January Deadlines: 15 Lit Mags and Contests With Deadlines This Month

January 4, 2017

There are a lot of writing resolutions made in the New Year, so stay motivated with these January deadlines from our favorite publications. The only way to publish is to submit work… so DO IT!

Featured! The Masters Review Short Story Award For New Writers

$2000 and publication to the first place story! $200 and $100 for second and third place, and agency review to any honorable mentions. All three agencies that reviewed stories this summer are participating in our winter award. That means Amy Williams, Victoria Marini, and Laura Biagi will review the winners. Details here.
Entry Fee: $20 Deadline: January 15

Notting Hill Editions Essay Prize

Essay writers, this one’s for you! A prize of £20,000 (approximately $26,600) will be given biennially. Five runner-up prizes of £1,000 (approximately $1,330) will also be awarded. For submission details and judges, visit the publication’s website. Essays up to 8,000 words are allowed. More details here.
Entry Fee: $27 Deadline: January 9

PRISM International – The Jacob Zilber Prize for Short Fiction

Don’t let the steep entry fee put you off. Each entry includes a one-year subscription or subscription extension for PRISM international, and each additional entry is only $5, so if you have a bulk of stories you’d like to submit, this contest is for you. $1,500 for the grand prize, $600 to the runner-up, and $400 to the second runner-up. Learn more here.
Entry Fee: $40 for US Deadline: January 15

Ellen Meloy Fund – Nonfiction Prize

Writing about the desert is a great way to warm up this winter. A prize of $3,000 is given to enable a creative nonfiction writer “whose work reflects the spirit and passions for the desert embodied in Ellen Meloy’s writing” to spend creative time in a desert environment. Send up to 10 pages. Details here.
No Fee!
Deadline: January 15

Room Magazine Short Forms Contest

We love a great flash fiction contest. Room Magazine will award $500 and publication to two winners whose work is less than 500 words. Accepted forms include: one or two prose poems, flash fictions, or flash creative non-fictions, as long as they are below word count. Details here.
Entry Fee: $42 USD to enter and $7 USD for each additional entry. Deadline: January 15

Breakwater Review Fiction Contest

A prize of $1,000 and publication in Breakwater Review is awarded. ZZ Packer to judge! Submit a story of up to 5,000 words by the deadline to be considered. All entries are considered for publication in the journal. Submit here.
Entry Fee: 
$10 Deadline: January 15

Literal Latté – K. Margaret Grossman Fiction Award

Send your best fiction under 10,000 words for a chance at $1,000 and publication with Literal Latte. $300 and $200 go to the runners up. Full submission guidelines here.
Entry Fee: 
$10 for one or $15 for two Deadline: January 15

Ploughshares General Submissions

Fiction, Poetry, and Nonfiction. Writers, now is your chance to have work under consideration from the venerable Ploughshares before they close to submissions. Send work in any genre that is less than 6000 words, or less than 5 poems. Submission details here.
Entry Fee:
$3  Deadline: January 15

Third Coast – Fiction and Poetry Contest

Judged by the incredible Desiree Cooper and Natalie Diaz! Third Coast is accepting submissions less than 9000 words and 3 poems until January 15. $1,000 and publication in each category is awarded. Learn more.
Entry Fee:
$16  Deadline: January 15

New Millennium Writings

Four prizes of $1,000 each and publication in New Millennium Writings are given twice yearly for a poem, a short story, a short short story, and a work of nonfiction (including creative nonfiction). Previously unpublished works or works that have appeared in a journal with a circulation of under 5,000 are eligible. Full details here.
Entry Fee:
$20  Deadline: January 31

Iowa Review Awards – Fiction, Poetry, Nonfiction

Don’t miss this one! $1,500 and publication is awarded in all three categories: poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Joyelle McSweeney, Amelia Gray, and Charles D’Ambrosio will judge, respectively. Full details and guidelines here. Entry Fee: $20  Deadline: January 31

Crazyhorse Literary Prizes

Crazyhorse is also offering prizes in three categories, awarding $2,000 for the best poem, story, and essay. Ada Limn, Justin Torres, and Robin Hemley are judging. Up to three poems and 25 pages can be submitted. Submit here.
Entry Fee:
$20  Deadline: January 31

Center For Fiction – New York Emerging Writers Fellowship

We love this fellowship! $5,000 each, membership to the Center for Fiction in New York City, and access to writing space at the Center are given annually to fiction writers living in New York City who have not yet published a book of fiction. There are a lot of specifics, so read the guidelines, here.
No Fee!
Deadline: January 31

The Kenyon Review Short Fiction Contest

This short fiction contest is open to all writers who have not yet published a book. Submissions must be 1,200 words or fewer and you can only submit one piece. Lee K. Abbott to judge! Full guidelines, here.
Entry Fee:
$22 Deadline: January 31

Autumn House Rising Writer Award – Poetry

The Rising Writer Contest is for a first full-length book of poetry by an author 33 years old or younger. The final judge is Ada Limón. The winner will be awarded publication of a full-length manuscript and $1,000. Send up to 80 pages. Guidelines and details here.
Entry Fee:
$25 Deadline: January 31


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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