The reading period for Thread is currently on hiatus,

but don’t let that stop you from reading the 84 essays on this site!

Also, see below for exciting literary news…



Big news! Thread just earned it’s fourth spot on the Best American Essays 2020 Notable list. Kudos to Roberto Loiederman for “Cave 7” (Fall 2019). See previous Notables by Tom McGohey for “Cicero’s Hands” (Fall 2018), Richard Holinger’s essay “The Art of Passivity” (Fall 2017) and Randy Osborne for his essay, “Seaside Bohemia” (Fall 2015) for their well-deserved praise!

Thread has also received a four-star review in The Review Review and features in The Chicago Tribune, Brevity Blog and New Pages.




Dear Supporters of Thread and Lovers of Essay:

I’ve decided to stretch out my hiatus from editing Thread a bit longer.

I love the community that Thread built, but this time off has confirmed that producing three issues a year is truly a labor of love that takes an enormous amount of time. Ask anyone in publishing!

I’m also aware that launching and releasing my memoir next spring will be incredibly time consuming. Now that the book is completed (still some editing to do!) I’m finding that there’s more room in my head, and as a consequence, there are essays that want to be written.

But with 84 published essays across fourteen issues, you’ve probably missed a few. I urge you to scroll through past editions. You might want to start with the four pieces that found their way on the Best American Essays Notables lists (see links above).

My gratitude to all of the contributors and writers who submitted and especially to those of who read and appreciated the work these past years.

You have made this thing that began from an inkling into a rather impressive little spark.

So grateful for the art makers and art appreciators in the world, especially now.

Wrap yourself up in it! And stay safe.

October 22, 2020



Thread publishes personal essays by established and emerging writers of 1500 words or less.

Stitch features a 100-word piece on the first of every month.

Thread/Stitch accepts personal narrative pieces which includes personal essays, narrative nonfiction and short memoir only.  Please note that Thread/Stitch do not publish fiction, short stories, poetry, journalistic features or academic essays. The publications are highlight stories written from a writer’s life experience.

There are no submission fees. Contributors  – and your editor  – offer their work for the love of the art and the joy of publication. Every essay accepted in Thread or Stitch receives a careful edit in which I work closely with the writer.

Though Thread does not pay writers, each published essay is featured on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, and contributors’ books are promoted on the site in the New Work by Thread Writers section. Essays in Thread have been acknowledged as notables in Best American Essays in 2016, 2018 and 2019. Writer bios and head shots are featured on a separate Contributors page.

Thread and Stitch cover a variety of themes relating to human experience across the decades; thoughtful, poignant and humorous stories from the lives of a diverse range of people.

To submit your work for review:

  1. Send your piece IN THE BODY OF THE EMAIL to, indicating whether it is a submission to Thread or Stitch with the name of your essay in the subject line.

  2. PLEASE DO NOT SEND WORD DOCUMENT ATTACHMENTS OR PDFs. I am aware that this can throw off formatting, but that’s okay.

  3. Feel free to send ONE ESSAY PER SUBMISSION for Thread and UP TO TWO for Stitch.

  4. INDICATE IF YOUR PIECE IS A SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSION.  Let me know if the piece is accepted elsewhere.

Thread publishes original material, not been previously published. I’ll let you know by email if your piece is a fit, usually within four-to-six weeks.

Keep updated on Facebook. Click on the Live Lit tab for the next scheduled event.  Subscribe to my blog about craft, creativity, inspiration and the writing life here. 

Ellen Blum Barish

Editor, THREAD

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Thread?

An online literary publication featuring short personal essay, memoir, creative nonfiction and original photography.

Who edits the publication?

Ellen Blum Barish. For more about me, click on the About page.

Is Thread affiliated with a university or other organization?

No. Thread is the creation of volunteer writers and a solo editor-photographer.

Who are the contributors?

Emerging and established writers. See Contributors page.

When do you read submissions?

The reading period is currently on hiatus.

In what form should I send pieces?

See the guidelines above.

Does Thread and Stitch pay writers?

No but Thread does promote writers on social media, the Contributors page and features writers creative work on the site as well.

Can you submit photographs or art?

Not at this time.