Philadelphia Stories is a free print magazine that strives to publish the finest fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and art written by authors living in, or originally from, Pennsylvania, Delaware, or New Jersey. Philadelphia Stories seeks submissions from diverse perspectives: all ethnicities, races, abilities, and gender identification. We wish to demonstrate the vitality and vibrancy of the  Philadelphia-area residents in every issue.

Thanks to the support of the Conrad Weiser Author Fund, we pay an honorarium of$50 via Paypal to our authors published in our print magazine.

Please follow these guidelines for submitting material. 

*Please scroll to the bottom to select the genre or contest to which you would like to submit.  

DEADLINES:  Rolling Submissions. 

PLEASE NOTE: You will be notified of the status of your submission within six months AFTER the issue deadline. If you have not heard from us within six months after your submission was sent, please feel free to contact, and we'll check the status for you. (Please note, our emails do sometimes get caught in spam filters.) Thanks for submitting to Philadelphia Stories!  

In General

  1. Only work submitted through our Online Submission Form will be considered.
  2. We do not accept previously published work. This includes work published online, on personal blogs or websites.
  3. Any work received after the closing date for a particular issue will be considered for the next issue.
  4. Simultaneous submissions are accepted. Please let us know immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  5. Please attach a SHORT bio (about 75 words, written in third person), including your connection to Pennsylvania, Delaware, or New Jersey.
  6. We will send notice by email regarding the acceptance or rejection of your material within six months after the issue's deadline. 
  7. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Editorial Director, Trish Rodriguez, at


Poetry Contest

The Philadelphia Stories National Prize for Poetry annual national poetry prize features a first place $1,000 cash award. Three runners up will each receive a $250 cash award. The winning and runner up poems are published in the Spring issue.  These poems and honorable mentions appear online. Our prize celebrates risk, innovation, and emotional engagement. We especially encourage poets from underrepresented groups and backgrounds to send their work.

Contest Submission Guidelines

  • Submission deadline:  November 15, 2023
  • The $5 fee covers the submission of (1) one single poem up to three pages in length. Each poem must be submitted individually. Multiple poems submitted in the same document will not be considered.
  • Poets may submit as many individual poems as they like so long as they are each in a single document. There will be a $5 fee for each submission.
  • Submission fees are not refundable.
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted; however, we must be notified immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere. If your simultaneously submitted poem is accepted elsewhere, please WITHDRAW your submission as soon as possible. And congratulations!
  • We will only consider work previously unpublished in print or online.
  • Poets currently residing in the United States are eligible.
  • All submissions  should use a 12 pt font and standard typeface (not Comic Sans or Impact,  etc.). 
  • Poets should only upload Word documents [.doc, .docx]. The AUTHOR'S NAME SHOULD NOT APPEAR ANYWHERE IN THE UPLOADED DOCUMENT.
  • Submissions will be accepted via the website. If you have any trouble uploading to the site, please email

Judge for 2024: Kirwyn Sutherland

Contest Screening Protocol

Upon receiving contest entries, our contest coordinator will share anonymous, number-coded poems to a team of screeners. This screening team is made up of our usual poetry board plus a few additions selected by the contest coordinator if necessary. The poems that are selected by the screening team are passed on to poetry editor. From this batch of 60-100 poems, the poetry editor selects the finalists who will be shared with the judge. The judge is given approximately one to two dozen poems from which to name a winner, up to three runners up, and honorable mentions.  If the screeners and editor particularly love a poem that is not selected by the judge, we name it an "editor's choice" and include it in our online issue.

The Philadelphia Stories Poetry Prize was originally established to celebrate poet Sandy Crimmins. We are grateful to Sandy's family for allowing us to remember her through this prize!

Sandy Crimmins’s poem “Spring” appeared in the first issue of Philadelphia Stories and she performed at our launch party. She served on the Philadelphia Stories board from 2005 to 2007. Since Philadelphia Stories magazine premiered in 2004, Sandy’s voice and vision have fundamentally shaped Philadelphia Stories. Sandy was a poet who performed with musicians, dancers, and fire-eaters, and one of her proudest accomplishments was celebrating the work of her vibrant poetry community. The Sandy Crimmins Prize for Poetry is made possible by the generous support of her family.


Philadelphia Stories, Junior, a division of Philadelphia Stories,   is a literary magazine published each Spring for writers age 18 and under who currently live in Pennsylvania, Delaware, or Southern New    Jersey. Please follow these guidelines for submitting material.  There is no  reading fee. Deadline: February 1. We accept submissions year-round. 

Don't have a Submittable account? No problem! You can email your work to our editors here: PSJR912@GMAIL.COM

General Guidelines
1.    Philadelphia Stories, Jr.  accepts work submitted to our online submission form or by email.  
Emailed submissions will be accepted as either a Word .doc or .txt  attachment.
2.  On the first page, please include your name, school, grade, and information on how we can contact you.

3. Any work received after the closing date for a particular issue will be considered for the next issue. 

 4.  Tell us about yourself and where you live. For example: George   Smith is in sixth grade and likes to write poetry. He also likes   basketball and lives with his cat and little sister in Cherry Hill, NJ.   He has read all seven Harry Potters twice. 

Philadelphia Stories, Jr. publishes:

1. Fiction (original short stories no longer than 5,000 words)
2. Poems
3. Essays
4. Art (original photos, drawings, pictures of sculptures, cartoons, etc.)

If you would prefer to email your submission, email to

Creative nonfiction essays should not exceed 2,500 words. We’re looking for pieces that focus on positive Philadelphia experiences, but will consider any well-written essay on any subject. In particular, essays should convey real emotional honesty and or humor. We do not accept previously published work.



  1. All artwork must be submitted electronically.
  2. Please submit no more than five previously unpublished images for consideration. (You must submit each image file as a separate submission; you cannot attach multiple images to one submission.)
  3. Preliminary images do not need to be print resolution and may be attached as a JPEG or GIF. Final, approved artwork should be of professional quality, at least 300 dpi saved as a TIFF, PDF, JPEG or EPS.
  4. Do not send us links to your website. We'll leave it to you to find your best work.

  1. We accept short stories or novel excerpts in varying lengths but not more than 5,000 words.
  2. We look for fiction written by Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New Jersey writers (either currently residing in, originally from, or lived here at some point) that features sharp writing, carefully crafted plots, and, above all, compelling characters. Novel excerpts should be able to stand alone as a complete work.

Poetry [updated]:

  1.  We especially encourage poets from underrepresented or historically marginalized backgrounds or circumstances to submit work to Philadelphia Stories.  
  2. Up to three poems may be submitted in one submission period; each poem is not to exceed 36 lines. Poems may be single spaced (unlike prose submissions which should be double spaced). Poems that exceed 36 lines/one page may not be considered.
  3. Submit each poem in its own single document/attachment. This will allow the submitter to WITHDRAW work that is accepted elsewhere as we DO expect some poets to make simultaneous submissions to multiple journals. Submitted documents that include multiple poems may not be considered.
  4. If your simultaneously submitted poem is accepted elsewhere, please WITHDRAW your poem as soon as possible. And congratulations!
  5. Your cover letter should include a bio of no more than 3 sentences/~50 words PLUS a brief sentence/statement indicating your connection to Philadelphia, PA, NJ, or DE. Feel free to copy and paste the same text in each submission. No need to reinvent the wheel. Upon acceptance, we will also ask for a photo and an updated bio.
  6. Please title your submission with the TITLE of the attached poem.

Philadelphia Stories