Wyoming Arts Council

Creative Writing Fellowships

The Wyoming Arts Council offers two fellowship opportunities for Wyoming creative writers.

2016 WAC CW fellowship winers

2016 WAC poetry fellowship winners (from right) Carol Deering of Riverton, and Connie Brewer and Katie Smith, both from Gillette, pose with fellowship judge Rebecca Foust after a reading at Natrona County Public Library Sept. 26 in Casper.

Creative Writing Fellowships

Creative Writing fellowships are awards of merit, based on a writer’s body of work, and honoring Wyoming’s literary artists whose work reflects serious and exceptional writing. The format of the 2017 fellowships is new: one $3,000 fellowship will be awarded in each category of Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, and Fiction, for a total of three fellowships. Applications are juried by noted authors, literary agents, or writing professionals from outside the state. Jurors may award honorable mentions. Recipients of the Creative Writing fellowships will share their work at the Wyoming literary conference of their choice.

The 2017 Creative Writing Fellowships are now accepting applications. All applications must be submitted through Submittable. You do not need to subscribe in order to submit. Click here for information on creating a free account and submitting your application. The application deadline for the 2017 fellowships is August 22.


  • Must be at least 18 years of age at time of application.
  • Must not be a full-time student pursuing high school, college, or university art-related degrees.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or have legal resident status (evidence of U.S. citizenship, resident status and state residency may be required).
  • May not be affiliated with the Wyoming Arts Council either as a board member or staff member, including their families, whether full-time, part-time or contractual.
  • May not be an employee of the Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources.
  • Must have been domiciled within the state borders for a total of 20 months in the previous two years.
  • Must remain a Wyoming resident for at least one year after award, living in the state for at least 10 months of the year.
  • Must not have received a Creative Writing fellowship within the last four years.
  • May receive a total of two fellowship awards in your lifetime.
  • You may not receive a 2017 Blanchan or Doubleday writing award, but you may enter this competition if you were a previous Blanchan or Doubleday winner.
  • You may enter the competition only once by the deadline.
  • You may only enter the competition in one category (Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, Fiction).


  • You’ll receive $3,000 (70% immediately; 30% held until approval of your final report).
  • NEW THIS YEAR! You will receive an honorarium/travel stipend to present your work at a fellowship reading at your choice of literary conference: the Casper College Literary Conference (September 2016), WyoWriters Conference (June 2017) or the Jackson Hole Writer’s Conference (June 2017).
  • You’ll sign a contract that verifies you’re eligible to receive this award.
  • You’ll need to supply a resume and a photograph for publicity.
  • The WAC will retain your manuscript for possible use in excerpts for promotional purposes and Arts Council publications (print and electronic).
  • You will retain all rights to this work and the work you produce during the grant period.
  • You must fill out a final report form, due June 30, 2017, which asks questions about how this award helped you and what you accomplished during the year you received it.

 Jurors for 2017

Laurie_Saurborn_HeadshotPoetry – Laurie Saurborn

Laurie Saurborn is the author of two poetry collections, Industry of Brief Distraction and Carnavoria, and a chapbook, Patriot. An NEA Creative Writing Fellowship recipient, her poems, short stories, essays, reviews and photographs have appeared or are forthcoming in such publications as American Literary ReviewDenver QuarterlyThe Cincinnati ReviewThe Southern Review, and Tupelo Quarterly. Laurie teaches creative writing at the University of Texas at Austin, where she also directs the undergraduate creative writing program.

Ted_Thompson_HeadshotFiction – Ted Thompson

Ted Thompson is the author of The Land of Steady Habits, which was a finalist for the Center for Fiction’s Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize. His work has appeared in Tin HouseAmerican Short Fiction, One Teen Story, and Best New American Voices, and he has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Writers Omi at the Ledig House, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he lives in Brooklyn with his family, where he teaches in the Brooklyn College MFA program.

Dave_Madden_HeadshotCreative Nonfiction – Dave Madden

Dave Madden is the author of If You Need Me I’ll Be Over There and The Authentic Animal: Inside the Odd and Obsessive World of Taxidermy. His shorter work has appeared in Harper’s, The Normal School, The Rumpus, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere, and he’s received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. He teaches in the MFA program at the University of San Francisco.

Neltje Blanchan and Frank Nelson Doubleday Memorial Writing Awards 

The $1,000 Blanchan award goes to a writer whose work, in any genre, has been inspired by nature. The $1,000 Doubleday award goes to a woman writer of exceptional talent in any creative writing genre. Winners also receive a stipend to attend an annual reading. The Council reserves the right not to make awards based on judge recommendations. The applications for the 2015 Blanchan and Doubleday writing awards are available online only via Submittable. You have to submit separately (if you qualify) for both the Blanchan and Doubleday awards listed under the Wyoming Arts Council. Applications for the 2017 awards will be available in fall 2016.



Creative Writing Fellowship Recipients

      • Fiscal Year 1987 (awarded 1986)
        Tilly Warnock; Laramie, Len Sherwin; Douglas, Kirk Keller; Moran, Mary Alice Gunderson; Casper. Jurors: Mark Harelik, William Kloefkorn and Marilyn Krysl.
      • FY 88 (awarded 1987)
        Sandra Dorr; Story, Mark Jenkins; Laramie, John Nesbitt; Torrington, Tim Sandlin; Jackson. Jurors: Joy Harjo, Nancy Mairs and Bill Ransom.
      • FY 89 (awarded 1988)
        B.J. Buckley, Arvada; David Mouat, Worland; Mark Spragg, Wapiti; Geoff Peterson; Green River. Jurors: Marvin Bell, Terry McMillan and Kim Stafford.
      • FY 90 (awarded 1989)
        Rick Kempa, Rock Springs; Jennifer McMullin, Casper; Barbara Smith, Rock Springs; Dan Whipple, Casper. Jurors: Ray Gonzalez, Diane Wakoski and Jerome Washington.
      • FY 91 (awarded 1990)
        Vicki Lindner, Laramie; Michael Riley, Cody; Geoff O’Gara, Lander (only three winners in FY 91). Jurors: David Lee, Russell Martin and Mary LaChapelle.
      • FY 92 (awarded 1991)
        C.J. Box, Cheyenne; Len Edgerly, Casper; Dainis Hazners, Story; Julia Hoagland, Powell. Jurors: Denise Chavez, Don Snow and Michael Martone.
      • FY 93 (awarded 1992)
        Leslie (Bridewell) McMillan, Rock Springs; Scott Hagel, Cody; Mark Jenkins, Laramie; Page Lambert, Sundance. Jurors: Starkey Flythe, Jr., Linda Hasselstrom and David Milofsky.
      • FY 94 (awarded 1993)
        Tim McGee, Worland; Hannah Hinchman, Dubois; Rodney Mahaffey, Casper; and Lawrence Sullenger, Story. Jurors: Simon Ortiz, Scott Walker and Wanda Coleman.
      • FY 95 (awarded 1994)
        Janell Hanson, Laramie; Craig Johnson, Ucross; Marie J. Carvalho, Rock Springs; Stephanie Buehler, Sheridan. Jurors: Dagoberto Gilb, Gregg Levoy and Robert Greer.
      • FY 96 (awarded 1995)
        C.L. Rawlins, Laramie; Suzanne Tyler, Jackson; Jane Wohl, Sheridan; Ron Franscell, Gillette. Jurors: Peggy Shumaker, Michael Katakis and Melissa Pritchard.
      • FY 97 (awarded 1996)
        Laura Bell, Shell; Bob McKee, Douglas; Diane LeBlanc, Laramie; David Romtvedt, Buffalo. Jurors: Ron Carlson, Elizabeth Woody and E. Ethelbert Miller.
      • FY 98 (awarded 1997)
        Dainis Hazners, Story; Jon Billman, Kemmerer; Julia Hoagland, Powell; Maija Rhee Devine, Laramie. Jurors: Mary Crow; Kevin McIlvoy; and Jewell Parker Rhodes.
      • FY 99 (awarded 1998)
        Carol Deering, Riverton; Christy Stillwell, Laramie; William Hoagland, Powell; Lisa Vice, Thermopolis. Jurors: Agha Shahid Ali, Jonis Agee and Kent Nelson.
      • FY 00 (awarded 1999)
        Mark Spragg, Cody; Alyson Hagy, Laramie; Sam Western, Sheridan; Martha Clark Cummings, Thermopolis. Jurors: Sandra Alcosser, Mark Amerika and Stephanie von Hirschberg.
      • FY 01 (awarded 2000)
        Robert Druchniak, Evanston; Charles Levendosky, Casper; Stefani Farris, Laramie; Geoff Peterson, Green River. Jurors: Lewis Nordan, Judyth Hill and Gary Ferguson.
      • FY 02 (awarded 2001)
        Rodney Gene Mahaffey, Casper; Paisley Rekdal, Laramie; Chavawn Kelley, Laramie; Bo Moore, Green River. Jurors: M.L. Liebler, Bill Tremblay and Sharman Apt Russell.
      • FY 03 (awarded 2002)
        Diane Panozzo, Tie Siding; Ted Kerasote, Jackson; Ann McCutchan, Laramie; Connie Wieneke, Wilson. Jurors: Robert Priest, Lisa D. Chavez and Bob Fox.
      • FY 04 (poetry – awarded 2003)
        W. Dale Nelson, Laramie; Page Lambert, Sundance; and Michael Harkin, Laramie. Judge: Virgil Suarez.
      • FY 05 (creative nonfiction – awarded 2004)
        Heather LaVonne Jensen, Cheyenne; Laura Bell, Cody; and Vicki Lindner, Casper. Judge: Elmaz Abinader
      • FY 06 (fiction – awarded 2005)
        John English, Casper; Alyson Hagy, Laramie; Geneen Marie Haugen, Kelly. Judge: James Sallis
      • FY 07 (poetry – awarded 2006)
        Jane Wohl, Sheridan; Myra L. Peak, Green River; and Jeffe Kennedy, Laramie. Judge: Rosemary Daniell
      • FY 08 (creative nonfiction – awarded 2007)
        John Sutton of Sheridan, John D. Nesbitt of Torrington, Chavawn Kelley of Laramie. Judge: Nick Flynn
      • FY 09 (fiction – awarded 2008)
        Kevin Holdsworth, Green River; Doug Reitinger, Sheridan; and Valerie Pexton, Laramie. Judge: Laura Pritchett.
      • FY 10 (poetry — awarded 2009)
        Sam Renken, Laramie; Lori Van Pelt, Saratoga; and David Zoby, Casper. Judge: Greg Pape.
      • FY 11 (creative nonfiction – awarded 2010)
        Joel Burdess, Casper; Jayme Feary, Jackson; and Pam Galbreath, Laramie. Judge: Lee Gutkind.
      • FY 12 (fiction – awarded 2011)
        Kathy Bjornestad, Sundance; Samuel Western, Sheridan; Stefani Farris, Lander. Judge: Pam Houston.
      • FY 13 (poetry — awarded 2012)
        Claudia Mauro, Jackson; Matt Daly, Jackson; W. Dale Nelson, Laramie. Judge: Brian Turner
      • FY 14 (creative nonfiction — awarded 2013)
        Chad Hanson, Casper; Mary Beth Baptiste, Laramie; Heather Jensen, Cheyenne. Judge: Connie May Fowler
      • FY 15 (fiction — awarded 2014)
        Shawn Klomparens, Jackson; Estella Soto, Laramie. Judge: Meg Pokrass
      • FY 16 (poetry — awarded 2015)
        Carol Deering, Riverton; Constance Brewer, Gillette; Kathleen Smith, Gillette. Judge: Rebecca Foust.

Blanchan/Doubleday recipients

Since 1989, 44 talented writers have received Blanchan/Doubleday awards: Geoffrey O’Gara, Betsy Orient Bernfeld, Hannah Hinchman, David Mouat, Sheila Roberts, Scott Hagel, Holly Skinner, C.L. Rawlins, Marcia Saum, Dainis Hazners, Barbara Gilbert, William Hoagland, Diane LeBlanc, Tina Willis, Maija Rhee Devine, Mary Beth Baptiste, Julene Bair, Chavawn Kelley, Geneen Marie Haugen, Janell Hanson, Mark Spragg, Karol Griffin, Stefani Farris, Laura Bell, Darcy Lipp-Acord, Jack Clinton, Tina Welling, Susan Marsh, Myra L. Peak, Marcia Hensley, Jeffe Kennedy, Melodie Edwards, Bo Moore, Barbara Smith, Alisan Peters, Lou O. Madison, Christine B. Nelson, W. Dale Nelson, Nina S. McConigley, Patricia Frolander, Edith Cook, George Vlastos, Christine Fadden, Yvette Ward-Horner, Matt Daly and Marylee White.

Grant Information

Deadline: Varies
Amount: $3,000 and $1,000
Contact: Rachel Clifton