Founded in 1997, the Backwaters Press has published award-winning books by some of America’s finest writers. The University of Nebraska Press acquired the Backwaters Press in 2018, with its impressive backlist in poetry and prose that contributes to the cultural landscape of our state and region. As a general interest imprint of UNP, the Backwaters Press continues to plant it roots firmly in the Great Plains, delighting readers with literature of enduring value and consequence. Nebraska is proud to announce that titles under the Backwaters Press imprint will be available as ebooks as well.
The Backwaters Prize in Poetry, an international poetry book competition, was initiated in 1998 and continues under the auspices of UNP. Contest winners are chosen by distinguished American poets; past judges include Hayden Carruth (winner of the National Book Award and the National Book Circle Critics Award), Philip Levine (National Book Award winner and two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize), and Ted Kooser (Poet Laureate of the United States and Pulitzer Prize winner).
Visit the Backwaters Prize in Poetry page for more information and a link to make an electronic submission.
Join our mailing list to receive updates about the prize competition and the Backwaters Press.
Support the Backwaters Press by joining Friends of UNP.
Diane Kiesel is the author of She Can Bring Us Home: Dr. Dorothy Boulding Ferebee, Civil Rights Pioneer (Potomac Books, 2015). She Can Bring Us Home is the winner of the 2015 Richard Slatten Award for excellence in Virginia biography and the 2016 Colonial Dames of America Book Award for the best chronicle of American history [...]
Aaron Gilbreath is an essayist, a journalist, and previously a contributing editor at Longreads. He has written essays and articles for Harper’s, the New York Times, the Paris Review, and the Dublin Review and his work has been listed as notable in Best American Essays&nbs [...]