Exposition Review is an independent, multi-genre literary journal that publishes narratives by new, emerging, and established writers in the genres of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, stage & screen, experimental narratives, art & photography, and comics (see guidelines below). 

Wondering what to submit to us? We like to be surprised; we like writing that is razor sharp, immediately transporting us with a strong voice and sense of place. We like work that’s thoughtful and cathartic, work that embraces conflict and isn’t afraid to take risks. We love pieces that blur the boundaries of genre. To get a better idea of what we look for in submissions, please read our previous issues. You can also follow the Expo blog to get news about latest submission and contest openings.  


Every issue has a theme from which writers and artists can draw inspiration. We encourage those who submit to think outside the box; we look for stories that fit the theme yet make us think about it in different ways; we want work that satisfies and challenges traditional forms of storytelling.

Vol. IV: "Wonder"

We all experience wonder in our lives. Wondering is human; it’s the desire to know, the curiosity to question, and the ability to dream. Wonder is what we feel when we encounter the beautiful, the unexpected, the unfamiliar, or inexplicable. There are infinite possibilities, and we can’t wait to discover each and every one of your interpretations for Vol. IV: “Wonder.”

We invite you, with this theme, to amaze us with your words. Strike us with your visual art. Don’t be afraid to bend genre, to be unfamiliar, to turn convention on its head and into something wondrous. Bring a punch to our guts with your brevity. Leave us curious for more in the last line. Let destruction be as glamorous as creation. And finally, follow the submission guidelines.

Submissions for Vol. IV will be open from September 15–December 31 2018.

All work is read and given fair consideration by our editorial staff. Guidelines for individual genres are as follows:

  • Fiction. Short stories and stand-alone novel excerpts up to 5,000 words, or up to three pieces of flash fiction, 750 words or fewer.
  • Nonfiction. Memoir, personal essays, and creative nonfiction up to 5,000 words. 
  • Poetry. Up to three poems of any form and in traditional or experimental styles.
  • Stage & Screen. One-act plays, scenes, or short film and screenplay excerpts up to 15 pages. 
  • Experimental Narratives. We love narratives in all forms. Whether it's digital poetics, a video, or a transmedia, genre-bending piece, if it tells a good story, creates compelling characters, and/or tickles our literary senses, we want it. Consider the limits in our other categories and our online platform for length guidelines.
  • Art & Photography. Up to five pieces of art and/or photography per submission. If submitting more than one piece of art, please compile into one file (PDF or otherwise). Include appropriate credit lines for all pieces. 
  • Comics. Comics should be self-contained, up to three pages per piece, with no more than three pieces per submission.


Our Flash 405 competitions accept short from work in the genres of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and stage & screen. Contests are judged by members of Expo's editorial team as well as guest judges. Each contest has a theme and winners are awarded cash prizes and online publication. For more information visit the Flash 405 page on our website.

Ends on March 5, 2019$5.00

Flash 405 is Exposition Review's multi-genre, short form writing competition, awarding cash prizes and online publication to the winners. It accepts entries every other month from January-August.

The February 2019 round is open from February 4th, 2019 - March 5th, 2019 and guest judged by Maureen Lee Lenger. The theme is "Happily Ever After".


About Maureen Lee Lenker:  Maureen Lee Lenker is the romance columnist at Entertainment Weekly. She also covers film, theatre, and TV as a writer there. Her work has appeared in a wide variety of publications, including Turner Classic Movies, The Hollywood Reporter, LA Weekly, and more. In addition to covering romance, she has also had two romantic short stories published in the anthologies Christmas Nookies and Then Comes Winter. Maureen has previously been involved with Exposition Review as a director of their annual staged readings, and is thrilled to be joining the journal for this more literary adventure. 

A note on "Happily Ever After" from Maureen Lee Lenker: 

“We’re all looking for our own version of happily-ever-after, whether it’s the perfect partner, the dream job, the white picket fence, the urban loft, or something entirely off the beaten path. What would give our lives meaning if not the search for happiness? February means love is on the brain, and the cardinal rule of romance writing is that it have an HEA or Happily-Ever-After. It doesn’t matter if it’s in the arms of a duke, Prince Charming, or the leader of a motorcycle gang, we all are searching for our soulmate, our OTP, the person who makes us see stars and rainbows. So, give me your best happily-ever-afters. They can be funny, angsty, a long-time coming, or the result of a chance meeting. Love is love is love is love, so there are no rules here, including when it comes to the level of heat on the page. The only requirement is a happy ending. Much like life, it’s up to you how that’s defined and how you get there. So, go ahead, sweep me off my feet with your romantic entry–I can’t wait.“

We accept:

  • Fiction. A complete story, no more than 405 words (Get it?).
  • Nonfiction. A complete story, no more than 405 words.
  • Poetry. One poem, no longer than 5 lines.
  • Stage & Screen. A complete scene, no longer than 4 pages. Please format according to the standard unpublished playwriting or screenwriting format.
  • Experimental. A complete short form narrative utilizing innovative techniques and/or hybrid forms. Consider the spirit of flash as well as the limits of other categories for length guidelines.

Multiple entries are allowed. Simultaneous submissions and previously published works are not. One piece per entry.

Include a short, third-person bio in the cover letter.

The judge will choose a 1st and 2nd place winner, along with up to 3 Honorable Mentions. All will receive publication on the website. 1st and 2nd place will also receive a cash prize--and here's the fun part. There's no limit to how much you could win! Here's a breakdown: 

  • 1st prize: Online publication + 40% of all entry fees.
  • 2nd prize: Online publication + 20% of all entry fees.
  • Honorable Mention: Online publication. 

Once you submit, be sure to share with your friends! The more entries we receive, the larger the prize!

Blind submissions:
All submissions are judged blind. Please save and submit your work as [TITLE]_[GENRE] and remove all identifying qualities from the final document. Note, we still require your name and a brief bio with your Submittable submission form/cover letter.

Exposition Review