The Big Brick Review

2016 Winners!

Grand Prize: $300 (US)
The Errand, by Jeanne Brinkman Grinnan

Second Prize: $200 (US)
Your Goddam Life and How To Sew A Dress, by Susan Starbird

Third Prize: $100 (US)
The Willies, by Kerry Feltner

Honorable Mention: $50 (US)
For Today I Can, by Karin Cole

(tie) Honorable Mention: $50 (US)
Red Balloon, by Holly Hinson

(tie) Honorable Mention: $50 (US)
Surprise Night, by Elizabeth Osta

Congratulations to our 2016 winners!

Entries of Note

While not every essay submission can win one of our prizes, many were worthy of praise.
At least we can offer you the following recognition for your writing resume:

Autumn Chill, by Rachel Sona Reed
Speed, by Sherry Cook Stanforth
Parting Words, by Peter Berres
Reds, by Patricia Roth Schwartz
Big Josh and the Big Rescue, by Rae Theodore

Additional Entries of Note (in no specific order):
Reflexion by Kay Thomann; Drawing Blood by Laura B. Johnsrude; Seeing Red by Carina Hart; A Box of Kittens and Other Wishes by Mary Ann Lana, Making Knots by Mary Ann Cooper; Heart Of The Hogsback by Jessica Luetzow; My Awakening by Christopher “Irish Goat” Knodel; Behind Enemy Lines by Chuck Kensler; Picture Fish by Ed Rau;
Love, Even Though (My Love is Red) by Trace Bruce.



Next Up:

Open Submissions: Sundry Bricks

Sundry Bricks © 2015 Gregory Gerard


Our next open submissions window for our Sundry Bricks feature is from May 15, 2017 - July 31, 2017. For more info, visit Submissions.


2016 JUDGES:

Georgia Beers is a Lambda and Goldie award-winning author and editor of lesbian fiction. Her novel, 96 Hours (2011, Bywater Books), based on actual events during the September 11 crisis, earned Foreward Reviews - Gold Medal, LGBT Book of the Year. Born and raised in Rochester, New York, she still lives there with her partner of twenty years, their two dogs, and a cat. When not writing, she watches too much TV, reads voraciously, and invents new reasons not to work out. Georgia is currently hard at work on her eleventh book. Visit her and find out more at

Susan Bono is a writing teacher and freelance editor who published Tiny Lights: A Journal of Personal Narrative in print and online at from 1995-2014. Her work has appeared in anthologies, magazines, newspapers, on stage and radio. Her collected essays, What Have We Here: Essays about Keeping House and Finding Home, is now available. For more, visit

Gregory Gerard's work has been recognized by Tiny Lights, Johnathan,and Geva Theater. He teaches writing part-time at Writers & Books, Rochester’s contemporary literary center, and has been a guest instructor at the University of Rochester's Scholars Creative Writing Program. His memoir, In Jupiter's Shadow, (2009, Infinity Publishing) chronicles a religious boy's struggle with forbidden attraction. For more, visit

Sejal Shah's creative nonfiction has been nominated for Best American Essays and the Pushcart Prize, and featured in The Huffington Post.  Her writing has recently appeared in Brevity, Conjunctions, The Kenyon Review, The Literary Review, The Margins, and AWP’s The Writer’s Chronicle. The recipient of residencies from Blue Mountain Center, the Millay Colony for the Arts, New York University, and the Ragdale Foundation, she lives and teaches in Rochester, NY. She is working on a memoir about leaving New York City and academia and moving back to her hometown. For more, visit (photo credit: Preston Merchant)

Alison Smith's memoir, Name All the Animals (2004, Scribner) was named one of the top ten books of 2004 by People Magazine and was short-listed for the Book-Sense Book of the Year Award. Her writing has appeared in McSweeney's, Granta, The London Telegraph, The New York Times, The Believer, Best American Erotica, and other publications. Alison has been awarded the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, the Judy Grahn Prize for Nonfiction, and a Lambda LIterary Award. Alison resides in Brooklyn, NY. For more information, visit