Julia Peterkin Literary Awards

Established in 1998 by the Creative Writing program at Converse College, the Julia Peterkin Award is a national contest honoring both emerging and established  writers. The award is named for Converse graduate Julia Mood Peterkin, whose 1929 novel,  Scarlet Sister Mary, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in literature.

Submit Here
The Julia Peterkin Poetry Contest:

South 85 Journal seeks submissions of previously unpublished poems of 50 lines or fewer for for the annual Julia Peterkin Poetry Contest from June 1 to August 1 each year. The winning selection will receive $500 and publication in the December issue of South 85 Journal. Contest finalists will also be named and their work published alongside the winning selection.  Submissions are read blind by an outside judge.

  • Submissions are open June 1 – August 1.
  • Submit up to three unpublished poems of 50 lines or fewer. 
  • All submissions will be read blind. Please do not include personal information on your manuscript or file. Submissions that include identifying information will not be considered.
  • The winning poem will be awarded a cash prize of $500.
  • Four semi-finalists will be chosen for publication in South 85 Journal.
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please withdraw your entry if your poem is accepted elsewhere. Partial withdrawals are allowed.
  • Multiple contest submissions will be considered as long as a separate submission fee is paid for each contest entry.
  • Work may be submitted in both categories as long as the submission fee is paid for each contest entry.
  • All winners must be over 18 years old and reside in the U.S. in order to claim cash prize.
  • Please use 12 point, standard font. We suggest Times New Roman.
  • We consider only previously unpublished work.
  • Current and former staff members are not eligible for participation.
  • Current Converse College students and Converse MFA alum are not eligible for participation.
  • Results will be announced in October.
South 85 Journal does not publish work which has been previously published either in print or online. We acquire exclusive first-time Internet rights only. All other rights revert to the author at publication. Works are also archived online. We ask that whenever an author reprints the work that first appeared in our pages, South 85 Journal be given acknowledgment for the specific work(s) involved. Only the main contest winner will receive a prize.
Submit Here
The Julia Peterkin Flash Fiction Contest:
South 85 Journal accepts submissions of previously unpublished flash fiction pieces of 850 words or fewer for the Julia Peterkin Flash Fiction Contest between June 1 and August 1. The winning selection will be awarded $500 and publication in the December issue of South 85 Journal. Contest finalists will also be selected and published alongside the winning selection.  Submissions are read blind by an outside judge.
  • Submissions are accepted from June 1 – August 1.
  • Previously unpublished fiction of 850 words or fewer are eligible for this contest. We are especially interested in stories that demonstrate a strong voice and/or a sense of place, but we consider all quality writing.
  • All submissions will be read blind. Please do not include personal information on your manuscript or file. Submissions that include identifying information will not be considered.
  • We will select one winner to receive a cash prize of $500.
  • Four semi-finalists will be chosen for publication in South 85 Journal
  • All winning entries will be published in the Fall / Winter issue of South 85 Journal.
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please withdraw your entry if your piece is accepted elsewhere.
  • Multiple contest submissions will be considered as long as a separate submission fee is paid for each contest entry.
  • Work may be submitted in both categories as long as the submission fee is paid for each contest entry.
  • All winners must be over 18 years old and reside in the U.S. in order to claim their cash prize.
  • Please use double-spacing and a 12 point, standard font. We suggest Times New Roman. We consider only previously unpublished work.
  • Current and former staff members are not eligible for participation.
  • Current Converse College students and Converse College MFA alum are not eligible for participation.
  • Results will be announced in October.
South 85 Journal does not publish work which has been previously published either in print or online. We acquire exclusive first-time Internet rights only. All other rights revert to the author at publication. Works are also archived online. We ask that whenever an author reprints the work that first appeared in our pages, South 85 Journal be given acknowledgment for the specific work(s) involved. Only the main contest winner will receive a prize.
Previous Winners