The Clay Reynolds Novella Prize

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$1,000 + Publication

2024 Judge: Steven Dunn

Established in 2001, The Clay Reynolds Novella Prize highlights one book a year that excels in the novella format. Since 2024, the Prize comes with a $1,000 advance, a standard royalty contract, and 10 copies of the published book.

Submissions open each year on January 1 and close on March 31.

Winner of the 2023 Clay Reynolds Novella Prize:

The Mary Years, by Julie Marie Wade

Selected by Michael Martone

Submission Guidelines

Submit to The Clay Reynolds Novella Prize

General Guidelines

*Writers who studied with the final judge or TRP staff for a semester-length period are not eligible. Writers who studied with the final judge or TRP staff for two-week residencies, single workshops, or other instances less than a semester in length are eligible, provided the work submitted is previously unseen by TRP staff or the final judge.

Manuscript Guidelines

Contest Judge: Steven Dunn

Beowulf Sheenah Steven Dunn Steven Carl Dunn Jr.jpegSteven Dunn (a.k.a Pothole, cuz he’s deep in these streets) is a Whiting Award winner who was shortlisted for Granta Magazine’s Best of Young American Novelists. He’s the author of three novels: Potted Meat (Tarpaulin Sky, 2016), water & power (Tarpaulin Sky, 2018), and Tannery Bay (FC2/University of Alabama Press, 2024), which is co-authored with his homie Katie Jean Shinkle. Potted Meat is a 2017 Colorado Book Award Finalist, VICE Magazine’s Best Books of 2016, and adapted into a short film by Foothills Productions called The Usual Route. The Usual Route has played at the LA International Film Festival, Houston International Film Festival, and others. Steven teaches in the MFA programs at Regis University, Stetson University, and Naropa University.

Photographer Credit: Beowulf Sheenah

Clay Reynolds

Clay Reynolds (1949-2022), for whom this competition is named, is the author of ten novels, and his short fiction has won numerous awards. Reynolds’ critical evaluations have appeared in national magazines including Chronicles, American Way, and Texas Monthly.

Previous Winners:

2023: Julie Marie Wade – The Mary Years

2022: Jane V. Blunschi – Mon Dieu, Love

2021: Deirdre Danklin – Catastrophe

2020: Cecilia Pinto  Imagine the Dog

2019: Dylan Fisher  The Loneliest Band in France

2018: Patrick Stockwell  The Light Here Changes Everything

2017: Chelsea Catherine – Blindsided

2016: Curt Eriksen – A Place of Timeless Harmony

2015: Rusty Dolleman – The Megabucks     

2014: Ernest J. Finney – Elevation 6,040

2013: Benjamin Ludwig – Sourdough

2012: Adam Berlin – Both Members of the Club

2011: Bruce Douglas Reeves – Delphine

2010: Tina Egnoski – In the Time of the Feast of Flowers

2009: Daniel Robinson – The Shadow of Violence

2008: William Orem – Across the River

2007: Tara Deal – Palms Are Not Trees After All

2006: Lonnie Busch – Turnback Creek

2005: Seuxanne Freeman – Omnibo

2004: Mark Connelly Fifteen Minutes

2003: Rebecca Bailey – The Only Road There Is

2002: Stephen March – Armadillo

2001: Charles Wyatt – Falling Stones: The Spirit Autobiography of S.M. Jones