Magazines and Contests with Deadlines in September

September 17, 2014

Goodbye summer school, hello normal school. Fall means a wealth of huge literary contests. There might be money; there will almost definitely be publication. But you don’t do it for any of those things, I know. You do it for the mail. So enter some of these here contests. Digital or snail, there will certainly be mail involved.

American Academy In Berlin  Whoa, hit the ground running, eh? How ambitious of you. Though are you sure you want to take time out of your life that could be spent applying to literary journals and contests that might be a better fit for . . . what’s that? They give the Berlin Prize Fellowship recipients a $5000 monthly stipend, airfare, and lodging in beautiful Berlin?! Go ahead, submit. NO ENTRY FEE Due: September 29

California State University – Perhaps this is more our speed: a domestic contest, with prizes that include payment and publication. CSU’s Anhinga Press awards the Phillip Levine Prize in Poetry annually to the best poetry collection. Check it. Entry fee: $25. Due: September 30

Glimmer Train Press – What would a deadlines post be without the Train gang? This month, their Family Matters contest seeks the best stories about “families of all configurations.” All they ask, in no uncertain terms, is that you don’t throw anyone under the bus too flagrantly. Submit here. Entry: $15. Due: September 30

Puritan Magazine  The Thomas Morton Memorial Prize in Literary Excellence is awarded to the single best submission in the respective categories of poetry and fiction. The judges for this year’s prize are Margaret Atwood (for poetry) and Zsuzsi Gartner (for fiction). Submit now! Entry: $15. Due: September 30

Hackney Literary Awards – Thirty bucks by the thirtieth to get dirty and flirty with the Alabama hurdy gurdy. Oh my god, that makes no sense, I’m so sorry. This contest is for an unpublished novel. Peep the deets. Entry: $30. Due: September 30

American Literary Review – “Three prizes of $1,000 each and publication in American Literary Review are given annually for a poem, a short story, and an essay.” I know that deep in the heart of Texas they do everything bigger, but the ALR website states some explicit maximum word lengths for this contest. Check out the details here.  Entry: $15. Due: October 1

Zoetrope: All Story – At this point, Zoetrope is a name that is synonymous with quality short fiction. Winning submissions of their Short Fiction Contest are considered for representation by some of the most prestigious literary agencies in the world. Go for it. Entry: $20. Due: October 1

Harvard University – If you simply must know what all the fuss is about, I suggest you apply for one of Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute Fellowships. It’ll net you $75,000 and office space at the Institute. Details are here, in case you’re a world famous writer perusing our lowly deadlines round-up. If that is the case, please also check out the Guggenheim Fellowships, the Cullman Fellowships, or those damn Pulitzers, which are also due at the end of the month in case you have any juice left in your iWatch to send the applications. All of these fall under the category of If You Win, It Goes In Your Obit. NO ENTRY FEE. Due: October 1

The Missouri Review Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize  This is a big one. The Missouri Review awards $5000 to the winning work of fiction, $5000 to the winning poetry submission, and $5000 to the winning essay. This contest is heading into its 24th year and previous champions have gone on to be published in the Best American series, among other publications. Guidelines here. Entry: $20. Due: October 1

Masters Review – “In honor of our favorite month of the year, we’re holding a contest for the best short story that embodies the hair-raising, spine-chilling, disturbing, and scary nature of October.” That’s me quoting the royal We, as in the Masters Review Crew. Which is to say we’re hosting a damned fine writing contest about the damned. There is a $$$ prize and !!! publication for the lucky so-and-so who can bring the pain to our cranial. Enter here. Entry: $13. Due: October 15

by Andrew Wetzel


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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