The 2022 Button Poetry Short Form Contest (Q4) is open December 7 - 9, 2022

The 2022 Button Poetry Chapbook Contest is open NOW - January 9, 2023

For all Button Poetry Contests and Submission opportunities and questions, please visit:

The 2022 Button Poetry Chapbook Contest is now open!
Please review these guidelines carefully before submitting.

Prize: The winner will receive publication, 50 free author copies, and a $500 honorarium.

Entry Fee: $15; all entrants will receive a 20% discount off any purchase at the Button Shop.

Timeline: The contest will open on November 14, 2022 and close at 11:59 PM PT on January 9th, 2023 

Eligibility: This competition is open to writers of ALL AGES from anywhere in the world. If chosen for publication and under the age of majority, you will need a signature from a legal guardian.

Manuscript Eligibility: Open to all previously unpublished, chapbook-length manuscripts of poetry (loosely defined) written in English. Manuscripts that contain previously published poems are eligible, so long as the manuscript is unpublished as a collection.

What We Like: We value energy and voice and force, work that crosses borders or effaces them completely, work that enters into larger social conversations, work that lives in the world, work with calloused hands and a half-empty stomach. We think poetry is and ought to be part of our everyday lives and culture.

Past Winners: 2012 Winner me Aunt Jemima and the nailgun. (Aziza Barnes), 2013 Winner Highway or Belief (J. Scott Brownlee), 2014 Winner black movie (Danez Smith), 2015 Winner St. Trigger (Aaron Coleman), 2016 Winners Sadness Workshop (Stevie Edwards) and Bound (Claire Schwartz), 2017 Winner Fortunately (Nava Etshalom), 2018 Winner Keep This To Yourself (Kerrin McCadden), 2019 Winner Born in a Second Language (Akosua Zimba Afiriyie-Hwedie), 2020 Winner Lupercalia (SP Mulroy), 2021 winner wine / water / blood (Zach Goldberg), and the rest of our books, are available here.


  • Submit a previously unpublished, chapbook-length (20-30 pages, 8.5x11 page-size) manuscript of poetry using our online submission manager. The manuscript, in one PDF file, should include: a title page with the title of the book only (no contact or identifying information about the author), a table of contents page, and the text itself. Please make sure that the name of your PDF file and the title of your manuscript entered here in Submittable match.

    The full PDF, all-inclusive, MUST be 35 pages or less. Files longer than 35 pages or shorter than 20 pages will be disqualified.

  • Include, in the Cover Letter section of our submission manager ONLY, a brief letter with the title of your work and your contact info, as well as a brief bio. If you wish, you may also include info about your web and social media presence, but this is not required. Your name and contact information SHOULD NOT appear anywhere in the manuscript–we only want your name in the Cover Letter section itself. (Note: If your name appears in a poem, change it / falsify it / cut the poem—if your name appears ANYWHERE in the manuscript, your entry may be disqualified.)

  • Start each new poem on a new page (poems longer than one page are fine, just don't put multiple short poems on the same page); use a legible, 10- to 12-point font like Times New Roman or Garamond.

  • We are unable to consider revised versions of manuscripts during the contest, though the winner will have the opportunity to revise before publication.

  • Multiple submissions by the same poet are fine, but you must pay a $15 entry fee for each submission.

  • Simultaneous submissions are also fine, but please let us know immediately if your manuscript is accepted elsewhere.

  • Collaborative manuscripts written by more than one author are fine, too. Fine, fine, fine.

Process: The judges will read all submissions blindly to ensure the maximum level of fairness and select 8-12 finalists. The finalists will then be forwarded along to the final judge (TBD), who will select a winner. All finalists will be considered by the Editors for publication.

For additional questions, please email
Button Poetry