South Carolina First Novel Prize
We are excited to announce the biennial South Carolina First Novel Prize book contest is now open for submissions. Six to eight novels will be judged by nationally recognized novelist Ben Fountain.
The South Carolina First Novel Prize recognizes one of South Carolina's exceptional writers by providing a book contract with Hub City Press. The competition is a highly competitive, anonymous process. Publication by Hub City of at least 1,500 copies of the book will bring recognition that may open doors to other resources and opportunities. The book will be nationally distributed. A group of finalists will be announced ahead of naming the winner. The winner will receive a $1,000 book advance on royalties.
Susan Tekulve of Spartanburg was winner of the 2012 competition. Her book, In the Garden of Stone, was published in May 2013 and was nationally reviewed by such publications as Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, and Library Journal. Additionally, Tekulve has toured bookstores throughout the Southeast and participated, or will participate, on panels at the Southern Book Festival, the South Carolina Book Festival, and the High Country Festival of the Book. Matt Matthews of Greenville won for his coming-of-age novel Mercy Creek in 2010, and Brian Ray, a graduate of the University of South Carolina MFA program, won in 2008 for Through the Pale Door.
The applicant must: Be a legal resident of the U.S. and S.C. with a permanent residence in the state for one (1) year prior to the application deadline (twelve consecutive months); Be 18 years of age or older at the time of application; Not have published a novel before, but may have published a book of nonfiction, short stories, poetry or children's literature. Simultaneous submissions are accepted, as long as winning author is willing to withdraw it from consideration elsewhere upon accepting S.C. First Novel Prize.
Deadline March 3, 2014. Applications must be postmarked (or hand-delivered to the S.C. Arts Commission offices before 5:00 PM) no later than the stated date.
Notification Summer 2014
Filing Fee $35.00
Award The winning author will receive a book contract with Hub City Press, an award-winning independent press in Spartanburg, S.C. Upon successful execution of the contract with Hub City, the winner will receive a $1,000 advance against royalties. Hub City will publish at least 1,500 copies of the book.
The winning author will also receive an invitation from The Humanities CouncilSC to appear and sign books at the 2015 South Carolina Book Festival. The winner will receive significant promotion by the sponsors of South Carolina First Novel Prize: Hub City Press, The South Carolina Arts Commission and The Humanities CouncilSC. Hub City Press will promote the book through social media and by mailing galleys and news releases to national and regional reviewers and to key booksellers. Additionally Hub City will set up author appearances at book festivals, bookstores, colleges and libraries. The S.C. Arts Commission will promote the winner and the book on the agency's websites, in the e-newsletter, through social media and by distributing news releases to media outlets around the state, and to key regional and national arts organizations.
The South Carolina First Novel Prize is funded by the South Carolina Arts Commission, Hub City Press and the Phifer/Johnson Foundation of Spartanburg, SC. The Humanities CouncilSC is a founding partner.
For information about First Novel Competition eligibility requirements and application guidelines, visit http://www.SouthCarolinaArts.com/firstnovel or call (803) 734-8696.
Fountain won the National Book Critics Circle book prize in 2012 for Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. The New York Times praised Fountain’s novel as “grand, intimate and joyous.” The Washington Post called it “a masterful gut-punch of a debut.” His short story collection Brief Encounters with Che Guevara, won the PEN/Hemmingway Award for first fiction in 2006. He has won a Pushcart Prize, two O. Henry Awards, two Texas Institute of Letters Short Story Awards, and a Whiting Writers Award, among other honors and awards. Fountain’s fiction has been published in Harper's, The Paris Review, Zoetrope: All-Story, and Stories from the South: The Year's Best, and his nonfiction has appeared in The New York Times and The New York Times Sunday Magazine, among other publications. His reportage on post-earthquake Haiti was nationally broadcast on the radio show This American Life. He and his family live in Dallas, Texas.