Big Muddy is an online journal that annually publishes an 8 x 8 perfectbound, color-cover, print issue.  

We are open for submissions year round. We accept fiction, poetry, and essays. Send us your original, previously unpublished manuscripts. Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but we kindy ask that you notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere (if you've submitted multiple pieces, email upress@semo.edu to withdraw part of your submission). Please limit number of individual pieces submitted to: (1) for fiction, non-fiction, or review, (3) for flash fiction, flash non-fiction, (6) for poetry.

We are unable to pay contributors at this time, though if your work is selected for the print issue, you will receive two copies for free. 

Please allow up to six months for a response.

Deadline: October 1, annually.
Reading Fee: $15 (Through Submittable. If you're unable to pay through Submittable, please email us at upress@semo.edu to make alternate arrangements). 
Award: $500 and publication in an issue of Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley.

Manuscripts submitted to the contest will be read and judged anonymously.

Submission Guidelines

  • Submissions must not be previously published.
  • Submit a maximum of 500 words, double-spaced. In the "Cover Letter" field on the submission, please include the following :
    • Contest title
    • Manuscript title
    • Author name
    • Address
    • Telephone number
    • Email (if available)
    • Your name and contact information must not appear anywhere else on the manuscript
  • Failure to follow these guidelines may disqualify entry.

Deadline: Entries must be postmarked by October 1, annually.

Reading Fee: $20 (Through Submittable--if you are unable to pay through Submittable, please email upress@semo.edu to make alternate arrangements). 

Award, contest deadline of October 1, 2018: $1000 and publication in an issue of Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley.

Manuscripts submitted to the contest will be read and judged anonymously.

Submission Guidelines

  • Submissions must not be previously published.
  • Submit a maximum of 30 pages, double-spaced, with the following information included in the "Cover Letter" section of the submission page:
    • Contest title
    • Manuscript title
    • Author name
    • Address
    • Telephone number
    • Email (if available)
    • Your name/contact information must not appear anywhere else on the manuscript.
  • Failure to follow these guidelines may disqualify entry.






Manuscripts Must Be:

  • Big Muddy is dedicated to reviewing full-length of any genre books from independent, university, and small presses.
  • Reviews should be double-spaced pages (approximately 300-500 words).
  • Reviews should be over books published within the last two years. 
  • All documentation should be in appropriate style for your field.
  • We prefer only a minimum of summary. Your educated, supported opinion is most valuable to the review.
  • Reviewers are sent one copy of the issue in which their review is published. The review becomes the property of Southeast Missouri State University Press.
Do you subscribe to Big Muddy? Consider purchasing a submission while you're here submitting. And for our submitters, we're offering a 10% discount off of our usual subscription rate. That means two issues of Big Muddy for just $18.00. 

All of the usual submission rules and guidelines are the same, this category is just for submitters who want to subscribe to our magazine.

It's important to remember that purchasing a subscription will in no way change our editorial decisions about your work. We'll look at the work just like every other submission. Basically, this is just like submitting your work normally, but you get two lovely issues of Big Muddy after you submit (Note: if your work is accepted, your subscription will begin with the issue following the one that you'll receive contributors copies for). 

Please make sure to note the genre of submission in your cover letter, and please do make sure your contact information is correct for the subscription. 




We love what we do, here, at Big Muddy, and we love sharing your work with as wide an audience as possible. Of course, it takes money to keep any literary endeavor afloat. If you feel so inclined, and are a fan of the magazine, consider making a small donation with your submission to help us grow and to keep running.

Please keep in mind, Tip Jar Submissions will absolutely not influence are editorial decisions about work we accept and reject. We just thought we'd put this here in case you love what we do and wanted to help out. 

One last thing: please make sure to specify the genre of your work in your cover letter. 


Big Muddy