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Submission Guidelines

We are currently closed for submissions. We will open again for our Fall 2024 issue this summer.


Please read this page carefully as it shares important information on submission guidelines and terms. We look forward to reading your work!

We receive submissions through only, and have two reading periods per year (spring and fall). Fall issues are themed, spring issues are not. We ask for your best previously unpublished prose, poetry, media recordings, hybrid work, and artwork in the realm of Narrative Medicine when we are open. We ask that if your work was accepted in a previous issue, that you skip a submission period and wait till the next one before submitting again. If you sent us work that was not accepted, you may submit new pieces for consideration. You are welcome to send any questions via the contact form, however, any work sent outside reading periods, or using the contact form, will not be read. 

Poetry: We accept up to 5 poems in whichever format you see fit, but no more than five pages in all; Times New Roman, 12 pt. font in a Word file is preferable. If you have specific formatting for your poem or you have embedded text within an image, please state this in the description of your submission (you may send us a PDF if this applies). We are open to hybrid poetry pieces that include visual and written elements.


Prose: We accept prose submissions (both fiction and creative nonfiction) of up to 3000 words. Please double-space your work and use Times New Roman, 12 pt. font. Please send your piece in Word format. We accept up to three pieces of Flash at once as long as the culminating word count is under 3000 words. Please put all pieces in one document with clear titles for each.


Artwork: You may submit up to five pieces of original artwork at once. If your piece is accepted and does not meet DPI for printing, we may reach out for a higher quality image. We are open to art that has text elements; if you consider your piece more poetry than art, however, please submit it under Poetry, as we only accept submissions for one genre per person per period.

Media Recordings: We can accept original, unpublished media recordings in the form of music, videos, electroacoustic pieces, or sound-related work. Please make sure your piece is no longer than 5 minutes. A link to the file is sufficient for reviewing purposes; Mp3 or WAV is fine. If we accept the piece, we will ask for a full copy of the work so it can be securely and permanently uploaded to our website. Media work shall only be showcased on our site, and cannot be included in any print publications, though pieces may be mentioned with a link to view online.


General guidelines:

  • Each fall issue has a presiding theme. Spring issues are not themed. If the issue is themed, priority will be given to work that meets that theme.

  • Though we are fairly flexible on how this is interpreted, please reflect on whether your work fits within the genre of Narrative Medicine before submitting. For a clear description of what Narrative Medicine is, please visit the Home page. 

  • Please ensure that you include a bio of 100 words or less at the foot of your document (in the email is fine for any media submissions), and a short cover letter in the body of your email with your submission.

  • You may submit in only one category, and once per submission period.

  • We do not currently charge a fee for submissions and we cannot pay contributors at this time.

  • Our turnaround time is roughly two months.

  • Currently, we can only accept submissions written in English, or that are translated to English. Please reach out if you have questions about this regarding any specific pieces. Quotes or small sections used for dialog or poetic effect are fine.

  • We will immediately refuse anything that contains hateful, extremely or gratuitously graphic, or harmful language or ideas.

  • We do not currently offer feedback. 

  • We do not currently publish book reviews.

  • Please do not submit previously published work, or work you have sent us before. 

  • If your work was accepted for the most recent published issue, please do not submit to the following issue; we ask that you wait for the next one.

  • Simultaneous submissions are okay, but please immediately withdraw, or let us know if your work has been accepted elsewhere.

  • Please proof read your work for errors. We will not edit extensively for publication. Work that contains excessive errors will be rejected.

  • The Author retains rights to all work upon publication, but we do ask that if the work is published elsewhere afterward, you credit The Calendula Review as the initial publisher.

  • Please be sure to adhere to HIPAA guidelines on identifiers.

  • Please title your submission as outlined below.

Submissions should be emailed to during the open period only, and with the subject line: GENRE_NAME_TITLE OF WORK. For example: POETRY SUBMISSION_WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE_SONNET 18. Please include a short cover letter in the body of the email, and an attach your work in Word format or similar. Please also remember to insert a short bio of 100 words or less at the end of your Word document so we have everything in one place; make sure your name and email address are clearly stated in the document with a word count in the top right corner. Please note that once you've sent your work, you should get an auto response saying your work has been received. If you do not see this after a couple of minutes, check your "outbox" or "sent" folder to make sure your message went out.


By submitting their work, the Author agrees to the terms laid out in these guidelines. If accepted, a contract for the piece including these terms will be offered to the Author.

Please be sure to adhere to HIPAA guidelines on identifiers when submitting any kind of work. This is especially pertinent for work in the realm of narrative medicine. For a list of identifiers and information on HIPAA compliance, please go here.



For questions about submissions, please email us. Please, do not send submissions via this form. 

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