The First-Book Scholarship

In an effort to support equality and accessibility within literary publishing, Gasher Press is pleased to offer a $250 scholarship to an emerging writer currently submitting their first-book manuscript, in order to assist in the covering of submission costs for contests and open reading periods. 

The 2021 First-Book Scholarship is now open! This year we are pleased to offer two scholarships, one for prose and one for poetry. Submit until September 1st following the provided guidelines below:

  • Please include in the title of the submission the manuscript's title followed by the genre you are submitting to (EX: The Seedling - PROSE) 

  • The manuscript must be at least 48pgs in length with a cover letter and bio.

  • You may only submit one entry per submission period. All other entries will be disqualified regardless of withdrawing previous submissions. 

  • Writers must not have published a full-length collection at the time of submission, including self-published books. (chapbooks are okay.)

  • The writer must reside in the United States at the time of submission.

  • This is a blind reading. Please DO NOT include any identifying material on your manuscript, including an acknowledgments page. Those who do not remove this information from their submission will be disqualified.

2020 Winner

Sam Ferrante

GASHER Journal is pleased to announce Sam Ferrante as the winner of the 2020 First-Book Scholarship for her manuscript No More Odes to My Mouth.

Sam Ferrante is a queer poet, teacher, and editor who received her MFA from Butler University in 2020. Originally from Long Island, NY, she has been lucky enough to have featured with La Mama Poetica, Melbourne Spoken Word, Passionate Tongues, and a couple other spots. Her work has appeared in Turnpike, Foundlings, Ghost City Review, Blowing Raspberries, and elsewhere. She is currently the Poetry Co-Editor at Booth and cannot wait to read your work. 

A list of finalists as well as the editorial board for this year's scholarship are listed below.


Katherine Indermaur  Facing the Mirror: An Essay

Jasmine Ledesma  My Head, The Color Factory

Sean Cho A.  Contemporary Day

David Capps  Drawn in Evening Light

Samantha Schaefer  i cut the things with a large knife.

Editorial Board

Whitney Kerutis

Erin Armstrong

Ethan Cohen

Rachel Cruea

Rushi Vyas


Past Winners

2019 Winner: