Undergraduates: Here’s Where You Can Submit your Creative Writing for Publication

The cover of the 2020 print edition of Duke University's undergraduate literary magazine, The Archive.
The cover of the 2020 print edition of The Archive, Duke University's undergraduate literary magazine.

Established in 1887, The Archive is Duke University’s undergraduate literary magazine, showcasing students’ original poetry and prose. The biannual collection is published online and in print, and welcomes submissions of any theme or subject. 

For Duke’s aspiring writers and creative thinkers, The Archive provides a platform for exceptional literary work to be recognized and shared. Getting a piece published in The Archive might be a first step towards becoming a novelist or poet. Submitting is an exciting opportunity for any student who’s passionate about creative writing — and The Archive is far from the only option. 

Duke undergraduates have had their work published in various literary journals and magazines across the country, including the Oakland Arts Review, The Foundationalist, and Proteus. Many publications at universities and online are designed for undergraduate writers and devoted to literature of all kinds.  

If you’ve written something you’re proud of, in any style or genre, you have the opportunity to submit your work for publication. Many undergraduate magazines focus exclusively on creative writing, including poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, short prose, and plays. Others also accept literary analysis in the form of essays or research. 

Read on to learn about select publications for undergraduate writing. You’ll find submission guidelines, deadlines, and what types of work each magazine or journal seeks. This list is far from exhaustive, but includes some great opportunities for young, ambitious writers.

The Foundationalist

The Foundationalist is an online and in print literary journal run collaboratively by the editorial boards at Bowdoin College, Yale University, and the University of Iowa. Issues are published biannually, in the fall and spring. Selected works are published digitally on Acedemia.edu and made available in print and in e-book format.

The Foundationalist accepts undergraduate literary essays, poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. There are no page limits, word limits, or restrictions on themes. However, previously published works will not be considered. The deadline for the fall has passed, but there will be another call for submissions in the spring.

Oakland Arts Review

The Oakland Arts Review is an international literary journal for undergraduates, published by Oakland University in Michigan. Issues are published online in e-book and PDF format and include literary nonfiction, fiction, poetry, comics, and artwork. Submissions must be original undergraduate work that has not been previously published. 

The journal accepts submissions year round. The deadline to be considered for this spring's publication, Volume Six, is December 1, 2020. 

The Blue Route

The Blue Route is Widener University’s literary journal for undergraduate writing. Published exclusively online, The Blue Route accepts short fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. Students selected for publication receive a small cash reward for their contribution. 

The submission deadline for the journal’s 25th issue is March 1, 2021. Poetry submissions may include up to three poems, and prose submissions may include up to three pieces of fiction or nonfiction totaling no more than 3,000 words. The Blue Route does not accept previously published work and seeks “highly imaginative writing about contemporary life as you see it.”

Green Blotter 

The Green Blotter Literary Magazine is published annually by Lebanon Valley College’s Green Blotter Literary Society. The magazine features undergraduate poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and artwork. 

Submissions are accepted year round, but the deadline to be considered for next year’s issue is February 22, 2021. Students can submit up to two pieces of fiction or nonfiction prose, no more than 3,000 words in length. Poetry submissions have no exact word limits, but cannot exceed five pages. Green Blotter also accepts up to five images of photography or other visual art for consideration. 

Outrageous Fortune

Based at Mary Baldwin University, Outrageous Fortune is an online literary magazine created by and for undergraduates.. The magazine publishes poetry, short stories, essays, novel excerpts, plays, films, and artwork. 

The deadline for submission for the upcoming issue is November 25, 2020. Students may submit up to five poems, and can even include a video of a poetry performance. There are no word limits for short stories, novel excerpts, essays or plays. However, the editorial board stipulates that essays must be creative nonfiction or other creative genres, but cannot be literary criticism. Students may also submit up to five photos or other pieces of artwork, and no more than two films for consideration. 


Mosaic is the University of California, Riverside’s undergraduate literary journal, published annually. The journal was founded by a small group of poets in 1959, and has since expanded to include not only poetry but also fiction and creative nonfiction, plays, and visual art. 

The submission deadline is March 1, 2021, and submitted works must be previously unpublished. Poets may submit up to five poems, with no length restrictions. For plays, fiction, and creative nonfiction, undergraduate writers may submit up to five pieces of work totaling no more than 8,000 words. This can include multiple shorter pieces or a single longer piece, as long as it does not exceed the word limit. Mosaic also accepts visual art and photography, accompanied by a brief artist statement.

Prairie Margins

Prairie Margins is a national undergraduate literary magazine founded at Bowling Green State University. Each volume is published in print and archived in a digital format. The magazine accepts submissions year round, and welcomes poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and visual art. The deadline for the 2021 issue is March 1, 2021. 

Writers submitting fiction or creative nonfiction are limited to 6,000 words, and poets are limited to six poems. Artwork submissions may include up to eight photographs, paintings, or other pieces of visual art.