SUBMISSION GUIDELINES for The Main Street Rag
Applies to ALL written submissions
- All literary magazine submissions are E-mail only as a WORD or RTF file and must be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- NO Simultaneous submissions.
- NO Previously Published material (unless solicited specifically by magazine editor)
- Report time: We try to report in 6-8 weeks.
- Author’s name and MAILING address must appear both in the submission email and on submitted work. If we accept the work and do not have this information at the time of production, no contributor’s copy will be sent.
- New Submissions. If an author has an item accepted for publication, we will not consider additional work from that author until the item we have in backlog has been published. Timeframe is usually between 6 months and a year.
- Submission period: we are currently reading year round for the literary magazine.
Those who choose to submit to our magazine need to affirm in the body of their submission email that it is “NOT a simultaneous submission and WILL NOT BE SUBMITTED ELSEWHERE FOR THE NEXT 8 WEEKS.” (Important: Note the quotation marks)
- Report time: up to 12 weeks for all prose
- Submission Length: 6000 word maximum
Essays/Creative Non-Fiction: Please EMAIL THE IDEA FIRST. We can tell you whether the subject appeals to us and whether we will have space for it without writers wasting time. Prefer social or political themes over How to, process pieces or literary pieces about the life of a literarian.
- Need high resolution to print, but require low resolution to submit. If you don’t know the difference, you’re not ready to have your work published.
- Portrait versus landscape orientation is best for printing without cropping.
- We like it all—no subject taboo—but if you are targeting cover art, we like people doing what they do, street scenes, a world in motion. Send us a picture we can hear and smell.
- Prefer interviews with those in the arts—mostly literary—but visual and performing arts will also be considered.
- Length: 2000-2500 words
- If it’s not someone with whom we are familiar, we’ll need to see a sample of their work: a copy of a recent book, a website with their artwork.
- Will need subject bio and headshot and images if the subject is a visual artist.
- Up to 6 pages of poetry. That can mean one long poem or as many as 6 one-page (or shorter) poems. No more than one poem per page. Any style, any subject, emphasis on edgier material, but we’re not interested in the graphic details of your love life and we do enjoy a good laugh now and then–so just send your best material and let the rest sort itself out. What we are least likely to accept is “garden” poetry, poetry about poetry, or the often over-used wading pool of Greek and Roman mythology. We prefer work that is alive with the poet’s own experiences.
- While we do not publish much in the way of formal poetry in our magazine, we will consider it. In that regard, we like to see formal poems that maintain the integrity of the form without becoming stiff, uninteresting or losing their vitality.
- Most of our reviews are done by our staff and we prefer books be provided, but will sometimes review from PDFs. Ask first.
- We only review books published during the current or previous calendar year.
- Not interested in negative reviews, however, discussion of a manuscript’s strengths and weaknesses might include negative aspects.
- Title information must be included with submission along with the following: author name, publisher, publication date, ISBN, price, page count
- Must have an ISBN to be considered for review.
Our focus is on publishers and authors who don’t get much attention from mainstream media. Since there are many of those and we like to (at least) mention as many as possible, review lengths are important and specific to genre:
- Poetry Chapbooks (52 pages or less): up to 350 words
- Full-length Poetry or Short Fiction Collections: up to 600 words
- Novels, Nonfiction : up to 800 words
The goal of reviews featured in The Main Street Rag:
Connecting author to audience. If you can’t think of an audience that would enjoy reading a particular book, then we would not be interested in publishing your review. We also don’t run promo material disguised as review. If you have a relationship with the author or press, we want to know what that relationship is prior to considering the review and will scrutinize the review carefully for objectivity.