James Jones First Novel Fellowship

There are presently no open calls for submissions.


The 33rd Annual James Jones First Novel Fellowship
will be awarded to an American author of a first novel-in-progress, in 2025, by the James Jones Literary Society. 

The award is intended to honor the spirit of unblinking honesty, determination, and insight into modern culture exemplified by the late James Jones, author of From Here to Eternity and other prose narratives of distinction. Jones himself was the recipient of aid from many supporters as a young writer and his family, friends, and admirers have established this award of $12,000 to continue the tradition in his name. First runner up award $3000 and second runner up $2000 each may be given by the Jones Literary Society. All selections are at the discretion of the judges.

Eligible writers

Have never published a novel

Are U.S. citizens or permanent residents of America with Green Cards

May have published any other type of work including non-fiction articles and short stories

Non eligible writers

Officers of the James Jones Literary Society

Writers who have published previous novels

Eligible submissions

Unpublished novels

Novels in which one or more chapters have been published

Non eligible submissions

Collections of short stories

Linked short stories

Self-published novels




Note: Manuscripts may be simultaneously submitted for the First Novel Contest and to a publisher for publication. If the work is accepted by a publisher at any time up to the announcement of the First Novel winner, the Society must be notified and the selection will be withdrawn from the contest.


Manuscript Guidelines: A two-page (maximum) outline of the entire novel and the first 50 pages of the novel-in-progress are to be submitted. 

The manuscript must be typed and double-spaced; outline may be single-spaced. Entrants should include their name, address, telephone number and e-mail address (if available) ONLY on the cover letter, but nowhere else on the manuscript.  Pages should be numbered.  Please drop your cover letter in cover letter box, and your outline/synopsis and the first 50 pages of you novel as one document under attached files.

DEADLINES: Entries should be sent to jamesjones.submittable.com/submit. no later than midnight, March 15, 2025 Eastern Standard time.

Entry Fee: $30 plus a $3.00 processing fee.

Entries for the 2025 contest will be accepted beginning October 1, 2024.
For more information, please contact us jamesjonesfirstnovel@wilkes.edu.

James Jones First Novel Fellowship