In cooperation with the Kent State University Press, the Wick Poetry Center sponsors an annual poetry chapbook competition for Ohio writers, a National Teen Writing contest, as well as the Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize. The winning manuscripts are published by the Kent State University Press, and the winners give a public reading of their work on campus.

Ends on May 1, 2018$25.00

This prize is offered annually to a poet who has not previously published a full-length collection of poems. The prize awards the winner with $2,500 and publication of his or her first full-length book of poetry by the Kent State University Press. The winner and the competition's judge will give a reading together on the Kent State campus. The 2017 winner was Fugue Figure by Michael Green, selected by Khaled Mattawa; the 2018 winner will be selected by Ellen Bass.


  • The competition is open to poets writing in English who have not yet published a full-length collection of poems (a volume of 50 or more pages published in an edition of 500 or more copies).
  • There is a $25 reading fee. 
  • Submissions must consist of 50 to 70 pages of poetry, with no more than one poem included on a page. 
  • The poet's name or identifying information is not to appear on the manuscript. Include just one title page with the title only. List all other contact information in the "cover letter" box of the submissions manager. Entries are judged anonymously. If any identifying information is found in the manuscript, including journal publication information or identifying dedications or notes, the manuscript will be disqualified.
  • Do not include an acknowledgements page. If an acknowledgements page is included in the manuscript, the manuscript will be disqualified. 
  • The manuscript may be submitted simultaneously to other publishers, but the poet must notify the Wick Poetry Center immediately if the manuscript is accepted for publication elsewhere.
  • Manuscripts must be postmarked between February 1, 2018, and May 1, 2018.
  • A winner will be announced in late summer, 2018.
Ends on September 1, 2018$120.00 - 380.00
$120.00 - 380.00

Wick Juniors Summer Camp:
August 1 – August 5, 2018

For writers entering grades 3 through 12.
Registration fee: 
       $190 (dorm option)
       $120 (tent option - only for middle and high school students
Scholarship available to those in need--please click here.

The Wick Juniors Summer Camp is offered in partnership with the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Students entering grades 3 through 12 will experience one day with the Wick Poetry Center teachers at Kent State University followed by a three-night, four-day stay at the Environmental Education Center (EEC) in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. 

Through guided hikes, pond dips, and more, the young writers will explore how the natural world influences our writing. A culminating reading will follow at the Wick Poetry Center’s Poetry Park. The registration fee covers all expenses, including meals and lodging at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Additionally, the young writers will receive a bag, notebook, and pencils.

This year, we are also offering a tenting option. Middle and high school campers will be able to bring their own tent (on ground) equipment and camp on-site. These campers will still be able to use all of the dormitory facilities, as well as receive meals and snacks. There is a discounted tenting rate for this option, though spots are very limited. In the comments section, please indicate if the camper will share a tent with other campers (and list their names). For example, "Jane Smith will tent with Sally Smith and Rebecca Jones). 

Spaces are limited. 

A full camp itinerary is forthcoming this Spring. If you have any questions or concerns please email:

Ends on June 15, 2018$150.00

A Spiritual Writing Workshop with Katherine Willis Pershey

August 6, 7-9pm at the Wick Poetry Center

"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience." --Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

In Narrate the Soul, participants will engage in the tradition of using words to explore, celebrate, and bear witness to things seen and unseen. This workshop is nonsectarian, open to writers of any spiritual persuasion and any level of writing experience. (We are all beginners.) Participants will be encouraged to read My Bright Abyss by Christian Wiman.

Registration is on a first come basis.

Katherine Willis Pershey is an Associate Minister of the First Congregational Church in Western Springs, Illinois. A graduate of Kent State University (2002) and Claremont School of Theology, Katherine has contributed to the Christian Century, the Chicago Tribune, and the Art of Simple. She is the author of Any Day a Beautiful Change: A Story of Faith and Family (Chalice Press; 2012) and Very Married: Field Notes on Love and Fidelity (Herald Press; 2016). She and her husband, Benjamin, met in a poetry class in Satterfield Hall. They have two daughters.

Registration deadline: June 1st, 2018