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Submissions are now CLOSED. Thank you to everyone who submitted!

2018 Theme: Instinct

Moving with the heart, not the head. Trusting ourselves. Pushing away the voices in our minds calling out you can’t or it won’t work or be sensible. Sometimes, we can’t be sensible. Sometimes, we just have to jump off the cliff, telling ourselves that yes, there is water down there. Knowing that there is water down there, without even looking. Knowing something without knowing how or why we know it.

Something not learned. Something inherent. Something we all share, regardless of faith, nationality, orientation, identity, or age. Something so deep in us we forget it’s there. Automatic reflexes. Laughing. Crying. Sexuality. Flinching. Running away, or to. Fight. Flight. Survival. Intuition. Passion.

Instinct is not what makes us unique. Bears have instincts. Moths have instincts. Cormorants have instincts. What sets us apart is our ability to move outside of those instincts, to turn inward and look at them, to see and know them as constellations, as beacons, as magnets. Things that guide us, save us, pull us in or push us away.

Give us the subconscious. The action without thought. The blind faith. The I-have-a-bad-feeling-about-this. The inevitable. The wholly human.  The deep, primal, incomprehensible trust. Give us that instinct, however it plays out, consequences and logic be damned.

Ready to submit? Click here!

General Guidelines

Noctua Review is accepting previously unpublished short fiction, poetry, and artwork between September 1st, 2017 and December 31st, 2017. Any submissions received outside our reading period will go unread. We do not consider non-fiction or translations at the present time.

Please do:

  • Use our Submittable account to send us your work!
  • Send us simultaneous submissions (and notify us if your work is accepted elsewhere)
  • Include a short cover letter with your submission

Please do not:

  • Email or mail submissions to us (except for visual art!)
  • Include your name/identifying information on the submission itself

Noctua Review requests First North American Serial Rights for print and digital publication. All rights revert to the author upon publication. While we cannot offer payment at this time, contributors will receive a complimentary copy of the issue in which they appear.


Our ideal poetry submission is a group of up to 3 poems, no longer than 6 pages total, uploaded in a single document (doc, docx, PDF). Traditional and nonce forms accepted as well as free verse.


We accept individual pieces (doc, docx, PDF) of up to 4,000 words. If you’re submitting multiple flash fiction pieces, please include up to three entries in a single submission totaling 1,500 words or fewer. 

Visual Art

Submit art or photos as attachments to our Art Editor at Please include a short message of introduction, where your work has been previously featured, and briefly explain your typical artistic aesthetic. Photos of nocturnal animals/landscapes are of particular interest to us. Color photographs will be considered for the cover only; for that reason, we’re most interested in black and white submissions.