Chestnut Review is thrilled to announce that in place of our past contests, we will now hold an open chapbook reading period twice per year with a goal of selecting four manuscripts from the queue regardless of genre, to be published and promoted in tandem with our quarterly issues. We reserve the right to publish more or fewer chapbooks based on the quality of the submissions received.
Manuscripts will pass through a multi-stage reading process involving the readers and editors of Chestnut Review, who will select the chapbooks for publication.
To read our FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) about Chapbooks, see here.
- Submissions open from 1 March until 30 April (Spring Reading) and 1 October until 30 November (Autumn Reading) each year via our regular Submittable page.
- Authors will be notified of our decisions approximately two months after each reading period closes.
- The selected chapbooks will be published at the same time our quarterly issues appear. Spring Reading chaps will appear on the following 15 October and 15 January; Autumn Reading chaps on the following 15 April and 15 July.
- Chapbooks may be poetry, prose, or hybrid. When submitting, please select the genre that aligns the most closely with your chapbook.
- No images or other media.
- Length: 15-25 pages of poetry, or 15-35 pages of prose.
- Times New Roman, 12-point font is preferred, single-spaced for poetry and double-spaced for prose. Please start all pieces on a new page.
- Pieces may have been published individually, but never as a collection. At least 50% of the pieces (NOT pages) must be unpublished at time of manuscript submission.
- Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please let us know immediately if the collection has been accepted elsewhere via Submittable.
- Multiple submissions: you may submit once for free if you match the identifying categories. If you wish to submit an additional manuscript, please submit under the relevant paid category.
- Submit works written in English only. Translations are not accepted.
- Please submit your manuscript in a .doc or .docx format.
- We do not read anonymously. You may include your name and other identifying information.
- Include a title page, a table of contents, and any acknowledgements. If you have previously published any pieces, please indicate that clearly along with the venue. These do not count towards the page total.
- Submission fee is on a sliding scale between $0-$10. Please pay what you can afford by selecting the appropriate option from the list.
Payment and Promotion
- Selected authors will receive our standard payment ($120) and 50 copies of their chapbook in hard copy.
- Authors earn 30% royalties on all Amazon sales of the chapbook, paid annually.
- Chapbooks will be advertised in Chestnut Review and featured for sale on Amazon.com and via our website.
- Authors will be interviewed in a quarterly issue of Chestnut Review.
- Authors will be promoted at in-person events such as AWP and virtual events which authors are welcome to design and plan in tandem with staff.
Submitters may choose to receive paid feedback from a Chestnut Review reader that includes our standard summary of your piece plus 2-4 strengths and 2-4 suggestions on the chapbook as a whole. While the feedback may highlight individual pieces, it will focus more on general suggestions for the entire work.
Submitters may choose (in addition to, or instead of paid feedback) editorial feedback from a chapbook editor, which includes robust in-line comments on the entire document and a 1-2 paragraph letter with overall thoughts.
- We reserve the right to feature poems from chapbooks, at our discretion, in future issues of Chestnut Review without further compensation, and submission of a manuscript indicates your acceptance of these terms.
- Chapbooks undergo an editing process in which both the editor and the author may propose changes, in order to produce a finished print-on-demand chapbook by an agreed-upon target date. In the unlikely event this deadline is not met or either side feels the need to withdraw, all rights return to the author. We also reserve the right to pull chapbooks from production or publication in extraordinary circumstances, including misrepresentation of identity, plagiarism, AI-generated material, or abuse.
- Chestnut Review does not provide e-book versions of the text. We will deliver the Adobe InDesign file for your book on request if you wish to use it as the basis of an e-publication. We cannot provide any technical assistance in preparing such publication.