Freshwater Literary Journal


Freshwater’s 2021-22 Writing Contest

The Video above is the 2021 Freshwater Literary Festival, featuring readings of works by contributors to the 2021 issue of Freshwater Literary Journal, along with a tribute to longtime contributor Richard Smith.


Freshwater Literary Journal is a student-coordinated professional literary journal produced at Asnuntuck Community College since 2000, seeking submissions from the public. We consider poetry, short stories, personal essays, and creative nonfiction, and we publish a wide variety of literary work from students and professional writers across the globe.

Dates and Deadlines

Submission Period: August 15, 2021, to February 15, 2022. Acceptances and rejections will be sent on a rolling basis, no later than the end of March 2022. The new edition will be published in May 2022.

Submission Guidelines

Freshwater accepts submissions of poetry, short stories, personal essays, and creative nonfiction. We seek to publish a wide variety of literary work from people of all backgrounds. We look for new experimental takes on old mediums, as well as more traditional approaches.

To submit, email your entire submission in one attachment. Make sure to include your name in the attachment.

No cover letter needed, but send a brief, one-paragraph, third-person bio with mailing address in the body of the e-mail.

Poetry: Three poems maximum, up to 40 lines each.

Prose: (fiction or nonfiction): One or multiple pieces up to 1,500 words total.

Send to (No snail-mail submissions, please.)

No previously published material. Simultaneous submissions permissible if you notify us immediately of acceptance elsewhere. Payment is one contributor copy.

Read the 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 editions of Freshwater online here:

Copies of Freshwater’s print issues (2005 through 2021) are available for purchase. Please email for details.

Click below for for the first two episodes of the Freshwater Literary Series (interviews with authors we really like!).

Episode One: Susanne Davis:

Episode Two: Tim Gager:


2021-2022 Student Writing Contest

Open to full- and part-time undergraduate students enrolled at Connecticut’s community colleges and public universities during 2020-2021.

(2021-2022 — Poetry — Judge: TBA)


1st Prize: $100

2nd Prize: $75

3rd Prize: $50

Three honorable mentions: $25 each

Winning authors will have their work published in the 2020 edition of Asnuntuck’s literary journal Freshwater and will be invited to receive their awards at the annual Freshwater Literary Festival either online or at the college in late April or early May 2022.

Entry deadline: February 15, 2022. Decisions made by the end of March.

Rules and Guidelines: Open to full- and part-time undergraduate students enrolled during 2020 or 2021 at Connecticut’s community colleges and/or public universities. Student writers may submit up to three unpublished poems no longer than 40 lines each. Email the poems in a single .doc, .docx, or .rtf document (with titles but no names on the poems for anonymous judging) to Include an email message with name, address, college affiliation, email address, brief third-person biographical note, and the titles of poems submitted. Poems that do not win prizes will be considered for publication in the 2022 Freshwater Literary Journal.