YellowJacket Press supports emerging and established poets in Florida with an annual chapbook contest, chapbook publications, and public readings. YellowJacket Press creates a means for poets to share and promote their work and nurtures a sense of community among poets and audiences across the state.
YJP has become known for publishing superior quality poetry in simple, yet beautiful, individually designed chapbooks. YJP currently publishes two books a year and sponsors readings statewide for its poets.
YJP is a 501c3 non-profit organization and is in the process of becoming a member of the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP).
Poet, writer, editor and teacher Gianna Russo, has pursued a life-long calling to poetry and writing. A supporter of the literary arts and artists for almost 30 years, she is active in a number of literary endeavors in Tampa and across Florida. Russo is the author of the full-length poetry collection, Moonflower (Kitsune Books, 2011), winner of a Florida Book Award bronze medal, Florida Publishers Association Presidents’ Award silver medal, and an Eric Hofer First Horizons finalist award.
As founding editor of YellowJacket Press, Russo won a 2011 Creative Loafing Best of the Bay Award. A fellow of both the Surdna Foundation and the Hambidge Center for the Arts and Sciences, she is the recipient of an Arts Teacher Fellowship which allowed her to attend the Spoleto, Italy Writers Workshop in 2006. She has also received a Hillsborough County Artist Fellowship, Emerging Artist Grant, and an honorable mention for the Florida Artist Fellowship. A Pushcart Prize nominee, she has published poems in Tampa Review, Ekphrasis, Crab Orchard Review, Apalachee Review, Florida Review, Florida Humanities Council Forum, Karamu, The Bloomsbury Review, The Sun, Poet Lore, Saw Palm, The MacGuffin, and Calyx, among others. Her creative nonfiction has appeared in the St. Petersburg Times. In her first stab at fiction, in 2012 she contributed a chapter to the collaborative novel 15 Views of Tampa Bay, published serially on the website of Barrow Street Press.
A teacher of creative writing and English for over 20 years, Russo also was the administrator of the Florida Suncoast Writers Conference and the founding director of the YMCA Writers’ Voice in Tampa. She co-directed the creative writing program at Howard W. Blake School of the Arts in Tampa from its inception in 1997-2007 and worked as Curator of Education for the Henry B. Plant Museum in Tampa. She has also worked as a successful grant writer. Currently, she teaches at St. Leo University, where she is also managing editor of Sandhill Review.
When not teaching, writing or supporting other writers, Ms. Russo enjoys gourmet cooking, organic gardening, travel, reading, dancing and enjoying life with family and friends. She is the mother of two grown sons and lives in Tampa with her husband, the scholar and editor Jeff Karon, and their cat Gingko.
YJP ADVISORY BOARD
Sylvia Curbelo (Assistant Editor)
YJP CHAPBOOK CONTEST FOR FLORIDA POETS
The contest opens October 1st and must be postmarked no later than December 1st of each year.
A CHAPBOOK is a small collection of approximately 20 pages of poetry by a single poet.
SUBMISSION GUIDELINES AND ENTRANCE FEE
HOW TO KNOW IF WE'RE A GOOD FIT FOR YOUR WORK:
We suggest that you read the sample poems here in order to get a sense of the YJP aesthetic. Even better, order one of our books to see if your work is comparable in quality, and perhaps style. Read the biographical notes about each poet, and compare that information with your own.
WHAT WE DO AND DON'T PUBLISH:
We publish poetry chapbooks (small, unified collections of poetry) of no more than 24 pages. We do not accept previously published chapbooks or individual poems.
MANUSCRIPT SUBMISSION DO'S AND DON'TS:
We accept only paper manuscripts. We do not accept handwritten manuscripts, poems printed out from a website, or submissions via e-mail, although if your manuscript is selected for publication, we will ask you to submit the entire work to us as an e-mail attachment.
Poetry should be submitted single-spaced, no more than one poem per page. Clearly indicate any stanza breaks, especially when they occur at the end of a page, so that these breaks will be obvious to our editors.
Poetry chapbook manuscripts should be no longer than 24 pages, including title page, table of contents, dedications and acknowledgments. The manuscript should be held together with a large clip. Do not bound your submission. While we do not accept previously published books, your manuscript may include individual poems which have been published elsewhere. In that case, include acknowledgments. Though we will consider simultaneous submissions, please notify us if the manuscript is being considered elsewhere.
OTHER SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS:
Include a separate cover page with the title, your name, address, phone number and e-mail address, along with a brief bio note which includes the date you became a Florida resident. (This page does not count as one of the 24-page maximum.)
Include a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for our response. Manuscripts will not be returned. For this reason we strongly recommend that you retain copies of all the work you submit.
ENTRANCE FEE IS $10.00:
Send check or money order made out to Gianna Russo, editor. Do not send cash. For copies of the previous winning books, send an additional $5.50 per book (1.00 discount for contestants) along with your submission.
SEND SUBMISSIONS TO:
YellowJacket Press Chapbook Competition
1410 E. Paris Street
Tampa, FL 33604
For inquiries, contact Editor Gianna Russo at email@example.com.