McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers, $25,000 Loft Awards in Creative Prose and in Children’s Literature/Older Children
DEADLINE: 11:59 pm Friday, November 20, 2020. Entries must be submitted through our online portal Submittable by 11:59 pm. Please note that our office hours are not extended on that date, so please ask questions and make sure you are familiar with the application process before the deadline.
The Loft Literary Center is pleased to announce the 2021 McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers, made possible by the generous support of the McKnight Foundation. McKnight also funds artist fellowship programs in ceramic arts, choreography and dance, music composition, music performance, playwriting, and theater arts, screenwriting, and visual arts.
ABOUT THE FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
The McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers provide Minnesota writers of demonstrated ability with an opportunity to work on their craft for a concentrated period of time. The intent of this program is to recognize and support midcareer artists living and working in Minnesota who demonstrate a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment, and artistic excellence.
Four $25,000 fellowships are offered in alternating years to writers of creative prose and poetry. This year’s four awards will be in creative prose, which includes fiction and literary nonfiction such as memoir, personal essay, and autobiography.
A $25,000 fellowship is awarded each year in children’s literature, including poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction. This year’s award is offered to a writer for children 8 years of age or older.
McKnight Fellows are also entitled to up to $3,000 in reimbursement to attend a writing conference or retreat during their fellowship year. These fellowships do not support the work of playwriting, journalism, or nonfiction that is written primarily for educational or technical use.
JUDGING FOR THE MCKNIGHT ARTIST FELLOWSHIPS FOR WRITERS
Prominent writers and editors living outside of Minnesota serve as the judges. There are no screening judges. All manuscripts are judged anonymously.
Due to the number of entries received, it is not possible for the judges to make individual comments on the manuscripts.
Applicants must have been legal residents of Minnesota for the 12 months prior to the application deadline and must currently reside in Minnesota.
Applicants may apply for only one McKnight Artist Fellowship per year. You may not apply for the Award in Creative Prose and also apply for any other McKnight Fellowship, including the Award in Children’s Literature, or a McKnight Fellowship in an alternate discipline, such as ceramics or music.
Recipients of the McKnight Fellowship in any discipline in the last five years are not eligible to apply. Honorable mentions are eligible.
Prior recipients of the McKnight Fellowship must demonstrate a new body of work since their last Fellowship.
Full time students in a degree granting program are not eligible to apply.
Loft and McKnight Foundation staff and board members are not eligible.
If you have questions about your eligibility for the McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers, please email Bao Phi, Director of Events and Awards, at email@example.com.
Additional Requirements for the Loft Awards in Creative Prose
In addition to the general eligibility requirements, applicants must have:
- Published a book (e.g., novel, memoir, collection of short stories or personal essays). OR
- Published at least 5 pieces of original work in no fewer than three literary journals or magazines that regularly feature prose as part of their format. Work published in an online journal that has an editorial process is eligible. Work published in an anthology is eligible. The same piece printed in a journal and in an anthology may only be counted once; applicants may not use multiple publications of the same work to meet the 5 required pieces.
- Authors counting a self-published book for eligibility must include a brief letter from the publisher confirming that the manuscript underwent an editorial process. Please upload this in the eligibility requirements.
- Work that is pending publication and will be published before April 1, 2021 is eligible. When asked for proof of eligibility, please upload a letter from the editor or publisher with proof of publication.
Additional Requirements for the Loft Award in Children’s Literature
In addition to the general eligibility requirements, applicants must have
- Published a book for children eight years or older, in any genre other than educational textbook material OR
- Published at least 3 pieces of original work in one or more publications that regularly feature creative work for children eight years or older as part of their format. Work published in an online journal that has an editorial process is eligible. Work published in an anthology is eligible. The same piece printed in a journal and in an anthology may only be counted once; applicants may not use multiple publications of the same work to meet the 5 required pieces.
- Work that is pending publication and will be published before April 1, 2021 is eligible. Please provide a letter from the editor or publisher with proof of publication.
Ineligible work in both awards:
- Student-only publications
- Self-published books that did not go through an editorial process
- Work published on personal home pages or online sites that do not have an editorial process.
- Work in a genre outside the category in which you are applying. (e.g., published poetry may not be used to meet the publication requirements for the Award in Creative Prose)
- Work that has previously won a McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers. If you are a previous winner, you must submit a manuscript different from the one for which you received the earlier award.
You must apply through Submittable and you will need to create a Submittable account if you do not already have one. If you have technical submission questions, please contact Submittable technical support at http://help.submittable.com/
In addition to the form in Submittable, you will need to prepare three files to upload with your submission (see descriptions on the next page for details):
- a work sample
- proof of Minnesota residency
- proof of publication
- if self published, or have work pending publication, a letter from the editor
Please prepare your writing sample. All work samples must be anonymous. If your name appears as part of the manuscript text, omit it, use a pseudonym, or redact it out so it is illegible. Do not include your name as part of the writing sample file name. Identifying information should only be included in the Submittable application form, which is blind to the judge. Identifying information anywhere in the submitted work sample file will disqualify your submission.
Loft Awards in Creative Prose: Applicants should submit at least 20 but no more than 25 pages of a typed (12-point font), double-spaced manuscript. Pages must be consecutively numbered.
Loft Award in Children’s Literature: Applicants should submit a manuscript that is at least 5 but no more than 20 pages in length and that is written for ages 8 and older. Manuscripts may be in prose or poetry, or a combination of the two. All manuscripts must be typed in a 12-point font. Prose manuscripts should be double-spaced. Poetry may be single- or double-spaced. All pages must be consecutively numbered.
PROOF OF RESIDENCY
The Loft requires finalists to provide proof of Minnesota residency. This can be a scan or digital photo of a Minnesota Driver’s License, ID, or utilities bill with name and address and date. Name, address, and date should be clearly legible.
PROOF OF PUBLICATION
Applicants must submit proof of each publication necessary to meet eligibility. For books, we will need a photocopy or scanned image of the title and copyright pages. For journals, we will need photocopies or scanned documents of either the cover or title page of the journal as well as the table of contents page and the pages on which your work appears. For self published books, please provide a brief letter from the publisher confirming an editorial process.
- Work samples may be submitted as PDF, DOC, DOCX, RTF, MP3, WAV, MP4, or MOV files.
- All manuscripts must be anonymous. If your name appears as part of the manuscript text, omit it, use a pseudonym, or redact it so it is illegible.
- Applicants should include a brief biographical statement—you will see a field for this in Submittable. Do not attach the biographical statement to your manuscript. The biographical statement is used for publicity purposes only when the winners are announced. Biographical statements are not seen by the judges.
DEADLINE: 11:59 pm Friday, November 20, 2020. Due to the anticipated volume of requests for help, please plan ahead and ask questions before the deadline week to ensure a reply. Please note that the Loft office hours will not be extended the evening of the deadline. Entrants will be notified of their status by the end of April, 2021. Winners will begin receiving payments in May, 2021.