Submission guidelines

We are looking for short fiction, flash fiction, creative nonfiction, novel excerpts, and poetry. No submissions in any category may be more than 1500 words.

In order to qualify for consideration, your manuscript must have been rejected by at least one publication, or have failed to win a prize in a literary competition. You may feel free to revise your work before submitting it to us, but the general idea should be the same as the one that was rejected. We will not publish every submission we receive, but we aim to publish as many as possible. We are looking for pieces with some quality that makes them, for better or for worse, stand out from the crowd.

All submissions must be the original work of the submitter, and must be previously unpublished, in print or online, by a third party. If you have self-published the story, or posted it on your personal blog or website, we will happily consider it, but please let us know where else it has appeared.

By submitting your story, you are granting Rejected Manuscripts electronic rights in perpetuity and first printing rights, should your story be selected for one of our print anthologies. Authors retain copyright of their work. You are also granting Rejected Manuscripts the right to edit your work slightly for spelling, punctuation, and style.

Please send manuscripts to submissions@rejectedmanuscripts.org

NOTE: We respond to every submission. If you have not heard back from us in 48 hours, please try again, and/or check your junk mail.

Be sure to include your full name, a list of publications that have rejected your story, and a copy of the manuscript attached as a word file. If you have a website or blog, please feel free to send along the URL and we will link to it from our website. Also, please send a short bio of two or three sentences which we may print in the anthology, should your story be selected.

We encourage you to vote for your own story and to promote it to friends and fans. However, it is against the spirit of the competition to indiscriminately vote down competitors’ stories.

Reasons we might reject a manuscript

  • Derivative
  • Not interesting
  • Would require severe editing to make it comprehensible
  • Too long
  • Copyright infringement
  • Defamation
  • Violates hate crime statutes