Tin House

Submission Guidelines

Do you accept genre fiction?
Although we read fiction of all stripes and frequently publish work that crosses or bends genre lines, we do strongly recommend that all submitters familiarize themselves with Tin House before sending work.
My manuscript comes in just over 10,000 words, but it's really worth a read!
Unless you are able to shave it down to 9,999, it will be returned unread. We apologize if this seems militant, but, as they say, we have to draw the line somewhere. If your manuscript seems long, and there is no WORD COUNT included in your cover letter, it will be returned unread.
Why are your rejection notes so robotic and impersonal?
It’s mostly a matter of volume; with over 2,000 submissions received each month during our reading period, we must unfortunately be very ruthless in our selection process. It keeps some of us up at night. Please, please don’t take it personally.
Could you please tell me why you didn't accept my story?
See above. We just don’t have the time to comment on individual submissions. We wish we could.
Who reads my submissions?
We have a volunteer crew of about twenty-five readers. All of our readers have an extensive background in the literary arts and most have advanced degrees in English or writing or both. They are put through a grueling gauntlet before being offered a position. Submissions are also read by our editorial interns, who hold an equally competitive position and are extensively vetted. Finally, most of the magazine’s editorial staff read submissions on an ongoing basis, as well.

Tin House Theme Issues

Starting in 2016, we will accept unsolicited submissions twice a year: in September and March. As always, our summer and winter issues are not themed. We consider each submission for all upcoming issues regardless of theme. If you wish to be considered for a particular theme, please make a note in your cover letter.

Tin House is currently accepting unsolicited submissions for our next THREE issues:

Fall 2017: True Crime. We're putting out an APB for stories, essays, and poems about crimes large and small, so long as it's true . . . or, you know, "true." (Pub date September 1, 2017. Accepting unsolicited submissions March 2017.)

Winter 2017. (Unthemed. Pub date December 1, 2017. Accepting unsolicited submissions March 2017.)

Spring 2018: Candy. What's that sweet thing you crave, that might also be ruining your life? Tell us about your temptations, your pursuit of pleasure, and the hard edge along something sickly sweet. (Pub date March 1, 2018. Accepting unsolicited submissions March 2017.)

Submission Guidelines

We accept unsolicited submissions twice a year: in September and March.

Please submit only one story or essay (10,000-word limit), or up to five poems at a time. Multiple submissions will be returned unread. We ask that you please wait until you hear back from us before submitting new work for consideration. If you currently have a submission in our system but wish to submit something new instead, please withdraw the older submission via Submittable.

We shall do our best to respond within six months but this period may be longer. [Currently it is longer, please bear with us!] Please do not call the office with inquiries or threats. We appreciate your patience!

Tin House does accept simultaneous submissions. In the event that the work is accepted for publication elsewhere, please do us the courtesy of informing us promptly.

Only previously unpublished works will be considered for publication.

Cover letters should include a word count and indicate whether the submission is fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.

Manuscripts transmitted via fax or e-mail will not be accepted for consideration.

Please click here submit via our Submittable page.

For Lost & Found submissions: Lost & Found essays champion books that have been overlooked or culturally neglected, with the hope of bringing them new attention and readership. Featured books need to be at least 10 years old, and preferably about the work of a lesser-known author rather than the lesser-known work of someone famous. We particularly look for pieces where the Lost & Found author has a story to tell about how or why they came to love the book. We are happy to see pitches or finished drafts; it's always a good idea to pitch first if you have questions about whether a book is a fit for the feature. Send submissions or inquiries for Lost & Found ONLY to emma@tinhouse.com.

While we prefer electronic submissions, submissions can be mailed to Tin House, PO Box 10500, Portland, OR 97210. Please enclose an SASE (include an IRC with international submissions), or we cannot guarantee a response or the return of your work.

Questions not addressed on this page may be directed to info@tinhouse.com.

Curious to see what else is going on at Tin House? Find out by visiting us at our always flowing blog, The Open Bar.