The Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest |
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The Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest

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Deadline: MARCH 31, 2024 - CLOSED

Entry fee: $10 Academy members / $15 non-members
Poetry Contest judge: Dorothy Chan

  • 1st-place winners of the Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest will receive a one-week artist residency at Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts in Mineral Point.
  • Winners will receive a prize of $500 for 1st place, $250 for 2nd place, and $100  for 3rd place.
  • All winners are invited to read their work at the 2024 Wisconsin Book Festival.
  • 1st-3rd-place winning poems will be published in print and online issues of Wisconsin People & Ideas magazine. 
  • Honorable mention poems selected by the lead judge will be published in subsequent issues of the magazine.


  • Authors must be age 18 or older and reside or attend school in Wisconsin. All submissions must be original and previously unpublished work, whether online or in print.
  • Current Wisconsin Academy staff, board, and Foundation board members are not eligible. If you have questions about eligibility, please reach us at

Submission Guidelines

  • One entry consists of 1-3 poems. You may submit multiple entries, and each additional entry requires paying a contest fee.
  • Please include a cover page with the author's name, address, phone number, email address, and poem titles
  • One (1) poem per page, up to three (3) poems per submission
  • Typed, single-spaced
  • 12-point clearly readable font. For example: Times New Roman, Garamond, etc.) 
  • 45 lines maximum per poem (including lines between stanzas).
  • Please do not include your name on the manuscript pages. 

Print or electronic submissions will be accepted. 

Electronic Submissions

Electronic submissions (and judging) will be managed via AirTable. After registering, participants will receive a link to submit their manuscript.


Time to write for 2025!

Print Submissions

  • Print submissions must be postmarked, delivered, or date-stamped by 11:59 pm on the contest due date. Submissions postmarked or hand-delivered after the deadline will not be considered and the entry fee will be retained to cover handling.
  • Keep a copy of your manuscript. Print manuscripts will be recycled, not returned. If you are able, we encourage you to submit online rather than in print.
  • Every contestant must be able to provide an electronic version of their manuscript by email if needed.

Entries may be mailed or hand-delivered to 

Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters
1922 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53726

Contest semifinalists to be announced soon!

The 1st-place winner will be published in the fall 2024 issue of Wisconsin People & Ideas; 2nd-place and 3rd-place winners will be published in subsequent issues. 

2024 Poetry Contest Judge

Dorothy Chan (she/they) is the author of five poetry collections, including the forthcoming, Return of the Chinese Femme (Deep Vellum, Spring 2024). They are an Associate Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of Honey Literary Inc, 501(c)(3) BIPOC-focused literary arts organization. They were a 2022 recipient of the University of Wisconsin System's Dr. P.B. Poorman Award for Outstanding Achievement on Behalf of LGBTQ+ People. This summer, they will be a Visitor at Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Visit their website at

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Wisconsin Academy Offices 
1922 University Avenue
Madison, Wisconsin 53726
Phone: 608.733.6633


James Watrous Gallery 
3rd Floor, Overture Center for the Arts
201 State Street
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: 608.733.6633 x25