Litmag Roadmap: Kentucky

November 18, 2023

Our penultimate stop on the Litmag Roadmap trip finds us in Kentucky! Let’s dive into what literary institutions Rebecca Paredes has added as destinations in the Bluegrass State.


From the incisive works of bell hooks to the narratives of Wendell Berry and Hunter S. Thompson, Kentucky is steeped in literary history. The state’s literary heritage boasts boundary-breaking writers who have influenced generations, the timeless Appalachians, and both new and established literary journals that publish the works of today’s emerging writers. On our journey through Kentucky, we’ll make a pit stop to spotlight a few journals actively publishing fiction.

Good River Review

This publication is the literary journal of the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University. Good River Review (GRR) publishes two issues a year, and regularly features book reviews, interviews, essays on the practice of writing, and other literary news between issues. GRR accepts fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.

Jelly Bucket

Jelly Bucket is published by the Bluegrass Writers Studio at Eastern Kentucky University. Founded in 2009, Jelly Bucket features established and new writers. The journal accepts works of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and ten-minute plays from anywhere in the world. Jelly Bucket is committed to publishing writers from, and writing about, marginalized and under-represented communities. Each year, the journal makes a specific call for work and showcases it in a special section, which comprises roughly 50% of the issue.

New Limestone Review

Formerly Limestone, New Limestone Review is the literary journal of the University of Kentucky’s MFA in Creative Writing program. The journal was established in 1986 and has published work from many noted Kentucky writers, including Wendell Berry, Gurney Norman, Ed McClanahan, Frank X Walker, Maurice Manning, Nikky Finney, and Holly Goddard Jones. New Limestone Review publishes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and visual art online twice per year.

Still: The Journal

This online literary journal publishes Appalachian literary, visual, and musical artists. Launched in 2009, Still: The Journal publishes three times per year. The submission period opens on November 15 and runs through the end of December, and the journal accepts poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction.

The Louisville Review

Founded in 1976, The Louisville Review (TLR) is an independent nonprofit organization that was previously housed at Spalding University and the University of Louisville. TLR has published writers such as Stephen Dunn, Claudia Emerson, Louise Erdrich, and Ursula Hegi. The journal accepts unsolicited submissions of fiction and poetry and publishes a print edition 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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