Fence will accept submissions from February 1, 2018 – March 31, 2018. All work must be submitted at Full guidelines for each genre follow. 

Poetry: Please submit up to three poems and no more than ten pages of poetry per submission. One submission per person is desirable.Each submission is $3. 

Fiction: Please limit your submission to one story of no more than 8000 words or three flash fictions of up to 1000 words each. Submissions containing more than one story or three flash fictions will not be read. Individuals are limited to one submission per submission period.Each submission is $3. 

Other: This category allows submitters to self-define by choosing not to define their genre. Is appropriate for work that is hybrid or otherwise not interested in saying what it is. Submit up to twenty pages of Other; submissions containing more than one document will not be read. One submission per person. Each submission is $3. 


The 2019 Fence Modern Prize in Prose, Ottoline Prize, and Modern Poets Series will accept submissions April 1st – 30th 2018. The winning manuscripts will be published in Fall 2019 and Spring 2020. 

The Fence Modern Prize in Prose is a contest for open-form prose projects of any length written in English. Genres rotate between criticism, hybrid nonfiction, poetics, biography, autobiography, speculation, and anything Other. The 2019 FMPP will be awarded to a prose memoir. The prize is open for submissions April 1 -30, 2018

The Ottoline Prize awards publication and $5,000 to a book-length work of poetry by a woman writing in English who has previously published one or more full-length books of poetry. The author will receive a $5000 cash prize. Past winners include Chelsey Minnis, Harmony Holiday, Lauren Shufran, Stacy Szymaszek, Wendy Xu, and Ariana Reines.

The Fence Modern Poets Series is open to poets of any gender and at any stage of career, and offers a one thousand dollar cash prize in addition to book publication. Past winners include Joyelle McSweeney, Prageeta Sharma, Kevin Holden, and Steven Alvarez.


The winner of the 2018 Fence Modern Poets Series. Edgar Garcia’s Columbus Journal will be published in 2019.

Edgar Garcia is a poet and scholar of the hemispheric cultures of the Americas. Born in California to families from Central America, he earned degrees at Chaffey Community College and UC Berkeley, before earning his PhD at Yale. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Antioch Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, Big Bridge, Chicago Review, Damn the Caesars, Jacket2, LARB, Mandorla, Make, PMLA, Sous les Pavés, Those That This, and Tzak. He co-edited an anthology of American literature, American Literature in the World (Columbia UP); co-edited a blog on the native and anthropological poetics of the Americas, (with Jose-Luis Moctezuma); and is co-editing a special issue of denkbilder on the philosopher Walter Benjamin for the UK-based New Writing(Taylor & Francis/Routledge). A chapbook of his poetry, Boundary Loot, was published by Punch Press in 2012. And Signs of the Americas, a forthcoming monograph, studies the contemporary aesthetic, philosophical, legal, and psychological innervations of such seemingly antiquated sign-systems as pictographs, hieroglyphs, and khipu. He teaches in the departments of English and Creative Writing at the University of Chicago. 

The Winner of the 2017 Modern Poets Series is Lite Year, by Tess Brown-Lavoie, and will be published in the fall of 2018 by Fence Books.

Tess Brown-Lavoie is a writer and farmer in Providence, Rhode Island. She runs Sidewalk Ends Farm with her sisters, and plays drums in the band Mother Tongue. Tess works on land access as the RI Field Agent at Land For Good, coordinates the Justice and Agriculture Working Group in Rhode Island, and serves as the Vice President of the National Young Farmers Coalition Board.