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 the heartland and beyond.

We are currently open for all categories including artwork & book reviews. General 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individual poems or flash pieces, please add a message/note to the submission indicating which title(s) are being withdrawn. 
  • Submission title/file must not contain any information that would identify the author. This includes names, email addresses, etc. Submissions that do not follow this guideline may be declined without consideration.
  • The Good Life Review acquires First Publication Rights and the right to maintain an archive copy of accepted work online. All other rights revert to our author(s) upon publication. We respectfully request that if the work is reprinted elsewhere, appropriate acknowledgment to The Good Life Review is made.
  • We will respond to all submitted work. It may take up to four months on general submissions and up to six months on contest submissions. Artwork and book reviews may remain open for the duration of the current calendar year. Thank you in advance for your patience.
  • 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 genre 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  • Work must be original and previously unpublished.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:

June 1 – July 31st (Autumn Issue)
August 1 – October 31st (Winter Issue)
November 1 – January 31st (Spring Issue)
December 15 – April 15 (Summer Honeybee Prize Issue)

Does your original photography or artwork tell a story? We are currently looking for pieces to feature in our Summer 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. 


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!

Work submitted here will be considered for our autumn issue (online only) and the submission window will close on July 31st. Genre guidelines are as follows:

For Fiction and Creative Nonfiction:

  • We consider original, previously unpublished stories and essays up to 5000 words (if it’s a little more, we will keep reading, but the story has to earn it). Please select the correct category (short, flash, micro) on the form so the submission can be routed to the correct editorial team. 
  • For flash and micro, no more than 3 pieces in a single submission. 
  • Submissions should be typed, double-spaced and paginated with one-inch margins and a 12 point serif font, preferably Times New Roman in Word or PDF format. 

For Poetry:

  • We consider original, previously unpublished poems in formal, free verse, and experimental forms. 
  • 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 in Word or PDF format. We do our best to format poems to the exact specification desired but those with long lines may wrap unconditionally when rendered on some tablets and mobile phones.

For Stage Plays & Screenplays: 

  • We consider original, previously unpublished 10-Minute plays, One Acts, and short films and television scripts/pilots up to 30 pages in length.
  • 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 or screenplay formatting will not be considered.

We support Spanish translations as long as the rights to translate have been previously acquired.

For all submissions: Please ensure that all personal identifiable information (name, email, address) 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.

The Good Life Review