Welcome to the Good Life! 

The Good Life Review is a quarterly online literary journal committed to exploring the overlooked. Based out of Omaha, Nebraska—astride the oft unnoticed—we recognize that there are a myriad of voices that call the regions surrounding us home. Our mission is to lift up the strange, the daring, and the underrepresented to reveal complexities hidden in our heartland and beyond.

We are currently open for all genres including artwork and book reviews. The submission window for our Spring 2022 issue will close on February 28, 2022. As of Issue #7 we will be paying authors $25 per published piece. Guidelines are as follows:

  • Simultaneous submissions will be accepted as long as we are promptly made aware that the work you have submitted has been accepted elsewhere. Please withdraw through Submittable. To withdraw individual poems or flash pieces, please add a message to the submission indicating which titles are being withdrawn. 
  • Your submission title/file name and contents should not include any personal identification details. 
  • The Good Life Review pays $25 per published piece for First Publication Rights and the right to maintain an archive copy of accepted work online. All other rights revert to our authors upon publication, and the work may be reprinted as long as appropriate acknowledgment to The Good Life Review is made.
  • We will respond to all submitted work. Please allow up to 4 months for a response.
  • We will not publish work that seems offensive to us or which exhibits hatred directed towards a particular gender, race, ethnicity, ability, sexual identity, socioeconomic class, or other status, regardless of whether it is protected by law. In other words—if you are an asshole, we don't want your writing or your three dollars. 
  • Please submit to only one category in a single submission (for example do not send a document with both fiction and poetry unless it is to be considered as a hybrid piece). If you have work that doesn’t fit neatly into one of our categories, choose the closest and we’ll figure it out. 
  • Work must be original and previously unpublished. Give us your very best!

Our general submission schedule:

July 1 – August 31st (Autumn Issue)
October 1 – November 30th (Winter Issue)
January 1 – February 28/29 (Spring Issue)
January 15 – April 15 (Summer Honeybee Prize Issue)

Ends on This opportunity will close after 100 submissions have been received.

Does your original photography or artwork tell a story? We are currently looking for pieces to feature in our Winter 2022 issue. There are no specific guidelines and the only requirement is that you must own rights to the images submitted. We would encourage you to check out our latest issue @ https://thegoodlifereview.com/ to see if we would be a good home for your work. 

Please note: there is a cap on the number of submissions we will accept during the current window and once the project reaches that threshold, it will automatically be closed to new submissions. 

Once those submissions have been reviewed, we will open the window again so please check back if the window is currently closed. 

For Fiction: We want to read writing that is polished, confident, and well-developed. We want stories that are engaging from the first word to the last. Experimental fiction is welcomed.

  • We consider original, previously unpublished stories up to 5000 words (if it’s a little more, we will keep reading, but the story has to earn it). 
  • Stories should be typed, double-spaced and paginated with one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman. 
  • For pieces under 1,000 words, please see flash guidelines below. 

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For Flash Fiction: We want every word to pull its weight; every sentence tells a story. We want flash that moves, that transforms and twists on the page. Characters that run their fingers through your hair and yank at the roots, yelling at you to look, feel, believe. A voice that lifts us up and carries us past the last line. In short, send us your best work and we promise to handle it with care.

  • We consider previously unpublished flash fiction of 1,000 words or fewer. 
  • Pieces should be typed, double-spaced and paginated with one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman. 
  • Include no more than three pieces in a single text file. 

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For Stage&Screen: Not every script has to be produced! Theater and film are long trodden forms and we want to see what divergent paths you’re making. For stage/screenplays, all genres and topics will be considered. Beyond keeping the audience merely engaged moment to moment, we are seeking works that push societal boundaries and stimulate the senses. From the opening line show us the exuberant, binding, heartbreaking, touching, thought provoking, moving, or whatever journeys your characters make. Send us the stories that only you can tell. Guidelines for Stage Plays:

  • Only 10-Minute plays and One Acts up to 30 pages in length will be considered.
  • Paginate each script.
  • Please include a cover page with no identifying information as well as character breakdown list and staging instructions.
  • Though cross-genre is encouraged, please ensure each script is formatted for performance: An example can be found here.
  • Scripts diverging from standard playscript formats will not be considered.

Guidelines for Screenplays:

  • Only short films and television scripts/pilots up to 30 pages will be considered.
  • Paginate each script.
  • Please include a cover page with title and no identifying information.
  • Though cross-genre is encouraged, please ensure each script is formatted to be produced. An example can be found here.
  • Scripts diverging from standard screenplay formatting will not be considered.

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We support Spanish translations!

Please ensure that personal identifiable information (such as author name) is removed from the attached document and not included in the submission title. A comprehensive set of guidelines can be found on our submission page.

For Poetry: We are interested in work that pushes boundaries, both in content and form, especially language that moves us. Poems should emanate from textured, evocative images, use language with an awareness of how words sound and mean, and have a definite sense of voice. Each line should help carry the poem from first line to last. We are open to your experimentations and are especially interested in work that is speculative, narrative, surreal, fragmented, and lyrical. We also welcome prose poetry and strongly encourage underrepresented voices. Whatever shape it takes, we want exciting work that thinks through or challenges poetic traditions. In other words, The Good Life Review wants your excellent writing—period. Send us what you got!

  • We consider original, previously unpublished poems. There is no length limit on individual poems, but please send no more than six poems per submission and no more than 10 pages in total.
  • Poems should be typed with at least one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman. Please indicate a page break if a poem continues onto the next page.

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For Nonfiction: Send us your best, most polished work. We want to read essays that wake us up in the morning—ones that get our minds working and hearts thumping. We want prose that is artful and clever with voices that are clear and cadent. Whether traditional or experimental, structure and form should enhance the content of a story that is both universal and painfully specific. Fresh perspectives, especially ones we may not have considered before, are welcomed and encouraged. We want what you’ve got, and we’re eager to get reading.

  • We consider original, previously unpublished creative nonfiction. Essays should not exceed 5,000 words. Excerpts from memoirs may be considered but should be self-contained.
  • Essays should be typed, double-spaced and paginated with one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman.
  • For pieces under 1,000 words, please see our flash nonfiction guidelines below.

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For Flash Nonfiction: We want every word to pull its weight; every sentence tells a story. We want flash that moves, that transforms and twists on the page. Characters that run their fingers through your hair and yank at the roots, yelling at you to look, feel, believe. A voice that lifts us up and carries us past the last line. In short, send us your best work and we promise to handle it with care.

  • We consider previously unpublished flash nonfiction of 1,000 words or fewer.
  • Pieces should be typed, double-spaced and paginated with one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman.
  • Include no more than three pieces in a single text file.

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We support both Spanish and French translations!

Please ensure that all personal identifiable information (such as author name) is removed from the attached document and not included in the submission title. A comprehensive set of all guidelines can be found on our submission page.

BOOK REVIEWS

We are seeking book reviews of poetry, creative nonfiction, and fiction. These reviews shouldn’t simply be about good writing; they should be good writing. We aim to introduce our readers to the diverse talents of reviewers as well as offer a space for important discussions about craft. Guidelines for reviews are as follows:

  • - We prefer reviews of recently published books (2020 - 2022) by a diversity of authors.
  • - Please use a standard font and size (e.g.,12 point Times New Roman).
  • - We prefer Word doc or docx file types, but PDF is OK if you must.
  • - We do not consider reviews of self-published books.
  • - Book reviews accepted will be featured on The Good Life Review’s rolling content page online which is free for all visitors of our site. They will not appear in our quarterly issue.
  • - Reviews accepted for publication may still require editing or revision, in which case reviewers will work with an editor from our team to prepare the text for publication.
  • - Send only one review at a time, and wait until you receive a response on a submission before sending more work.

For poetry:

  • - Avoid passive voice. (Don’t tell us what the poems are, but rather consider how they work.)
  • - Consider how the collection relates to others stylistically and thematically.
  • - Consider how the arrangement and aesthetic operate in the unified body of work as well as in individual poems.

For fiction or creative nonfiction books:

  • - The review should be a synthesis of summary, analysis, and critique.
  • - Consider evaluations of craft employed within the body of work.
  • - Consider the structure and organization of the story or stories.
  • - If the prose is a collection of short stories or essays, consider how each relates to the others and contributes to the whole of the book.

Please note that this is a call for book reviews and not a request to send manuscripts. Our editorial team will also be reviewing books on a limited basis beginning in 2022. You may pitch book review requests/ideas by emailing us at editors@thegoodlifereview.com. Please include a letter that introduces yourself and explains the details of what you are pitching.

Thank you!

This year the submission fee remains the same but the prize payout has increased from $800 to $1400 which will be split between the winners and runners-up in each of the four categories. Details as follows: 

Submissions for the 2022 Honeybee Prize will be open until April 15th. 

Three to six finalists in each category (Poetry, Nonfiction, Script Writing, and Fiction) will be sent to our guest judges, who will select a winner and runner-up. The judges for this year's contest are TBD.

The winning entry in each of the four categories will receive $300 via PayPal, publication in our summer 2022 issue, and a jar of honey from a Midwest apiary. The runner-up in each category will receive $50 via PayPal. All finalists may be published in our summer issue.

The contest fee is $15 which will be used to support the prize payout.

Submission guidelines are the same as our regular publication guidelines. We will not consider previously published work and request that all personal identifiable information is removed from the attached manuscript. For a comprehensive set of guidelines and genre specific details, please visit our submission page at https://thegoodlifereview.com/submit/













 

This year the submission fee remains the same but the prize payout has increased from $800 to $1400 which will be split between the winners and runners-up in each of the four categories. Details as follows: 


Submissions for the 2022 Honeybee Prize will be open until April 15th. 


Three to six finalists in each category (Poetry, Nonfiction, Script Writing, and Fiction) will be sent to our guest judges, who will select a winner and runner-up. The judges for this year's contest are TBD.


The winning entry in each of the four categories will receive $300 via PayPal, publication in our summer 2022 issue, and a jar of honey from a Midwest apiary. The runner-up in each category will receive $50 via PayPal. All finalists may be published in our summer issue.


The contest fee is $15 which will be used to support the prize payout.

Submission guidelines are the same as our regular publication guidelines. We will not consider previously published work and request that all personal identifiable information is removed from the attached manuscript. For a comprehensive set of guidelines and genre specific details, please visit our submission page at https://thegoodlifereview.com/submit/













 

The Good Life Review