We read submissions year-round with our tip jar submissions, and until we run out of our monthly allotment of free submissions. If the free submission option isn't available check back at the beginning of the next month. See individual categories for genre guidelines.
We pay at least $20 a piece—the author's payment rising with the more tip jar submissions we receive. We happily accept simultaneous submissions providing you notify us in a timely manner if a piece is accepted elsewhere with a note in Submittable. We also read blind—only looking at cover letters after reading and deciding upon the piece so do not include your name in the file name or in the document. Submissions will ideally be responded to within 2 weeks, but if you haven't heard from us within 3 months drop a note in your submission to check that we're still breathing.
Additionally, all submissions will receive a few short notes from the editor about the pieces submitted, and sometimes suggestions of writers we think you'd enjoy or other magazines you might try with your writing, because hey, we're submitting writers too. Even if your piece isn't for us it might be absolutely perfect elsewhere. A rejection is in no way a value judgement on the piece—it merely doesn't fit into the vision we have for the current issue/s.
Hard Sells: For poetry: Hard end rhyme (but a well disguised rhyme via enjambment is another story), A preponderance of abstractions, Archaic syntactical inversions. That's about it. For prose: Bland writing. Straightforward is fine, and genre writing is fine as long as there's more to it that just a series of events and world building—there should be a 'point' or a reason to read the story other than just being a short diversion. As always, edit ruthlessly and send us your best stuff.
Writers we admire: Too many to name, but a couple dozen or so would be Campbell McGrath, Kurt Vonnegut, Amy Hempel, Li-Young Lee, Jhumpa Lahiri, Russell Edson, James Tate, Barry Hannah, Denis Johnson, Kim Addonizio, Yusef Komunyakaa, Charles Harper Webb, Dorianne Laux, Luis Alberto Urrea, David Kirby, Cormac McCarthy, Tobias Wolff, Stephen Dunn, Frank O'Hara, Tim O'Brien, Lydia Davis, Virgil Suarez, Richard Siken, Dean Young, Kay Ryan, Charles Simic, Steve Kowit, Barbara Hamby, Denise Duhamel, Gaylord Brewer, Emma Bolden, Gerald Locklin, Raymond Carver, Theodore Roethke, Marilyn Chin, Nick Flynn, Nick Lantz, Gary Snyder, Flannery O'Connor , T.R. Hummer, D.A. Powell, T.C. Boyle and, oh, I don't know, how about some W.S. Merwin since we're doing the initials.
Pay it Forward Submission fees go entirely toward paying authors. Pay it Forward Submissions will also receive more detailed feedback than a standard submission as well as good karma.
Poetry should be under 80 lines. Submit 1-5 pieces.
Fiction/NonFiction should be under 2000 words. Submit up to three (3) short prose pieces, or if they're under 600 words up to six (6).
Long Form should be just one (1) piece under 6000 words for prose, or poetry 80-300 lines.