How to Enter
The entry period for the 2021 is now OPEN. Entries must be received by June 1, 2021.
IMPORTANT: The entry process has changed for 2021. It is now a one step system. Sonnet(s) must be submitted with the Entry Form. Please make sure your sonnets are properly formatted and ready to submit prior to completing the Entry Form. No changes to sonnets can be made after entries have been received.
Before completing the entry form, please make sure that your sonnets adhere to the submission instructions below.
Winners will be announced in early August. Cash prizes, totaling up to $2,000, will be awarded in several categories, including:
- Top Three Sonnets
- Regional (Three Winners - Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa)
- Best Youth (Three Winners - High School and Younger)
- Laureate's Choice (Fifteen Winners)
- Sonnets may be written in Shakespearean, Spenserian, Petrarchan or Non-Traditional rhyme schemes, but each must be in the fourteen line, entirely (or predominantly) iambic pentameter form. (Read more about Sonnet Forms here: What is a Sonnet?) Only previously unpublished sonnets are eligible.
- There is a $5 FEE for up to three sonnets per entry. There is NO FEE for entrants in the Youth category (high school and younger) or for undergraduate college students. Sonnets must be received by June 1st to compete in this year's contest.
- The $5 entry fee may be submitted through PayPal or by US or International Post.
- No entrant may be awarded more than one prize.
Sonnet Submission Instructions
- Up to three sonnets may be submitted for each entry fee. Sonnets should be uploaded as individual files.
- No changes can be made after sonnets are submitted. Please make sure your sonnets are in their final version before uploading them.
- Acceptable file formats are: .doc, .docx, and .pdf.
- In your document, place the title, or the first line if it is your title, then skip two lines and add all fourteen lines of your sonnet, double spacing each line. To assist our judges with readability, 14 point Times New Roman is the preferred font and size. Do not include your name on the sonnets.
- Sonnets are submitted through the Entry Form.
- If you have any difficulties with the form or require assistance, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The author retains all copyrights to the submitted sonnet. Winning sonnets will appear on this website with the copyright notice intact and may be published in a forthcoming anthology. By entering the contest, the author consents to the publication of a sonnet selected as a winning entry.