Ruminate is a contemplative magazine committed to slowing down, paying attention, and encountering heart-awakening storytelling and art so that we can live more fully awake to our selves and our world. 

  • General magazine submissions are always free. 
  • We currently pay $17/page for poetry (with a maximum of $68 per poem), $17/400 words for prose, and $17/image for visual art. Ruminate firmly believes in paying our contributors, and we are working hard to increase the amount we pay them. 
  • We only accept submissions that are previously unpublished (a piece that has had a circulation of 500 or greater, in print or online, is considered previously published). 
  • We do accept simultaneous submissions, however, please notify us right away if your work is accepted elsewhere. 
  • If you are interested in receiving poetry feedback from the Ruminate staff, please review our writing critique sessions.
  • If you agree to allow Ruminate to publish your work, we will receive first serial rights and all rights revert back to you.
  • We only accept online submissions, as our readers are spread across the country. Any submissions made by postal mail or email will not be considered.
  • Please wait for a response to your submission before sending us more work.
  • Before submitting, we strongly recommend ordering a copy of the magazine in order to better understand the type of work we publish and to tailor your submission accordingly.
  • Our response time is approximately 3-4 months. 
  • If you need to make a correction to a submission, such as removing your contact info or withdrawing a poem from a batch of poems submitted, please use the "Allow Edit Requests" function in Submittable. 

Ruminate is seeking new volunteer board members for our board of directors. Board members can serve from any location. In your statement of interest letter, please tell us about your experience and background as well as why you think you'd be a good fit for the Ruminate board of directors. If you know your Enneagram type and your StrengthsFinder top five strengths, please include that info as well. 

Please send us an email to if you know someone you think would be a good fit for Ruminate's board. 

We strongly encourage people of color, women, LBGTQ folks, formerly incarcerated, and differently-abled people to apply.

About our board:

Our board's gift, service, and function is to lovingly oversee and support Ruminate's finances and fundraising efforts from a holistic and contemplative posture. Together, our board members will live out the invitation they are asking of our donors by investing resources God has given them—their energy, prayers, and money—in the work of Ruminate to which we've been called. We join Henri Nouwen in understanding fundraising as a place where “those who need money and those who can give money meet on the common ground of God’s love."

On a practical level, the board lives this out together by holding Ruminate in their prayer life, participating in board meetings twice a year (can be done remotely), participating in quarterly email check-ins, working on smaller fundraising committees, and by making an annual personal financial contribution to Ruminate at a level that is meaningful to them. We also invite our board members to gather for an annual retreat—a time to grow and be nourished together. Board members serve for a three-year term with a one-time option to renew.

On an organizational level, our board helps us integrate our contemplative spiritual approach into the organizational context, including our finances and the function of our board. We are cultivating methods and processes that create a mindful, attentive, curious, compassionate, and listening organization that is more effective in serving our community, and this is also true for our board.

On an individual level, we're looking for board members who are passionate about our contemplative mission to help readers encounter stories and art that awaken their hearts by growing more compassion, curiosity, and creativity in their lives. We are working toward building a board whose diversity of thought, ideas, life experience, and skills broadly reflects our readers, artists, and patrons. The ideal board candidate is inspired by the sensibility and spirit of our publication and understands that Ruminate is more than just another arts magazine and that this is more than just another nonprofit board.        


  • Commitment to Ruminate's mission
  • Informed, available, and engaged
  • Personally practicing Ruminate's mission of living awake with more compassion, curiosity and creativity
  • Previous nonprofit or board experience a plus
Ends in 6 days, 23 hours

Readers Ruminate Topic: "Hauntings"

Each issue of Ruminate includes personal notes from our readers on a topic—we love hearing from our readers! 

We're looking for short nonfiction, 300 words or less, that tells us your honest experiences in rich image and detail. No poetry please. You can approach the topic from any angle.

Because of space constraints, we aren't able to print all of the notes we receive. Also, we often edit the notes we receive, sometimes quite a bit, but each reader will have the chance to approve the edits. 

We will notify you if we decide to share your note in the magazine, and you'll receive a copy of the issue your note appears in. If you'd rather not have your name appear in the magazine, feel free to submit your note under "Name Withheld."

Ends on May 14, 2018

We accept all styles of creative nonfiction—essays, short memoirs, literary journalism, etc—only requiring that it be in prose form (no line breaks). We only accept pieces that are under 5,500 words. You may only submit one nonfiction piece per reading period. We currently pay nonfiction contributors $17 per 400 words and in contributor copies.

Writing for the Ruminate Blog:

Please take a look at some posts here to get an idea of what we're looking for. Currently we are not paying our guest bloggers, however, you will receive a complimentary copy of one of Ruminate's back issues. We are also looking for regular blog columnists. If you are interested in becoming a regular columnist, please note that in your submission. 

We welcome submissions by people from all walks of life and from all faith traditions, from seekers and doubters and people exploring the big questions and the human condition. 

Ruminate is a nonprofit magazine and online community and our vision is to inspire and nourish the creative and contemplative in all of us. Your submission should be grounded in a contemplative and/or creative posture. 

Ruminate Blog Post Submission Guidelines

  • The Ruminate Blog publishes posts on topics including (but not limited to): 
    • the writing/artist life
    • the contemplative life
    • topical issues surrounding art and/or faith (see Sophfronia Scott’s piece:
    • narrative/personal essays
    • spiritual/contemplative prayer practices 
    • our earth
    • slowing down and paying attention
    • playfulness/wonder
    • discipline/rituals
    • place
    • compassion/kinship
    • social justice and activism
    • ordinary sacredness
    • hospitality
    • mystery
    • the body
    • a short reflection on a poem, quote, or book that inspires or nourishes you
  • If you have any photos to include along with the post, please make sure you have permission or that the photo is under the Creative Commons license. 
  • Submissions should be 1000 words or less. 
  • Please submit a 100 word or less bio (including relevant publications) and a headshot to be published with your submission if accepted
  • Any relevant or helpful links should be included in the body of your submission
Our blog editor, Charnell Peters shares these words about her vision for the blog:
     "As a part of Ruminate’s contemplative and imaginative space, the Ruminate blog seeks work that embraces inquiry and process over answers and destinations. In all dimensions of our lives—spiritual, creative, physical, emotional, mental, relational—we sojourn from one stage to another and rarely in linear form. I am looking for work that contends with the winding, convoluted ways in which the many dimensions of our lives unfold and pieces that speak to common the inquiry and struggle of wayfinding in those journeys.
     The Ruminate blog is a place for work that queries, shares, and relates with open palms, with tension, and with the breadth and depth of your experience, not work that presents oversimplified answers or didactic anecdotes. Some good questions to ask of your submission are: Is this work generous in that it shares honestly with others? Does this work make space for inquiry or contemplation? Is this work accessible? We seek work that honors the diversity of our lives and welcome work from writers of all faith backgrounds. We especially welcome work from people whose voices have been historically marginalized. The best way to understand what the Ruminate blog is looking for is to read a few pieces for yourself."
Ends on August 15, 2018

We only accept short stories that are under 5,500 words. Please do not submit again until you've received a response regarding your current submission. 

Ends on April 14, 2018
Thank you for wanting to submit to Ruminate. We welcome visual art submissions of any medium. We know that sharing your art is a brave act--we look forward to seeing your work! 

Visual artists may submit the following:
  • Professional quality digital images in TIFF or JPG formats (if JPG, saved in “baseline” or “standard” format at the highest quality possible). Images must be Mac and PC compatible. Note: Please do not submit PPT or PPTX presentations; minimum of 320 dpi and between 1200 and 2400 pixels in the longest dimension.
  • Please include an artist statement as well. 
Ends on May 18, 2018$20.00
We invite you to enter the 2018 Poetry Prize with final judge Ilya Kaminsky.

As with all our submissions, we highly recommend reading a copy of the magazine to better understand the type of poetry we are looking for. You can buy a PDF for $5. Issue No. 45 features the winning poems from the 2017 Prize: We also offer a discounted bundle of past print issues featuring the Janet B. McCabe Poetry Prize.  

-The submission deadline is May 15, 2018, 
and we offer a 3-day grace period after the deadline. Poems submitted by May 18, 2018 will be entered into the poetry contest.
-The entry fee is $20 (Includes a copy of Ruminate—either print or digital. E
nter by March 15th and receive a complimentary physical copy of the prize issue featuring the winning work. All international entries and entries received after March 15th will receive a complimentary PDF copy of the prize issue featuring the winning work).
-All submissions must be previously unpublished work. 
-You may submit up to two poems per entry, no longer than 40 lines each.
-You may only upload one document, so please make sure to include both poems in the same document.
-There is no theme or topic for the poetry prize. 
-$1500 and publication will be awarded to the winner. $200 and publication will be awarded to the second-place winner.
-All entries will be blind-judged by our panel of readers who will select thirty poems as finalists.
-The finalist judge, Ilya Kaminsky, will review the thirty finalist poems and select the first place and second place and honorable mention poems.
Close friends and students (current & former) of this year's judge, Ilya Kaminsky, are not eligible to compete. We define student as someone who has taken one semester-long course or more with Ilya Kaminsky; those who have only studied under the judge for week-long workshops and the like are still eligible.
-Also not eligible to compete are: friends or family of the Ruminate staff, regular Ruminate blog contributors, past 1st-place winners of any Ruminate Prize, and past judges of any Ruminate prize. 
-All submissions must be submitted via our online submission manager. We will not accept mail or email submissions.
-We do accept simultaneous submissions. However, please withdraw your entry or notify us immediately via the Submittable "note function" if a poem is accepted elsewhere.
-Please remove your name, bio, and any contact info from the file that you submit.
-All entrants will be notified of their submission status by Mid-August. 
-As a contemplative magazine, we are sometimes asked if Ruminate is seeking or only accepts "spiritual" poems. The answer to that question is no. We are simply looking for good writing and there are no restrictions on the subject matter or content for submissions. The best way to understand the work we publish is to read a past issue. You can also sign up for our emails and receive a free copy of Issue 38. (