Room's Annual CNF, Poetry & Fiction, and Cover Art Contests

Room now has three annual contests. Our Creative Non-Fiction Contest was open from October 15, 2014 to March 8, 2015. Our Poetry and Fiction Contest is open from April 15, 2015 to July 15, 2015, and our first annual Cover Art Contest will be open from September to November 30, 2015.


Fiction & Poetry Contests

Our Fiction and Poetry Contests will open on April 15, 2015. The deadline is July 15, 2015.

Fiction Contest

Judge: Shani Mootoo

FIRST PRIZE: $1,000 + publication in Room
SECOND PRIZE: $250 + publication in Room
HONOURABLE MENTION: publication on Room's website

Poetry Contest

Judge: Jen Currin

FIRST PRIZE: $1,000 + publication in Room
SECOND PRIZE: $250 + publication in Room
HONOURABLE MENTION: publication on Room's website


Cover Art Contest

In 2015, we're thrilled to introduce our first annual Cover Art Contest. Submissions will open in September 2015. The deadline is November 30, 2015.

Judges: Amy Friend (cover artist, Room issue 36.1 Mythologies of Loss) & Ilene Sova (artist & founder of Toronto's Feminist Art Conference)

FIRST PRIZE: $500 + publication on the cover of issue 39.2 of Room
SECOND PRIZE: $50 + publication in issue 39.2 of Room
HONOURABLE MENTION: publication on Room's website


Creative Non-Fiction Contest

Our 2015 CNF contest is now closed. The shortlist and winners will be announced at the end of May.

FIRST PRIZE: $500 + publication in Room
SECOND PRIZE: $250 + publication in Room
HONOURABLE MENTION: publication on Room's website 
(read last year's honourable mention for creative non-fiction on our blog)

Creative Non-Fiction Judge

Ayelet Tsabari is the author of the short story collection The Best Place on Earth (HarperCollins), which was nominated for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. Her nonfiction has won a National Magazine Award and a Western Magazine Award and she is a two‐time winner of Event’s Creative Non‐Fiction Contest. In 2011, she was nominated for a Creative Non‐Fiction Collective Readers' Choice Award. A graduate of the MFA program at Guelph University, Ayelet has taught creative writing through the University of Toronto and the University of Guelph. She was named as one of ten Canadian writers to watch by CBC.

Read Room's interview with Tsabari here.

Photo Credit: Elsin Davidi


General Guidelines

  • Each entry must be original, unpublished, not submitted or accepted elsewhere for publication or previously to Room, and not entered simultaneously in any other contest.
  • Each entry cost $35 CAD to enter, and $7 CAD for each additional entry. For international entrants: $49 USD, and $7 USD. All submissions include a one-year subscription to Room. Additional entries do not include an additional free subscription. (Current subscribers will be given an extension on their subscription.)
  • We only use Submittable, a secure online submissions management tool, to manage our submissions. For more information about using Submittable, please check our Submissions page.
  • Judging will be blind. Please ensure that your name or any personal details are not included in your submission document; this includes the file name. (You will have a chance to include your contact information on the Submittable form).
  • You can only upload one document on Submittable. Cover letters are not necessary, but if you want to send us one, include your cover letter on the Submittable form.
  • Room publishes original work by women, which includes trans*persons, gender-variant and two-spirited women, and women of non-binary sexual orientation.
  • Previously commissioned Room writers and contest judges are barred from participating in subsequent contests at Room.

Genre-Specific Rules

  • For fiction and creative non-fiction, one submission includes one short story or essay of up to 3,500 words.
  • We would prefer if you double spaced your prose.
  • One poetry submission includes up to three poems or 150 lines of poetry.
  • One cover art submission includes one artwork and an accompanying 100-word artist statement (please note that judging is blind and your name should not appear on your statement).
  • When submitting multiple poems, please begin your second and third poems on a new page, in the same document.

Past Winners