A quarterly print journal featuring the best prose and poetry we can get our hands on, period.


Standard Submission Guidelines   


Reading Period:

April 15 through December 15




Fiction: 7,500 words maximum. We want original, unpredictable fiction with vivid characters that experience conflict throughout a purposeful, precisely wrought plot. If you decide to break this rule and you do it well, we want that even more. For flash fiction, please submit up to 3 pieces (no more than 1,000 words each) in the same Word document.


Poetry: 3 – 5 pieces in one Word Document. We want our poetry to matter. We want to invest ourselves in the voice of the narrator. We welcome all forms, but generally speaking: if you make it a point to impress us with your format alone without investing yourself in the content, we’ll know. Of course, if you can break these rules and break them elegantly, we want your work.


Nonfiction: 7,500 words maximum. We want to read unpredictable, insightful, and well-crafted creative nonfiction. Outside of that? Surprise us, although you'll have better luck with a skillfully developed narrative and quality prose than with other techniques. We love nontraditional work—so much so that we have a category for it: Miscellaneous. Feel free to submit your odder creations there.


Miscellaneous: Surprise us. Fake news articles. The hilarious photo you caught on your iPhone on the way to work. Your rant about the empty promises of Axe Body Gel. Your kid's clumsy rendition of your dog eating lunch. No politics; no religion. If you think someone else may want to see it, send it along.


Response Time:  We do our absolute best to answer within 8 weeks (often much sooner), but like most journals, we can sometimes take a bit longer, depending on the time of year. Feel free to query after four months. We offer expedited response times (in lieu of asking you for donations, which feels icky), on our Submittable page.




  • All work should be Double-Spaced, Times New Roman, 12-pt font (Standard Manuscript Form) in a .DOC or .DOCX file format. Poetry may be single-spaced.
  • Page Numbers, please.
  • Include your name and contact information on the first page of your document.
  • Prose submissions should include word count on the upper right. (Basically, we’re asking for the industry standard. Nothing more, nothing less.) One space between sentences & automatic indents, please.
  • Include a brief cover letter in the Submittable form. Tell us where you’ve been published. Tell us if you are a new writer. Tell us what awards you’ve collected…all that good stuff. No pressing need for a third person bio, but we’ll take it if you have it.
  • We offer premium response windows and services, but our basic submission option will always be free. We are writers, and we hate paying to submit as much as we hate to wait. For all submissions, our goal is to respond within six weeks at the absolute latest.
  • The Indianola Review purchases One Time, First North American Serial Rights. All rights revert back to the author upon publication.
  • We accept simultaneous submissions. Just let us know if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • No reprints. We publish original work only. As usual, that means no blog posts.
  • No multiple submissions, please. One at a time is great, and we respond quickly. Upon hearing our response, please wait at least 30 days before submitting again.
  • Though we are writers and despise the overly picky, needlessly snarky demands to which some lit mags feel they're entitled, (notice that most of these don't even offer a token payment), we have to say that failure to meet our basic, industry standard manuscript guidelines will likely result in an expedited response. It's just easier to read properly formatted manuscripts—it's not that we think we're special and deserve specially formatted offerings. Please. Just do the minimum. That basic stuff you should be doing everywhere else. That's all we ask.


 We Accept Submissions via Submittable






Over 2,500 Words: $50

Under 2,500 Words: $25



$5 per page (maximum $25)



Over 2,500 Words: $75

Under 2,500 Words: $50



$5 per page (maximum $25)



$50 for Cover Artwork



Next Workshop Start Date: July 11th, 2016

End Date: August 8th, 2016

Current Available Slots: 1/12

Cost: $99.00


 Sign Up via Submittable



© 2016 The Indianola Review