Midwest Review is an annual print magazine featuring the Midwest in new work by writers, photographers, and artists who live in, or have lived in, the Midwest.

The Midwest is the region of the north central United States that includes the Great Lakes area and the upper Mississippi River valley (according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Midwest is comprised of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, and Missouri). Of course, the Midwest is also a state of mind.

We're looking for thoughtful and thought-provoking writing and visual art that examines, interprets, and redefines the wide spectrum of life, past and present, in the Midwest. We accept unsolicited submissions of original creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and visual art from June to December. We're interested in new, diverse, and emerging voices. We welcome work from under-represented communities and from incarcerated writers in the Midwest. Contact the editor at christopher.chambers@wisc.edu regarding those submissions.

We do not consider previously published work (work that has appeared previously in any publication, print or online, including self-published work, in print or online). Simultaneous submissions are okay; please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.

We welcome submissions of work from writers in or from the Midwest who are currently or recently incarcerated. There is no submission fee required for these submissions. It can be helpful to have the mailing address and/or email address of a person outside to help facilitate communication.   

Authors of work accepted for publication by Midwest Review receive a contract granting non-exclusive first serial rights. Copyright reverts to the author upon publication with the request that subsequent re-publication of the work acknowledges first publication in Midwest Review.

General submissions for Issue 9 extended to December 15, 2020. 

Great Midwest Writing Contest: December 1, 2020 – March 1, 2021.

ISSN 2471-6871

We're looking for thoughtful and thought-provoking photography and visual art that examines, interprets, and redefines the wide spectrum of life, past and present, in the Midwest. Let us know in your cover letter your connection to the Midwest. Submit black & white or color, up to 5 images.

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We're looking for thoughtful and thought-provoking short fiction that examines, interprets, and redefines the wide
spectrum of life, past and present, in the Midwest. Submit work up to 6,500 words, double spaced. Let us know in your cover letter your connection to the Midwest, and please do not put your name on the manuscript.
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We're looking for thoughtful and thought-provoking essays and creative nonfiction that examines, interprets, and redefines the wide spectrum of life, past and present, in the Midwest. Submit work up to 6,500 words, double spaced. Let us know in your cover letter your connection to the Midwest, and please do not put your name on the manuscript.
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We're looking for thoughtful and thought-provoking poetry that examines, interprets, and redefines the wide spectrum of life, past and present, in the Midwest. Submit up to 5 poems or 10 pages of poetry in one file. PLEASE DO NOT MAKE A SEPARATE SUBMISSION FOR EACH POEM. You can title the submission with the title of the first poem, or with the titles of all the poems. To withdraw a poem, add a note to your submission and indicate the poem(s) you would like to withdraw. Let us know in your cover letter your connection to the Midwest, and please do not put your name on the manuscript.

Receive a copy of a recent issue of Midwest Review with your submission.

Submit up to 6,500 words of creative nonfiction. Simultaneous submissions are okay; let us know immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. Previously unpublished submissions only. Entries must be submitted online via Submittable.

A $500 prize and publication in Midwest Review for the winning entry. All entries will be considered for publication.


Contest Selection Process & Guidelines
1st Round: Blind Read by MR Editorial Staff with 10 finalists forwarded to the contest judge.
2nd Round: Blind Read by Contest Judge: Ander Monson.
Judge will select the winner from a group of finalists chosen by Midwest Review editorial staff. 

Ander Monson is the author of Vanishing Point; Neck Deep and Other Predicaments, winner of the Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize; the novel Other Electricities; and the poetry collections Vacationland and The Available World. He grew up in Houghton, Michigan in the Upper Peninsula. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, an MA from Iowa State University, and an MFA from the University of Alabama.


CLMP Code of Ethics

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.

Submit up to 6,500 words of fiction. Simultaneous submissions are okay; let us know immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. Previously unpublished submissions only. Entries must be submitted online via Submittable. 

A $500 prize and publication in Midwest Review for the winning entry. All entries will be considered for publication.

Contest Selection Process & Guidelines

1st Round: Blind Read by MR Editorial Staff with 10 finalists forwarded to contest judge.

2nd Round: Blind Read by Contest Judge: TBA. 

Judge will select winner from a group of finalists chosen by Midwest Review editorial staff. 

CLMP Code of Ethics

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.

Submit up to 10 pages of poetry (one poem or several; one poem per page). Simultaneous submissions are okay; let us know immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. Previously unpublished submissions only. Entries must be submitted online via Submittable. 

$500 prize and publication in Midwest Review for the winning poem. All entries will be considered for publication.

Contest Selection Process & Guidelines

1st Round: Blind Read by MR Editorial Staff with 10 finalists forwarded to contest judge.

2nd Round: Blind Read by Contest Judge (TBA). 

Judge will select winner from a group of finalists chosen by Midwest Review editorial staff. 

CLMP Code of Ethics

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines — defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.

This is to purchase a copy of Midwest Review, issue 8 (this is not a submission category). Please enter "purchase copy 8" in the Title field, your name and mailing address in the Cover Letter field. You will receive an automatic email from Submittable thanking you for your submission, even though this is an order to purchase a copy. That email is your confirmation that we received your order. We hope you enjoy the magazine. Thank you for your interest and support! 

This is to purchase a copy of Midwest Review, issue 7 (this is not a submission category). Please enter "purchase copy 7" in the Title field, your name and mailing address in the Cover Letter field. You will receive an automatic email from Submittable thanking you for your submission, even though this is an order to purchase a copy. That email is your confirmation that we received your order. We hope you enjoy the magazine. Thank you for your interest and support! 

This is to purchase a copy of Midwest Review issue 6 (this is not a submission category). Please enter "purchase copy 6" in the Title field, your name and mailing address in the Cover Letter field. You will receive an automatic email from Submittable thanking you for your submission, even though this is an order to purchase a copy. That email is your confirmation that we received your order. We hope you enjoy the magazine. Thank you for your interest and support! 

This is to purchase a copy of Midwest Review 5 (this is not a submission category). Please enter "purchase copy 5" in the Title field, your name and mailing address in the Cover Letter field. You will receive an automatic email from Submittable thanking you for your submission, even though this is an order to purchase a copy. That email is your confirmation that we received your order. We hope you enjoy the magazine. Thank you for your interest and support! 

This is to purchase a copy of Midwest Review 4 (this is not a submission category). Please enter "purchase copy 4" in the Title field, your name and mailing address in the Cover Letter field. You will receive an automatic email from Submittable thanking you for your submission, even though this is an order to purchase a copy. That email is your confirmation that we received your order. We hope you enjoy the magazine. Thank you for your interest and support!