Founded in Paris by Harold L. Humes, Peter Matthiessen, and George Plimpton in 1953, The Paris Review began with a simple editorial mission: “Dear reader,” William Styron wrote in a letter in the inaugural issue, “The Paris Review hopes to emphasize creative work—fiction and poetry—not to the exclusion of criticism, but with the aim in mind of merely removing criticism from the dominating place it holds in most literary magazines and putting it pretty much where it belongs, i.e., somewhere near the back of the book. I think The Paris Review should welcome these people into its pages: the good writers and good poets, the non-drumbeaters and non-axe-grinders. So long as they’re good.”
Decade after decade, the Review has introduced the important writers of the day. Adrienne Rich was first published in its pages, as were Philip Roth, V. S. Naipaul, T. Coraghessan Boyle, Mona Simpson, Edward P. Jones, and Rick Moody. Selections from Samuel Beckett’s novel Molloy appeared in the fifth issue, one of his first publications in English. The magazine was also among the first to recognize the work of Jack Kerouac, with the publication of his short story “The Mexican Girl,” in 1955. Other milestones of contemporary literature, now widely anthologized, also first made their appearance in The Paris Review: Italo Calvino’s Last Comes the Raven, Philip Roth’s Goodbye Columbus, Donald Barthelme’s Alice, Jim Carroll’s Basketball Diaries, Peter Matthiessen’s Far Tortuga, Jeffrey Eugenides’s Virgin Suicides, and Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections.
In addition to the focus on original creative work, the founding editors found another alternative to criticism—letting the authors talk about their work themselves. The Review’s Writers at Work interview series offers authors a rare opportunity to discuss their life and art at length; they have responded with some of the most revealing self-portraits in literature. Among the interviewees are William Faulkner, Vladimir Nabokov, Joan Didion, Seamus Heaney, Ian McEwan, and Lorrie Moore. In the words of one critic, it is “one of the single most persistent acts of cultural conservation in the history of the world.”
The Paris Review is published quarterly.
All submissions must be in English and previously unpublished. Translations are acceptable and should be accompanied by a copy of the original text. Simultaneous submissions are also acceptable as long as we are notified immediately if the manuscript is accepted for publication elsewhere. The Paris Review pays up to $1000 per story.
We strongly suggest to all who submit that they read the most recent issues of The Paris Review to acquaint themselves with material the magazine has published and to gauge appropriate story lengths. Short stories should be 1000-7500 words long, a novelette 7500 – 15000 words. Subscriptions are available here.
The Paris Review does not accept e-mailed submissions. Fiction manuscripts and essays should be sent to the attention of the Fiction Editor and poetry manuscripts to the Poetry Editor at the following address:
The Paris Review
544 West 27th Street
New York, NY 10001
Please submit no more than one short story, one nonfiction manuscript, or six poems at a time. Be sure to include phone and (if possible) e-mail contact information. While the magazine welcomes unsolicited submissions, it cannot accept responsibility for their loss or engage in related correspondence. Rejected manuscripts will not be replied to or returned unless accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Do not submit more than four times per year.
Please allow three months for a response for fiction and nonfiction and six months for a response for poetry submissions. If, after that time, you have not heard back about your submission, call 212.343.1333, or send an email to queries at theparisreview dot org—be sure to write “Query” in the subject heading. Include your city, state, the approximate date when you sent your manuscript, and whether the piece was fiction or poetry.
Prizes are awarded annually at the Spring Revel by the editors of The Paris Review. Winning selections are announced in the winter issue. No application form is required; winners are selected from the stories and poems published in The Paris Review each year.
The Paris Review Hadada
The Hadada Award is presented each year to “a distinguished member of the writing community who has made a strong and unique contribution to literature.” Previous recipients of the Hadada include John Ashbery, Joan Didion, Norman Mailer, Peter Matthiessen, George Plimpton (posthumously), Barney Rosset, Philip Roth, James Salter, Robert Silvers, William Styron, Paula Fox, and Frederick Seidel.
The Plimpton Prize for Fiction
The Plimpton Prize for Fiction is an award of $10,000 given to a new voice published in The Paris Review. The prize is named for the Review’s longtime editor George Plimpton and reflects his commitment to discovering new writers of exceptional merit. Past recipients include Amie Barrodale, Jesse Ball, Caitlin Horrocks, April Ayers, Alistair Morgan, Ottessa Moshfegh, Benjamin Percy, and Emma Cline.
The Terry Southern Prize for Humor
The Paris Review recognizes humor, wit and sprezzatura as important qualities of good writing. The Terry Southern Prize honors work appearing in the last year, either in the Paris Review or the Paris Review Daily, that best embodies those qualities. It is given in memory of our loyal contributor Terry Southern, known for his uproarious fiction and journalism and such screenplays as Dr. Strangelove and Easy Rider. Past recipients include Elif Batuman, J. D. Daniels, Adam Wilson, and Ben Lerner.