Ends on February 18, 2018

$20.00 USD

We invite you to enter the William Van Dyke Short Story Prize. 

As with all our submissions, we highly recommend reading a copy of the magazine to better understand what we are looking for. The 2016 winning story appears in Issue No. 41: And the Soul Felt Its Worth. The 2015 winning story appears in Issue No. 37: Being Known. The 2014 winning story appears in Issue No. 34: Keeping Things Whole. We offer all of these in a PDF format for $5 each. We also offer a discounted bundle of past print issues featuring the William Van Dyke Short Story Prize.


  • The submission deadline for the short story contest is February 15, 2018. Note – there is a grace period of three days for this contest. Entries submitted by 11:59 PST on February18th will be entered into the contest.
  • The entry fee is $20 (includes a complimentary copy of the prize issue featuring the winning work; international entries will receive a complimentary PDF copy).
  • You may submit one story per contest entry fee and it must be 5500 words or less. There is no limit on the number of entries per person.
  • Entries must be previously unpublished (if it has a circulation of 500 or greater, in print or online, we consider it previously published).
  • We do allow simultaneous submissions, but if it is accepted elsewhere please withdraw it immediately and make a note in the "notes" section of the entry. 
  • $1500 will be awarded to the winner and publication in the Prize Issue. $200 will be awarded to the runner-up story and publication in the Prize Issue.
  • A blind reading of all entries will be conducted by a panel of Ruminate readers, who will select 10 short stories as finalists. The finalists will then be reviewed by our finalist judge.
  • Close friends and students (current & former) of the finalist judge are not eligible to compete. Nor are regular Ruminate blog contributors and close friends and family of the Ruminate staff. Previous 1st place recipients of any Ruminate Prize and previous judges of any Ruminate Prize are also not eligible to compete. 
  • We will be notifying all entrants of submission status in mid-April, 2018.
  • Please remove your name, bio, and any contact info from the file that you submit.
  • As a contemplative magazine, we are sometimes asked if Ruminate is seeking or only accepts "spiritual" stories. The answer to that question is no. We are simply looking for good stories, and there are no restrictions on the subject matter or content for submissions. The best way to understand the work we publish is to read a past issue.
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