Open Reading Period Submissions

Milk & Cake Press is open to submission for both chapbook and full-length poetry manuscripts from January 1- April 30, 2021.

Milk and Cake Press publishes full-length and chapbook collections of poetry. We are interested in manuscripts with attention to the sound of language. We would like to see experimental work, though we are open to virtually any kind of manuscript. (No light verse or limericks, please.)

Please note that this is an open reading period, not a contest. We expect to publish 4-6 titles a year, and most of those will come from this submission period. Our final selections will have been read by three or four volunteer staff, including the editor-in-chief.

We welcome the work of new, emerging and experienced poets and encourage submissions from BIPOC, LGBTQIA , neurodivergent and disabled writers. We want to read work of emerging and experienced poets. Be sure your name is not on the manuscript, and do not provide a biographical statement or acknowledgments of previously published poems. Instead, in your cover letter, provide 3-5 sentences summarizing your manuscript.

General submission instructions: please submit your mansucript in Word, Pages, or PDF. We do request a submission fee; however, if this is prohibitive for you, please email

Why do we charge submission fees? These fees, along with book sales, cover the costs of printing and marketing our titles. Our press is completely run by volunteers, who are mostly family members.

Chapbook submissions should be 18-30ish pages of poetry. The fee for a chapbook submission is $10. 

Full-length manuscripts should be  48-60-ish pages. (Longer is not necessarily better!) The fee for a full-length submission is $25. 

If the length of your manuscript doesn’t fit these guidelines, send it anyway!

You may submit to both categories or multiple manuscripts in either category, with the appropriate fees. Simultaneous submissions are welcome; please let us know as soon as possible should your work be accepted elsewhere (congratulations!).

Please submit your work and submission fee here. You will need to create a Duotrope account, if you don’t already have one–it’s free to create an account. If for some reason you can’t use Duotrope, please email to discuss alternatives.

Payment for selected work is 25 copies. Selections will be made and announced in late spring or early summer 2021.