JANUARY 1, 2021 - MARCH 31, 2021


The Cleveland State University Poetry Center welcomes submissions for the Lighthouse Poetry Series. The Lighthouse Poetry Series publishes contemporary poetry from poets with any history of publication. The winner will receive $1,000, publication, and a standard royalty contract. This year’s contest will be judged by Shane McCrae.

Shane McCrae’s most recent books are Sometimes I Never Suffered and The Gilded Auction Block, both published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. In 2021, the Cleveland State University Poetry Center will release an expanded edition of his first book, Mule, with an introduction by Victoria Chang. McCrae has received an Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Lannan Literary Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and a Whiting Writer's Award. He lives in New York City and teaches at Columbia University.


1. The Lighthouse Poetry Series is open to poets with any history of publication. Translations are not eligible.

2. Intimate friends, relatives, or current and former students of Shane McCrae are not eligible to submit. Faculty, staff, students, and alumni of Cleveland State University or the Northeast Ohio MFA Program (NEOMFA) are not eligible to submit.

Guidelines & Notes

1. Make sure to record your most current information (name, manuscript title, address, phone number, and email address) in your Submittable account; this is the information we will use to contact you. Manuscripts should be 55 pages minimum, 150 pages maximum. No biographical information should be included in your submission and your name should not appear in the manuscript. You may include an acknowledgments page that lists previously published poems.

2. Multiple submissions are welcome and simultaneous submissions are acceptable (please inform us immediately if the manuscript is accepted elsewhere).

3. The CSU Poetry Center reserves the right to consider all entrants for publication; a list of winners and finalists will be posted on the Poetry Center website in late summer/early fall of 2021.

To Submit

1. Upload your manuscript as a .pdf to Submittable (mail submissions are not eligible).

2. There is a $25 reading fee, which must be paid through Submittable. As a token of our appreciation for your readership and your support of innovative small press publishing you will have the option of receiving a book of your choice from our catalog (we will provide a coupon and instructions in your manuscript confirmation).

3. Email poetrycenter@csuohio.edu with any further questions.

* Please know that all manuscripts submitted to us are reviewed with great care and are read by our editors. We do not read manuscripts directly in Submittable’s software and do not use their labels to identify the status of a manuscript.

Cleveland State University Poetry Center