Let Your Words Fly: Submission Bonanza 2015

photo (7)Do you have stories that have been hibernating over winter in the caves of your computer files? Poems that have sleepily spent the dark months hiding from the cold snuggled between the pages of your notebook? Blog posts or essays that are destined to fly in the summer breeze and see a new audience?

It’s time for a Submission Bonanza, and I’d love for you to join me!

Here in Alaska, the new, green life is taking shape. The air feels fertile and full of possibilities. Birds are sending their songs out into the world and all this makes me feel like I should follow suit. With the start of summer, there’s the reminder of the possibilities that exist and the importance of our art seeing the light of day, stretching in the sunshine and basking in the warmth of the outdoors.

Two years ago at this time, I began a Submission Bonanza. It was an attempt to start getting my work out in the world, which I had been terrible about doing. It had been a long time since I had submitted anything anywhere, thinking of myself as not-a-real-writer, as someone who just wrote to make myself happy. At some point, I realized that writing, for me, is actually about connection and the real reason I was not submitting my work anywhere wasn’t because it was “just for me” but because I was afraid of the rejection. I mean, this poem is my soul; how could I stomach someone saying it wasn’t good enough?

Two years and hundreds of rejections later, I am stronger. I know now how to take the rejection letters. Being an editor of a magazine myself, I see how subjective the process can be and I know that it’s not a reflection of the worth of my soul.

I also have quite a few publications under my belt, because as subjective and harrowing as the process can be, there will also be moments when your work falls into the lap of someone who gets you, someone who connects with what you are trying to say. And they’ll want to share that with other people. Which, honestly, is kind of magical.

I have to say, I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit, been remiss in keeping my work flying out into the world and, thankfully, nature has reminded me that it’s time again.

submission bonanza logo 2 copySo, I’ll be doing another Submission Bonanza this year, 30 submissions in 30 days. For the whole month of June, I’ll be keeping a running list of literary journals that I submit to, and I’ll highlight some of the best ones so that you can submit to them, too.

If you’re new to submitting, check out my Guide to Creating Your Own Submission Bonanza, Choosing and Selecting Submittable Pieces, Finding Literary Magazines, and Six Tips for Perfect (Professional) Cover Letters.

Feel free to use the Submission Bonanza logo and join up. I’ll keep you posted with how things are going. Keep me posted as well!

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Call for Submissions: Cake & Grapes

Another new(to me)! magazine that’s open for submissions: Cake & Grapes!  With a name like that, how can you not submit?  Check them out.

We at Cake & Grapes believe that art is anyone’s game. 

That’s why we’re opening our doors to you: to give you a chance. Flash fiction, short fiction, epic poetry, photographs, sestinas, sketches, films, paintings, sculptures, gifs, papier mache hats – we want them all. 

Show us what you’re made of, and we’ll show the world.

GUIDELINES

We don’t want to hamper your creativity; we just need to lay down some basic rules.

Prose
Short fiction, flash fiction, and non-fiction are all accepted. All prose submissions must be less than 2,500 words in length. Exceptions will only be made for essays that are relevant and irreverent.

Poetry
If humorous, epic poems will be tolerated. Otherwise, it’s fair game.

Artwork
As this is an online publication, we will only be able to accept photographs or scans of your artwork. Please be sure that your work is well-lit. We will consider original comics, sketches, sculptures, paintings, graphic designs, gifs, – you name it – for publication.

Video
All video submissions must be less than 10 minutes in length. We’re not the FCC, so no worries there.

Feel like you fit within our loose rubric?

SUBMIT!

Drowning in Truth: Lessons from Dispatches from the Drownings by B.J. Hollars

Dispatches from the Drownings: Reporting the Fiction of Nonfiction by B.J. Hollars is a deep, poignant look into the nature of nonfiction, specifically in how it relates to truth and fiction. Dispatches starts with a very necessary Author’s Note, in which Hollars explains his project:

Sticking with my ‘75/25 theory’ on the validity of facts, only seventy-five percent of the following hundred drowning dispatches are based on true accounts. The other twenty-five are completely fabricated. I have made no effort to differentiate. In fact, in an attempt to thwart the sleuthing reader, I have gone so far as to manufacture false entries in my bibliography. (Hollars, xiv)

Thus Hollars begins an exploration of where truth is found in journalism, in creative nonfiction, and in fiction and where the lines are between these three genres. Though Hollars admits that this way of going about things will be maddening for some readers, he is also clear and upfront about his truthfulness (or lack thereof). It could be argued that this ends up being more honest than most journalism, which does not discuss the writer’s own motives, how she comes to choose the facts she chooses, or what she chooses to stretch or leave out.

Dispatches is indeed a fascinating foray into the exploration of truth in writing, but it is also much more than that. I found myself unable to put the book down. This, despite the fact that Hollars himself admits that there is very little suspense in the book. Most of the stories end the same way, with a drowning. However, Hollars uses many techniques to keep the reader going. Some of these are very straightforward. The shortness of the articles, between one hundred and five hundred words pushes the reader on. The use of white space in the book keeps the articles from running together and also allows the reader that sense of moving quickly through the pages. It is, quite literally, a page-turner. The writing is also captivating, making puns or drawing conclusions so that the reader must ask: Is this Hollars or is he “paraphrasing” what was already there? So many of the articles end with eyebrow-raising lines, like the one about the man thought to have had a heart attack: “On his last swim, however, his heart was no longer in it” (Hollars, 162) or the story of the drowning of the “inmate at the feeble-minded home” which ends with “It appears as if they boy who sought independence on Independence Day found freedom at last in the river” (Hollars, 136).

Some of the things that keep the reader going, however, go deeper into the choices that Hollars made. For one, there is a great variety in the types of stories that Hollars uses. While most of the stories end in death by drowning, they don’t all. The stories vary from the rescue of a pig, to lovers’ quarrels, to mothers drowning children, to men in logging accidents. The sheer range of possibilities of ways to drown is mind-boggling. Additionally, Hollars gives us also a range of details. The articles do not simply state the name and date, etc. Some give the process of grief of survivors, some give the background of the deceased, some give insight into how mental illness was portrayed at the time, some give details about clothing, customs, or celebrations of the time period. The effect is that the reader is not reading the same story over and over again, but instead is looking through one hundred peepholes which give tiny glimpses into the lives of the people and the past. This effect is heightened by the use of photographs from that time period and place.

This array of information given and information withheld also leaves the reader with questions that keep her going through the book. What is mother’s disease? Did they ever find the body? Was that really an accident? What happened to the money? Hollars plays to these questions by very rarely giving the answers. For about four of the articles, he also gives follow-up articles that explain the story more fully. This keeps the reader going in hopes that more might be explained. It is very rare that it ever is.

Perhaps the most powerful thing that keeps the reader going is the search for truth. Knowing that twenty-five percent of the articles are not factual makes the book into a game, as if the more the reader reads, the more insight will be gained, and therefore perhaps the reader will be able to tell the “fraudulent” articles from the real ones. The reader feels as if perhaps the next article will hold clues about how to tell which stories are real, about how to read this book. True to his philosophy, Hollars never reveals which stories we may take as truth and which he fabricated. Instead of leaving the reader maddened, this has the effect of leaving the reader haunted: haunted by the drownings which may or may not have taken place, haunted that we may never know what happened, haunted by idea that truth may not be as easy to grasp as we once thought. Indeed, Hollars writes that he leaves Dispatches with the same ghosts: “Despite all my research, I could no longer precisely recall which stories were factual and which I’d fabricated… I’ve studied the facts, I’ve fabricated the fictions, but I no longer know which me to believe” (Hollars, 184).

*This post is part of a series on the craft of writing called Reading for Writers.  This series examines a variety of authors to ascertain the choices they’ve made in their writing and the effects of those choices so that we as writers can make better decisions in our own writing. May contain affiliate links.

Call for Submissions: The Litragger

Are you looking for a place to re-publish works that have already appeared in print?  The Litragger is the place!  Check out their submission guidelines below:

 

Dear Writers,

We are republishing work that has previously appeared in print, exists in back issues, but does not have an online presence. We believe firmly in the benefit of publishing in print. But we also believe that writers deserve the opportunity to place their work online in a well-designed reading environment, following the print publication cycle, so that they may find new readers and build an audience on the web.

So if you have a piece, send it to us!

Email a word document or PDF to submissions@litragger.com.

Just let us know where it appeared originally and when it was published, and we’ll read it and let you know if we think it’s a good fit.

– Adam and Landon

 

Call for Submissions: Saw Palm Magazine

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES


Saw Palm is a Florida-themed journal, however we welcome writers and artists from across the country and the globe as long as the work is connected to Florida (via images, people, themes, et cetera). We also welcome creative works from Floridians that are not obviously about someplace else. Please check out past issues, available for download as free PDFs. We publish one issue per year in the spring.

We do not accept work that has been previously published either online or in print. We welcome simultaneous submissions as long as you immediately notify us of acceptance elsewhere. Our general reading period is between July 1st and October 1st, however submissions for Places to Stand in Florida are accepted year-round.

Send only one submission per genre at a time. If you have a pending submission, please wait for a response before submitting again. We make every effort to respond as quickly as possible while giving each submission the time it deserves. Our average response time for is 3-5 months. After 6 months, you’re welcome to follow up with the appropriate editor.

All submissions must be made electronically through our online submissions manager. Please upload prose and poetry files in .doc or .docx formats only. Art, photography, and comics should be uploaded in .jpeg / .jpg format only. Paper submissions sent via snail mail will be recycled unread.

Click here to submit.


POETRY

We accept up to five poems per submission period at a maximum of 10 pages. Combine all poems into one document and include in a single submission.

FICTION

We ask that fiction submissions be no longer than 6000 words. Please send only one story per reading period.

CREATIVE NONFICTION

We ask that submissions of memoir and essays be no longer than 6000 words. Please send only one piece per reading period.

FLASH FICTION & FLASH NONFICTION

We accept up to three works of flash fiction or flash nonfiction (750 words or less) per submission period. Please send all stories or essays in one document.

ART & PHOTOGRAPHY

We accept up to five submissions of art or photography per reading period. Please send files in .jpeg / .jpg format only. You may also include a URL if a portfolio of your work is online.

COMICS

We welcome submissions of graphic fiction and nonfiction of up to seven pages, whether in black & white, greyscale, or full color. Submit in .jpeg / .jpg format only. Keep in mind that the journal’s dimensions are smaller (5″x7″) than the average literary journal and so comics with small panels filled with intricate art are not well-suited.

INTERVIEWS

We are especially interested in interviews of Florida writers and artists, although we’re open to almost any Florida-related subject. Please query us about the interview subject first, via email.

REVIEWS

We are interested in reviews of any Florida-related subject: author, book, film, tourist attraction, CD, website, beach, park, toll roads, snack stands, local landmarks—anything! These reviews will appear on http://www.sawpalm.org. Unlike submissions of creative work, current or recent USF students and faculty are welcome to submit reviews. Size limit: 6000 words. Reviews appear on sawpalm.org.

PLACES TO STAND

Please tell us what it’s like to stand at a specific place in Florida at a specific time of day in 500 words or less. While we enjoy the unusual, locations should be public and accessible (so not your bathroom!) Please include GPS coordinates.

Unlike other categories, current or recent USF students and faculty are welcome to submit pieces for the Places to Stand series.

Poems submitted as part of the Places to Stand series are welcome but should be justified left and otherwise not have complex formatting and spacing. This is due to technical limitations in Google Earth.

Places to Stand appears on sawpalm.org.

Call for Submissions: Wigleaf

Wigleaf is now open for submissions.  They publish (very) short fiction.  Check them out!

SUBMISSIONS

We feature stories under 1000 words.

Submissions are welcomed via our SUBMITTABLE page.

(We’re open during the final week of each academic month,
with the exception of December. So: the final weeks of August,
September, October, November, January, February, March and April.)

For all other correspondence: wigleaf.fiction@gmail.com.

PUBLISHING SCHEDULE

We post new stories at least twice a week for nine months
of the year. Our summer break runs from early May until mid August.
Over the break we put up our annual, The Wigleaf Top 50 (Very) Short
Fictions of the year.

Call for Submissions: Flash Frontier

 

Submissions now open

In 2013 we are reading and publishing on a bi-monthly basis. Each issue follows a theme. See our Themes and Announcements pages for details. Also see Archives to read past issues and get a feel for stories we publish.

February 2014: one way (submitted by Brendan Way and among the top five themes from the winter 2013 comp)

April 2014: scattered (submitted by Bruce Costello and among the top five themes from the winter 2013 comp)

What we like

We are looking for variety and originality. Tickle us, haunt us, gobsmack us. Choose your words carefully and leave our readers wanting more. And do it in 250 or less (not including title).

Please submit only previously unpublished works. If the work has appeared in any other print or electronic journal, we consider it published. If it has appeared on a writing workshop site, we will consider it but please do let us know, and we expect Flash Frontierto be credited with first publication if your work appears in our pages.

We love original art in all forms — colourful and daring, muted and understated. We’ll choose art each month which reflects the theme.

How to submit

Stories

  • Electronic submissions only. Submit submissions in an email to: flashfrontier [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Write Submission: month / theme (that is, name the theme, as in: Submission: January / Frontiers) in the subject line.
  • Place your story in the body of the email. No attachments, please. If your story requires unusual formatting, the editors may ask for an different kind of document to confirm your formatting requirements.
  • Include the title of your story, your name, and the whole text in the email.
  • Please format your story by using double spacing between paragraphs and no indent on paragraph beginnings.
  • Provide a brief biographical sketch (approx. 60 words) about yourself that can be included on our Contributor page. You do not have to include your bio if you have submitted to us before.
  • Submissions are due by the last day of the month for the following month’s issue. Each issue will appear mid-month.
  • Remember to count: 251 won’t be accepted.
Art
  • If you are submitting art, please send your work(s) as an attachment. Provide a title for the piece and tell us where the artwork originated. Artists may send up to five pieces for consideration at once.
  • Please provide a brief commentary (approx. 60 words) about your art submission.
  • Provide a brief biographical sketch (approx. 60 words) about yourself that can be included on our Contributor page. You do not have to include your bio if you have submitted to us before.

Payment and Rights

  • We do not pay authors for their work, but there will be prizes awarded quarterly and at the conclusion of our first year.
  • An author must own full copyright of the work submitted.
  • First rights revert to author upon publication, although Flash Frontier reserves the right to anthologize material originally published here in electronic or printed format.

Please direct any questions to us at flashfrontier [at] gmail [dot] com