The Monadnock Essay Collection Prize


The 2017 Monadnock Essay Collection Prize is CLOSED for submissions! 

Thank you to everyone who submitted their collections!! Winners will be announced in January after our judge Andrew Merton has time to read all the wonderful essays! We’ll notify all our submitters when the results are in!


We’re thrilled to announce this year’s judge: Andrew Merton!

Andrew Merton is a journalist, essayist, and poet. Publications in which his journalism and essays have appeared include Esquire, Ms. Magazine, The New York Times Magazine, Boston Magazine, The Boston Globe, and the Green Mountain Review.  His book Enemies of Choice: The Right-To-Life Movement and Its Threat to Abortion, was published by Beacon Press in 1980. His poetry has appeared in Bellevue Literary Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, The Rialto (U.K.), Comstock Review, Louisville Review, the Asheville Poetry Review, the American Journal of Nursing, and elsewhere. His first book of poetry, Evidence that We Are Descended from Chairs, with a foreword by Charles Simic (Accents Publishing, 2012) was named Outstanding Book of Poetry for 2013–2014 by the New Hampshire Writers’ Project. His second book of poetry, Lost and Found, was published by Accents Publishing in 2016. He is a professor emeritus of English at the University of New Hampshire.

The Monadnock Essay Collection Prize

• The prize will be awarded for a book-length collection (120-160 pages or 50,000-60,000 words) of nonfiction essays

• The essays can take any form: personal essays, memoir in essay form, narrative nonfiction, commentary, travel, historical account etc.

• The essays must NOT have been previously published as a collection

The cost to enter this competition is $25.00 per manuscript (entrants may submit multiple manuscripts) and the winner will receive:

• $750.00 prize money

• Publication of their collection

• 50 copies of the published book

• Distribution with our other 2018 fall titles through our partner UPNE (University Press of New England)

Read our complete submission guidelines here!

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Congratulations to last year’s winner Neil Mathison of Seattle, Washington with his collection Volcano: An A to Z and Other Essays about Geology, Geography, and Geo-Travel in the American West. His collection will be published this June! 


Many thanks to everyone who submitted collections and helped us spread the word about the contest. Our judge Alice B. Fogel chose Mathison’s collection from among many worthy entries!

First annual Monadnock Essay Collection Prize


Volcano: An A to Z and Other Essays about Geology, Geography, and Geo-Travel in the American West by Neil Mathison of Seattle, Washington

Finalists were:

Without Saints by Christopher Locke of Upper Jay, New York

Wordwalks by Chris Arthur of Fife, Scotland

Honorable Mentions went to:

In the House of Magic and Sorrow by Mark Brazaitis of Morgantown, West Virginia

A More Exceptionally Perfect America: Essays & Impertinent Thoughts by Michael Konik of Los Angeles, California

Fingerprints of War by Sara Ohlin of Everett, Washington

Yahrzeit Candles by Deborah Thompson of Fort Collins, Colorado

Areas of Fog by Will Dowd of Braintree, Massachusetts