As You Were: The Military Review

About the Publication and Organization

Military Experience & the Arts invites submissions from veterans, family members, and civilians exploring military themes in the genres of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and artwork for publication in our main periodical, As You Were: The Military Review. It is a digital publication that’s released  every Veterans Day and Memorial Day. There are usually two submission periods a year, in January and July. Owing to backlogs, however, we sometimes have to skip the opening of certain genres. The exact dates and up-to-date opening/closure information for each genre  can be found below, on this page, in the “Submissions Portals” section.

As You Were, three words spoken quickly by non-commissioned and commissioned officers who choose to drop rank and get to business, is meant to put troops “at ease.” Military Experience & the Arts, in its collaborative approach to publishing, has long sought to provide an atmosphere in which veterans and their loved ones can feel “at ease” when expressing themselves.

Our title also connotes a hearkening back, an exploration of the self and the past. We’re interested in those words and works of art that are brave enough to cut through rank and time, presenting military experience honestly. We’ve published numerous volumes since 2011, providing each contributor – regardless of whether that contributor has published 25 words or 25 books – with some form of one-on-one consultation if they wanted it.

About the Submissions and Editorial Process

We’re more than a traditional publisher. It’s our mission at MEA to help veterans and family members enrich their writing, regardless of their skill level. We welcome works from new as well as experienced writers. We encourage you to let our staff help you craft the best possible piece. You’ve invested time and emotion in writing your story. Our purpose is to invest our time in helping you tell it in the most  effective manner possible, as well as teaching you things that will develop your skill-set in your chosen craft.

If you’re willing to be revised, editors may make bigger-picture suggestions such as reordering a sequence of events or more fully developing a theme. They’ll also be looking at the paragraph and sentence level, and may suggest adding more details in a description for a richer scene or trimming of extraneous material that slows the pace or distracts from the overall theme of the piece. Our goal is to help you revise until you get a publishable piece.

These editorial suggestions will follow the conventions of the respective genres. Experimentation is good, but it is in the interest of writers to master the conventions first before deviating from them. Brand new writers may want to look at our help page for a discussion of the basics in non-fiction and fiction. Following the guidance there will get you a good working draft. More experienced writers may find it helpful as well.

Of course, we understand that not all writers will want to revise their work. So you’ve got options:

  • You can choose to work with our staff to revise and rewrite your submission. You will receive one-on-one guidance from an experienced, published writer to help you refine your work, the goal being to develop a polished, publishable piece.


  • You can let our staff accept or reject the piece as it is written. We understand that some writers won’t want to revise or rewrite, but would also like the opportunity to be considered for publication.

Submissions Portals

**Before submitting, please note the following**

1. If a particular genre is ‘closed’ we are not currently accepting submissions in that genre and will resume taking submissions when we are caught up with editing. As a courtesy, we ask that you refrain from submitting a piece to a different category. (For instance, if poetry is closed, please don’t submit your poem to the artwork category).

2. Please only submit work that it is related to military themes. The organization’s intent is goal is to bridge the divide between civilian and military worlds through creative expression.

3. We don’t have the capacity for editing book-length manuscripts, and we can’t publish books. Submissions are for consideration for publication in our digital magazine. Please limit works to 3,500 words or less

4. We will under no circumstances consider previously published work, even if it is self-published.

5. If you’ve submitted with us in prior issues, please note that we have to prioritize those who are submitting to us for the first time. Usually we can circle back around and get to you before the next volume goes out, but sometimes we can’t.

6. We will consider simultaneous submissions. However, we ask that you inform us that it’s being considered elsewhere and choose to have us accept/reject as is.

7. If you are writing outside of your personal experience, please conduct the research required to render a piece in your piece credibly. Our editors are here to assist you in the craft of writing, not to serve as technical advisers for technical and historical details.

8. In the past we have tried to workshop everything that’s been submitted. The average number of submissions received each period has increased well beyond our capacity, however. Beginning July 2020, we will be implementing a submissions cap per each genre that applies to those pieces seeking editorial guidance. It will be commensurate with editorial staffing in a given submission period. This will ensure that those writers with whom we can work will receive quality mentoring. We will work with as many writers as we can, but we will not be able to work with everyone. Thank you for your understanding.

Follow the links below when submitting to your chosen genre(s). They’ll take you to our Submittable page when submission periods are open. General Guidelines can be found here.

Our full copyright and privacy policy can be found here. All copyrights revert back to writers and artists upon publication. 

Fiction – Military-themed short stories of literary fiction (Closed. Will open January 15, 2021 to January 30, 2021)

Nonfiction – Short, creative non-fiction stories based on personal experience involving military themes (Closed. Will open January 15, 2021 to January 30, 2021)

Poetry –  Military-themed poems. Poetry Editor, Randy Brown. (Closed. Will open July 2021)

Artwork – Military-themed visual artwork (Closed. Will open January 15, 2021 to January 30, 2021) 


For any questions you have about the submissions process, please email the Editor-in-Chief at