Contributor Awards are offered to applicants at the early stages of their writing career whose writing shows exceptional promise. 

Contributor Awards

Though some will have a literary background and/or MFA, this is not a requirement for the contributor award. An extensive record of publication is not necessary; writers with significant publication in journals should consider applying at the Scholar level instead.

Contributor Awards are for those who consider themselves emerging writers, regardless of age. During the conference Contributor Award winners receive guidance on their work during the workshops and are invited to read by signing up for a slot during the Blue Parlor reading series. Upon acceptance, more information about the Blue Parlor reading series will be provided, as well as details on how to submit an unpublished manuscript for workshop critique. (The manuscript guidelines are similar to those followed during the application process—see details below.)

Contributor Awards cover tuition, room, and board at the conference ($3,720).

Contributor Award applicants apply online by February 15. Applicants submit a manuscript of published or unpublished work in the genre in which they are applying. See the manuscript guidelines for important details.

Apply

Returning Contributor Awards

Returning contributor awards are given to a Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference contributor who attended the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in August without the support of conference financial aid and wishes to return the following year. Because the 2020 conference was cancelled due to Covid-19, those who attended the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in August as paying contributors in 2019 are eligible to apply for the awards in 2021.

Returning Contributor Awards are for those who consider themselves emerging writers. During the conference Returning Contributor Award winners receive guidance on their work during the workshops and are invited to read by signing up for a slot during the Blue Parlor reading series. Upon acceptance, more information about the Blue Parlor reading series will be provided, as well as details on how to submit an unpublished manuscript for workshop critique. (The manuscript guidelines are similar to those followed during the application process—see details below.)

Award applicants are considered for the Donald Everett Axinn Returning Contributor Award, the Norton Girault Returning Contributor Award, and the Carol Houck Smith Returning Contributor Award, which cover tuition, room, and board at the conference ($3,720).

Award applications are accepted online and must be submitted by February 15. To apply for an award, complete the online application and submit the following supporting materials: (1) a copy of the original manuscript as it appeared in the 2019 workshop packet; (2) a copy of the revised manuscript that incorporates feedback received during 2019 workshop—the Admissions Board is interested in seeing a draft that has undergone significant revision; and (3) a sample of new work begun after the 2019 workshop, i.e., a new story, essay, or portion of a novel or memoir not to exceed 6000 words; or ten pages of new poetry, not to exceed more than one poem per page; the new work must be in the same genre as the manuscript used for workshop in 2019. See the manuscript guidelines for important details.

Apply

Bread Loaf Katharine Bakeless Nason Contributor Awards

Bread Loaf Katharine Bakeless Nason Contributor Awards are offered to applicants at the early stages of their writing career whose writing shows exceptional promise. Bakeless Awards also support the conference’s goal of fostering a writing community that gives voice to writers of all backgrounds, ages, and experience. While literary merit is the main consideration for these awards, writers who meet one or more of the following criteria are encouraged to apply: a member of a historically underrepresented group; an individual who is in particular need of financial and creative support; a first-time Bread Loaf participant; or an applicant with a nontraditional literary or educational background. Applicants for a Bread Loaf Katharine Bakeless Nason Award must not have previously received any financial aid award from Bread Loaf and must not have earned an MFA within the past ten years. Writers with an extensive record of publication should consider applying at the Scholar level instead.

Bakeless Awards are for those who consider themselves emerging writers. During the conference Bakeless Award winners receive guidance on their work during the workshops and are invited to read by signing up for a slot during the Blue Parlor reading series. Upon acceptance, more information about the Blue Parlor reading series will be provided, as well as details on how to submit an unpublished manuscript for workshop critique. (The manuscript guidelines are similar to those followed during the application process—see details below.)

Bread Loaf Bakeless Contributor Awards cover tuition, room, and board at the conference ($3,720).

Bread Loaf Katharine Bakeless Nason Contributor Awards are completed and accepted via the online application, which includes a section where applicants write a short statement of 300 to 500 words addressing the award criteria noted above. Applicants submit a manuscript of published or unpublished work in the genre in which they are applying. See the manuscript guidelines for important details.

Apply

Middlebury College Student Contributor Awards

Special scholarships are made available to current Middlebury College students and also in some cases for recent Middlebury College graduates. See more information for Middlebury College Students.

Middlebury students who graduated in May 2020 will be eligible for the 2021 Middlebury Student Contributor Award. We have made this adjustment for the 2021 application process considering the unusual circumstances and understanding that otherwise this year would have been a Middlebury senior’s final year to be eligible to apply for this particular award.