February Deadlines: 9 Contests and Prizes

January 28, 2022

It may not be a leap year, but you can still make this a special February! Take a look at these contests, figure out your favorites, and then let your heart decide!

American Short(er) Fiction Prize

American Short Fiction and judge Brandon Hobson are looking for writers who know their way around flash fiction – could that be you? Stories must be less than 1000 words, but multiple entries are allowed! First place receives $1000 and guaranteed publication, and all entries are considered for publication. Details here.

Entry Fee: $17 Deadline: February 1

Michael Waters Poetry Prize

There’s only a little time left to enter Southern Indiana Review’s writing contest for poetry collections! Entries must be written in English, and be less than 100 pages. Judged by Michael Waters himself, the first-place winner is awarded $5000 and their collection will be published by Southern Indiana Review Press. Don’t miss it!

Entry Fee: $25 Deadline: February 1

Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing

This amazing residency is offered to two writers through Bucknell University, and the winners receive a stipend of $5000 and four months of lodging. They’re looking for fiction and literary nonfiction writers over the age of 21 who are not enrolled in a college or university. You’ll need a 20 page sample of your prose, but this could be the opportunity for you! Learn more here.

Entry Fee: FREE Deadline: February 1

Slippery Elm Prize

This annual contest from Slippery Elm Literary Journal is looking for the best in both poetry and prose! Benjamin Busch is judging in poetry, up to three poems per entry. M. O. Walsh is judging in prose, with a 5000 word maximum. The winner of each contest receives $1000, and all entries are considered for publication in the 2022 print issue. Submit here!

Entry Fee: $15 Deadline: February 1

William van Dyke Short Story Prize

If you have a story to tell, Ruminate wants to hear it! Judged by the wonderful Morgan Talty, the first-place prize is $1000 and publication. He is looking for stories that “grab me, give me hope, and change me for the better.” Submissions need to be 5500 words or less, but there are no limits on the number of entries per person. Submit here.

Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: February 1

The Mary McCarthy Prize in Short Fiction

Sarabande Books has been around for over a quarter of a century, and now you can be a part of that history! Their contest is open to any short fiction writer in English, and submissions can vary from short story collections to novellas. Judged by Susan Minot, she’s awarding $2000, publication of the manuscript, and a standard royalty contract to the winner! All finalists are considered for publication. Learn more here!

Entry Fee: $29 Deadline: February 15

Sustainable Arts Foundation Award

If you have ever juggled being a parent and a writer, this is opportunity knocking! The Sustainable Arts Foundation is awarding $5000 each to twenty writers and artists, who inspire us by making creative work while raising a family. Writers can apply in creative nonfiction, fiction, graphic novels, young adult fiction, poetry, and more. Applications must include personal information, artistic information, and a portfolio. Submission guidelines here.

Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: February 25

Flash Fiction Prize

This annual contest from Fish Publishing is a true challenge – can you write a compelling and resolved story in 300 words or less? Judged by Tracey Slaughter, first place receives $1130 and publication, and the other nine finalists are published as well. See more here!

Entry Fee: $16 Deadline: February 28

Women’s Prose Prize

This contest is now held only on even-numbered years by Red Hen Press, but the prize is for any and all women writers with a previously unpublished, original work of prose! Acceptable submissions include novels, short story collections, memoirs, and essay collections, between 25,000 and 80,000 words. The winner, selected by judge Melanie Conroy-Goldman, receives $1000 and publication by Red Hen Press. Learn more here!

Entry Fee: $25 Deadline: February 28


by Kimberly Guerin


At The Masters Review, our mission is to support emerging writers. We only accept submissions from writers who can benefit from a larger platform: typically, writers without published novels or story collections or with low circulation. We publish fiction and nonfiction online year-round and put out an annual anthology of the ten best emerging writers in the country, judged by an expert in the field. We publish craft essays, interviews and book reviews and hold workshops that connect emerging and established writers.

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