Submission Guidelines

Submission Guidelines image


Red Hen Press is proud to confer ten annual literary awards: the Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award for $3,000, a four-week PLAYA Residency, and the publication of a full manuscript; the Quill Prose Awardthe Red Hen Press Fiction Award, the Red Hen Press Nonfiction Award, the Red Hen Press Women’s Prose Prize, and the Red Hen Press Novella Award each for $1000 and publication by Red Hen Press.

Through the Los Angeles Review, we confer four annual awards: the Short Fiction Award, the Flash Fiction Award, the Creative Nonfiction Award, and the Poetry Award. A prize of $1,000 and publication in the Los Angeles Review will be given to four authors each season for exceptional writing in each genre.

We Accept Unsolicited Submissions

Red Hen Press is an independent, nonprofit press that publishes about twenty books of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry every year. We’re looking for novels, memoirs, creative nonfiction, hybrid works, essays, and poetry collections of exceptional literary merit that demonstrate a high level of mastery.

Red Hen publications are diverse in style and subject but tend to have in common a certain wildness. Please familiarize yourself with our catalog before submitting.

Representative writers:
Fiction: Brian Doyle, Elizabeth Earley, Andrew Lam, Aimee Liu, Ellen Meeropol, and tammy lynne stoner
Poetry: Chris Abani, Camille Dungy, Percival Everett, Allison Joseph, Douglas Kearney, Ron Koertge, Khalisa Rae, Maggie Smith, and Tess Taylor
Creative nonfiction: Florencia Ramirez, Steve Almond, and Elissa Washuta

 With your submission, be sure to include:

  1. A cover letter that includes the author’s name, contact information, and a brief synopsis of the work. For award submissions, this should be the only information included in your Cover Letter. For General Submissions, please include the above information and describe the author’s background, list any publication credits if applicable, and explain why the work is a fit for Red Hen Press.
  2. The work itself. For General Submissions, writers may submit either the full manuscript or a sample of between 20 and 30 pages. Please keep in mind that full manuscripts take longer to review. All manuscripts should include page numbers on every page.

Given the high volume of submissions we receive, please expect a response time of three to twelve months. We appreciate your patience. Phone calls, emails, and letters will not speed up the process, and are strongly discouraged.

Agented Submissions

Agented submissions should be sent directly to Managing Editor, Kate Gale, at