Chapbook Contest | ECTC

Chapbook Contest

2023 The Heartland Review Chapbook Contest


This contest closed on May 1, 2023, and the winner is Vanishing Below the Waist by Ellie White!

THRP is excited to announce that Vanishing Below the Waist by Ellie White has been selected as the winner of THRP’s 2023 Chapbook Prize. 

Finalists include:

Everything Must Go by Michael Hill, Fort Collins, CO

Surviving the Eremocene Chuck Salmons, Pickerington, OH

West of Wichita by Michael Lasater, South Bend, IN

Spooky Pentameters by George Drew, Poestenkill, NY

Book of St. Niko by Matt Schroeder based in southern China

Naming the End by Ronald J. Pelias, Lafayette, LA

The 2023 judge was Dave Malone, a poet and writer from West Plains, Missouri. Malone has over seven published books. His newest book is titled Tornado Drill, from Aldrich Press in April 2022. 

Click here to Submit -  Powered by Submittable

2023 Chapbook Winner: ELLIE WHITE 

Ellie White is THRP's 2023 chapbook winner with her work titled Vanishing Below the Waist.

Judge Dave Malone writes:

Dave Malone, poet and writer

Vanishing Below the Waist is an accomplished body of work that explores the body—distinctly the female one, with poems on dyspareunia, vulvodynia, and endometrioma. The collection opens with a poem where the speaker asks, “Who is she trying to save?” By the end of the volume, she provides the answer. In the second poem, the poet provides an Eden, “where even heaven gets wrecked,” and then takes the reader on a journey through sweet yet shocked lovers, galaxy children and moon lovers, woman as mermaid and broken statue, church services, death, mud daubers, and orgasm. The journey ends with Judeo-Christian-like prophecy where an archetypal imaginary flood may or may not come, but the poet suggests you “eat the fish” in a world where “Sequins make everything shine.” And shine this collection does in purposeful, imagistic language by a poet with a deft hand.

Contest Rules and Prize Information

Announcement: Closed. This will reopen again is the winter of '23/'23.  The regular scheduling of the competition is winter to May 1 with notification by Labor Day.

Prize: $500 Grand Prize (as a gift card) + 10 free copies + discounted copies.

Open to: Anyone. THRP is not concerned with the poet who has the most publications; rather, we wish to award the best writing that contributes the most to the craft of poetry. Anyone can enter.

Submission Rules:

THRP asks for a $20 donation to support the contest.

Submit no more than 30 pages of your best poetry. We do not accept photopoetry or picture poetry.

All submissions must be electronic through Submittable.  Email submissions are not accepted. Use the link below which says "Click here to Submit". This prompts you to create an account with Submittable, a database where you can find more contests, not just ours. Once in submittable, there is a paypal button.

The submitted manuscript must be a Word file.  The file must contain a cover page with contact information and a biography of no more than 100 words with a list of publications, if applicable. No identifying marking should appear on any other page of the manuscript other than page one with your bio. Submissions that fail to comply will be automatically disqualified.

The Process:

We notify winners no later than Labor Day of the same year.

You have a choice to 1) publish with us and accept the prize, 2) decline publication and accept the prize, or 3) decline both.

THRP is not an independent press. We are subject to the governance of our college Elizabethtown Community & Technical College, which in turn is part of a larger entity the Kentucky Community and Technical College System. As such, we are not able to enter into a legally binding agreement per se.

We work together with authors to produce books that each party is satisfied with, and sometimes this takes 4 - 6 months. We use InDesign in a 5.5X8.5 format with KDP as the printer/distributor; the printer/distribtor is subject to change. After we lay out your book, we will send you an electronic copy to edit; you will then mark your changes and we will process those. Our editors will also review your work. We provide 10 free copies of a printed book along with additional discounted copies. We do not make ebooks at this time. All of our products are available on Amazon.

If you choose to publish with us, THRP retains First North American Serial Rights and may use portions of the winning title to promote the press and/or other events in perpetuity. Upon publication by THR, right revert back to the author.


THRP will post your name, title, and picture our college website (this one) and link to any website you might might have. We post the same information on our social media account(s). We make the book available on Amazon; we also invite each author to a virtual reading of his/her work. We use InDesign in a 5.5X8.5 format using KDP as the printer/distributor; the printer/distribtor is subject to change.