Davidson College Writing Competition

The Department of English urges all students and all years to submit your best work to our annual writing competitions: the R. Windley Hall, Charles Lloyd, the Vereen Bell competitions, and the newest named award, the Gibson Prize for Scholarly Writing. 

Each winning entry is selected by a distinguished external judge.

Submit Your Creative Work(s) for a Chance to Win Prizes!

Writing Competition Categories


Awarded to the best work of fiction by a Davidson student. Submit up to eight pages (if excerpted, indicate so) of any story written in 2022-2023. More than one story may be submitted, but the total page count may not exceed eight. If excerpted, say so.

Judged by Danielle Evans.

Creative Nonfiction

Awarded to the best work of creative nonfiction by a Davidson student in any discipline written in 2022-2023. The total page count may not exceed eight. If excerpted, say so.

Judged by Lilly Dancyger.


Awarded to the best poetry by a Davidson student in any discipline written in 2022-2023. Submit up to eight poems written in 2022-2023. The total page count may not exceed eight.

Judged by Toby Altman.


Awarded to the best scholarly essay written by a Davidson student in any discipline in 2022-2023. The total page count may not exceed eight. If excerpted, say so.

Judged by Margaret Konkol.


  • Submit your work by Monday, March 27 at 5 p.m.
  • Work may have been written for any class, or on your own.
  • All work must be double-spaced.
  • You may enter 2 contests: one in creative writing (either fiction, creative nonfiction, or poetry), and another in scholarly writing.
  • All students submitting to these competitions must be available to attend the awards on the evening of Thursday, April 13 at 7 p.m. For questions about this requirement, contact Professor Parker @ amparker@davidson.edu.


Photo Judges
Toby Altman

Poetry: Toby Altman

Toby Altman is the author of Discipline Park (Wendy’s Subway, 2023) and Arcadia, Indiana (Plays Inverse, 2017). He has held fellowships from MacDowell, Millay Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He teaches at Beloit College.



Lilly Dancyger

Creative Nonfiction: Lilly Dancyger

Lilly Dancyger is the author of Negative Space (2021), a reported and illustrated memoir selected by Carmen Maria Machado as a winner of the Santa Fe Writers Project Literary Awards; and the editor of Burn It Down (2019), a critically acclaimed anthology of essays on women's anger. She is currently at work on First Love, a collection of essays about the power and complexity of female friendship, forthcoming from The Dial Press. Lilly's writing has been published by Guernica, Literary Hub,The Rumpus, Longreads, The Washington Post, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and more. 

Fiction: Danielle Evans

Fiction: Danielle Evans

Danielle Evans is the author of the story collections The Office of Historical Corrections and Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self. Her first collection won the PEN American Robert W. Bingham Prize, the Hurston-Wright award for fiction, and the Paterson Prize for fiction; her second won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize and The Bridge Book Award. She is the 2021 winner of the Joyce Carol Oates Prize, a 2020 NEA fellow, and a 2011 National Book Foundation “5 under 35” honoree. Her stories have have been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories 2008, 2010, 2017, and 2018, and in New Stories From The South.

Evans received an MFA in fiction from the Iowa Writers Workshop; she currently teaches in The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University.

Margaret Konkol

Scholarship: Margaret Konkol

Margaret Konkol is an assistant professor of Modern and Contemporary American Literature and Digital Humanities at Old Dominion University. Her work addresses questions about the role of nature and technology in shaping material life and changing ideas about poetry’s role in society. She has recently been named Director of mpark, a makerspace dedicated to expanding the impact of the humanities by supporting cross-disciplinary collaboration. Margaret is completing a book manuscript entitled For Everyone a Garden: Modern Poetry and Civic Space. Published essays appear in Feminist Modernist StudiesModernism/ModernityPaideuma: Modern and Contemporary Poetry and Poetics, and Textus. She has also published a co-edited collection of essays Modernism in the Green: Public Greens in Modern Literature and Culture (Routledge 2020).