Literary Journal Reading Periods (General Submissions)

Submission Tracker

Literary Journal Reading Periods (General Submissions)

Writing isn't just about writing—it's about submitting your work far and wide, increasing your chances of landing those essential publication credits. We know that navigating the expanses of the literary industry can be daunting, and we want to help! This list of 25 top-rated literary journals (in no particular order) is a great place to start! Do you know of a journal to add? Contact us with all the details!


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F(r)iction

F(r)iction

F(r)iction is different. The brainchild of a ragtag team of editors, artists, and writers, F(r)iction is the best of everything we’ve ever loved. F(r)iction is experimental. F(r)iction is strange. F(r)iction pokes the soft spots, touches nerves most would rather remain protected. F(r)iction is secrets and truths and most importantly—stories. F(r)iction is weird, in every respect. Printed triannually and distributed around the world, F(r)iction publishes short fiction, flash fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, in addition to a selection of graphic stories.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: All year (print and online)

Conjunctions

Conjunctions

Bard College’s literary, biannual, book-length journal Conjunctions publishes innovative fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction by emerging voices and contemporary masters. For over three decades, Conjunctions has challenged accepted forms and styles, with equal emphasis on groundbreaking experimentation and rigorous quality. The print and e-book anthologies generally collect pieces that form a conversation around a central theme—obsession, doppelgängers, black comedy, new-wave fabulism, novellas, works in progress, Caribbean writing, and so on.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: All year (print and online)

One Story

One Story

One Story is an award-winning, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit literary publisher committed to supporting the art form of the short story and the authors who write them—through One Story, One Teen Story, education, community, and mentorship. One Story is devoted to the development and support of emerging writers. It has published over 250 authors in One Story and One Teen Story, many at the beginning of their careers. Since 2002, One Story has published over 200 writers, and is now one of the largest circulating literary magazines in the country, with over 15,000 readers.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–May 1

Ploughshares

Ploughshares

Ploughshares is best known for its print literary journal, but it also publishes the digital-first Ploughshares Solos series and annual print Solos Omnibus anthology, as well as the Ploughshares Blog and Newsletter. Published three times per year, the journal features fiction, nonfiction, and poetry as well as a Look2 essay, an essay series that seeks to publish pieces about underappreciated or overlooked writers. Two out of three issues per year are guest-edited by a prominent writer who explores different literary circles; the Winter issue of each year is staff-edited.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: June 1–January 15 (print)

A Public Space

A Public Space

A Public Space is an independent magazine of literature and culture. It was founded in 2006. A Public Space seeks work that is brave and unexpected. They are interested in writing that uncovers the extraordinary in the everyday, provides a rare glimpse, exposes an unexpected truth, or puts forth a daring hypothesis. There are no boundaries or stipulations with the exception of requiring authenticity, curiosity, and an honest voice.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 15–April 15 (print)

The Kenyon Review

The Kenyon Review

Kenyon Review began in 1939 in Gambier, Ohio affiliated with Kenyon College. With a bold new design, the Kenyon Review has transformed itself from one of America’s most important literary magazines, publishing groundbreaking work by both Nobel Prize–winning authors and daring new voices, to a fresh, exciting, and timely multi-platform publication, reaching out to a diverse audience.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 15–November 1 (can change on yearly basis) (print)

Tin House

Tin House

Tin House offers an artful and irreverent array of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and interviews as well as columns on food and drink, out-of-print and underappreciated books, and a literary crossword puzzle. Perhaps most indicative of the magazine’s mission to stake out new territory and showcase not only established, prize-winning authors is its commitment that every issue include the work of an undiscovered fiction writer and poet.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: March and September (print and online)

The Southern Review

The Southern Review

The Southern Review is one of the nation’s premier literary journals. Hailed by Time as “superior to any other journal in the English language,” The Southern Review has made literary history since their founding in 1935. They publish a diverse array of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry by the country’s—and the world’s—most respected contemporary writers.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–December 1 (print)

Zoetrope: All Story

Zoetrope: All Story

Zoetrope: All-Story, is a quarterly magazine devoted to the best new short fiction and one-act plays. It has received every major story award, including the National Magazine Award for Fiction, while publishing today’s most promising and significant writers. Along with new stories, each edition of the magazine presents a Classic Reprint—a previously published short story that inspired a great film—to illustrate the narrative relationship between the art forms. It is also an art magazine, as the editors invite a different contemporary artist to illustrate and design each issue.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: January 1–August 31/September (print and online)

The Paris Review

The Paris Review

The Paris Review hopes to emphasize creative work—fiction and poetry—not to the exclusion of criticism, but with the aim in mind of merely removing criticism from the dominating place it holds in most literary magazines. Decade after decade, the Review has introduced the important writers of the day. Adrienne Rich was first published in its pages, as were Philip Roth, V. S. Naipaul, T. Coraghessan Boyle, Mona Simpson, Edward P. Jones, and Rick Moody. In addition to the focus on original creative work, the founding editors found another alternative to criticism—letting the authors talk about their work themselves.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: All year, by mail. Maximum: four submissions per year (print and online)

Virginia Quarterly Review

Virginia Quarterly Review

From its inception in prohibition, through depression and war, in prosperity and peace, the Virginia Quarterly Review has been a haven—and home—for the best essayists, fiction writers, and poets, seeking contributors from every section of the United States and abroad. It has not limited itself to any special field. No topic has been alien: literary, public affairs, the arts, history, the economy. VQR has thus made good its purpose of becoming a national publication of popularity and prestige, of independence and integrity.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: July 1–31 (print and online)

Ecotone

Ecotone

Founded at the University of North Carolina Wilmington in 2005, this award-winning magazine features writing and art that reimagine place, and our authors interpret this charge expansively. An ecotone is a transition zone between two adjacent ecological communities, containing the characteristic species of each. It is therefore a place of danger or opportunity, a testing ground. The magazine explores the ecotones between landscapes, literary genres, scientific and artistic disciplines, modes of thought.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: August 15–October 1 / December 15–February 1 (changes on yearly basis) (print)

Glimmer Train

Glimmer Train

This handsome tri-annual journal, run by two sisters, continues to actively champion emerging writers. Forty percent of all the stories presented in the last year were their authors’ first stories accepted for print publication. They know how much goes into writing a story you care about, and it is their great pleasure to read your work.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: March/April, July/August (print)

AGNI

AGNI

AGNI see literature and the arts as part of a broad, ongoing cultural conversation that every society needs to remain vibrant and alive. Their writers and artists hold a mirror up to nature, mankind, the world; they courageously reflect their age, for better or worse; and their work provokes perceptions and thoughts that help us understand and respond to our age. Another important aspect of AGNI’s editorial history and vision is its abiding interest in the important cultural questions that concern us all, both domestically and internationally.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–May 31 (print and online)

Crazyhorse

Crazyhorse

Founded by the poet Tom McGrath in Los Angeles in 1960, Crazyhorse continues to be one of the finest, most influential literary journals published today. Past contributors include such renowned authors as John Updike, Raymond Carver, Jorie Graham, John Ashbery, Robert Bly, Ha Jin, W. P. Kinsella, Richard Wilbur, James Wright, Carolyn Forché, Charles Simic, Charles Wright, Billy Collins, Galway Kinnell, James Tate, and Franz Wright.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–May 31

Granta

Granta

From Nobel laureates to debut novelists, international translations to investigative journalism, each themed issue of Granta turns the attention of the world’s best writers on to one aspect of the way we live now. Granta does not have a political or literary manifesto, but it does have a belief in the power and urgency of the story and its supreme ability to describe, illuminate and make real.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: Poetry: October 3–November 3 / Fiction: January 16–February 16 / Nonfiction: April 24–May 24 (print and online)

Guernica

Guernica

Guernica is an award-winning magazine of ideas, art, poetry, and fiction published twice monthly. Guernica Daily, the magazine’s blog, is updated every weekday. Guernica contributors come from dozens of countries and write in nearly as many languages. They include acclaimed writers like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Bei Dao, J. Malcolm Garcia, Mark Dowie, Lis Harris, Jonathan Steele, George Szirtes, Adonis, Victoria Redel, Norman Solomon, Richard Howard, Julian Rios, Edith Grossman, Sasha Polakow-Suransky, Tom Engelhardt, Tariq Ali…

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: All year (online)

McSweeney’s

McSweeney’s

McSweeney’s began in 1998 as a literary journal that published only works rejected by other magazines. That rule was soon abandoned, and since then McSweeney’s has attracted work from some of the finest writers in the country. Each issue of the quarterly is completely redesigned. There have been hardcovers and paperbacks, an issue with two spines, an issue with a magnetic binding, an issue that looked like a bundle of junk mail, and an issue that looked like a sweaty human head.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: Currently closed (Oct. 2016)

Noon

Noon

Rachel Syme of The New York Times described the magazine as “a beautiful annual that remains staunchly avant-garde in its commitment to work that is oblique, enigmatic and impossible to ignore…stories that leave a flashbulb’s glow behind the eyes even as they resist sense.”

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: Mail, all year (print and online)

Threepenny Review

Threepenny Review

Founded in 1980 and published in Berkeley, California, Threepenny Review publishes poetry, fiction, criticism, and memoirs. The appeal of the magazine lies partly in its offbeat combinations of the tried-and-true with the deeply unexpected.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: January 1–June 30 (online)

The Atlantic

The Atlantic

From editor C. Micael Curtis: “We hoped for a balance between well-known writers and beginning writers, and I think we have that. It was a matter of finding work that we thought was interesting and unusual and would be read with satisfaction by the kind of reader who cares about Atlantic fiction.” The magazine was founded in 1857 in Boston, Massachusetts and it publishes well-known writers and new writers. It is one of the oldest and most respected journals that publishes fiction alongside political, social, and economic articles.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: All year by email with pitch in body of email (print and online)

The Georgia Review

The Georgia Review

The Georgia Review makes thoughtful choices about writing, art, typography, and design that come that together in a beautiful physical object that captures some of the best of contemporary culture and is itself an artistic creation—tangible, vital, and lasting. Founded at the University of Georgia in 1947 and published there ever since, The Georgia Review has become one of America’s most highly regarded journals of arts and letters. Each quarterly issue offers a diverse, thoughtfully orchestrated gathering of short stories, general-interest essays, poems, reviews, and visual art.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: August 16–May 14 (print and online)

The Gettysburg Review

The Gettysburg Review

The Gettysburg Review, published by Gettysburg College, is recognized as one of the country’s premier literary journals. Their most important criterion is high literary quality; they look for writers who can shape language in thoughtful, surprising, and beautiful ways and who have something unique to say, whatever the subject matter or aesthetic approach. They have very eclectic tastes, but are highly selective, publishing only two percent of manuscripts submitted to them annually.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–May 31

The Sun

The Sun

The Sun is an independent, ad-free magazine that for more than forty years has used words and photographs to evoke the splendor and heartache of being human. Each monthly issue celebrates life, but not in a way that ignores its complexity. The personal essays, short stories, interviews, poetry, and photographs that appear in The Sun’s pages explore the challenges we face and the moments when we rise to meet them.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: Mail, all year (print)

New England Review

New England Review

By publishing new fiction, poetry, and nonfiction that is both challenging and inviting, New England Review encourages artistic exchange and thought-provoking innovation, providing publishing opportunities for writers at all stages in their careers. The selection of writings in each issue presents a broad spectrum of viewpoints and genres, including traditional and experimental fiction, long and short poems, translations, criticism, letters from abroad, reviews in arts and literature, and rediscoveries.

Unsolicited Submissions: yes

Reading Period: September 1–May 31 (may be subject to change due to size of volume) (print and online)

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