The English Department Announces The 2017 Davenport Playwriting Contest


Entries are now being accepted for the annual Davenport Prize in Playwriting sponsored by the English Department.


1) entrants must be in “good standing” but need not be English majors or enrolled in an English course; students who completed coursework on campus during the 2016-17 school year, but have not yet commenced and are not currently enrolled are eligible to submit, provided they will be commencing from Knox in June;

2) only one play per author is allowed;

3) submitted plays need not be written especially for the contest, but cannot have been previously published off campus (note that publication on-campus does not exclude a story from entry); no play that has received a prize in a Knox contest may be submitted to any subsequent contest, although a rejected manuscript may be submitted a second time; any story currently under review for another prize may be submitted;

4) each submission must include a title page or cover sheet with the author’s name and complete contact information, as well as the title of the play; please leave name off subsequent pages;

5) each submission should be double-spaced and paginated;

6) each submitted manuscript is limited to 10,000 words;

7) only original work by the contestant may be entered (translations are not eligible);

8) all entries must be submitted in hardcopy to Cyn Fitch’s office (Old Main 217) no later than Wednesday, April 19 by 4 p.m. If you have questions about the submission guidelines, contact Cyn Fitch .

[Note: Cash prizes are determined by the English Department, in consultation with the judge’s recommendations for awards. As well, the prize-winning manuscripts each year will be retained by the college and may be published on the English Department’s website.]


This year’s playwriting judge is alumna Courtney Meaker

Courtney Meaker ‘08 is a playwright based in Iowa City. Her full-length plays include Buckshot, Chaos Theory – a play seeking order, Made of These, The Lost Girls, and Candid International. She’s an alum of the Seattle Repertory Writers Group 2014-2016. Recently, her play That’swhatshesaid garnered international attention for using the female dialogue and stage directions of the most-produced plays in America as its inspiration and source material. Her one acts and ten minute plays have been performed numerous venues in the Pacific Northwest, and she’s had multiple stints as a playwright with 14/48 The Worlds Quickest Theater Festival. She was the co-writer on the second season of the award-winning web series WRECKED. Her essay, “Walking While Fat and Female – Or, Why I Don’t Care Not All Men Are Like That” was republished at and in 2014. And her short story, “Etymology,” was a finalist for the Naked Girls Reading Literary Award in 2011. She’s currently getting her MFA in Playwriting at the University of Iowa.

Prizewinners will be announced at the Caxton Club reading on Friday, May 12 at 4 p.m. in the Alumni Room, Old Main.


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