The Heartland Review, an internationally distributed bi-annual journal, is an imprint of The Heartland Review Press. We seek high quality, original submissions of poetry, fiction and non-fiction from established, emerging and young authors throughout the year, but our reading periods generally take place in May-July and December -February.  We pull the files in May and December in order to prepare it for our editors to read.  If you submit after we pull, your work will be reviewed during the next reading period.  Yes, we do nominated for Pushcart Prizes. 

Response time: We try to respond within 6 months but sometimes that isn't always possible. Our spring issue usually features the finalists and winners of our Joy Bale Boone Poetry Prize. As a result, you can check the submittable database for updates and status changes. You will receive an email stating the disposition of your work at the end of the reading period. When possible, we will comment on pieces that didn’t quite fit.

​Copyright: THR retains first North American serial rights and may use the submitted material to promote the journal and website. 

​Payment:  THR  pays 1 contributor copy mailed by USPS to the author of accepted works.

GENRE ​​​GUIDELINES

Poems: Submit 3 poems of any length or style to include traditional poetic forms.

Fiction:  1-2 fiction manuscripts that do not exceed 3500 words.

Non-fiction: 1-2 non-fiction manuscripts that do not exceed 3500 words.

Authors may submit only one entry per genre at a time. Multiple entries will be ignored. 

ALL GENRES MUST FOLLOW THESE FORMATTING GUIDELINES: 

1. Submissions must be in one Word compatible file (.docx, .doc, and .rtf). PDFs will be disqualified. 

2. For fiction and nonfiction, the Word file must be double spaced uniformly. Do not put in extra spaces or have double with single spacing. Do ​not insert your own "enters" at the end of each line; ensure Word wraps the text automatically. Use left align, not justification. This helps the import and export of files.

3. The file should contain a cover page that includes a 30-40 word biography and contact information. Only include personal information in the cover page/letter; submissions with personal information on the pieces or on multiple pages will be automatically disqualified. This means do not put your name in a header or footer in your document. Any personal information on pages of manuscripts will automatically disqualify the entire submission.

4. The file name should include the date (year and month) and the author’s name. For example, 2018_6_John Smith. File names that do not include the date and author’s name will be disqualified.  This helps keep the files organized.

Writers should submit 1-2, previously unpublished stories. Submissions should be in a Word file and doubled-spaced uniformly. Do not put in extra spaces or have double with single spacing. Do ​not insert your own "enters" at the end of each line; ensure Word wraps the text automatically. Use left align, not justification. This helps the import and export of files. 

We ask that stories be no longer than 3,500 words, given the journal’s limited space. Name, contact information, a 30-40 word biography, and word count should appear on a cover page. Personal information on any other pages of the manuscript will automatically disqualify submission.

The file name should include the date (year and month) and the author’s name. For example, 2018_6_John Smith. File names that do not include the date and author’s name will be disqualified.  This helps keep the files organized. Happy writing!

 It’s 4:50 a.m. and I can’t sleep, so this seems like the perfect time to try to write submission guidelines and solicit your creativity. The Heartland Review is now accepting creative nonfiction of 3500 words or less. If you or someone you love can't sleep at night because there are too many things swirling in the brain, then we're here to help. Write those thoughts down and send them in. 

We're looking for essays and memoir-style writing. No literary criticism, book reviews, or journalism. Though we accept things with epiphanies and happy endings, we want writing that expresses the grit of our human existence. You can reveal old truths and life lessons, but the writing must not be stale.

Remember to submit your manuscript in a Word file and double space it uniformly. Do not put in extra spaces or have double with single spacing. Do ​not insert your own "enters" at the end of each line; ensure Word wraps the text automatically. Use left align, not justification. This helps the import and export of files. 

The file name should include the date (year and month) and the author’s name. For example, 2018_6_John Smith. File names that do not include the date and author’s name will be disqualified.  This helps keep the files organized. 

Happy writing!


Poets should submit 3-5 previously unpublished poems in Word format. Because of heavy volume and our poetry contest, give us six months to respond. We print in a 6X9 format. Name, contact information, and a 30-40 word biography should appear on a cover page. Personal information on any other pages of the manuscript(s) automatically disqualifies submission for consideration. Simultaneous submissions are fine. Please notify us if a poem is selected elsewhere. THR retains First North American Serial Rights. We nominate for Pushcart Prizes.

The Heartland Review