Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry´╗┐

The Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry is an annual regional prize, presented in partnership by Milkweed Editions and the Lindquist & Vennum Foundation.  Established in 2011 with the aim of supporting outstanding Midwestern poets and bringing their work to a national stage, the prize will award $10,000 as well as a contract for publication to the author of the winning manuscript. The winner will be selected from among five finalists by an independent judge. The 2014 prize will be judged by Kevin Prufer.

Kevin Prufer is the author of five collections of poems, most recently National Anthem (one of Publishers Weekly's five best poetry books of the year) and In a Beautiful Country, an Academy of American Poets Notable Book of 2011 and a finalist for both the Rilke Prize and the Poets’ Prize. He is the editor of several books, including Until Everything Is Continuous Again: American Poets on the Recent Work of W.S. Merwin (with Jonathan Weinert), Dunstan Thompson: On the Life & Work of a Lost American Master (with D. A. Powell), and New European Poets (with Wayne Miller). His sixth poetry collection, Churches, will be published in 2014.  He has been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lannan Foundation, and three Pushcart prizes. Prufer teaches at the University of Houston and serves as Editor-at-Large for Pleiades: A Journal of New Writing.


  • Submissions for this regional prize will be accepted only from poets currently residing in the Upper Midwestern United States, defined as: North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

  • Submitted collections must not be under consideration by any other prize committee or publisher from the date of submission until the announcement of the winning collection. If the work has been submitted elsewhere, it must be withdrawn from consideration in order to enter the contest. The work must not be currently under consideration for publication by Milkweed Editions. Individual poems may be under consideration for publication elsewhere.

  • The submitted manuscript must be unpublished, though individual poems may have been previously published.

  • Submissions for the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry will be accepted annually during a specified submission period. There is no entry fee.

  • Five finalists will be selected by the editors at Milkweed Editions. The prizewinning collection will be selected from among the finalists by a critically acclaimed poet who is to be named at the beginning of each prize submission period. All finalists will be notified.

  • The winning collection will be announced annually in April. The prizewinner will receive $10,000 and publication by Milkweed Editions. Prizewinning collections will be published annually the winter following announcement of the winner.

  • Poets should refrain from entering the contest if their relationship to the judge in a given year constitutes a conflict of interest, and Milkweed Editions reserves the right to disqualify any entries deemed to jeopardize the integrity of the contest. Poets published by Milkweed Editions within the preceding two years are not eligible to enter the contest. Submissions will not be accepted from employees of Lindquist & Vennum, PLLP, The Minneapolis Foundation, or Milkweed Editions, their families, or relations.


  • Submissions for the 2014 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry will be accepted between December 6, 2013 and January 31, 2014. Submissions must be received by January 31, 2014.

  • Poets may submit one complete, book-length collection of poetry.

  • Submissions will be accepted in hard copy only. Emailed submissions or those submitted via our online Submission Manager will not be considered.

  • Please include a single loose cover sheet providing the following information.

Poet’s name:

About your submission
Title of manuscript:
Total page count:
Titles of individual poems that have been previously published:

About you
Please include a brief biographical paragraph.

  • The cover sheet will not be made available to the judge, nor should any identifying information appear on the manuscript itself. (Do not include the author’s name as a header or footer, or on title pages. If the poet’s name appears within the text, please omit it, line it out with permanent marker, or use a pseudonym.)

  • Manuscripts should be stapled or secured with a paperclip. Please include a title page (with author’s name omitted) and table of contents. Pages must be numbered.

  • Address all submissions for the Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry to:

Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry
Milkweed Editions
1011 Washington Avenue South
Open Book, Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55415

  • Improperly addressed or incomplete submissions cannot be guaranteed consideration for the prize. Manuscripts will not be returned.

Milkweed Editions is one of the nation’s leading independent publishers, with a mission to identify, nurture and publish transformative literature, and build an engaged community around it. The Lindquist & Vennum Foundation was established by the Minneapolis-headquartered law firm of Lindquist & Vennum, PLLP, and is a donor-advised fund of The Minneapolis Foundation.


A conversation between the two previous winners of the prize can be found here.


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