Cola reads for fiction and poetry each academic year. We offer a free reading period in the fall (typically 1-3 months), and a paid reading period (with a submission fee of $3). This paid period supports the basic operational costs of running our journal such as publishing, web hosting, etc. All submissions, free or otherwise, are considered equally.

For the month of January, we are open exclusively for our Black and First American Authors project. Fees for these submissions are waived.

To see if your work is a good fit, take a look at the recent work we’ve published in print and on our website.

The best place to learn about whether or not we are open for submissions is on our Twitter page.


  • Work must be previously unpublished.
  • We do accept simultaneous submissions, however please let us know immediately if your work gets accepted elsewhere by sending a message through Submittable. Please do not withdraw your submission unless you are withdrawing the entirety of its contents.
  • Please only submit once per reading period.  
  • Poetry submissions: please submit 3-5 poems in a single Word document with no more than one poem per page.
  • Fiction submissions: we consider stories from 1,000 to 5,000 words in length. (8,000 words is the absolute max.) Please double-space and paginate your document. If you intend to submit shorter works of fiction (1,000 words or less), we encourage you to include 3-5 pieces in a single document.
  • Please include a brief bio (about 100 words or fewer) and a mailing address in your cover letter.
  • Please send us your work via our Submittable. We do not accept email submissions at this time. We also do not accept postal submissions, unless you are currently incarcerated.

© Cola Literary Review, 2022. All rights reserved.
Cola Literary Review does not collect or share personal information.