Literary Contest Rules

 The Samuel Eells Literary & Educational Foundation runs two literary competitions, one for undergraduate students and one for college graduates.

Please click here for the Undergraduate Literary Competition rules and application information.

Graduate Literary Competition Rules

The Samuel Eells Literary & Educational Foundation Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. There are three distinct categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Poetry.

  1. The 2016 SELEF Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. All entries must be received by January 16, 2017.
  2. There are three categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Poetry.
  3. First prize of $250 in each category is offered in the form of a charitable donation on the award recipient’s behalf. Based on funds available and the number of second and third prizes awarded, amounts up to $100 may be offered for charitable donation on each award recipient's behalf. Donations must go to a charitable 501(c)(3) organization with a literary or educational mission of the award recipient’s choice. The SELEF Board reserves the right to review the designated charities.
  4. Entries must be originals, submitted via e-mail as a Word document. Entries should not be signed and should not bear information that could disclose the identity of the entrant. The entrant must attach a separate document, as a cover sheet to the original manuscript that gives the following information: category in which entered; title of entry; entrant's name, address and telephone number; and entrant's college associated with SELEF and graduation year.
  5. Previously published manuscripts are not eligible for entry, except works published in college or university publications. Original written material submitted for course work is acceptable. No entrant may submit more than five entries in any single category. All manuscripts must be typed. Handwritten materials will be rejected. Manuscripts must be sent electronically as an e-mail attachment.
  6. Manuscripts of less than 1,500 words are strongly recommended; however, manuscripts of up to 5,000 words will receive consideration. All manuscripts should be intended for the general well-educated reader; none should require highly specialized or technical knowledge.
  7. By entering the Literary Competition, all participants assure SELEF that the submitted work is his or her own, and that all sources are correctly referenced. In addition to this, all participants grant the Samuel Eells Literary and Educational Foundation an irrevocable, non-exclusive license to use, reproduce, publish, and distribute selected entries in SELEF promotional material, digital media, and/or a SELEF literary journal.
  8. There is no minimum number of submissions required for an award to be made in each category. However, regardless of the number of submissions made, the judges reserve the right not to make an award in any category if they deem that no submissions meet the standards to earn an award. All decisions made by the judges are final and are kept confidential.

Send your entries to: