Writers' Guidelines

The Iowa Review is published three times a year: in April, August, and December. We look for the best writing available and are often pleased to introduce new writers. We also sponsor The Iowa Review Awards, an annual contest in our three main genres of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction.

Non-contest manuscripts are welcome during the fall semester only—September, October, and November. Unsolicited work that arrives at any other time will not be read. 

We accept online submissions at https://iowareview.submittable.com/submit and paper submissions at the address below. There is a $4 charge for online fiction, poetry, and nonfiction submissions*; this is not a reading fee but is simply meant to cover the administrative and IT costs associated with our online submissions system. We do not consider e-mail submissions.

Work must be previously unpublished in print or online, and, if accepted, must not be published anywhere else before it is published in The Iowa Review (the lead time between acceptance and publication is about a year). Prose submissions should be double-spaced. Simultaneous submissions are accepted, provided you contact us immediately to withdraw your work if it is accepted for publication elsewhere. We typically respond in one to four months. 

We recommend reading an issue of The Iowa Review before submitting. Ask for us at your local bookstore or library, or purchase a copy here

Current University of Iowa students are ineligible to submit.

*Subscribers can now submit online for free! Please use the appropriate "for subscribers only" category on Submittable. We check these submitters' names against our subscription list, so please use this category only if you're a current subscriber.

Fiction, Poetry, and Nonfiction

The Iowa Review publishes short stories, flash fiction, graphic novels, self-contained novel excerpts, and plays; poetry of all kinds; and all manner of creative nonfiction, including personal essays, lyric essays, memoirs, and literary journalism. The page limit for prose is 25 pages and for poetry is 8 pages (query by e-mail if you have a longer poem). We pay $1.50 per line for poetry ($40 minimum) and $0.08 per word for prose ($100 minimum).

Book Reviews

In the past, we have published short (750-1,000 word) reviews of book-length fiction, poetry, and nonfiction on our website; however, we are no longer accepting reviews for our online gallery or for our print edition. 


Translations should be submitted according to the guidelines of the original work's genre and addressed to that genre's editor. Translators should have permission from the copyright holder and should include a copy of the original work with their submission.


We are not currently accepting unsolicited interviews. 

The Iowa Review Awards

Entries for The Iowa Review Awards—given in fiction, poetry, and literary nonfiction—are accepted during the month of January. Outside judges name a winner and a runner-up in each genre. First prize is $1,500 and publication; second prize is $750 and publication. Any other finalist chosen for publication will be paid at our standard rate. Please consult the full contest rules posted on our website yearly.


[Fiction, Poetry, or Nonfiction] Editor
The Iowa Review
308 EPB
University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA 52242

Paper submissions without a self-addressed, stamped envelope will not be considered. Please do not mix genres in a single envelope. 

iowa-review [AT] uiowa [DOT] edu