Barthelme Prize for Short Prose

Deadline Extended to September 15th

The Barthelme Prize for Short Prose is open to pieces of prose poetry, flash fiction, and micro-essays of 500 words or fewer. Established in 2008, the contest awards its winner $1,000 and publication in the journal. Two honorable mentions will receive $250, and all entries will be considered for paid publication on our website as Online Exclusives.

All entrants to the Barthelme Prize receive a one-year subscription to Gulf Coast, beginning with the year in which the corresponding prize winner is published.

We will accept submissions both via our online submissions manager and via postal mail.

Barthelme Prize Guidelines: Online Submissions

  • Submissions accepted via Gulf Coast's online submissions manager.
  • Submit up to three pieces of short prose in a single .doc, .docx, .rtf, or .pdf file.
  • Only previously unpublished work will be considered.
  • The contest will be judged blindly, so please do not include your cover letter, your name, or any contact information in the uploaded document. This information should only be pasted in the "Comments" field.

Barthelme Prize Guidelines: Postal Mail Submissions

  • Only previously unpublished work will be considered.
  • Please address postal mail entries to:
    Gulf Coast
    ATTN: Barthelme Prize in Short Prose
    Department of English
    University of Houston
    Houston, TX 77204-3013
  • The contest will be judged blindly, so your contact information should appear only on your cover letter.
  • Please include your $18 reading fee, payable in U.S. dollars to "Gulf Coast."