Thank you for your interest in The Iowa Review.

We accept fiction and poetry submissions from August 1 through October 1 and nonfiction submissions from August 1 through November 1. Guidelines can be found here:

Guest edited by Meenakshi Gigi Durham


“when i’m asked to disrobe

and talk about my body

you see

everyone travels through

some sort of prison atsomepoint,” writes the poet Omotara James.

Bodies can be prisons, and they can be imprisoned. Bodies are socially defined, surveilled, regulated, contoured; and the mechanisms of these embodied actions are legal, medical, educational, environmental, familial, religious, cultural, political — above all, political. In recent years, we have watched Black bodies being assaulted by police and by vigilantes, women’s bodies being denied their autonomy, bodies on borders being beaten back, bodies collapsing incruel heatwaves, bodies denied medical care when they challenge gender norms. The precarity and vulnerability of the body are markers of the current moment. 

But bodies are also resistant and rebellious: they push physical limits for the sheer thrill of it, joyfully couple across boundaries of race and gender, risk harm in activism for social justice, extend healing touches and caring gestures.

In this special issue of The Iowa Review, “Bodies in and out of control,” we seek submissions that engage with the body/embodiment, its management and governance as well as its multiplicity, its mysteries, and its vitality. Poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, and other artforms are welcome.

As submissions are read anonymously, please do not include your name on the submission document itself. Your name, email, address, and bio can be included in the cover letter.

Work must be previously unpublished in print or online, and, if accepted, must not be published anywhere else before it is published in The Iowa Review (the lead time between acceptance and publication is about a year). Simultaneous submissions are accepted, provided you contact us immediately to withdraw your work if it is accepted for publication elsewhere. We typically respond in one to six months.

The page limit for prose is 25 pages and for poetry is 8 pages (query by e-mail if you have a longer poem). Prose submissions should be double-spaced.

Current University of Iowa students are ineligible to submit.

We pay $1.50 per line for poetry ($100 minimum) and $0.08 per word for prose ($100 minimum).

Translations should be submitted according to the guidelines of the original work's genre and addressed to that genre's editor. Translators should have permission from the copyright holder and should include a copy of the original work with their submission.

For more information, visit:

The Iowa Review