Grist: A Journal of the Literary Arts, seeks high quality submissions from both emerging and established writers. We publish craft essays and interviews as well as fiction, nonfiction, and poetry—and we want to see your best work, regardless of form, style, or subject matter.
Past issues have included such writers as Dan Albergotti, Dorothy Allison, Ellen Bass, Richard Bausch, Katherine Boo, Maud Casey, May-lee Chai, Peter Ho Davies, Timothy Donnelly, Tom Franklin, Elizabeth Gilbert, Joy Harjo, Lyn Hejinian, Bob Hicok, T.R. Hummer, Adam Johnson, Fady Joudah, Dorianne Laux, Dorothea Lasky, Dana Levin, Julia B. Levine, Lisa Lewis, Thomas Lynch, Khaled Mattawa, Joseph Millar, Ander Monson, Danielle Pafunda, Ron Rash, Hilda Raz, Maggie Smith, Maura Stanton, Michael Steinberg, Virgil Suárez, William Wenthe, and many others.
We read between June 15th and September 15th. Please note that we do not accept snail mail submissions. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable as long as we are immediately notified if the piece has been accepted elsewhere. Please do not mix genres in the same submission. We do not consider previously published work. We do not consider work from those currently or recently affiliated with the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.
Our submission fee (waived for subscribers) is $4 for three to five poems, for one work of fiction up to 7,000 words, or for one work of non-fiction up to 7,000 words (in all of our prose categories, we are also open to considering flash pieces as long as they are submitted in one document and do not total over 7000 words). The bulk of our reading fee goes to paying our writers; the rest covers our Submittable fees and a portion of our publishing costs, which helps us to make a high-quality home for a wide variety of the best national and international creative and literary work available to us. We hope that you will regard this fee as an investment in you, the writers who keep us going, while also serving as a sign of your support for the literary art we all value so much.
Average response time is 2-4 months. If you have not received a response after four months, send a query email to your genre’s editor; contact information is on our About page.
Submissions will be considered for publication in either the print issue or Grist Online. Payment is $10 per poem or 1 cent per word for prose (up to $50), as well as a contributor copy. Additional copies are also available at a reduced price for contributors.
To submit your work to the journal, please read our guidelines below and then submit via our online submissions manager, Submittable. To pitch ideas or submit reviews, craft essays, or interviews to our blog, The Writing Life, please read below. To submit to our annual ProForma contest, please see our Contest page.
Craft Essay: Submit one craft essay up to 7,000 words.
Fiction: Submit one story up to 7,000 words.
Poetry: Submit 3-5 poems.
Non-fiction: Submit one essay up to 7,000 words.
The Writing Life: To pitch an idea for a craft essay, interview, or other piece you think would be a great fit for our blog, please contact our Managing Editor for Online Content, Elizabeth Cooley: ecooley2 AT utk.edu
Reviews: Grist seeks reviews of books published by small and independent presses in the genres of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, essays on craft, and books about the creative process as it relates to all artistic mediums, including visual art. While most reviews follow the standard model, experimentation with the review form is also welcome, with the understanding that clarity is always a virtue.
We focus on small, independent, and university presses because we think there are already plenty of other outlets for books by major publishers. And while we believe that all books deserve serious, critical commentary, we don’t see much value in wasting our time (or our readers’!) on a review of a book we don’t recommend. So: as a reviewer, we want you to be honest, but we also want you to highlight the books you’re excited about, and leave aside the others.
We look for approximately 700 words, are happy to request books for you, and will work with you on establishing a timeline that works for you (although we usually ask reviews be completed in 4-8 weeks).
If you have an interest in reviewing for Grist, book suggestions, or any questions, please contact our Reviews Editor, Caroline Jansen: cjansen3 AT vols.utk.edu