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Write City

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Write City Ezine is published by the Chicago Writers Association. We welcome fiction, creative nonfiction and quality poetry.

Story Elements

Every story has essential elements which make it worth reading. Prior to submitting your piece to our magazine for consideration, please ensure that your story has the following elements:

  • Your story begins in the middle of the action
  • You have introduced a protagonist
    • The protagonist has a goal (something is at stake)
    • Something or someone prevents the protagonist from achieving this goal which creates conflict
    • There is an inciting incident or complication that forces the protagonist to act
  • There is a unique tone/voice/writing style
  • The setting is described without slowing the pace of the story
  • The dialogue is realistic and serves a purpose


Submission Guidelines

Include your full name, the title of your submission, your email address, and website link (if available) plus a personal photograph and a short 150-word bio. Include the title of your piece in the Subject line. While submissions previously published on personal blogs are acceptable, we do not accept submissions previously published in other publications including those that have been self-published. Upon publication, we pay $50/CWA members, $25/nonmembers per prose piece and $35/members, $10/nonmembers per poem.

If we have passed on one of your submissions, please wait 60 days before submitting again. 

Prose: Submit no more than one prose piece at a time. Prose should be single-spaced, Times New Roman font, and no longer than 1,800 words. Submit in Microsoft Word, not PDF.

Poetry: Submit no more than three poems at a time. Poems should be single-spaced in a Times New Roman font. 

Email submission to Please keep in mind that submissions may be edited.

The Write City Ezine Dedicated Staff


Managing Editor Maggie Smith writes upmarket women’s fiction with a focus on relationships. Her debut novel, TRUTH & OTHER LIES, was published in March, 2022 by Ten16Press. Because she loves both writers and readers, she finds joy in bringing the two together as the host of Hear Us Roar, a podcast featuring debut women’s fiction novelists. And because she knows writing can be a lonely journey, she shares advice and encouragement on the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. She may be a terrible housekeeper but she’s one terrific friend and makes her home in Milwaukee with her tolerant husband and her aging, but still adorable sheltie. and


Associate Editor Cole Lavalais is a prolific writer and teacher whose work can be found in the Chicago Tribune, Obsidian, Apogee, Warpland, Tidal Basin Review, Aquarius Press, and others. Her debut novel, Summer of the Cicadas was published by Willow Books Press. She is a fellow of the Kimbilio Center for Black Fiction, VONA and the Callaloo Writing Workshops. She holds an M.F.A. from Chicago State University and a Ph.D. from University of Illinois at Chicago. She has taught writing for over fifteen years and is the founder/director of the Chicago Writers Studio, and an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and English at Chicago State University .

Samantha Hoffman

Associate Editor Samantha Hoffman is the author of What More Could You Wish For, published by St. Martin’s Press. Her stories have appeared in Chicken Soup for the Dieter’s Soul, The Corner Magazine in London and other print and online publications. Samantha is V.P. of the Chicago Writers Association and Executive Director of Let's Just Write! An Uncommon Writers Conference.
She is also a writer, editor, executive assistant, runner (8-time marathoner), film and theatre buff and traveler.

Molly DiRago

Associate Editor Molly DiRago is a graduate of the creative writing certificate program at the University of Chicago’s Graham School. Her work has been recognized by Typehouse Literary Magazine (first place in its 2017 open fiction contest) Glimmer Train (March/April 2016 Fiction Open honorable mention), the American Short(er) Fiction Contest (semifinalist), Cutthroat Magazine’s Rick DeMarinis Short Fiction Prize (semifinalist) and the Tampa Review’s Danahy Fiction Prize (finalist). Publication credits include Typehouse Literary Magazine, the Maine Review, and Black Mirror Magazine. Molly resides in Chicago with her husband and two children.

Christina Rodriguez

Associate Editor - Poetry Christina D. Rodriguez is a Latinx poet, entrepreneur, and woman of tech from New York, currently living in Chicago. She is the author of the debut poetry collection Knees in the Garden (Querencia Press, 2023). Her poems have appeared in Tupelo QuarterlyYes, PoetryRust + MothSatin Soulbits, and elsewhere; her work has also been published in various anthologies. Christina has received awards for the Frost Place Conference on Poetry and Winter Tangerine’s Catalyze Self-Revolutions workshop. She has performed at the Chicago Public Library, The New York Poetry Festival, and Columbia College Chicago. She is a board member of the Chicago Writers Association as the organization’s social media manager and poetry editor for CWA's The Write City Magazine. She is also a contributor to the Instagram poetry book club, Can We Discuss Poetry. To learn more about Christina, visit her at or @poemlust on Instagram.


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