For writers

Is ABR open to new writers?

Australian Book Review has a proud history of publishing new and younger writers and critics. Each year we publish around 300 writers/critics. Of them, usually 80–100 are completely new to the magazine – a measure of our openness to new voices and talent.

If you want to write for ABR, please read this pdfAdvice for New Reviewers, in which Peter Rose, our Editor, summarises what we look for in reviewers and describes how best to approach the magazine for work. This is intended to be a practical and encouraging document.

In a separate document – pdfAdvice for ABR Contributors – Peter Rose sets out what we offer contributors and what we need from them.

Before you approach ABR, get to know the magazine. Find out if its style and content suit your work. If you don't subscribe, buy a few issues or think about subscribing. In our new contributors we look for many things – wide reading, excellent grammar, punctuality, professionalism – but we are also looking for people with a real understanding of our style, our direction, and our content.


Is ABR Arts looking for new contributors?

ABR Arts covers all the arts – film, theatre, music, dance, art exhibitions, festivals, etc. We pay for everything we publish, and we are publicly committed to increasing our rates when we can. All reviews appear promptly online; some later appear in the print edition.

ABR is always looking for discerning critics and arts journalists. This new document – pdfAdvice for new ABR Arts contributors – sets out what we offer our journalists, how we work with them, and what we require from them in return.

We welcome expressions of interest from arts journalists.


Does ABR pay its writers?

ABR pays for everything it publishes – print or online – and it pays increasingly well. Our standard rate for reviews has increased by 150% since 2013. We intend to increase these rates in coming years.

In his May 2015 editorial, Editor Peter Rose deplored the low or non-payment of freelance reviewers, especially younger ones. ABR is a proud advocate for young writers and a keen defender of critical standards.


Does ABR accept poetry submissions?

Australian Book Review publishes two or three new poems in each issue. Space is always tight, so long poems are not possible. Nor do we publish very short poems. Generally we look for poems of 15 to 40 lines. We pay $400 per poem. Poems wishing to be considered should direct their submissions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Send them as Word files, not PDFs. Limit your submission to four poems at one time. If you haven’t published in ABR before, add a brief note regarding your publishing history.

Response times may vary, but generally we reply within a month of submission. Please note that we do not accept poetry manuscripts and do not have the resources to provide an advisory/editorial service.

The Peter Porter Poetry Prize (worth a total of $8,500) is currently open and will close 1 October 2019.


Does ABR accept short story submissions?

ABR is not currently accepting submissions of non-Jolley short stories.

Entries are currently closed for the ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize (worth a total of $12,500). The Jolley Prize – open to writers in English in any country – is one of the world’s most prestigious prizes for an original short story. Entries will reopen for the 2020 Jolley Prize in January.