2020 Sensations Magazine Best Newcomer Contest:  "Global Warming"

IMPORTANT NOTE!   THE 2020 SENSATIONS MAGAZINE BEST NEWCOMER CONTEST IS OPEN ONLY TO U.S.-BASED POETS WHO HAVE NEVER BEEN PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED IN SENSATIONS MAGAZINE - If you, at any point, have been published in Sensations Magazine, these are NOT your submission requirements.  Use the Contact button to contact the Publisher for details on renewing your subscription for 2020.  Upon receipt of your subscription renewal, your 2020 submission requirements will be hard copy mailed with the first items we send.

If you have NEVER been previously published in Sensations Magazine, here is your 2020 invitation:





Sensations Magazine Supplement 10, "Global Warming," will be divided into four subsections, with a research article opening or closing each section.  Contest entrants will be able to submit one poem to each of three subsections; 2020 subscribers will be able to submit poetry in all four subsections.


One First Place Award - $40, publication of all 3 poems, receipt of one copy of Supplement 10 and one back issue of our choosing

One Second Place Award - $20, publication of 2 poems, receipt of one copy of Supplement 10 and one back issue of our choosing

Multiple Third Place Awards - Publication of 2 poems and receipt of one copy of Supplement 10

Multiple Fourth Place Awards - Publication of 1 poem and receipt of one copy of Supplement 10

Regardless of the total number of contest entrants, First to Fourth Place Awards will be issued.  The number of total awards will be determined by the quality of entries and number of entrants. 


1.  SUBSECTIONS:  Poem 1:  "The Gathering Storm" (factors that got us to this point of global warming).  Poem 2:  "Paths to Salvation" (ways in which we can stop, slow down, or reduce global warming).  Poem 3:  "What the Future Could Bring" (what could happen if we don't succeed).

2.  LINE LIMITATIONS & STYLES:  Countin each line break as one line, you may submit one poem of 14-18 lines; one poem of 14-30 lines; and one poem of 14-60 lines.  We welcome free verse, and poetry in such forms as pantoums, sestinas, sonnets, and villanelles.  No concrete poetry.  No forms under 14 lines (haiku, cinquain, etc.).

3.  LINE LENGTH LIMITATION ON ALL POEMS:  Selected poems will be published in triple-column format, so in each poem, do not exceed 45 characters per line.  For each M-dash included on a line, reduce that total by 5 characters.
4.  POEM PREPARATION:  No self-identifying information on any printed poem.  Submit each poem on a separate printed page.  Each poem must be titled.  Submit only new, previously unpublished poems that you have authored.  Sorry, no electronic submissions will be accepted.  Do not send originals.  Poems will not be returned.

5.  COVER SHEET PREPARATION:  On a separate page, include (1) your name (as you would like it to appear in print, if selected for publication), regular mailing address, and email address; (2) the titles of your poems; (3) your original source research information that inspired each poem (book title/author, Internet or YouTube video link, etc. - 1-2 sources per poem is sufficient); and (4) a bio of no more than 500 characters.  Include your website string, if relevant.

6.  ENTRY FEE PREPARATION:  Make a personal check for $10 payable to "David Messineo" ONLY and put "2020 Contest" in the MEMO section.  The $10 total fee is required, whether you choose to submit 1, 2, or 3 poems in total.  If your personal check bounces (it has happened), your poems will not be considered until you pay the roughly $35 bank fee for a bounced check - and you'll hear from me directly, quickly, if this happens.  Sorry, we do not accept PayPal, credit cards, or any online bill/credit paying system.

7.  MAILING PACKET PREPARATION:  Put one copy each of your 1-3 poems; the cover sheet with all the details; and your personal check entry fee into an envelope, and mail it all to "David Messineo, Sensations Magazine, P.O. Box 132, Lafayette, NJ 07848-0132."

8.  POSTMARK DEADLINE:  Your packet must be postmarked BETWEEN MARCH 1 AND JUNE 29, 2020 to be considered.

9.  CONFIRMATION OF ENTRY:  Each contest entrant will be send, to the mailing address you provide, a packet of tear sheets of poems, on various themes, that were previously published in past Sensations Magazine issues.  Once this envelope arrives, you will know that we have received your entry.

10.  HOLD OFF ON SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS:  We ask that you do not simultaneously submit your submissions elsewhere until after July 15, 2020.  We aim to respond within a week or two after the June 29, 2020 postmark deadline.

11.  NO SASE REQUIRED & NO POEM RETRACTION:  Poems will not be returned, and winners/acceptances will be notified by email, and posted on the Acceptances button on this website in July 2020.  Once acceptance has been emailed, no accepted poem may be retracted from publication.

12.  ALL DECISIONS BY THE JUDGE ARE FINAL:  Publisher/Poetry Editor David Messineo solely will judge all submitted poems, and his 2020 Best Newcomer Poetry Contest decisions will be final.


1.  Upon receipt of your submissions and payment, we will mail you one "Poetry Sampler" - an envelope containing 3 previously published poems/tear sheets - which (along with your cancelled check) will be your confirmation that we have received your contest entries.

2.  The judging of all entries will begin on the postmark deadline of June 29.  All poetry selections will be made by Publisher/Poetry Editor David Messineo, whose decisions will be final.

3.  Email notification of contest winners will be sent by July 15.

4.  Supplement 10 will debut in Lafayette, NJ on Sunday afternoon August 2, 2020.  Those published in Supplement 10 will be invited to attend its debut, at their own travel/lodging expense.

5.  Supplement 10 will be mailed after August 3, 2020, and should be arrive to all recipients by August 15, 2020.


1.  For the Global Warming theme, we are especially interested in lesser-known true stories, relayed via poetry, that are backed by personal research, as well as ones that take interesting and unusual creative spins.

2.  Judging will consider both subject and craft.  In light of that, we will be looking for such craft elements as alliteration, assonance, internal rhyme, etc.

3.  If sending any poetry in form, note we prefer traditional form.  Show us you know how to write a good poem in form, whether sestina, sonnet, pantoum, villanelle, or something else.  Be sure to keep within the 45-character-per-line limit stated above.

5.  Make sure everything is spelled correctly.  Sloppiness and/or not caring will not get you published.

Best of luck to all our 2020 contest entrants!