The Cleopatra Literary Contest for Young Women
Established and sponsored by Stephanie Dray, this literary competition is aimed at discovering, mentoring, and publishing young, aspiring female writers. In particular, we wish to foster new voices with an appreciation for women’s history. The contest is named after the inspirational Cleopatra VII of Egypt, who was, herself, an author of books about cosmetics, pharmacology and weights and measures.
- Teen Category Grand Prize: Either $100 USD cash or a brand new E-reader, in addition to a certificate, a feature article on Ms. Dray’s blog and in her newsletter, a one month writing mentorship with Ms. Dray, and a critique from NY literary agent, Jennifer Schober of Spencerhill Associates.
- Young Women Category Grand Prize: Either $100 USD cash or a brand new E-reader, in addition to a certificate, a feature article on Ms. Dray’s blog and in her newsletter, a one month writing mentorship and a critique from NY literary agent, Jennifer Schober of Spencerhill Associates.
- Finalists Prize: Constructive feedback from publishing industry professionals, mentions on Ms. Dray’s blog and in her newsletter, a certificate, and a free book supplied by Ms. Dray and affiliated authors.
- Females between the ages of 13-18 for the teen category
- Females between the ages of 19-22 for the young women’s category
- This is an international contest, so writers outside of the US are eligible
“Selene’s life is a lesson to us that the trajectory of women’s equality hasn’t always been a forward march. In some ways the ancients were more advanced than we are today; there have been setbacks before and may be more in the future.”
This year’s submissions must echo themes explored in Ms. Dray’s novel, LILY OF THE NILE, including, but not limited to:
- Entrants retain all publication rights
- No entry fee is required; no purchase required
- Awards will be judged by published authors and publishing professionals
- Short stories, essays, poems and excerpts from novels and novellas are all welcome, in any genre, as long as they focus on one of the themes listed above and adhere to the rules listed below.
- All contest rules must be observed and all eligibility requirements met or the entry will be dismissed.
- All entries must be original works, in English. Plagiarized work will not be tolerated in any form, and entries cannot have been previously published or purchased by professional media, either electronic or print. (If you previously published this piece on your website for your friends to read, that will not disqualify you unless your post has received more than 5,000 views.)
- Entries are limited in length to 2,000 words, but excerpts from longer works are allowable. No cover letter is necessary.
- Entries must be submitted electronically and include the subject header: CONTEST ENTRY
- Entries must include the author’s legal name, a pen name (if any), valid mailing address, telephone number, email address, a word count, and the age of the author. Failure to include any of this information will result in disqualification.
- Entries should be included in the body of the email; please don’t include any attachments as they can often trigger junk mail filters.
- All announcements regarding this contest will be made via Ms. Dray’s newsletter, so entrants must join.
- Entries must be received no later than 11pm EST March 1, 2011.
- Semi-Finalists are tentatively scheduled to be announced on May 1, 2011 and Finalists are tentatively scheduled to be announced on August 1, 2011.
- Only one entry per author and all entries must be the final version. No revisions will be accepted once the entry has been submitted.
- Entries will NOT be judged by Ms. Dray, but by industry professionals. The decisions of the judges are entirely their own, and are final.
- Contest judges reserve right to close contest before the deadline if overwhelmed by too many entries, so get yours in early!
- This contest is void where prohibited by law.
Additional Contest Sponsors include:
- Sarah MacLean, New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of THE SEASON
- Gwen Hayes, author of the much anticipated FALLING UNDER
- Rosemary Clement-Moore, RITA award winning author of THE SPLENDOR FALLS