We regret that, due to severe labor issues, we are compelled to charge a reading fee for most submissions—though note that the Rachel Wetzsteon Chapbook Award—which comes with a prize of $1,010.10—has no fees through July!

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Map Literary publishes poems & prose poems, short stories & short-shorts, scholarly essays & creative nonfiction, and art.

We also run the Rachel Wetzsteon Chapbook Award every other year.

We do not consider work that has previously appeared elsewhere, either in print or on the web.

Please include a brief bio in the "cover letter" field when you submit. 

We accept simultaneous submissions but expect to be notified in a timely manner if the work has been accepted elsewhere.

For fiction and nonfiction, submit one piece at a time for consideration; do not send a second piece until you have received a response to the first. You may, however, submit in more than one genre at a time. For poetry, submit 3-5 poems at a time; please send only one file.

We value provocative themes, experimental works, genre confoundings, fugue complexities, beautiful syntax, original voices, aesthetic risk-taking, creative research, ethnic hybridity, gorgeous paperweights.

We dislike clichés, gimmicks, SUVs, righteousness, PowerPoint presentations, nuclear arsenals, talking heads.

Thematic cartographers, we want to model today’s ethical, ethnic, and aesthetic realities. We look foward to hearing from you.

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Christopher Salerno: "I'm drawn to poetry that knows what year it is. Regardless of school or allegiance, my favorite lyric or meditative poems exist as a record of a process. They allow themselves to be in uncertainties. They beg to be reread, even if they’re simple. They may be simple. They may contain variants, diversions, or hiccups. Tonally, they may contain multitudes. A medley of historical references might include such hits as Keats' "Negative Capability," Lorca's "Duende," Frank O'Hara's "Personism," and the careful attentiveness of Charles Olson's "Projective Verse." Some of my favorite Small Press Poetry Publishers right now include: Wave Books, Birds LLC, Black Ocean, Ahsahta Press, Flood Editions, Wesleyan, Cleveland State University Poetry Center, Octopus Books, and others.


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John Parras: "I am particularly drawn to fiction with a poetic texture--fiction that employs intense figurative language and sophisticated prose rhythms. I like magic realism, experimental fiction, and sudden fiction (750-1000 words). I have recently been enjoying stories by David Means, Ben Marcus, Victor Pelevin, Ludmilla Petrushevskaya, Cormac McCarthy's 'Blood Meridian,' Paul Harding's 'tinkers,' and the beautiful sentences of Rivka Galchen."

Martha Witt: "I admire fiction that simultaneously surprises and convinces. When I read narratives with outrageous premises or unexpected twists that, in the end, seem absolutely inevitable, I am in awe. The emotional component is crucial, of course. Even great technique cannot save a story that offers its readers no emotional connection. Alice Munro, Deborah Eisenberg, John Barth, and Andrew Sean Greer write the kind of short stories I turn to again and again."


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Creative nonfiction or scholarly essays; book & cultural reviews; author interviews. We are looking for writers who are engaged by  contemporary cultural issues and who have explored forms such as the segmented essay, poetic prose, the braided essay, and the position  piece. Also welcome are personal essays, travel essays, and memoir by writers who demonstrate both a strong sense of place and a range of content that extends beyond the confessional.


Map Literary is pleased to announce that the 2022 Rachel Wetzsteon Chapbook Award is now open for submissions. Named after our late colleague, this award honors beautiful, original writing through publication as a high-quality chapbook.

This year the award will focus on POETRY. We seek new, original work, though individual pieces that have been previously published elsewhere may be included. The manuscript should be about 30 pages long.

The deadline for entries is September 30, 2022. There is no entry fee through July 31st. After August 1st, there will be an entry fee of $25.

The winner will receive a $1010.10 honorarium and 25 copies of the winning chapbook, which will be printed and sold on Amazon.com, where chapbooks of the previous winners can be found.

Tomorrow Music: Stories (2021), by Pete Stevens

Cellar Testament (2019), poetry by Greg Glazner

Our Daughter and Other Stories (2017), by Wendy Oleson

Electrocution: A Partial History (2015), poetry by Dennis Hinrichsen

Map Literary, print issue four, 2015

Our first winner, Dennis Hinrichsen, will judge submissions with Map Literary editors. Editors reserve the right to select no winner, or to select multiple winners, depending on the quality of submissions received.

Dennis Hinrichsen is the author of three chapbooks and nine full-length collections of poetry. His most recent collection, schema geometrica, was published by Green Linden Press in 2021 and won the Wishing Jewel Prize.  He's been the recipient of other prizes including the 2020 Grid Poetry Prize, the 2015 Rachel Wetzsteon Chapbook Prize, the 2014 Michael Waters Poetry Prize, and many others. From 2017-2019 he served as the Poet Laureate of the Greater Lansing Area in Michigan where he currently resides. More information about his work and other publications can be found on his website, www.dennishinrichsen.com.

Map Literary