FAQ: Narratively's 2023 Memoir Prize

If I submit the first chapter or another part of my memoir for the Narratively Prize and it wins or is a finalist, will I be able to publish that work later in my book? Will I continue to have the rights to my memoir?

Yes. You retain print publication rights, so you are able to pursue and publish a book version of your story now or in the future.

Can I submit the same story to both your Memoir Prize and one of your open calls for pitches? 

No. At this time, entrants must choose one category in Submittable under which to enter their work. However, if you already submitted a memoir through one of Narratively’s non-Prize open calls for pitches and have not yet gotten a response or any feedback from Narratively, you may email prizes@narratively.com and ask to withdraw your pitch so that you can enter it for the Memoir Prize. 

Can I resubmit a story I already submitted to the 2022 Narratively Memoir Prize?

Yes! If you submitted a story last year and have been reworking your piece since then, we’re happy to consider it for this year’s prize.

Can I submit a story I already published on my blog or personal website?

Yes. As long as your story hasn’t already appeared in a major publication, we will consider it. If you have any questions about whether a prior publication would qualify as major, feel free to email us at prizes@narratively.com.

Can I still be considered for publication with Narratively even if I don’t win the Prize? 

Yes. Once our judging window is complete and winners have been announced on or around February 4, 2024, we will reach out to some of the non-winning entrants whose work we see promise in, with offers of paid assignments to work on their story with our editors through Narratively’s normal editorial process. However, entrants are under no obligation to accept the offer. 

My memoir includes photos that are integral to the writing. Will your submission system accept images? If not, may I send you my memoir via some other channel?

Submittable will not accept standalone images. If you’d like to include images, you can insert them where you like them in the document (which also will help us to see why a particular image is relevant to a particular section of text). The inclusion of images will not help or hinder your submission. 

Is there a full copy of the Contributor Agreement that I can review that might provide some clarity?

Yes, there is. You can request our Contributor Agreement in its entirety by emailing prizes@narratively.com

Should I delete my byline after the title? What about headers and footers?

Yes. As stated in our Official Rules & Submission Guidelines, please keep your name (even a pen name) off of your manuscript. We prefer to read submissions without identifying information to avoid bias.

Do I delete my author’s bio info at the end of each story?

Yes. We prefer to read submissions without identifying information to avoid bias.

Are self-published works accepted?

Yes, they are. As stated in our Official Rules & Submission Guidelines, Narratively will not accept Submissions previously published by another publication, in any medium or on any platform, but we consider self-published works to be excluded from this, as you are not an external party to yourself.

Do you accept manuscripts that exceed your 7,000-word limit?

No, 7,000 words is a hard limit for this particular Prize. 

Help! I'm having trouble uploading my submission in Submittable. What should I do?

For tech support, you can head to Submittable's Help Center here for answers to most of your questions (and an email address in case you need additional assistance).

Still have questions? Email us at prizes@narratively.com.

Good luck!