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Creative Nonfiction is seeking new work for an upcoming issue dedicated to memoir.

We’re looking stories that are honest, accurate, informative, intimate, and—most importantly—true. Whether your story is revelatory or painful, hilarious or tragic, if it’s about you and your life, we want to read it.

Submissions must be vivid and dramatic; they should combine a strong and compelling narrative with an informative or reflective element, and reach beyond a strictly personal experience for some universal or deeper meaning. We’re looking for well-written prose, rich with detail and a distinctive voice; all essays must tell true stories and be factually accurate.

Creative Nonfiction editors will award $2,500 for Best Essay and two $500 prizes for runner-up. All essays will be considered for publication in a special "Memoir" issue of the magazine to be published in 2020.  

Guidelines: Essays must be previously unpublished and no longer than 4,000 words. All essays must tell true stories and be factually accurate. Everything we publish goes through a rigorous fact-checking process, and editors may ask for sources and citations. 

To submit by regular mail:  

Postmark deadline: Monday, February 25, 2019. Mail the essay and cover letter to:


c/o Creative Nonfiction 

5119 Coral Street 

Pittsburgh, PA 15224

To submit online:
 Deadline to upload files: 11:59 pm Eastern Time, Monday, February 25, 2019.