Litmag Roadmap: Illinois

September 16, 2022

Onward! We continue on our trek across the country in search of outstanding literary venues. This month, we turn to Illinois, the Land of Lincoln, home to Chicago and The Bean, and many excellent literary reviews!

Nicknamed “the Prairie State,” Illinois is home to established writers’ conferences, notable literary journals, and Chicago’s active literary scene. In this next stop on our litmag road trip, we’ll sightsee a few publishers of fiction. BYODD (Bring Your Own Deep-Dish).

After Hours Press

After Hours is a semi-annual literary magazine that launched in 2000. The magazine has published work from Chicago-area writers such as David Hernandez, Norbert Blei, Rane Arroyo, and Stuart Dybek. After Hours accepts work from writers and artists living in and around Chicago, as well as Chicago expatriates. (As their website notes: Once a Chicagoan, always a Chicagoan.)

Another Chicago Magazine

Established in 1977, Another Chicago Magazine believes that everything is political. To that end, the magazine is partial to writing that “confronts injustice and inequality, though not in didactic or polemical ways.” Another Chicago Magazine publishes poetry, fiction, nonfiction, reviews, translations, and art from creators based in Chicago and other parts of the world.


Arcturus is an online literary magazine presented by the Chicago Review of Books. Founded in 2016, the magazine is inspired by Chicago’s early modernist literary magazines. Arcturus has no restrictions on the content they publish, although they’re passionate about bringing new perspectives forward: “new ideas, new voices, new worlds, new challenges, new ways of seeing.”

Chicago Review

Chicago Review began in 1946. The magazine typically publishes two single issues per year and a double issue with a special feature section. The editors welcome poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and criticism.

Chicago Quarterly Review​​

The Chicago Quarterly Review is a nonprofit literary journal that has published emerging and established writers since 1994, including work chosen for Best American Essays, Best American Short Stories, O. Henry Prize Stories and the Pushcart Prize Anthology. The journal publishes fiction, as well as personal essays, poetry, translations, photographs, and artwork.


Founded in 2003 at the University of Chicago, Contrary is an independent magazine that publishes four times per year. The magazine is based on the South Side of Chicago and publishes writers from near and afar. Contrary publishes fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.

Euphony Journal

Euphony is a student-run, semiannual literary journal founded in 2000 at the University of Chicago. The journal publishes established and emerging writers of poetry and prose. Euphony publishes online throughout the year and releases two annual print issues.

Flyleaf Journal

Flyleaf publishes one short story and illustration per month in digital and print formats. The journal believes that “great stories can be both entertaining and profound, leaving a lasting impression on readers long after they put the story down.” Flyleaf is open to all styles and genres, with the exception of erotica.

Oyez Review

Oyez Review is the annual literary magazine of Roosevelt University. Founded in 1965, the magazine publishes fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and art. Previous contributors include Charles Bukowski, Dorothy Chan, Sam Pink, Tyehimba Jess, and Vi Khi Nao.


Soiled is part literary journal, part design magazine. The independent, artist-led project is produced by Joseph Altshuler, Hollen Reischer, Matthew Harlan, and Mariel Tishma, and it is published Could Be Architecture, a Chicago-based design practice. Soiled believes that “by intensifying the fictive and storytelling potential in architecture, we might engage a broader public in architectural ideas from discourse to action.”


TriQuarterly is the literary magazine of Northwestern University. The magazine is edited by graduate students in the Litowitz Creative Writing Program and the MFA in Prose and Poetry in the School of Professional Studies. TriQuarterly publishes fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, and publishes twice annually.

by Rebecca Paredes


At The Masters Review, our mission is to support emerging writers. We only accept submissions from writers who can benefit from a larger platform: typically, writers without published novels or story collections or with low circulation. We publish fiction and nonfiction online year-round and put out an annual anthology of the ten best emerging writers in the country, judged by an expert in the field. We publish craft essays, interviews and book reviews and hold workshops that connect emerging and established writers.

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