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The winning poet receives a $1,000 advance, a standard royalty contract, and 20 copies of the published book. Finalists will also be considered for future publication.

Judge: Charlotte Pence


Charlotte Pence will judge the 2nd Annual Arthur Smith Poetry Prize 

with preliminary readers: Catherine Childress & Candance (Candee) Reaves

Charlotte Pence’s new book of poems, Code, received the 2020 Book of the Year award from Alabama Poetry Society and was a finalist for Foreword Reviews Indie Poetry Book of 2020.  Code details not only the life cycle of birth and death, but also the means of this cycle: DNA itself. Her first book of poems, Many Small Fires (Black Lawrence Press, 2015), won Foreword Reviews’ silver medal award in poetry. Both poetry books weave together personal experience and scientific exploration. She is also the author of two award-winning poetry chapbooks and the editor of The Poetics of American Song Lyrics. Her poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction have recently been published in Harvard Review, Poetry, Sewanee Review, Southern Review, and Brevity. A graduate of Emerson College (MFA) and the University of Tennessee (PhD), she is now the director of the Stokes Center for Creative Writing at University of South Alabama.


Competition Guidelines

· Eligibility: We will be happy to receive work by any poet writing in English. Poems published in print or online periodicals, anthologies, or chapbooks may be included, but the manuscript itself must be unpublished. Original work only; translations are ineligible.

· Format: Minimum of 48 pages. There is no maximum length, but we expect manuscripts not to be much more than 90 pages. Pages should be numbered with no more than one poem per page. Please include a title page with title only, a table of contents, and an acknowledgments page.

· Simultaneous Submissions: Simultaneous submissions are acceptable. Please notify Madville Publishing immediately if your manuscript is accepted elsewhere.

· Multiple Submissions: Submission of more than one manuscript is acceptable, but each manuscript must be submitted separately and include a separate entry fee.

· International Submissions: We accept international submissions.

· Revisions: The winner will have the opportunity to revise the manuscript before publication. No revisions will be considered during the reading period.

· SUBMISSIONS SHOULD BE BLIND. PLEASE DO NOT INCLUDE AUTHOR NAME ANYWHERE ON THE MANUSCRIPT.

· Entry Fee: $25

· Deadline: September 30, 2022.

· Winner will be announced by December 31, 2022, and the winning collection will be published Fall 2023.

· Visit https://madvillepublishing.com/submission-guidelines/ for more information.


The poet, Arthur Smith, for whom this competition is named. He fixes the viewer with a kind eye. 

ARTHUR SMITH was born in central California. He received degrees from San Francisco State University (B.A., M.A.) and from the University of Houston (Ph.D.). He passed away on November 9th, 2018. To those who knew and loved him, he was a master teacher and a masterful poet. His first book of poems, Elegy on Independence Day, was awarded the Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize and was published by the University of Pittsburgh Press in 1985. That same year, it was selected by the Poetry Society of American to receive the Norma Farber First Book Award. His second book of poems, Orders of Affection, was published by Carnegie Mellon University Press in 1996, and his third book, The Late World, was published in 2002, also by Carnegie Mellon University Press. His most recent book of poems is The Fortunate Era (2013). His work has been honored with a “Discovery”/The Nation Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship, two Pushcart Prizes, and he was selected as the Theodore Morrison Fellow in Poetry for the 1987 Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference. He served two terms as an advisory member of the Tennessee Arts Commission Literary Panel, and he was a Professor of English at the University of Tennessee. His poems have appeared in numerous journals including

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