See Natural Bridge at the St. Louis Small Press Expo

The St. Louis Small Press Expo

Over 60 publishing projects from around the midwest, including literary mags, comics, publishers, and more.

Saturday, September 26th, 11:00-5:00

St. Louis Public Library – Central Branch
1301 Olive St
St. Louis, MO 63103

Make sure to stop by the Natural Bridge table to chat with our Managing Editor, Dusty Freund.

2015 Pushcart Nominations

Announcing our 2015 Pushcart Nominations!!!  Good luck writers.

Our nominations in fiction are:

1) “Drift” by Cynthia Dockrell
2) “Casket” by Yasser El-Sayed
3) “Pie” by Leslie Johnson

And our nominations for poetry are:

1) “Williamsburg” by Mark Hage
2) “Crash Centre” by David McLoghlin
3) “More Honored in the Breach: A Note to Ghost, Absent” by Gaylord Brewer

This past year Natural Bridge accepted 82 pieces of work (fiction, poetry, creative essay, and translation), from 65 different authors, to appear in Issue #31 and Issue #32. We sent in the best of the best (out of thousands of submissions last year)! Winners are usually publicized in April

Natural Bridge 2014 Pushcart Nominations

Natural Bridge is proud to present our nominations for next year’s Pushcart Prize (Best of the Small Presses) : “Erosion” by Jaimee Wriston Colbert, “Hurricane Machine” by Kim Bradley, “The Gatecrasher of Hyboria” by Ron Austin, “Charity: a memoir” by L.E. Kimball, “Summer Almanac” by Joe Betz, and “Absence of Elephants” by Walter Bargen. Congratulations and best of luck to all our nominees!

Now Accepting Submissions Online

Natural Bridge is now accepting submissions for Issue #32 online through Submittable.

Call for Submissions
Veterans in Iraq and Afghanistan

Natural Bridge, a journal of contemporary literature, published by the University of Missouri–St. Louis, seeks stories, poems, and essays for a special section in Issue 32 that will chronicle the American soldier’s experience in Iraq and Afghanistan.  We welcome well-written and original combat stories, but are especially interested in stories, poems, and essays that explore unexpected incidents and curious behavior that happens on the sidelines of war.  The remainder of Issue 32 will feature stories, poems, and essays on any topic.

Please use our electronic submission system, found at, or send hard copies to Natural Bridge, University of Missouri-St. Louis, One University Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63121.  Deadline for Issue #32 is March 1, 2014.  Issue #32 will be out in Fall 2014. Contributors receive 2 copies and a one year subscription.

There is a $3.00 charge for non-subscribers to submit online. This is not a reading fee, but helps maintain the submission service and website. This fee is waived for current subscribers. Save this fee by subscribing now.

Please be sure to read our General Guidelines before submitting.

Issue 29 Available Now!

Natural Bridge Issue 29 is edited by Mary Troy and continues Natural Bridge‘s tradition of featuring the best new work from emerging and established writers, including a new three-part interview with Meghan Daum.

From the introduction:

My job as editor of Natural Bridge, a journal of contemporary literature, consists mainly of providing oversight or advice to the other UMSL MFA faculty members who take their turns as guest editors and select work for the book we put out twice a year. I also have the privilege of working with our managing editor, invariably a talented MFA student with a bent toward publishing who does all the real work. I also oversee other of our talented and hard working MFA students, the advanced ones, who serve as assistant editors, readers of all the work submitted. Sometimes, as we did for this issue, we allow MA students to join in the selection process, and they make the job that much more stimulating. Oversight of all those listed above is easy, is fun, is uplifting. But every fourth semester, I’m given more fun, for it is then I have the privilege of serving as guest editor, and, along with the assistant editors, I read and sort and select from good work submitted by talented and emerging writers. This book, number 29, is not the result of call for a themed issue, but when I look at what we accepted, I see a theme has emerged: Ways we navigate through ourselves to a relative safety. Broad, yes, but not less fascinating for that.

Continue reading the introduction.

Natural Bridge at AWP

Going to the AWP Conference and bookfair in Chicago this year? So is Natural Bridge.

Come visit us at the bookfair where we will be sharing table O18 with the University of Missouri-St. Louis’ MFA in Creative Writing Program and the WomenArts Quarterly Journal. We will have copies of our most recent issue, #26 The Living Earth, discounted back issues and, of course, free candy.

Looking for something to do Thursday night? The UMSL MFA Program will host a reception, Thursday March 1, 7-8:15 in the Joliet Room, Hilton Hotel, 3rd floor. Feel free to stop by and have a drink, get to know us, pick up a copy of the journal.

Celebrations – News from our Contributors

We are never surprised when authors we publish go on to publish books, publish more books, win awards, are thus recognized for their talents by others. When we hear of such, we want to celebrate.

Congratulations to

Jeffrey Tigchelaar and his poem, “Blurbs,” which appeared in issue no. 23. It has been selected for the Best New Poets Anthology.

Andao Tian and her story, “The Death of my Mad Uncle,” which appeared in issue no. 16. It has been selected as one of seven “Recommended Stories” for the O. Henry Prize 2008.

Congratulations to the following authors whose recent books and collections have been published:

Robert Krut (issue 27), This is the Ocean (forthcoming) (Bona Fide Books, 2013).

Edward Belfar (issue 13), Wanderers (Stephen F. Austin State University Press, 2012).

Mary Makofske (issues 6, 8, and 23), Traction, winner of the Richard Snyder Prize (Ashland Poetry Press, 2011).

Carol V. Davis (issue 25), Between Storms (Truman State University Press, 2012).

Kat Meads (issue 20), When the Dust Finally Settles (Ravenna Press, 2011).

Barbara Crooker(issue 23), More (C&R Press, 2010).

Debra Brenegan (issue 26), Shame the Devil (State University of New York Press, 2011).

Tara Masih (issue 11), Where The Dog Star Never Glows (Press 53, 2010).

Judy Kronenfeld (issue 18), Light Lowering in Diminished Sevenths, winner of the 2007 Litchfield Review Book Prize in Poetry.

Murzban F. Shroff (issue 14), Breathless in Bombay: Stories (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2007).

Liz Robbins (issue 16), Hope, As the World Is a Scorpion Fish (The Backwaters Press, 2008).

Erin Elizabeth Smith (issue 16), The Fear of Being Found (Three Candles Press, 2008).