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               gates open


ihlr book prize

june 15 - aug 15, 2024

We seek short story and essay collections between 150-250 pages from emerging writers, & particularly encourage writers from under-represented groups to submit. The winner receives $1,000 &  publication with Texas Tech University Press. All submissions will be considered for publication.


the photofinish

july 1 - aug 15, 2024

Every year on New Year's Eve, we'll publish an e-issue featuring ten short pieces of prose or poetry in response to a photo we post in May. Send us your best flash stories and essays (500 words or less) or your best poems (fifteen lines or less). Entry few: $5. First prize: $250. Ten finalists: $50 each.

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the long story

aug 15 - oct 15, 2023

Every fall, we accept submissions for the IHLR Long Story, which is your chance to publish those marathon-long essays and stories most journals won't consider. Length: 20 to 40 pages. Entry fee: $15 (which includes a subscription). The winner--either an essay or story--receives $1,000.

Image by Trust "Tru" Katsande


aug 15 - oct 15, 2023

Every year, during National Poetry Month, Iron Horse releases a special electronic issue dedicated to all things poetry. Send us your poems! Entry fee: $15 (which includes a subscription). The best poem receives $1,000. Nine other finalists receive $100 each. All ten are published.


unlawful acts, 26.2

oct 15 - nov 15, 2023

Send us your poems, stories, and essays that center around unlawful acts: misdemeanors to felonies, war crimes to white collar crimes, perpetrators in the home or at work.  We'll be especially happy to receive mss about breaking laws that shouldn't be laws in the first place.

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chapbook issue, 26.3

jan 15 - mar 15, 2024

Each year, Iron Horse publishes one issue as a chapbook. In 2024, we'll accept prose manuscripts, 40-56 pages in length. Entry fee: $18 (which includes a subscription). Winner receives $1,000 and 15 copies of their chapbook. For more details, go here.

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open issue, 27.1

feb 1 - mar 15, 2024

Poems, stories, essays on any topic.

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