Portfolio Requirements

Due to the demand for this program, portfolios that don't adhere to the guidelines will be disqualified.

Please do not put your name on your essay responses and work samples.

Please supply recent work: specifically work that has been created since becoming a parent, and created within the last three years.

The requirements for each genre differ. Please check the requirements for your particular genre below before applying.

We do not accept portfolios of academic writing, self-help books, motivational writing, cookbooks, travel and/or other kinds of guidebooks.

At this time we are not accepting applications in the performing arts, film/video/tv (including screenplays), music, jewelry, pottery, and other crafts.

Writers

Creative Nonfiction
Early and Middle Grade Readers
Fiction
Graphic Novel/Graphic Memoir
Illustrated Children's Books
Illustrated Children's Books (Text Only)
Long Form Journalism
Other
Playwriting
Poetry
Young Adult Fiction

Visual Artists

Book Arts
Drawing
Fiber Arts and Textiles
Illustration
Installation
Mixed Media
Other
Painting
Photography
Printmaking
Sculpture

Creative Nonfiction

Creative nonfiction (also known as literary nonfiction or narrative nonfiction) is a genre of writing that uses literary styles and techniques to create factually accurate narratives. If this describes your work, then you should feel welcome to apply in this category.

Please note that we do not accept general nonfiction submissions, and we specifically do not accept submissions of academic writing, self-help books, motivational writing, cookbooks, travel and/or other kinds of guidebooks.

Requirements for submissions in this genre:

  • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
  • English
  • page numbers
  • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
  • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
  • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
  • no scanned copies of published work
  • autobiographical works that reference your name in the body of the submission are acceptable

Early and Middle Grade Readers

Requirements for submissions in this genre:
  • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
  • English
  • page numbers
  • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
  • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
  • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
  • no scanned copies of published work

Fiction

Requirements for submissions in this genre:
  • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
  • English
  • page numbers
  • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
  • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
  • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
  • no scanned copies of published work

Graphic Novel/Graphic Memoir

If you write and illustrate your works, submit samples of 1-2 works, 10-20 pages, in a single PDF.

Please follow our guidelines about keeping portfolio submissions anonymous. Do not include the cover of your book if it has your name on it. Do not submit scanned copies of published work.

The general guidelines for writers regarding fonts and page numbering do not apply to graphic novels.

Individual PDFS must be no larger than 30MB.

If you illustrate graphic novels, but don't write the text, we advise that you submit an application in the Illustration category.

If you write the text for graphic novels, but don't illustrate them yourself, you have two options:

  • You may apply collaboratively with your illustrator only if the illustrator is also eligible for our awards (is a parent of a child under 18). Please read our guidelines regarding collaborations carefully.

  • You may apply with just the text of up to 3 works, 10-20 pages.

Illustrated Children's Books

If you write and illustrate your works, submit PDFs of 2 complete books. Do not submit scanned copies of published books.

Please follow our guidelines about keeping portfolio submissions anonymous. Do not include the cover of your book if it has your name on it. Do not submit scanned copies of published books.

The general guidelines for writers regarding fonts and page numbering do not apply to picture books.

Individual PDFS must be no larger than 30MB.

If you illustrate children's books, but don't write the text, please apply in the Illustration category.

If you write the text for illustrated children's books, but don't illustrate them yourself, you have two options:

  • You may apply collaboratively with your illustrator only if the illustrator is also eligible for our awards (is a parent of a child under 18). Please read our guidelines regarding collaborations carefully.

    OR

  • You may apply in the Illustrated Children's Books (text only) category.

Illustrated Children's Books (Text Only)

If you write but do not illustrate children's books, then you should feel welcome to apply in this category.

You may apply collaboratively with your illustrator only if the illustrator is also eligible for our awards (is a parent of a child under 18). You and your illustrator should then apply together in the Illustrated Children's Books category.

Please read our guidelines regarding collaborations carefully.

If you write and/or illustrate picture books for adults, please apply in the Graphic Novel/Graphic Memoir category.

If you write and illustrate your works, please apply in the Illustrated Children's Books category.

If you illustrate children's books, but do not write the text, please apply in the Illustration category.

We do not accept hard copies of books.

Requirements for submissions in this genre:

  • text of up to 3 books, 2-15 pages
  • English
  • the general guidelines for writers regarding fonts and page numbering do not apply to illustrated children's books
  • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
  • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
  • no scanned copies of published work

    Long Form Journalism

    Long form journalism, related to narrative or literary journalism, is a genre of writing typically combining factual reporting with a narrative style, and usually running several thousand words long. If this describes your work, then you should feel welcome to apply in this category.

    Please note that we do not accept general nonfiction submissions, and we specifically do not accept submissions of academic writing, self-help books, motivational writing, cookbooks, travel and/or other kinds of guidebooks. Blog posts and short newspaper articles are also not accepted.

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
    • English
    • page numbers
    • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
    • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
    • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
    • no scanned copies of published work

    Other

    We do not recommend applying with multiple genres in a single application, as it's hard to demonstrate excellence with half the page count of an application focusing on a single genre. If you write in multiple genres, please choose just one for your application portfolio, rather than submitting as "Other."

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
    • written in English
    • page numbers
    • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
    • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
    • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
    • no scanned copies of published work

    Playwriting

    We do not accept submissions of screenplays, musicals, librettos, and/or teleplays.

    Playwrights may submit 15-25 pages, (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples).

    Please use standard script formatting conventions (there are many online references).

    You may include a title page and/or a character page if you like, and these do not count towards your 25 pages.

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • 15-25 pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
    • English
    • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
    • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
    • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
    • no scanned copies of published work

    Poetry

    10 poems, not to exceed 15 pages total, in a single PDF. Please start each poem on a new page.

    In the required date pulldown, please note the date of the oldest poem you are submitting.

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • English
    • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
    • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
    • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
    • no scanned copies of published work

    Young Adult Fiction

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:
    • 10-15 double-spaced pages (you may submit a single long sample or multiple shorter samples)
    • English
    • page numbers
    • 11- or 12-point standard serif font (for example, Times, Palatino, or Cambria)
    • PDF format only; Microsoft Word documents will not be accepted
    • no identifying information: no name on a cover page; no name in the header/footer
    • no scanned copies of published work

    Book Arts

    Book arts is a genre involving making unique (or limited edition) artistic or literary books by hand. It may involve papermaking, printmaking, letterpress, calligraphy, binding, paper marbling, paste papers, and the like.

    If your work does not involve physically making or altering books by hand, you should not apply in this genre.

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Drawing

    If you illustrate (but do not write) picture books or graphic novels, please submit your application under Illustration rather than Drawing.

    Requirements for submissions in in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Fiber Arts and Textiles

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Illustration

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Installation

    Installation art consists of works that often are site-specific and designed to transform the perception of a space

    We understand that installation pieces can be much larger and more time-consuming to produce than other types of work. Installation artists need not submit 10 unique works of art, but may submit multiple images/views from at least three different installation pieces to satisfy our portfolio requirements.

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

  • at least 10 and up to 15 individual images of at least three different installation pieces
  • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
  • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
  • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    If you would like to submit video documentation of your installation work, you may include links on the “Portfolio Notes” section of the Portfolio page. Please limit your video documentation to no more than 5 minutes.

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Mixed Media

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Other

    We do not recommend applying with multiple genres in a single application, as it's hard to demonstrate excellence with half the image count of an application focusing on a single genre. If you work in multiple genres, please choose one for your application portfolio, rather than submitting as "Other."

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Painting

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Photography

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Printmaking

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.

    Sculpture

    Requirements for submissions in this genre:

    • one image each of 10 individual works of art
    • up to 5 additional images to provide detail and exhibition shots, if appropriate
    • individual JPG or PNG files of each image
    • high resolution images (1,000 - 3,000 pixels per side)
    • individual image size limited to no more than 5MB

    Please let us see your work at its best. Images should be well-lit, not blurry, and high resolution. Flat artwork should be cropped to show only the artwork itself.

    While we ask that portfolio submissions not have identifying information on them, signatures on works of art are acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to direct us to your website to view your portfolio. The process of editing and curating one's work is extremely important and it is up to you to select the images that best represent your work. Our review is based on the strength of the work submitted with your application.