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Results of the 2023 WTAW Alcove Chapbook Series Open

WTAW Press is pleased to share the results of the 2023 WTAW Alcove Chapbook Series Open. The quality of submissions received was outstanding. The prize winner is Promiscuous Ruin by Julian Mithra, who received an honorarium of $250, publication, and 25 copies of their book. You can find a description of Promiscuous Ruin, learn more about Julian Mithra, and purchase a copy in paperback or ebook format here.

WTAW selected the following five finalist chapbooks to publish in 2023.

Finalists (listed alphabetically according to authors’ last names)

Outtakes, Joanna Acevedo: Coming Fall 2023
Something I Might
Say by Stephanie Austin: Coming July 18, 2023
Mississippi River Museum by Keith Pilapil Lesmeister: Published March 2023
Sarra Copia: A Locked-in Life by Nancy Ludmerer: Coming Fall 2023

Eggs in Purgatory by Genanne Walsh: Published March 2023

We would also like to honor the following chapbooks and their authors.

Annetta in Style, Stacy Bierlein
Delivery, Martha Coats
Attachment Disorders, Alice Hatcher
The Slough, Natalie Nebel
The Rest of Us, Tisha Marie Reichle-Aguilera
Neurotypical, Meghan Williams 

Honorable Mentions

American Filigree, Fatima Alharthi
Therapy, Sean Bernard
Imaginary Places, Alicia Bones
Applications, Anna Mantzaris
A Natural Man, Reggie Scott Young


The 2024 Alcove Chapbook Series Open Competition will take place June 30 through August 15, 2023.

WTAW Press announces its second annual Alcove Chapbook Series Open Competition. We are pleased to provide a platform to support the efforts of more writers and to welcome new writers and readers into the WTAW Press community. 

From June 30—August 15, 2023, we will accept submissions of unpublished chapbooks of prose. The competition is open to new, emerging, and established writers. The winner will receive book publication, a $250 honorarium, and 25 copies of their book. All submissions will be considered for publication and finalists selected for publication will receive 10 copies of their books. There is a nonrefundable $15 fee. 

What we seek to publish


Please take a look at the books WTAW has published. We publish enduring books of literary prose. We’re drawn to intimate, relevant writing and to material that explores issues of contemporary significance on any theme or subject. We don’t publish material we deem abusive or offensive. 

The length of manuscripts will be ideally between 20 and 48 pages, but slightly shorter or longer is okay. Collections, excerpts from longer works that stand alone, and single longform works considered too long for journal publication but too short for full-length book publication are all welcome. 

Hybrid texts, lyric essays, collections of flash, mini novellas, long stories, braided essays, innovative approaches to memoir, biography, and journalism, experimental fiction and creative nonfiction: all are welcome.

We’re interested in works that extend the possibilities of or challenge the conventions of prose and welcome submissions that innovate and take risks.

Chapbooks must have a cohesion of some sort. In the case of collections, there must be an intentionality to the placement of the material together as a single body of work (art).

We strongly encourage writers of traditionally underrepresented and marginalized communities and first-time authors to send us their work. 

General guidelines


We welcome submissions from writers of all backgrounds and especially encourage submissions from women, BIPOC, LGBTQ+ or nonbinary gender people, persons with disabilities, and all traditionally underrepresented groups. We welcome submissions from new, emerging, and established voices.


We accept submissions only through our submission manager. The submission manager will open on June 30, 2023. There is a $15 nonrefundable fee. Be sure to read and follow the guidelines on the form carefully. Submissions that don't follow the guidelines will not be considered and the fee will be forfeited.


The author’s name and contact information must not appear anywhere on the manuscript, including in the title or name of the file. Manuscripts with biographical information will be automatically disqualified and the fee forfeited. 


Manuscripts must be double-spaced with at least one-inch margins, using Times New Roman (or similar) 12-point font, and paginated. They must be submitted as a .doc or .docx file. 


Ideally, manuscripts will be between 22 and 48 (double-spaced) pages, but slightly shorter or longer is okay. Each new piece should begin on a different page. 


Include a title page with the word count on it and a table of contents, if applicable. (These pages of front matter are not included in the total page count.) 


While individual portions of the chapbook may have been published elsewhere, the majority of the chapbook as a whole must be previously unpublished. Chapbooks with new, unpublished work are preferred. 


Any previous published material contained in the manuscript must be credited in your cover letter (see more about the letter below). Acknowledgements of any previously published material may not be included in the manuscript file. Manuscripts containing acknowledgments will be automatically disqualified. 


Material must be of your own composition and free from copyright restrictions.  


Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but the writer must agree to notify us immediately if the chapbook is accepted elsewhere and to withdraw it from our submission manager. 


Multiple submissions are accepted, with each accompanied by a separate entry fee. Note: each submission must be unique. 

Submissions cannot be edited once they are submitted. Manuscripts selected for publication will go through an editing process with the editors.

Enter the cover letter into the appropriate field on the submission manager. Don't include your cover letter in the submission file itself. Submission files that contain a cover letter will be automatically disqualified.


Your cover letter must include the following information

  • Your contact information (address, phone, email)

  • The work’s title, genre, and word count

  • List of credits for any previously published portions

  • A brief synopsis of the work

  • A brief biography with publishing history, if applicable; include your website address and social media handles

  • Indication whether the manuscript is submitted simultaneously and pledge to withdraw it if accepted elsewhere

  • Where you heard about the open call for submissions

Any submission that doesn't follow the guidelines will be disqualified and the submission fee forfeited. Make sure to review the specific guidelines found on our submission manager

WTAW Press is committed to publishing the best work we can find, and we look forward to reading your manuscripts. Should we not receive manuscripts that fit our criteria for publication, we reserve the right not to publish manuscripts received during the open competition period.


All submissions will receive a response through our submission manager to the email entered on the submission form.

Thank you for considering WTAW Press.

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