What we’re looking for: Send us writing that you’re excited about. Send us work that took courage to begin and tenacity to complete. Send us your personal essay, your classic short story, your reboot of the villanelle, or your weirdest experimental text. Send us your flash fiction or nonfiction. Send your epistle, erasure, hybrid, prose poem, or micro memoir. 

Whatever you send our way, please be sure you’ve read our guidelines with care. Submissions that do not adhere to our guidelines may be returned unread. 

What we’re NOT looking for:
We will not publish work that glorifies xenophobia, racism, homophobia, ageism, classism, sexism, religious prejudice, ableism, or that normalizes hatred of any marginalized group or individual, though submitted work may thoughtfully consider subjects of discrimination.

We do not publish academic papers or news writing. 

General Guidelines:
We accept submissions only through Submittable. Submissions must be previously unpublished in print and on the Internet. We encourage simultaneous submissions but ask that you withdraw your submission immediately if it is accepted elsewhere. If part of a submission must be withdrawn, please notify the genre editor by using Submittable's "message" function on your submission. 

We encourage submissions from writers of all backgrounds, including but not limited to LGBTQIA+ writers, writers of color, women writers, unpublished writers, writers with disabilities, and international writers.

We nominate for Pushcart, Best of the Net, and other awards.

Our Staff Readers review all submissions anonymously. No personal information (such as name, email, social media handles, etc.) should appear in your submission file, in the title field, or file name. Submissions with identifying personal information will be returned unread. We understand that nonfiction submissions sometimes contain the writer’s name and ask that you use your best judgment in these circumstances. 

Staff Readers cannot view cover letters. However, our Editors enjoy cover letters and we ask that you submit yours addressed to the appropriate genre editor. In prose submissions, please include your word count in your cover letter. 

Please send only one submission at a time. We do not accept multiple submissions and we cannot refund multiple submissions. 


Submission Schedule:

We are open for nonfiction, fiction, and poetry submissions during three periods annually unless otherwise noted in Submittable: January 1-March 31; May 1-July 31; September 1-November 30. 

We publish issues triannually in January, May, and September. 

*COVID-19 UPDATE

Our staff readers are volunteers who are passionate about keeping contemporary literature accessible. We've temporarily decreased the number of weekly reading assignments we give our readers so they may attend to their changing work and family lives. As a result, our reading times are currently extended. Please allow us six months before querying. We will endeavor to respond to all work as quickly as we responsibly can. Thank you for your continued patience and understanding. 

Submission Fees:
We are a nonprofit organization and ask writers to pay a $3 fee per submission, of which we receive $1.86. This fee directly supports our authors, editors, programs, and helps cover our Submittable costs. We are grateful for your contribution. However, The Maine Review is dedicated to making contemporary literature accessible to readers and writers of all incomes, and economic hardship should never pose a barrier to publication for any writer. If the submission fee is a barrier, please email us at info@mainereview.com for a link to a fee-waived submission. No explanation is needed. *Do not email us your submission.* Emailed submissions cannot be reviewed by our staff readers. 

If you're able to donate, we offer $5 Community Supported Literature Submissions ($3 reading fee plus $2 donation), of which we receive $3.76. All donations are tax-deductible and are used to pay writers and support our publication. Direct donations of any amount are also welcome at mainereview.com/donate

Writer Payment:
Fiction and Nonfiction writers will receive a $25 honorarium per published flash (1,000 words or fewer) and a $50 honorarium for work 1,001 words or more. 

Poets will receive a $25 honorarium per published poem. 

Fiction and Nonfiction Formatting Guidelines:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Double-spaced
  • 1” margins
  • Pages numbered
  • Include your word count in your cover letter. Maximum 3,000 words, or 3 flash pieces of maximum 1,000 words each. Occasionally we will accept work up to 5,000 words. (Please include word counts in your cover letter.)

Poetry Formatting Guidelines:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Single-spaced (or as you would like your poem to appear online)
  • Pages numbered 
  • Maximum 3 poems, no more than 5 pages total

     

From Nonfiction Editor Emily W. Blacker:

Send us your essays, stand-alone memoir excerpts, and works that defy categorization. We’re looking for art that surprises the heart, stimulates the mind and delights the senses. What does that mean? It means that language and form are primary and that the piece transcends reportage and pursues insight. Some examples of pieces we love? “A Thousand Drops” by Bernard Cooper, “The Pain Scale” by Eula Biss, “Girl” by Jamaica Kincaid, “Just One Last Swirl Around the Bowl” by Dan Barry, “Leap” by Brian Doyle, “A Chapter on Red” by Jericho Parms. We seek various approaches and perspectives that make us see the world anew while connecting us to the common human core. We look forward to reading your writing. 

From Fiction Editor Brett Willis:

For tone, we’re looking for work that reflects your unique perspective. Show us what you see. We like our truth with a dash of humor. Empathy is essential. We prefer stories that come in under 3,000 words but will occasionally publish longer works—though as its length increases, so too must the story’s quality. Thank you for trusting us with your work. We look forward to reading it.

From Poetry Editor Rebecca Irene:

The Maine Review’s poetry team seeks work with musicality & fierceness, craft & cunning. We want lines that gut-punch, or caress, but always return to haunt. Authenticity & urgency are valued here. Hateful, phobic language is not. Some of the poets that quicken our blood—Lynda Hull, Claudia Rankine, Robert Lowell, Sharon Olds, Joshua Jennifer Espinoza, Franny Choi, Jericho Brown, Joseph O. Legaspi, Kaveh Akbar, Danez Smith, Anne Sexton, Ilya Kaminsky, Heather McHugh, Joy Harjo, & Valzhyna Mort. We look forward to reading your poems. 

In recognition of Indigenous Peoples Day, The Maine Review is offering free submissions from October 11-25, or until we reach our allowed free submission maximum. 

  • "Indigenous Peoples Day commemorates the 500-year struggles of Native Peoples against colonialism and the continuation of tribal societies and their values. First observed in the United States nearly 30 years ago, the annual celebration was created 'to bring sovereignty issues, recognition of religious expression and environmental issues into a new forum where the Native community can interface with majority community institutions to reach constructive solutions.'"  - Indigenous Peoples Committee

All writers are invited to make use of this free submission window. The Maine Review is dedicated to making contemporary literature accessible to readers and writers of all incomes. 

If you're able to donate, we offer $3 or $5 Tip Jar Submissions, of which we receive $1.86 or $3.76 respectively. All donations are tax-deductible and are used to pay writers and support our programs. Direct donations are also welcome at http://mainereview.com/donate.


A Note from Poetry Editor Rebecca Irene:
The Maine Review’s poetry team seeks work with musicality & fierceness, craft & cunning. We want lines that gut-punch, or caress, but always return to haunt. Authenticity & urgency are valued here. Hateful, phobic language is not. Some of the poets that quicken our blood—Lynda Hull, Claudia Rankine, Robert Lowell, Sharon Olds, Joshua Jennifer Espinoza, Franny Choi, Jericho Brown, Joseph O. Legaspi, Kaveh Akbar, Danez Smith, Anne Sexton, Ilya Kaminsky, Heather McHugh, Joy Harjo, & Valzhyna Mort. We look forward to reading your poems.

*Please read our General Guidelines before submitting.* We do not accept multiple submissions.*

Poetry Formatting Guidelines:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Single-spaced (or as you would like your poem to appear online)
  • Pages numbered 
  • Maximum 3 poems, no more than 5 pages in total

  Payment:
  Poets will receive a $25 honorarium per published poem.   

In recognition of Indigenous Peoples Day, The Maine Review is offering free submissions from October 9-18, or until we reach our allowed free submission maximum. 

  • "Indigenous Peoples Day commemorates the 500-year struggles of Native Peoples against colonialism and the continuation of tribal societies and their values. First observed in the United States nearly 30 years ago, the annual celebration was created 'to bring sovereignty issues, recognition of religious expression and environmental issues into a new forum where the Native community can interface with majority community institutions to reach constructive solutions.'"  - Indigenous Peoples Committee

All writers are invited to make use of this free submission window. The Maine Review is dedicated to making contemporary literature accessible to readers and writers of all incomes. 

If you're able to donate, we offer $3 or $5 Tip Jar Submissions, of which we receive $1.86 or $3.76 respectively. All donations are tax-deductible and are used to pay writers and support our programs. Direct donations are also welcome at http://mainereview.com/donate.

A Note from Nonfiction Editor, Emily W. Blacker:
Send us your essays, stand-alone memoir excerpts, and works that defy categorization. We’re looking for art that surprises the heart, stimulates the mind, and delights the senses. What does that mean? It means that language and form are primary and that the piece transcends reportage and pursues insight. Some examples of pieces we love? “A Thousand Drops” by Bernard Cooper, “The Pain Scale” by Eula Biss, “Girl” by Jamaica Kincaid, “Just One Last Swirl Around the Bowl” by Dan Barry, “Leap” by Brian Doyle, “A Chapter on Red” by Jericho Parms. We seek various approaches and perspectives that make us see the world anew while connecting us to the common human core. We look forward to reading your writing.

*Please read our General Guidelines before submitting.* We do not accept multiple submissions.*

Fiction and Nonfiction Formatting Guidelines:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Double-spaced
  • 1” margins
  • Pages numbered
  • Maximum 3,000 words, or 3 flash pieces of maximum 1,000 words each. Occasionally we will accept work up to 5,000 words. 

Payment:
Nonfiction writers will receive a $25 honorarium per flash (1,000 words or fewer) and a $50 honorarium for work 1,001 words or more. 

In recognition of Indigenous Peoples Day, The Maine Review is offering free submissions from October 9-18, or until we reach our allowed free submission maximum. 

  • "Indigenous Peoples Day commemorates the 500-year struggles of Native Peoples against colonialism and the continuation of tribal societies and their values. First observed in the United States nearly 30 years ago, the annual celebration was created 'to bring sovereignty issues, recognition of religious expression and environmental issues into a new forum where the Native community can interface with majority community institutions to reach constructive solutions.'"  - Indigenous Peoples Committee

All writers are invited to make use of this free submission window. The Maine Review is dedicated to making contemporary literature accessible to readers and writers of all incomes. 

If you're able to donate, we offer $3 or $5 Tip Jar Submissions, of which we receive $1.86 or $3.76 respectively. All donations are tax-deductible and are used to pay writers and support our publication. Direct donations of any amount are also welcome at mainereview.com/donate.

A Note from Fiction Editor Brett Willis:
For tone, we’re looking for work that reflects your unique perspective. Show us what you see. We like our truth with a dash of humor. Empathy is essential. We prefer stories that come in under 3,000 words but will occasionally publish longer works—though as its length increases, so too must the story’s quality. Thank you for trusting us with your work. We look forward to reading it.


*Please read our general guidelines before submitting. 

* We do not accept multiple submissions.*

 Fiction Formatting Guidelines:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font
  • Double-spaced
  • 1” margins
  • Pages numbered
  • Maximum 3,000 words, or 3 flash pieces of 1,000 or fewer words each in one document. 
  • *Occasionally we will accept work up to 5,000 words. 

Payment:
Fiction writers will receive a $25 honorarium per flash (1,000 words or fewer) and a $50 honorarium for work 1,001 words or more. 

The Maine Review