publication.) 
  • Winners will receive 20 free copies of their books.
  • Winner will be announced on the Texas Review Press website. 
  • Entries close on September 15.
  • Click Here to Submit

Past Winners of the George Garrett Fiction Prize

Click covers to read about each book or purchase a copy.

  • James Ulmer
  • Love Give Us One Death by Jeff P. Jones
  • Get a Grip by Kathy Flann
  • The Gold Piano by Stephen March
  • The Jumper by Tim Parrish
  • Purple Church by Starner Jones
  • The Pubilist’s Wife by David Armand
  • The Estate Sale by Richard Spillman
  • River Roots by Mary Kuykendall-Weber
  • Hog to Hog by Jack Smith
  • Sky full of Burdens by Meg Moceri
  • Fiestas by Jacqueline Bautista
  • An American Affair by Mark Brazaitis
  • Pitching Tents by Gail Mount
  • Blessings of Hard-Used Angels by John Cottle
  • Hardwater by Steve Sherwood
  • Acts of Contrition by Thomas Cobb
  • Marconi's Dream by Naton Leslie
  • Tales of Resistance by Peter Leach