Cropper Undergraduate Creative Writing Contest in Poetry, Fiction and Nonfiction

The University of San Diego awards three prizes each year in honor of Lindsay J. Cropper. The $150 cash prizes recognize undergraduate achievement in the genres of poetry, fiction and nonfiction. Submissions accepted in the Fall semester.

The 2020-2021 Lindsay J. Cropper Creative Writing Contest is now open for submissions. Full contest guidelines and submissions are through the Cropper Contest web site:  Judges to be announced. 

Deadline: Friday, November 20, 2020, 11:59 p.m.

  • We welcome submissions from all undergraduates—students do not have to be English Majors, or in the Creative Writing emphasis, to enter

  • Students may submit in more than one genre (poetry, fiction, or nonfiction), though a student can only win in one genre

  • A prize of $150 will be awarded in each of the three categories; judges to be announced

  • Winners and an honorable mention for each category will be published in the Fall 2021 issue of the Alcalá Review

  • Winners will be announced at the Spring Cropper Readings

If you have questions about the contest, please email:

Prof. Brad Melekian, at, or

Dr. Halina Duraj, at


The Alcalá Review, USD’s literary journal, can be found at

Cropper Writing Contest banner

Brad Melekian, MFA
Assistant Professor, English Department
Director, Cropper Center for Creative Writing

Phone: (619) 260-7856

Malachi Black, PhD
Assistant Professor, English Department
Phone: (619) 260-4696

Halina Duraj, PhD
Associate Professor, English Department
Phone: (619) 260-7429


  • Poetry Co-Winners: Olivia Hunt and McKenna Christian
  • Fiction Winner: McKenna Christian
  • Nonfiction Winner: Gurleen Kang
  • Fiction Runner-up: Thomas Dolan
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: Shaun Morand
Congratulations! The winners will have their entries published in the Fall 2020 issue of the Alcalá Review.


  • Poetry Winner: Marisa Hanson
  • Fiction Winner: Leilee Ghassemi
  • Nonfiction Winner: Marisa Hanson
  • Poetry Runner-up: McKenna Christian
  • Fiction Runner-up: Hayden Witt
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: Jake Sanborn

Congrats! The winners will have their entries published in the Fall 2019 issue of the Alcala Review.


  • Poetry Winner: Larissa Rogers
  • Fiction Winner: Maddison Nelson
  • Nonfiction Winner: Grace McDonald
  • Poetry Runner-up: Joe Duffy
  • Fiction Runner-up: Samantha Strauss
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: Ben Friedl

Congrats! The winners had their entries published in the Fall 2018 issue of the Alcala Review.


  • Poetry Winner: Ryan Samson
  • Fiction Winner: Rachel Truong
  • Nonfiction Winner: Charles Madruga
  • Poetry Runner-up: Larissa Rogers
  • Fiction Runner-up: James Cho
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: James Cho

Congrats! The winners had their entries published in the Fall 2017 issue of the Alcala Review.


  • Poetry Winner: Magenta Reynolds
  • Fiction Winner: Miles Parnegg
  • Nonfiction Winner: Sean Ouye
  • Poetry Runner-up: Brad David
  • Fiction Runner-up: Jessika Malone
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: Eric Draft

Congrats to all! The winners had their entries published in the Fall 2016 issue of the Alcala Review


  • Poetry Co-Winners: Gabriella Sghia-Hughes & Lucia T. Pasquale
  • Fiction Winner: Joie Coxon
  • Nonfiction Winner: Megan Huynh
  • Fiction Runner-up: Dylan Macdonald
  • Nonfiction Runner-up: Matthew Hose

The winners had their entries published in the inaugrual issue of the Alcala Review, Fall 2015.










There are currently no workshops offered. Please check back periodically.