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We've published over 25 books, you can get our books HERE. You can see our awardee announcements, short lists, and long lists, full-length open book selections, and chapbook selections in the drop-down menu under our ABOUT section. 

Our Winter Full Length submissions for books of Poetry and Prose have a deadline of March 31, 2024. Please read more below for our full length, and contest guidelines, or see them on our submissions link below. 

We host two annual book awards. One in poetry and one in prose (fiction and nonfiction), alongside full-length open book submissions in poetry and prose.

Our 2024 Prize in Poetry and  2024 Prize in Prose with a 500$ Award and publication are open! The deadline for both are September 1, 2024.

All books submitted to the awards are considered for general publication. In addition to the winner, we look to publish 1-2 other titles from the pool of prize submissions and open submissions. Please click HERE for full guidelines.

About the Prizes

Each award winner receives book publication, a $500 prize, and a $1000 social media and advertising promotional  package.  All books submitted are considered for publication outside of the prize. In addition to the winner, we will look to publish 1-2 other titles. Our longlist, shortlist, and winners will be announced in December 2024.  We read blind and sometimes rely on guest judges (these will be announced prior to the prize opening if so). Our shortlist typically consists of 4-5 pieces, and our longlist 10-12. The $500 prize is an advance against royalties.

About Full-length Open Submissions

Our full-length book submission period for poetry and prose is open until March 31 for the 1st Quarter (Winter), the 2nd Quarter (Spring), 3rd Quarter (Summer), and 4th Quarter (Autumn) will be announced in succesion. Quartely full-length book submissions are read 

Steel Toe Books also hosts a non-contest open call for full-length manuscripts in Prose (Fiction, Short Stories, Essays, Memoir, and Mixed Genre), and Poetry. Please click HERE for full guidelines. The open category runs on a periodic basis. Typically, when one period ends another will open consecutively or soon thereafter. For deadlines, see our submittable page. We are looking to bring on 1-2 titles from the open and runner-up pool from the prize. Open submissions can take more chances and can subordinate prose to other story and craft elements; mainly, we want to connect with work.

In Addition, we have an open chapbook category which includes an honorarium, copies, and a promotional campaign! We publish 1-3 chapbooks per year depending on our catalog needs that will re-open in 2024. Please see our 2022 selection HERE  and our 2021 selection HERE, and our 2023 selection HERE

Response Times:

We announce prizes in December but reserve the right to move announcements according to our reading load, administrative necessity, and other important factors. Should announcements be delayed, we will post publicly on social media to let everyone know. All prize submissions will be responded to at the time of official prize announcements. For open submissions, it will generally take us 9-12 months to reply, sometimes less and occasionally more. If it's been 12 months or you have an offer and would like to check the status of your manuscript, please reach us through the Submittable interface or through social media. All 2023 full-length non-award open book and chapbook announcements will be made by April 1, 2024.

A Note on Re-Submissions / Edits:

Please take care to dot your i's and cross your t's. We cannot entertain most requests for edits once submitted. Folks are allowed to re-submit to the open or prizes, but it's typically best to allow some time to pass before resubmitting and/or to have worked on the piece in a substantial way. It's best not to re-submit to the open in the same year.

A Note on Polish:

We are expecting to read well-edited work. Pieces with major problems, including odd, unintentional formatting will find it difficult to be selected.

Please use direct messaging via social media for instructions on how to apply for a fee waiver if you are suffering hardship.

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