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Orbit is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal of contemporary American literature. We welcome broad and imaginative definitions of "American literature" that extend geographies beyond the United States. We publish special and general issues in a rolling format and welcome application from qualified parties to coordinate special issues.

Focus and Scope Orbit welcomes submissions on post-war to contemporary American Literature. We do not publish creative writing. Articles in Orbit are expected to meet high standards of double-blind peer review.
Submission Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

Articles are generally expected to be of standard academic length for the field of literary studies, of approximately 8,000 to 12,000 words, although shorter notes and longer pieces may be considered. Orbit has no preference for a particular reference style, so long as the references are internally consistent within the manuscript.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, RTF, or WordPerfect document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text is double-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  5. Manuscripts should be prepared according to any endnoted bibliographic style, submitted in a 12-point font in either Microsoft Office, or OpenOffice format.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.
Copyright Notice

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.

Authors retain copyright. Works are released under a Creative Commons license, which provides unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons License stipulates that: "You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work)."

The citation of articles published in Orbit must include: the name(s) of the authors, the name of the journal, the full URL of the article (in a hyperlinked format if distributed online) and the DOI number of the article.

All articles published in this journal are available in full-text semantically rich JATS XML with metadata and structured citation data. Open OAI-PMH endpoints are available to crawl the articles at: . We ask that you respect our bandwidth capacity when mass-downloading articles but place no restrictions on this.

Peer Review

All submissions will be double-blind peer reviewed by active researchers. All communication will be through the assigned section editor.

All submitted manuscripts are first reviewed by the editorial team. Those papers that seem most likely to meet our editorial criteria are sent for formal review. The editorial board reserves the right to reject manuscripts without sending them for formal review.

Promising submissions are sent for formal review, typically to two reviewers, but sometimes more. The editors make a decision based on the reviewers' advice from among the following options:

  • Accept: Your submission has been accepted as is.
  • Minor revisions: Your submission requires minor changes and will be accepted once those have been completed.
  • Major revisions: Your submission needs significant re-working. A new file must be submitted and another round of review will take place.
  • Reject: Your submission was not accepted for publication with this journal, either because it was not seen to be of high enough quality, or its subject did not match the journal.

While reviews in all cases are blind, we recognise that articles that germinated in conference presentations are exceptionally hard to anonymize. In such cases we will, therefore, ask reviewers to disclose any conflicts of interest, disclose whether they know the identity of the author and to justify their comments solely on the basis of the article under submission. These factors will be combined and considered at the discretion of the editors in reaching a decision.

In the case of editors submitting, the submission will be handled by other members of the team who must adhere strictly to the recommendations of external reviewers.


Orbit: A Journal of American Literature allows the following licences for submission:

  • CC BY 4.0 - More Information  
    Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use. No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.
Publication Fees

This journal is published by the Open Library of Humanities. Unlike many open-access publishers, the Open Library of Humanities does not charge any author fees. This does not mean that we do not have costs. Instead, our costs are paid by an international library consortium.

If your institution is not currently supporting the platform, we request that you ask your librarian to sign up. The OLH is extremely cost effective and is a not-for-profit charity. However, while we cannot function without financial support and we encourage universities to sign up, institutional commitment is not required to publish with us.

Publication Cycle Orbit is a rolling format journal. This means that articles are published, under a Volume and Issue, as soon as they are ready. Volumes are numbered yearly, with up to four issues per year.

Section or article type

Public Submissions

Peer Reviewed



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Letters and Notes

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DeLillo Special Issue

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Response Articles

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Regular Article

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Table of Contents