Photography by Michael Angelo Smith (IG: @lsfmphotography).




Toho Publishing presents The Best Short Stories of Philadelphia, an anthology of the best short stories the Greater Philadelphia Area has to offer. 

We are putting this collection together because—even with as many literary efforts as already exist—we feel there is room for a platform seeking to integrate the city's diverse voices.  We acknowledge the numerous organizations already doing similar work—Blue Stoop, Kelly Writers House, Mighty Writers, Philadelphia Writers Conference, and Philadelphia Stories, to name a few—and we hope to take a seat at the same table.  We hope too that this collection becomes a yearly staple in the Philadelphia literary scene.

Our main goal is to collect, in one book, the best stories we can find in this city.  We want the powerful and the timid, the sacred and the profane.  We want the weird and the ordinary, the hopeful and the nihilist.  In short, we want the best stories Philadelphians have written.

We want to be moved.

In order to find these stories, we are reaching out to as many universities, colleges, schools, writing groups, and individual fiction writers in Philly as we can.  If you know of someone who might be interested in submitting, please share this page with them!

Also, while our primary goal is to create this book, our secondary goals are no less important: we seek to amplify the many talented voices of this city (emerging and established) and to make this publication (1) equitable and (2) reflective of the city’s demographics (a more diverse city than you might realize).  

If you'd like to follow the process of creating this anthology, check out our blog (created by our incredible team of interns). Or follow us on Instagram, @tohopublish, to stay up to date.



  • 3,000 word limit

  • Writers must currently live, teach, or work in the Greater Philadelphia Area (or have a really strong connection to Philly).

  • 1 submission per writer.  

  • Stories may have been previously published (so long as the writer retains the rights). 

  • Submission is free and does not guarantee acceptance.

  • Deadline: Submissions are open until midnight (EDT) on Sunday, 8/30/20.




Executive Editor

Andrés Cruciani has been teaching, writing, and editing for over fifteen years.  He has a bachelor's from Cornell, a master's in education from Brooklyn College, and an MFA (master of fine arts) in fiction from The New School.  A one-time high school mathematics teacher, he has taught at the university level as well and is the founder and CEO of Toho Publishing.  

Series Editor

Matthew Perez has edited over two hundred book-length manuscripts, including novels, memoirs, and creative nonfiction, as well as many in the scholarly/academic and reference fields.  His current clients include numerous university presses and trade publishers, as well as Shambhala Publications.  Matthew has recently worked for the Estate of David Rubin, renowned linguist and pioneering scholar and translator of Indian literature, editing and revising his published and unpublished novels, short stories, and works of criticism for (re)publication.  

Editorial Intern (Lead)

Claudia Langella is a literary studies and culture & media student at Eugene Lang College.  She is interested in the crossroads of literature and media and how each impacts the other in today’s culture.  Originally from the Philadelphia suburbs, she is excited at the prospect of preserving some of Philadelphia’s culture. 

Editorial Interns

Ailisha "Ail" Goodwin-Dancy is a full-time art and design student at The Community College of Philadelphia. A multifaceted artist, she primarily focuses on social issues and specializes in spoken word, painting, and fabric.  She is a host of monthly open-mic nights, a student editor for Toho Journal, and is the founder and CEO of a small business that specializes in fabric arts.

Rebecca Koestler is a communications and culture major (with a concentration in media studies) at Fordham University.  She also studies Spanish and political science. Originally from Yardley, Pennsylvania, Rebecca moved to New York City to pursue a career in media but still finds herself tied to her Philadelphia roots.

Grace Tinneny is an English and criminal justice double major at Temple University.  Grace was born and raised in Lafayette Hill, a suburb of Philadelphia, but now resides in the city.  She is looking to attend law school after graduation and hopes to pursue a career involving criminal law.