All submissions must be submitted online. Please observe our submission periods (see calendar below); we will automatically reject any manuscript that does not fit the theme or genre of that submission period. We do not publish previously published materials. Prose writers should send one manuscript (17 pages or less); poets should send three to five poems. Iron Horse accepts simultaneous submissions but please inform us immediately if a submission has been taken elsewhere. For further information on any topic, email us at


single author issue/chapbook: Each year, we publish one issue as a chapbook. The genre rotates: essays/stories/hybrid prose collections; short fiction/novellas; and poetry collections. Prose chapbooks should be 40-56 pages, double-spaced; poetry collections should be 28-36 pages, one poem per page. Submissions due every year, approximately from January 15 through March 15. Fee: $18, which includes a year's subscription. Winner receives $1,000 and 15 copies.

video literature: Submit your video essays, stories, and poems in January through March.

the trifecta: Send us your marathon-long manuscripts every Oct/Nov.

the photofinish

Flash prose (less than 500 words) & short poems (up to 15 lines). Respond to our photo prompt, posted online in May. Winner: $250. Nine finalists are published in the e-edition, released at midnight on Dec 31. $5 fee. Submit every June.


We open the gate for NewsFlash submissions every Monday. NewsFlash are brief responses to immediate current events (flash prose: 800 words or less; poems: up to 25 lines). We accept twenty submissions a week and publish the best online the following week.

craft talk

Essays appearing in the IHLR Craft Talk series are solicited, for now. 



We pay $100 for stories and essays, $50 for poems and flash prose. We pay $250 for Craft Talk essays as well as Trifecta winners. Chapbook winners are paid $1,000. We do not pay for every manuscript run as part of the IHLR NewsFlash, but we promote them heavily on social media. At the end of the year, we will award $200 to the best NewsFlash piece published that year.


If you want to know what poems, stories, and essays appeal to us, purchase a sample issue.


upcoming submission gates

22.2                      NaPoMo 2020                Sept 7 - Oct 11, 2019
June                     The Trifecta                    Oct 20 - Nov 17, 2019
22.3                      Open Issue                     Jan 3, 2019 - Feb 20, 2020
22.4                      Chapbook (Fiction)       
Jan 13 - May 1, 2020

23.1                      Feast                               Feb 15 - Apr 15, 2020

January                The PhotoFinish            July 1 - Aug 15, 2020

Year-Round          NewsFlash                     Sept 1, 2019 - May 15, 2020

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