The John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Awards

Recognizing excellence in unpublished, book-length manuscripts.

The SWG's John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Award recognizes excellence in unpublished, book-length manuscripts. The award rotates between the genres of poetry, fiction, and literary nonfiction. 

The genre in 2022 is fiction.

  • 1st place:  $1,000 
  • 2nd place: $650
  • 3rd place: $350

The winners will read from their work at the John V. Hicks Awards Show during the SWG's Annual Fall Conference.

Deadline for submissions

Submissions must be received electronically by June 30 at midnight. Late submissions will not be accepted.

A $25 entry fee must accompany the entry. Payment may be received via a mailed cheque payable to the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, or by calling the SWG Office at 306-791-7740 to pay by credit card.


About John V. Hicks

Distinguished Saskatchewan poet John V. Hicks was widely published and the recipient of many honours and awards. 

His poetry collections, most of which were published by Thistledown Press, include Now Is a Far Country (1978), Winter Your Sleep (1980), Silence Like the Sun (1983), Rootless Tree (1985), Fives and Sixes (1987), Sticks and Strings (1988), Month’s Mind (1992), Overheard by Conifers (1996), and Renovated Rhymes (1997). His poetry was also widely published in anthologies and in North America’s most distinguished literary publications.

In 1987, his short essays on the craft of writing were published in book form as Side GlancesNotes on the Writer’s Craft (co-published by Thistledown and the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild). Hicks was also a fine children’s writer whose stories have been published in school reader anthologies and the Canadian Children’s Annual. As well, his work in both poetry and prose has been aired on CBC Radio.

Honorary writer-in-residence for the city of Prince Albert since 1978, he was installed as Honorary Fellow of the University of Emmanuel College, Saskatoon, in 1979; was awarded an honorary D.Litt. from the University of Saskatchewan in 1987; received a Lifetime Award for Excellence in the Arts from the Saskatchewan Arts Board in 1990; and received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, the highest honour accorded by the Province of Saskatchewan, in 1992.

John Hicks died June 16, 1999, at the age of 92. 

How to submit

Applications will open March 2022.

  1. Complete an application form.
  2. Ensure your manuscript is in pdf format and follows the criteria rules outlined below.
  3. Submit your application form and manuscript electronically by June 30 at midnight. We will accept a pdf file by email to or by mail on a digital memory stick. We will not accept Word documents or paper copies.
  4. A $25 entry fee must accompany the entry.  You can mail a cheque payable to the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, or call our office at 306-791-7740 to pay by credit card. 


  1. Entrants must be Saskatchewan residents as of December 31, 2020.
  2. Only one entry per person is allowed in the manuscript awards.
  3. All entries must be original work. If the work is an adaptation of material not in the public domain, permission of the original creator must accompany the entry.
  4. Copyright for the entry remains with the author.
  5. No more than 50% of the manuscript may have been published in magazines and anthologies or by broadcast media. The work must not be accepted for publication at the time of submission, nor can it be published before the announcement of the awards in October (although it may be accepted for publication).
  6. The manuscript must be a full-length work of poetry, which is a minimum of 48 pages of poetry or prose poetry, and may be a collection for children or adults.
  7. The writer’s name and contact information should NOT appear on the manuscript. All entries will be numbered upon receipt so that they may be judged anonymously. If the writer’s name appears on any page of the manuscript, it will not be accepted for the competition. The name of the manuscript may appear on both the cover page and subsequent pages.
  8. The application form must be submitted separately from the manuscript (one pdf for the application and one pdf for the manuscript). There should be two documents in your submission - your manuscript and your completed application form.
  9. The following submission criteria must be followed:
    • Entries must be in English
    • Use plain text fonts (e.g. Times New Roman, Arial, Courier) in black
    • 12 point font
    • At least a one inch margin on all sides
    • The title and page number must appear on each page 
  10. Winners agree to permit the use of their name and title of their work in promotion by the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild.
  11. Winners agree to acknowledge the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild in any publication of the winning works.

The Jury

The Hicks Long Manuscript Award is judged by two established Canadian writers working in the genre under review. Their names will be announced after the award winners are announced. The jury may decide not to award a particular prize if they believe none of the submissions merits it. The decisions of the jury will be final.

Past Recipients

2020 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Judith Wright (Saskatoon)
  • Michael Trussler (Regina)
  • Jennifer S Wallace (Saskatoon)

2019 (Fiction)

  • Karin Melberg Schwier (Saskatoon)
  • Tim Blackett (Regina)
  • Beth Goobie (Saskatoon)

2018 (Poetry)

  • Katherine Lawrence (Saskatoon)
  • Shannon McConnell (Saskatoon)
  • Joy M. Brown (Regina)

2017 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Dauna Ditson (Regina)
  • Lois Simmie (Saskatoon)
  • Debby Adair (Regina)

2016 (Fiction)

  • Leona Theis (Saskatoon)
  • Sheri Benning (Saskatoon)
  • James Trettwer (Regina)

2015 (Poetry)

  • Katherine Lawrence (Saskatoon)
  • Gerald Hill (Regina)
  • Carla Barkman (Regina)

2014 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Robert Calder (Saskatoon)
  • dee Hobsbawn-Smith (Saskatoon)
  • Lloyd Ratzlaff (Saskatoon)


2013 (Fiction)

  • Linda Biasotto (Regina)
  • Lisa Guenther (Livelong)
  • Marliss Wesseler (Regina)

2012 (Poetry)

  • Andrea Ledding (Saskatoon)
  • Mari-Lou Rowley (Saskatoon)
  • Bruce Rice (Regina)

2011 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Joanne Webber (Regina)
  • Leona Theis (Saskatoon)
  • Andrea Ledding (Saskatoon)

2010 (Drama)

  • Mansel Robinson (Saskatoon)
  • B.D. Miller (Regina)
  • Rodney McLean (Regina)

2009 (Fiction)

  • Terry Jordan (Saskatoon)
  • Anne Patton (Regina)
  • Bernice Friesen (Saskatoon)

2008 (Poetry)

  • Jennifer Still (Saskatoon)
  • Bruce Rice (Regina)
  • Shelley A. Leedahl (Middle Lake)

2007 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Sally Crooks (Regina)
  • Ted Dyck (Shaunavon)
  • Ven Begamudré (Regina)


2006 (Drama)

  • Barbara Sapergia (Saskatoon)
  • Gordon Portman (Regina)
  • Geoffry Ursell (Saskatoon)

2005 (Fiction)

  • Brenda Baker (Saskatoon)
  • Byrna Barclay (Regina)

2004 (Poetry)

  • Daniel Scott Tysdal (Moose Jaw)

2003 (Literary Non-Fiction)

  • Robert Calder (Saskatoon)
  • Pat Krause (Regina)
  • Allan Safarik (Dundurn)

2002 (Drama)

  • Pam Bustin (Saskatoon)
  • Mansel Robinson (Saskatoon)

2001 (Fiction)

  • Shelley Leedahl (Saskatoon)
  • Dave Margoshes (Regina)
  • Joan Olson (Regina)

2000 (Poetry)

  • Tonja Gunvaldsen Klaassen (Saskatoon)
  • Gerald Hill (Regina)
  • Ken Howe (Regina)

For more information, please contact:

Program Manager
 306.791.7743 | E:

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