food banner

Seeking essay, poetry, and photograph submissions

How does food impact our place in community? How does food create, sustain, or disrupt communities?

Food provides energy, sustains life, and gives us reason to come together around a table. Food generates memories through time-honored recipes and traditions, provides opportunities for employment, and fuels community development.

Sometimes, food also generates anxiety or triggers unwelcome memories for those who are experiencing or have experienced chronic hunger or poverty. These tensions about food, however, extend beyond issues of poverty and hunger. They can include condescending stares in checkout lines, conflict at family dinner tables, or judgment by kids in a school lunchroom.

The Flanner Community Writing Center and Marian University Writing Center seek creative and critical submissions from novice and professional writers and photographers that explore intersections between food, community, and identity. 

We ask for essays, poems, and photographs from residents of Central Indiana that tell honest and captivating stories about how food impacts and shapes our place in community. Writers and photographers of all ages and abilities are encouraged to submit their work.

Awards and recognition

  • First place entries in each category (essay, poetry, photography) will receive $100. Second place entries in each category will receive $50.
  • Authors of first place, second place, and runner up selections will be invited to publish their works in a book to be released October 2018.
  • Judges from Marian University, IUPUI, and the Northwest Area of Indianapolis will select first place,second place, and runners up for each submission category.
  • Winners will be notified no later than Friday, September 14, 2018.

Submission guidelines

  • Email submissions to
  • Include a cover page that identifies the author’s name, mailing address, phone number, preferred email address, and title of submission(s).
  • Essays and poems should be submitted as PDF files. Photographs should be submitted as a high-resolution jpg files
  • Essays should be between 1,500-7,500 words. Poems should be no longer than two pages. Photographic submissions may consist of a single photograph or a photographic essay of no more than ten photographs.
  • Multiple submissions will be accepted, but authors/ photographers will only receive one first or second place award in one category.
  • Submissions will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on August 31, 2018.
  • Authors/photographers must reside within Indiana.

Writers are encouraged (but not required) to work with a Flanner Community Writing Center consultant before submitting their entry.

Appointments can be scheduled by visiting or calling the Marian University Writing Center at 317.955.6244.

Meeting people through student government
Getting involved in student government helped Oluwabanwo Adeniyi '21 feel like she’s part of the campus community.
Watch Bami's story
Building relationships with faculty and coaches
After he explored his college options, Conor Smith '20 decided to choose Marian because of his interest in athletics and exercise science.
Read Conor's story
Following her dream to be a dentist
After graduating cum laude with Marian's Class of 2017, Chrislyn (Church) Fite is well on her way.
Read Chrislyn's story

© 2017 Marian University
Notice of Nondiscrimination
Marian University does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, age or disabilities in the selection of administrative personnel, faculty and staff, and students.
*Placement rates are gathered from data collected from graduates within six months of graduation.