Thanks for sharing your work with Rattle! All of our content comes from unsolicited submissions—we couldn't exist without you, and we want this process to be as easy and friendly as possible. For more information, see our full guidelines page.
- Rattle publishes unsolicited poetry, translations, and book reviews.
- General submissions are open year-round, always welcomed, and always free.
- Rattle does not accept work that has been previously curated, in print or online—poems may be self-published on social media, blogs, or message boards, but cannot have been published in books, magazines, or similar collections open to the public. We want to be the first publisher to highlight the poems, but never want to discourage anyone from sharing their poems themselves. For more on this, read "Uncurated: The Case for a New Term of Art."
- Rattle does not accept work that has been predominantly generated by artificial intelligence. Poetry is a tool for expanding the human spirit, which means poems should be written by humans. It is possible to use A.I. toward that aim in some cases, so if used A.I. to assist in the writing process, please explain in the notes to your submission.
- Simultaneous submissions are encouraged.
- Contributors to the print magazine receive $200 and a complimentary one-year subscription. Poems for "Online" categories receive $100.
- All submissions are automatically considered for the annual Neil Postman Award for Metaphor, a $2,000 prize judged by the editors.
- Separate from general and themed (and always free) submissions, we also offer the annual $15,000 Rattle Poetry Prize and the Rattle Chapbook Prize—for each of those, a submission fee of $25 includes a one-year subscription to the magazine.
- Submissions cannot be revised after submission. If you need to edit a submission, please simply withdraw it and submit again. Note that typos and minor changes never affect our decisions—proofreading is what editors are for. If you've made a significant mistake, use the internal messaging system to send a new file as an attachment.
- To withdraw a single poem from a submission of multiple poems, just log in, click on the submission, and send a message to let us know which you'd like removed. Do not withdraw the entire submission—if you do, the submission will no longer be active and we won't see it.
- Don't include any contact information in the file(s) that you submit. Your name and contact info will be included in the Submittable fields, and this will make it easier for us to read fairly.
For more detailed information about rights, rules, privacy, and payments for publication, see our full guidelines.
NOTE: Please don't query to ask if we have a reply to your submission yet. If the status says "received" or "in-progress," then it's received and in-progress. We always go as fast as we can, but we're only human and the submission flow waxes and wanes, so response times vary considerably.
We like poems of any length. Try to send several poems as opposed to a single piece, but no more than four in a submission—up to four poems (or pages of short poems) may be included in a single file, in separate files, or pasted/typed into the text box provided on the next page. Do not include your name or contact info in the file/box with the poems. Do not make another submission in this category until we've replied.
We’re looking for previously unpublished poems that move us, that might make us laugh or cry, or teach us something new. We like both free verse and traditional forms—we try to publish a representative mix of what we receive. We read a lot of poems, and only those that are unique, insightful, and musical stand out—regardless of style. Since our issues include about 50 pages of poetry, one of the main things we’re looking for is diversity; we have enough room to be eclectic, and we plan on using it. So while most magazines suggest reading their back issues to get a sense of what they like to publish, we’d suggest reading to get a sense of what we’re having trouble finding—if you notice a style or subject matter that we don’t seem to be publishing, send us that!
Because of the nature of the traditional publication apparatus, poetry doesn't often respond in a timely way to current events—but we think it could. To test this hypothesis, we'd like to try publishing a poem online each Sunday (if we receive any that we like) that responds to a news story or public event from the previous week, and has been written in the time since.
Selected poems will appear as the Sunday poem at Rattle.com, with occasional extra poems Tuesday or Thursday, which are fed to over 10,000 people via our RSS feed and daily email service. Poets will receive $100 and a complimentary subscription to the print magazine.
The deadline for each week is Friday at midnight PST. The poems must respond to news that occurred in the previous week, and have been written in the time since.
Include a brief explanation as to what the poem is about. Feel free to submit to this category as often as you'd like, even within the same week, and even if you have other general, tribute, or contest submissions pending.
There's a long tradition of poetry responding to art (and vice versa), and we thought it would be fun to post these challenges. Every month we will post an image on our Ekphrastic Challenge page. Poets will then have one month to write a poem in response to that specific image.
After the deadline (the last day of each month), Rattle's editor and the artist who provided the image will each select their favorite poem, which will be published online the next month. Submissions to this category will only be considered as responses to the single image posted for the current month. If your poem isn't written in response to that image, please use the General Poems category instead.
For years, we've been offering a prompt at the end of every Rattlecast episode, to encourage folks to write new poems for the next week's open lines. At the end of every episode, Timothy Green announced the next week's prompt. Write yours within the next week to share it on the open lines, and submit it to this category by the end of the month to have it considered. Series editor Katie Dozier will select her favorite poems, which will be published as one of Rattle.com's daily poems. The winner each month will also receive $100.
Submissions for the Prompt Poem of the Month are not anonymized—we still want to encourage everyone to share their weekly poems on the Rattlecast's open lines—but choices are still being made solely based on the poem's merit. Submit as many poems as you'd like to this category, but only poems written for the current month's prompts. A winner will be chosen after the first week of every month.
February 5th: Write a poem entitled, “A Brief History of [X],” where X is a word that needs to be translated, and the poem is less than a page.
February 12th: Write a song of someone or something, as a persona poem 32 lines long.
February 19th: Write a haiku sequence that talks about love without mentioning it by name.
February 26th: Revise a poem that you wrote a long time ago by radically shifting its perspective. (Submit both the old and new versions.)
Our Fall 2024 issue will be dedicated to poems written in response to prompts. The relationship between music and poetry is self-evident, and we want to explore how music in the air in forms poems on the page. The poems may be any style or subject, but must be written who have been professional musicians at some point in their lives.
Include a contributor's note about your music experience and how it affects your poetry. We no longer publish essays, but always include a contributor notes section, where we ask in this case why you enjoy writing prompt poems.
You may submit up to four previously uncurated poems (or pages of short poems) at the same time, either in a single file or up to four files. Do not include your name or contact info within the file content. Do not submit more work in this category until we've replied.
NOTE: Submissions to this category are NOT considered for publication. There is no entry fee or payment for participating. To give everyone a chance, please do not enter if you've had worked critiqued here in the last year.
This is the entry portal for our monthly Critique of the Week. Every Friday at 4pm ET, Rattle's editor hosts a livestreamed poetry critique on YouTube and Facebook, offering suggestions and feedback. The viewing audience is encouraged to participate. The goal is to help us all become better poets through the honest sharing of our reactions, similar to the experience of an MFA roundtable workshop. Be sure to follow us on Facebook or subscribe on YouTube so that you don't miss the weekly critique.
Participants are reviewed at random and all entries are considered—but only one entry per person per year.
Include two poems to be critiqued with your entry here, but if you'd like to change them after you are chosen, you will be able to do so.
Note that videos will remain archived and viewable by the public for at least two weeks and then indefinitely until a participating poets request their video to be deleted.
If you'd also like to submit artwork, please use this category and submit up to six JPGs. Most often we only use art for our covers, which are full-bleed, 9" x 6". In order to publish a cover we will need a file with at least 300 ppi—but please submit smaller screen-res files (no larger than 1 MB each or so) for now, to keep the servers happy.
Our upcoming themes are as follows:
General issue - no deadline
Collaboration - November 1st
Young Poets - November 15th
Ghazals - January 15th
Musicians - April 15th
Artwork should somehow relate to the theme. We also prefer to have covers with vibrant colors, rather than black and white.
Artists receive $200 and a box of copies of the issue when it comes out.