New Blog Feature: Writing Lessons

We’re excited to announce a new feature for the Ploughshares Blog geared towards writing students: “Writing Lessons.”

In this feature writing students will discuss lessons learned, epiphanies about craft, and the challenges of studying writing. The exciting part of this feature is that we want to hear from you, writing students! What have you learned or discovered in your writing classes? Submissions are free, open, and accepted on a rolling basis.

Bonus: if we publish your “Writing Lessons” essay, we’ll give you a one-year subscription to Ploughshares literary journal. So put on your thinking caps and start writing!


Entrants must currently be enrolled in an MFA program, an undergraduate writing program, a summer conference, or residency, or have been enrolled in one of these programs in the past 6 months. Please submit up to 500 words about something you have recently learned about writing or being a writer. Submissions will be accepted on a rolling basis, and will be considered for publication in the month after they are received (so if you submit June 1-30, you will be considered for publication in July).


The authors of published entries will receive a one-year subscription to Ploughshares literary journal. The perks of being a subscriber include free online submissions.

Entry Info

Please email your previously unpublished essay of no more than 500 words to with the subject line: “Writing Lessons.” Include in the email your name, your mailing address, a professional-looking color headshot, at least 600×600 pixels, your Twitter handle (if you have one), the MFA program/undergraduate program/summer conference/residency where you were most recently enrolled, and the year you attended or are projected to complete this program.

The Ploughshares team will select three to five essays every month to publish on the Ploughshares blog. Essays will be published on Wednesdays. Submitters will not be notified if their essay is published, so check the blog to see if yours was chosen! By submitting your piece to the series you are giving Ploughshares permission to post it on the Ploughshares blog indefinitely. Copyright remains the property of the author. We ask that you not re-publish the piece within 6 months of publication on our blog.

Schedule of selections:

Essays will be published on Wednesdays, throughout the year, except for the following weeks.

  • Week of January 1
  • Week of July 4
  • Week of Thanksgiving (November 27)
  • Week of December 25

Image by Boston Public Library

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