Every year, the English Department offers prizes for distinguished writing by Wellesley College students.

Reading WomanThe competition is open to all Wellesley College undergraduates.

Students may submit ONE ENTRY in EACH of the following categories:

  • Lyric poem (not to exceed 32 lines)
  • Academy of American Poets Prize
  • Sonnet
  • Literary critical essay (an essay that demonstrates a detailed responsiveness to the shape and substance of a work [or works] of literature in English)
  • Translation of an essay, short story, or poem (the original must accompany the translation)
  • Short story
  • Creative non-fiction essay (personal essay, travel essay, memoir essay, etc.)
  • Feature journalistic essay (personal reportage, literary or cultural reviews for a non-specialist audience)
  • Longer work (novel, novella, play, or screenplay) or a collection (collection of short stories, collection of creative non-fiction essays, or collection of poems)

2015 Submission Guidelines

  • Entries must be submitted on or before Friday, April 17, 2015, at noon.
  • Each entry should be labeled with its appropriate category: “literary critical essay," "creative non-fiction essay”, “short story,” "lyric poem," "sonnet,” etc.
  • Entries must be typewritten, double-spaced (poems may be single-spaced), pages numbered
  • Student's name, Class, Banner ID#, and college and summer address must be on each entry.
  • For each entry, please submit TWO COPIES of your manuscript and the COVER SHEET; a HARD copy to the English Dept. Prizes Box in the English Dept. office (FND 103); and an ELECTRONIC copy sent as e-mail attachments to English-Prizes@wellesley.edu. Specify the appropriate submission category in the subject line, as outlined above.

Awarding of Prizes

The members of the Prize committee will choose from these prize entries the best submissions meeting the criteria for each of the following prizes as established by Wellesley College alumnae, their families, or the Department. The amount of an award varies year to year:

  • The FLORENCE ANNETTE WING MEMORIAL PRIZE FOR LYRIC POETRY, established by Mabel Wing Castle, Class of 1887, in memory of her sister.
  • The VIRGINIA WAINWRIGHT SONNET PRIZE, by Virginia Wainwright.
  • The JAQUELINE AWARD FOR PROSE, established by Eleanor and Rosamond Peck in memory of their sister. This award is given to a senior.
  • The JOHANNA MANKIEWICZ DAVIS PRIZE FOR PROSE FICTION, established by Peter Davis in memory of Johanna Mankiewicz Davis, Class of 1958.
  • The AGNES F. PERKINS PRIZE FOR PROSE, established by the English Department. This award is given to a first year, sophomore, or junior.
  • The MARY LYONS PRIZE FOR WRITING, established by the friends of Mary Lyons, former editor of The Wellesley Alumnae Magazine. This award is given to a junior or senior.
  • The CHARLOTTE PAUL REESE ‘38 MEMORIAL PRIZE FOR CREATIVITY IN WRITING, established by Robert Reese and Harriet Chamberlain Wilson Class of 1938.

2015 Prize Committee:

Ms. Sides, Chair; Mr. Bidart, Mr. Cain, Mr. Chiasson, Mr. Rosenwald, Mr. Wallenstein