Welcome to Electric Literature's submissions hub! 

We have a number of categories, including Essays, Novel Gazing, Recommended Reading, and The Commuter. Please scroll down for information and guidelines on the category you are interested in. 


Recommended Reading General FictionOpen from Monday, April 1 (12:00am) through Sunday, April 7 (11:59pm)

Submissions to Recommended Reading will open on Monday, April 1 at midnight and close on Sunday, April 7 at 11:59pm (and members of Electric Literature can submit year-round. Join today!). 

  • Recommended Reading publishes fiction between 1,500 and 10,000 words. (For fiction shorter than 1,500 words, check for open submission periods to the Recommended Reading Commuter.
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted but please notify us immediately if a piece is accepted elsewhere.
  • Upon acceptance, we can offer authors $300 for publishing rights.
  • Writers may submit one piece per general opening period. (This does not apply to year-round submitting members. For more information on members submissions, please visit the members hub.)


The Commuter—open for Poetry and Graphic Narrative from Monday, March 25th (12:00am) through Monday, April 1 (11:59 pm) 

The Commuter is our new home for poetry, flash, graphic, and experimental narratives. It publishes weekly on Monday morning, and has already showcased the likes of Noy HollandLulu MillerMeg PokrasssShelly Oria and Nelly Reifler, and more. 


For poetry and graphic narrative, please keep the following guidelines in mind:

  • For Poetry, submit 3–5 poems in a single document, and please limit the page count to 8.
  • For Graphic Narrative, we are interested in both traditional and non-traditional forms of visual storytelling. Submit up to 3 pieces of narrative illustration, comics, or mixed media narrative. For comics, each piece should contain a minimum of 3 panels. The total page count of your submission should not exceed 15 pages.


When we are looking for prose flash fiction submissions, please keep the following guidelines in mind:   

  • Submit up to three pieces of prose that together total no more than 1500 words. If sending multiple pieces, upload them all in a single document.  
  • Please submit all genres in .doc, .docx, or PDF.
  • If your work is selected, we can offer a total payment of $100.

All submissions will be accepted through our Submittable page. For a sense of the kind of work we publish, check out recent issues of The Commuter, our 280-character contest winners, and Recommended Reading’s 300th issue.


Novel Gazing—open for submissions from Thursday, March 7th (12:00am) through Monday, March 24 (11:59pm). 

Novel Gazing is Electric Literature’s personal essay series on the way that stories and reading shape our lives.

For this round of Novel Gazing, Electric Lit’s personal essay series about the way stories shape our lives, tell us about a book (or movie, or show, or other narrative media) that shifted your opinion. This could be a huge change — the book that convinced you God existed, or didn’t; the play that altered your political perspective; the movie that convinced you to have kids — or a small one. Tell us about the stories that revolutionized your outlook on your family, on your career, on your own creative output. Tell us about the opinions you thought were unshakeable, until you encountered the story that turned everything upside down.

You may want to read some earlier Novel Gazing essays to get a feel for the series. Some recent favorites include essays about moving on from grief with the help of an AIDS memoir, about learning the wrong lessons from 200-year-old erotica, and about realizing that the romances of young adult literature aren’t written for you.

  • Essays should not be longer than 4,000 words or shorter than 800
  • Payment is $100 per piece. 
  • Non-women are welcome to submit their work.
  • Read more about our vision for this series here and here.


Essays—CLOSED

We’re particularly interested in pieces that examine the intersection of the literary experience and other creative endeavors: film, fine art, music, video games, science, tech, architecture. 

  • Payment for essays is $100. 
  • Length is up to you, but we suggest aiming for 1,500–4,000 words.
  • To see what kind of essays we have published, visit our site

Please title your submission in a way that highlights its connection to the world of literature, the role of narrative in our lives, or the power of storytelling. Essays that do not reflect directly on the world of literature, books, or the role of narrative in our lives cannot be considered. 


For this round of Novel Gazing, Electric Lit’s personal essay series about the way stories shape our lives, tell us about a book (or movie, or show, or other narrative media) that shifted your opinion. This could be a huge change—the book that convinced you God existed, or didn’t; the play  that altered your political perspective; the movie that convinced you to have kids—or a small one. Tell us about the stories that revolutionized your outlook on your family, on your career, on your own creative output. Tell us about the opinions you thought were unshakeable, until you encountered the story that turned everything upside down.

You may want to read some earlier Novel Gazing essays to get a feel for the series. Some recent favorites include essays about moving on from grief with the help of an AIDS memoir, about learning the wrong lessons from 200-year-old erotica, and about realizing that the romances of young adult literature aren’t written for you.

Essays should not be longer than 4,000 words or shorter than 800, and payment is $100 per piece. Submissions will remain open until 11:59 p.m. on March 24.

Electric Literature