Thank you for your interest in contributing to The Bombay Literary Magazine (TBLM). Our current issue— Issue 57 (April 2024)— is now online.

☞ We publish three times a year: April, August and December. We accept submissions in five categories: fiction, poetry, translated fiction, translated poetry, essays, and graphic fiction.

☞ We reopen for submissions (for Issue 58) on May 01, 2024. The submit form will be made available at that time. We do not accept email submissions. If you would like to informed when we reopen for submissions, simply signup for our substack newsletter Crow & Colophon below.

Payment: We pay an honorarium of  ₹ 5,000 (approx. $61 or €51) per contribution.

We are currently not open for submissions. But for convenience, here are our submission guidelines.

☞ Please submit in just one category. We delete submissions made in multiple categories. As mentioned above, we only consider the first 400 submissions in each category (the first 400 fiction submission, the first 400 poetry submissions, etc.).

☞ FICTION SUBMISSIONS: we invite authors to submit one short story between 2,000 and 7,000 words in length.

☞ POETRY SUBMISSIONS: we invite poets to submit five poems, all in one document. Please do not send us fewer than five poems— we wish to understand your range and style through a substantial sample. We are publishing a poet, not a poem.

☞ TRANSLATIONS: We welcome translated poetry (3-5 poems) or short fiction. Each is considered a separate category. Please include a cover note with information about the original source text (such as publication date, edition, author & translator info, or any other contextual information). We would appreciate a brief note on the translation; feel free to share the appeal of this work, any translation challenges you solved, and anything you wish to share about your method.  Before publication, we will need to verify you have the permission/legal right to translate the text.

☞ GRAPHIC FICTION: We are looking for innovative graphic fiction aimed at adults. We are not keen on didactic fiction (stuff that preaches to readers). The length is up to you. We’ve published 20+ page fictions as well as 3-6 pagers.

☞ You may send your work to other outlets (i.e. we are fine with simultaneous submissions). However, please inform us ( if your work has been selected elsewhere. We remember such acts of courtesy. Please note that if more than 2 of your poems are accepted elsewhere, we will not have enough material to consider your submission, and it will therefore be marked withdrawn.

☞ We look forward to reading your work.

  1. Why the cap on the number of submissions in each category?We get a lot of submissions, especially in poetry. The evaluation process consists of four rounds of evaluation and our editors have to respond within six weeks. A cap on the number of submissions ensures we don’t have to compromise on the quality of our engagement.
  2. How do I submit something that’s a mixture of categories? For example, a prose-poem or creative non-fiction?We understand that sometimes creative work does not fit into neat genre categories. Our magazine is happy to feature and celebrate these forms, but for the editorial process we ask submitters to select a genre that seems closest to the one they have in mind.
  3. Do you accept unsolicited essays, interviews and reviews?We do publish in these genres, but currently we are approaching authors directly.
  4.  Do you accept submissions in languages other than English?Regrettably, no. TBLM is an English-language based literary magazine. However, we welcome English-language translations from other languages.
  5. Do you publish genre authors?No, we don’t. However, TBLM does publish genre fiction and poetry. We’re mindful of Babasaheb Ambedkar’s observation that a division of labour quickly becomes a division of labourers. We see genre as a useful division of literary works, not authors.
  6. When can I send you my work?We follow a ternary publication schedule. We accept submissions in the months of January, May and September. Our new issues are made available in April, August and December, usually by the fifteenth.If you’ve published with us earlier (hello, friend!), please wait for a year before sending us something in the same genre.
  7. What IP rights do you ask for?As writers, we are all-too-aware of how constraining publishing contracts can be. So we worked with Dr. Kalyan Kankanala, chief attorney at Banana IP, India’s leading intellectual-property law firm, to devise generous and equitable terms for the author. We only ask for the minimum set of digital rights that will let us legally display your work online, exclusively for a period of one year, but non-exclusively thereafter. You retain all other rights. Translation rights follow the same pattern, but they can get complicated, since in most legal jurisdictions it is the original author, and not the translator, who is ultimately assigning the rights.
  8. Help! I am not sure my submission went through. I’m afraid I may have submitted twice. I may have picked the wrong category. I attached the wrong manuscript. And misspelled my name. Or was it my email address? Help!No worries. For this and other existential queries, just ping us at We usually respond within a day.
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