Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Equestrian Voices Creative Writing Contest

General Guidelines

Entries for the 2019 Equestrian Voices Creative Writing Contest are open through November 1st, 2019.

The Equestrian Voices Creative Writing Contest is sponsored by The Plaid Horse, and promotes fine, literary prose involving horses and the equestrian experience. Works may be fiction short stories, or nonfiction essays. This contest is open to writers of fiction and non-fiction, regardless of any previous publications, and awards two prizes:

$1,000 The Plaid Horse Prize in Equestrian Literature
$500 The Piper J. Klemm Emerging Authors Prize

In addition, four honorable mentions will be chosen and awarded $250 each, plus publication in The Plaid Horse magazine.

The 2019 contest will be judged by The Plaid Horse editorial board and contributing writers. Works will be judged on quality of language, originality, level of engagement with the reader and interpretation of the award’s theme – the connection between horses and humans. Celebrate the special bond of horses through literary narrative.

2018 Winners

We are pleased to announce the winners for the 2018 contest!

The Plaid Horse Prize in Fiction

Winner: "Three Sisters" by Theresa Rice
Honorable Mentions: "Homecoming" by Shannon Fox and "Of Milk and Praise" by Anna Villegas

The Constance Wickes Prize in Creative Nonfiction

Winner: "Duet: A Braided Essay" by Paige Cerulli
Honorable Mentions: "Big Love Lessons" by Carolyn Getches and "Coming Back" by Elizabeth Oness

The Piper J. Klemm Emerging Authors Prize
Winner: "The Great Mongol Derby" by Noa Leibson

Keep your eyes on The Plaid Horse magazine and blog to read the winners, honorable mentions and finalists within the upcoming months!


The winning story or essay, emerging authors piece and honorable mentions will be published in a 2019-2020 edition of The Plaid Horse magazine. Each winner will receive a cash prize and copies of the issue in which their work appears.

All entries will be considered for publication in The Plaid Horse magazine or online publication.


  • All works must have an equestrian theme or include horses in some way.
  • Works may be fiction or narrative nonfiction.
  • * The Emerging Authors Prize is limited to scholastic writers under the age of 24 who are currently enrolled in high school or college.
  • Writers may submit for multiple prizes if they are eligible.
  • The 2018 winners for the Constance Wickes prize in nonfiction, Plaid Horse prize in Fiction, and Piper Klemm Emerging Authors prize are not eligible to enter in the same categories for the 2019 contest.
  • Honorable mention winners or authors previously published in The Plaid Horse blog or magazine are eligible to enter.


The contest opens July 9th, 2019 at noon EST and closes on October 15th, 2019 at noon EST. Winners will be announced in mid January 2020.

All submissions must be under 4,000 words.

Submit one entry per prize via Submittable.

  • No entries via e-mail or mail will be considered.
  • Submitted work must be original and previously unpublished in any form (Online publications/journals are considered published.)
  • International submissions welcome, but all works must be written in English.

Entry Fee

Entry to the contest requires a $20 fee, which includes a year’s subscription to The Plaid Horse magazine.

Submission Format

  • All work must be submitted in Times New Roman, double-spaced with 1” margins.
  • Include page numbers in the top right corner.
  • Include a title page with your address, phone number, e-mail address and the title of your submission.
  • Submitted documents should not contain any illustrations/photographs.

Terms & Conditions

  • By submitting your work, you grant The Plaid Horse first North American print and electronic publication rights and guarantee that the submission is your own, original writing. All rights return to the author after publication.
  • If the work is re-published at a later date, we request a notice that it first appeared in The Plaid Horse
  • The Plaid Horse will mark all contest entries as “IN-PROGRESS.” After the submission deadline when winners are announced, non-winning entries may be considered for general publication.