Literary Competition Rules – Graduate

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

If you’re looking for information about the undergraduate competition, please click here for the Undergraduate Literary Competition rules and application information.

The Samuel Eells Literary & Educational Foundation Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. There are four distinct categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography. The application processes for some categories are identical and may be combined into a single submission area.

Click on a category to submit your entries to the competition!

2017 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 four distinct categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography.  This is the form for Fiction, Non-Fiction and Poetry.

  1. The 2017 SELEF Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. All entries must be received by January 23, 2018.
  2. There are four categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography.
  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. Entries should not be signed and should not bear information that could disclose the identity of the entrant. Though the Submittable web entry form, the entrant must provide the following information: 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 undergraduate or graduate course work is acceptable. Submit recent works to the competition, rather than works submitted in previous years. SELEF expects that all entries have been proofread. No entrant may submit more than five entries in any single category. Manuscripts must be submitted electronically through Submittable.
  6. For the categories involving written entries, 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, nonexclusive, noncommercial license to use, reproduce, publish, and distribute selected entries in SELEF promotional material, digital media, and/or a SELEF literary journal. Authors of selected entries will have the opportunity to make non-substantive revisions before publication. 
  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.


If you have any questions, please contact gradlit@samueleells.org.


2017 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 four distinct categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography.  This is the application form for Photography.

  1. The 2017 SELEF Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. All entries must be received by January 23, 2018.
  2. There are four categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography.
  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. Entries should not be signed and should not bear information that could disclose the identity of the entrant. Though the Submittable web entry form, the entrant must provide the following information: title of entry; entrant’s name, address and telephone number; and entrant’s college associated with SELEF and graduation year.
  5. Previously published photographs are not eligible for entry, except works published in college or university publications. Original material submitted for undergraduate or graduate course work is acceptable. Submit recent works to the competition, rather than works submitted in previous years. No entrant may submit more than five entries in any single category. Photographs must be submitted electronically through Submittable.
  6.  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, nonexclusive, noncommercial license to use, reproduce, publish, and distribute selected entries in SELEF promotional material, digital media, and/or a SELEF literary journal. Authors of selected entries will have the opportunity to make non-substantive revisions before publication. 
  7. 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.


If you have any questions, please contact gradlit@samueleells.org.

Graduate Literary Competition Rules

  1. The 2017 SELEF Graduate Literary Competition is open to all college graduates associated with SELEF at select schools. All entries must be received by January 23, 2018.
  2. There are four categories: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Photography.
  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. Entries should not be signed and should not bear information that could disclose the identity of the entrant. Through the Submittable web entry form, the entrant must provide the following information: 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 undergraduate or graduate course work is acceptable. Submit recent works to the competition, rather than works submitted in previous years. SELEF expects that all entries have been proofread. No entrant may submit more than five entries in any single category. Manuscripts must be submitted electronically through Submittable.
  6. For the categories involving written entries, 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, non-commercial license to use, reproduce, publish, and distribute selected entries in SELEF promotional material, digital media, and/or a SELEF literary journal. Authors of selected entries will have the opportunity to make non-substantive revisions before publication.
  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.
  9. Additional rules may apply to specific categories. Please review the rules for each category on the application web site.

If you didn’t see your category at the top of the page, submit your entries using one of these links: