The Clay Reynolds Novella Prize

Clay Reynolds

Clay Reynolds is the author or editor of twenty published volumes, including ten works of original fiction ranging from novels to short fiction. He also has published more than 1100 other pieces of writing spanning original poetry, fiction, essay, scholarly critique, and literary analysis. Professor of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas at Dallas, he also directs Creative Writing there. An award-winning fiction writer, Reynolds is a member of the Texas Institute of Letters and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his novel, Franklin's Crossing. He has won the Violet Crown Award for fiction twice and also won a Spur Award for short fiction. His edited works include a collection of nineteenth century dime novels, a collection of essays on Larry McMurtry, and a collection of novellas. 

We are pleased to announce the winners
of the Clay Reynolds Novella Prize for 2017

They are:

The Winner: Blindsided by Chelsea Catherine from Graniteville, Vermont

Runner-up: Unprotected Rex by C.E. Smith from Nashville, Tennessee

Those entries that succeed in this contest are typically those that do one thing: they tell a simple story well, without the garnish of fancy experimental styles or attempts to write abstractly rather than directly. The features our judges look for are great characterization, dialogue, accuracy and vividness of setting, consistency in point of view and technique, and, above all else, a well-written piece of fiction that is free of jargon, grammatical error, and stylistic nonsense. Grammatical and mechanical errors will disqualify an entry faster than anything, so please take care in manuscript preparation and mechanical correctness. We are not interested in work that appears trendy or that tries too hard to be fashionable. We also shy away from work that imitates some other contemporary, popular writer. We look for honesty, originality, and directness in the writing. Be aware of the language that is appropriate to the time and place you write about.

Clay Reynolds is our final judge.

This contest will reopen for submissions from January 1 through October 15, 2018

Submission Guidelines

  • All submissions must be made electronically through our Submittable account.
  • Manuscripts should be between 20,000 and 50,000 words in length.
  • 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.
  • Click Here to Submit

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

Past Clay Reynolds Novella Prize Winners:

  • Rusty Dolleman
  • Ernest J. Finney
  • Benjamin Ludwig
  • Adam Berlin
  • Bruce Douglas Reeves
  • Tina Egnoski
  • Daniel Robinson
  • William Orem
  • Tara Deal
  • Lonnie Busch
  • Suzanne Freeman
  • Mark Connelly
  • Rebecca Bailey
  • Stephen March
  • Charles Wyatt