David Hamilton Prize


To honor the editorship, mentorship, and friendship of David Hamilton, who was editor of The Iowa Review for more than 30 years, we are pleased to host the David Hamilton Prize for Iowa Review Alumni, a biennial contest that launched in 2017.

In the spirit of David Hamilton’s support and encouragement of his students and their writing, anyone who has worked for The Iowa Review, whether as paid staff or volunteer reader, and whose name is listed as such on the masthead of a back issue of the magazine, is eligible to enter the contest (with the exception of genre editors, who cannot enter the contest in the same calendar year they worked for TIR).

The prize will be $1,000 and publication in The Iowa Review. The winner will be selected by the current editor of The Iowa Review.

The schedule for the next three contests is as follows:

2021 Contest: Fiction | 2023 Contest: Poetry | 2025 Contest: Nonfiction 

2021 Contest Rules: Fiction

  • The contest is open to former staff, volunteers, and interns of The Iowa Review (TIR) from any era, with the exception of genre editors (fiction, poetry, nonfiction) who graduated the same year as the contest is being held.
  • Please indicate on your cover letter what year(s) and in what capacity you worked for TIR.
  • Submit a fiction manuscript of up to 6,000 words, double-spaced.
  • Work must be previously unpublished.
  • Submit at iowareview.submittable.com. If accessibility issues prevent you from using Submittable, please email iowa-review@uiowa.edu for instructions.
  • Submissions will be accepted between May 1 and June 1, 2021.
  • Current students, faculty, or staff of the University of Iowa are not eligible to enter the contest. 

The David Hamilton Prize for Iowa Review Alumni is funded by a generous contribution from anonymous donors.

About David Hamilton

David Hamilton, emeritus professor of English at the University of Iowa, served as editor of The Iowa Review from 1978 through 2009. While at the University of Iowa he taught literature, both medieval and modern, and in the Nonfiction Writing Program. He is the author of Deep River: A Memoir of a Missouri Farm (University of Missouri Press) and Ossabaw: Poems (Salt Modern Poets Series).

For more information, email:

iowa-review@uiowa.edu