Snyder Prize

The Richard Snyder Memorial Publication Prize

This poetry book series honors the memory of Richard Snyder (1925-1986), poet, fiction writer, playwright, professor of English at Ashland University, and in 1969 co-founder (with Robert McGovern) of the Ashland Poetry Press. In selecting manuscripts for this series, Ashland Poetry Press editors keep in mind Snyder's tenacious dedication to craftsmanship and thematic integrity.


The Winner of the Snyder Prize Receives:

  • $1,000.00
  • Publication of winning manuscript in a paperback edition
  • 25 copies of the published book (in lieu of royalties)

2023 Submission Guidelines:

  • Original collection of poems, 48 to 96 pages.
  • Reading period begins January 1, 2023
  • Deadline: April 30, 2023 
  • Translations are ineligible (we have a separate translation series)
  • No names or any identifiers on manuscripts; acknowledgements may be included.
  • Ashland University MFA Program alumni, AU employees or their spouses are ineligible. 
  • Family, students, and co-workers of the final judge are ineligible. 
  • Electronic submissions only (Submittable. $27)                           
The 2023 Judge will be Mark Doty.
Mark Doty is the author of nine books of poetry, including Deep Lane (April 2015), Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems, which won the 2008 National Book Award, and My Alexandria, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the T.S. Eliot Prize in the UK. He is also the author of four memoirs: the New York Times-bestselling What Is the Grass, Dog Years, Firebird, and Heaven’s Coast, as well as a book about craft and criticism, The Art of Description: World Into Word. Doty has received two NEA fellowships, Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundation Fellowships, a Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Award, and the Witter Byner Prize.


Former Snyder Prize Winners:

  • Bruce Bond, 2022, for Vault 
  • Margaret Mackinnon, 2021, for Afternoon in Cartago 
  • Peter Grandbois, 2020, for Last Night I Aged a Hundred Years
  • Laura Donnelly, 2019, for Midwest Gothic
  • Barbara Ungar, 2018, for Save Our Ship 
  • Michael S. Moos, 2017, for The Idea of the Garden
  • Pamela Sutton, 2016, for Burning My Birth Certificate
  • Daneen Wardrop 2015, for Life As It
  • Anna George Meek 2014, for The Genome Rhapsodies
  • J. David Cummings 2013, for Tancho
  • Robin Davidson 2012, for Luminous Other
  • Gabriel Spera 2011, for The Rigid Body
  • Mary Makofske 2010, for Traction
  • Jason Schneiderman 2009, for Striking Surface
  • Marc J. Sheehan 2008, for Vengeful Hymns
  • Helen Pruitt Wallace 2007, for Shimming the Glass House
  • Lorna Knowles Blake 2006, for Permanent Address
  • Benjamin S. Grossberg 2005, for Underwater Lengths in a Single Breath
  • Christine Gelineau 2004, for Remorseless Loyalty
  • Vern Rutsala 2003, for The Moment's Equation
  • Carol Barrett 2002, for Calling in the Bones
  • Corrinne Clegg Hales 2001, for Separate Escapes
  • Jan Lee Ande 2000, for Instructions for Walking on Water
  • Philip Brady 1999, for Weal
  • David Ray 1998, for Demons in the Diner
  • Wendy Battin 1997, for Little Apocalypse

Notable awards of some Snyder book winners: 

The 2015 Richard Snyder Prize winner, Life As It by Daneen Wardrop, won the gold medal for poetry in the 2017 Independent Publishers Book Award.

The 2013 Richard Snyder Prize winner, Tancho by J. David Cummings, won the gold medal in the Independent Book Publishers Association Benjamin Franklin Award. 

The 2008 Richard Snyder Prize winner, Vengeful Hymns by Marc J. Sheehan, was the finalist for the Society of Midland Authors Poetry Competition.

The 2007 Richard Snyder Prize winner, Shimming the Glass House by Helen Pruitt Wallace, won the Bronze medal in the 2008 Florida Book Awards Poetry category.

The 2004 Richard Snyder Prize winner, Remorseless Loyalty by Christine Gelineau, was nominated by David St. John for the 2006 Los Angeles Times Book Prize in Poetry.

The 2003 Richard Snyder Prize winner, The Moment's Equation by Vern Rutsala (published in December 2004), was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award.


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