Creative writing contest submissions due by March 31

March 10, 2017
Rita Mae Reese
Dr. Kerry Neville

PLATTEVILLE, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin-Platteville Department of Humanities is currently accepting student submissions for the annual Thomas Hickey Creative Writing Awards Contest. The contest is open to all students who are enrolled at least part time at UW-Platteville.

All entries must be submitted to the Department of Humanities office, 323 Warner Hall (hard copies), or to (electronically) by 4 p.m. on Friday, March 31. Official contest guidelines are available in the Department of Humanities office or can be obtained by emailing Sara Koeller at

Students may submit a maximum of three entries (poems) in the category of poetry, a maximum of two entries in the category of creative nonfiction (pieces such as personal essays and excerpts of memoirs) and a maximum of two entries in the category of fiction. Fiction submissions may consist of short stories, short short stories or excerpts of novels.

Department of Humanities English faculty or staff will rank all entries to select finalists in each category.

The work of the finalists in poetry will be sent to guest judge Rita Mae Reese, author of the poetry collections “The Book of Hulga” (2016), which won the Felix Pollak Prize; and “The Alphabet Conspiracy” (2011), which won the 2012 Drake Emerging Writers Award. Reese will determine the winners in the category.

The work of the finalists in fiction and creative nonfiction will be sent to guest judge Dr. Kerry Neville who will determine winners in each category. Neville will also be the featured reader at the UW-Platteville Creative Writing Festival on April 25. Neville is author of the forthcoming short story collection, “Remember To Forget Me,” and of the short story collection, “Necessary Lies,” winner of the Short Story Book of the Year Prize from Independent Publisher Magazine.

Neville is a regular blog contributor to The Huffington Post and her stories and essays have appeared widely in journals and anthologies. She is a two-time recipient of the Dallas Museum of Art Prize for Fiction and the Texas Institute of Letters Prize for Fiction. She is an assistant professor in creative writing at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Georgia.

Cash awards of $100, $75 and $50 will be awarded to writers of the first through third-place entries respectively in each division. No student is eligible to win more than one prize per division.

Student winners of the Thomas Hickey Creative Writing Awards will read their works alongside featured writer Neville at the Department of Humanities 2017 Creative Writing Festival, Tuesday, April 25 in the Harry and Laura Nohr Gallery from 4-6:30 p.m.

“Our annual creative writing contest is an important way we celebrate the many active writers on our campus,” said Dr. Stormy Stipe, professor of English at UW-Platteville and organizer of the creative writing contest and festival. “By submitting to the contest students not only honor their own writing but help support and celebrate the strong, vibrant writing community we enjoy here at UW-Platteville.”

The creative writing contest is named after Thomas Hickey, a former English composition and literature professor at UW-Platteville. Hickey taught at UW-Platteville for 42 years and served as a judge for the creative writing contest for nearly 10 of those years.

Written by: Laurie A. Hamer, Communications Specialist, College of Liberal Arts and Education, 608-342-6191,


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