The editors of Coal Hill Review are sad to announce that the journal is going on an indefinite hiatus. We so appreciate the authors who let us publish their work in previous issues and look forward to reopening the journal in the future. 

We do accept simultaneous submissions, but please let us know if your work is accepted elsewhere. Just a heads up, we charge a $3 submission fee to cover the costs of our submission manager (except for book reviews).

Our guidelines are below. If you have more questions, please feel free to email us at


  • Send 3-5 poems for consideration (no more than 10 pages worth of work please)


  • Send up to 2 short stories (1,000 – 5,000 words)
  • Send a stand-alone excerpt from an in-progress or forthcoming novel (1,000 – 5,000 words)
  • Send up to 4 flash pieces (each piece should be 800 words or less)

Creative Nonfiction

  • Send up to 2 essays (1,000 – 5,000 words)
  • Send a stand-alone excerpt from an in-progress or forthcoming memoir¬†(1,000 – 5,000 words)
  • Send a micro-essays or flash pieces of CNF (each piece should be 800 words or less)

Book Reviews

  • Coal Hill Review exclusively publishes reviews of books published by independent and university presses;
  • Special consideration is given to reviews written about books by emerging authors, debut authors, authors and publishers with local ties to Pittsburgh and Southwestern Pennsylvania in addition to books that have received little press coverage or overlooked by other review outlets;
  • Coal Hill Review publishes book reviews that are generally around 1,000 words, though we welcome all pitches and queries when different lengths are appropriate;
  • We seek critically balanced reviews that go beyond simple commendations or criticism and might address how the writer is navigating some challenges of writing contemporary fiction, poetry, and nonfiction.

If you are interested in reviewing any of these particular titles, please query with a 1-3 page writing sample and your interest in reviewing the title, including any potential affiliations with the author. We understand the writing community can be a small and often pleasantly interconnected space but think it’s best to be upfront about these connections when offering a critical perspective.