Submissions for the Journal

* Submissions for the journal are now closed and will reopen in September, 2016. Submissions for the blog however are ongoing – we are always accepting pitches for articles! *

submissions open banner 2016

We’re looking for speculative:

  • Short Stories
  • Flash Fiction
  • Novel Excerpts
  • Poetry
  • Prose Poems
  • Graphic Fiction
  • Academic Papers
  • Articles
  • Interviews
  • Visual Art
  • Photography

What do we mean by speculative? Anything that could be construed as both literary and genre. Fantasy, horror, science fiction, superhero, dystopian, post-apocalyptic, gaslamp, steampunk, and anything else that you can think of. We encourage submissions related to mythology and folklore.

We accept papers and articles on film, photography, art shows, literature, or any other medium that you believe you have seen express speculative elements. We also accept papers analyzing the place of speculative fiction as a whole, and encourage you to submit these sorts of analyses. We’re especially interested in essays and/or articles that explore speculative works using gender theory, queer theory, critical race theory, social theory, Marxist theory, psychoanalysis, psychology, ethics, body politics, or just generally great critical thought (etc.).

SUBMISSIONS GUIDELINES

Word and Page Count Limits: 

  • Fiction — max. 4000 words
  • Nonfiction — max. 4000 words
    • (Please note that pieces near 4000 words will likely be cut down by our editors, as we favour pieces 2000-3000 words long)
  • Poetry — max. 4 pages (subject to change based on creative license for poetry)
  • Graphic fiction — max. 10 pages (4-6 pages preferred)

*You may submit up to a maximum of four pieces of any combination of works.* 

Please send all of your submissions in a single email. Send submissions to thespectatorial@gmail.com. Please ensure that your name is not anywhere on the document itself. Your email body must contain:

  • your name
  • an abstract/statement of purpose for each piece submitted (approx. 100-200 words describing your intentions)
  • for fiction submissions, please also provide a brief summary (approx. 100 words)

Text must be attached as:

  • .doc (NOT .docx)
  • 12pt font
  • Times New Roman
  • Single Line Spacing

Images must be attached as:

  • .JPEG file
  • 300DPI

*Although you are more than welcome to submit colour artwork, please be aware that due to budgetary constraints we may need to print artwork in black and white (we will, however, use the colour version of any accepted artwork in the online version of the journal).*

We’re very sorry, but failure to follow these guidelines may result in your piece not being considered.

We are looking for two things: really good stories and strong, analytical thought. If you think you have what we’re looking for, we absolutely encourage you to submit to us! However, we do ask that you be aware that approximately only 10% of the submissions we receive are published.

Please pay close attention to your email during the end of February, as we will contact you about the editing process as soon as we have chosen pieces. The next stage of the publication process with The Spec is meeting with our editors in person to discuss your writing!

Thank you for your interest in The Spectatorial! We’re excited to showcase your work. : )

A Note on Content

The Spectatorial has a zero tolerance policy on works that condone sexism, racism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, ageism, or any other form of discrimination and/or prejudice.

Thankfully, we have never received work that could be read as hateful. However, we have received pieces that depict upsetting material in a manner that we felt was careless and insensitive. We see this recourse to “edginess” and crass sensationalism as exploitative, derivative, and just plain bad writing.

We do not want our writers to shy away from difficult content—but we ask that you be sure that you address difficult material with empathy, understanding, and maturity.

If your work contains material that some readers may find upsetting, we ask that you let us know in advance with a brief content warning. Thank you for your cooperation.

If you have any questions or concerns, or would like further clarification, please email us at thespectatorial@gmail.com.

A Note on Horror

We would like to clarify that we are interested in works of speculative horror, not realist horror. In other words, we want horror pieces that contain some element of the supernatural or the unreal. We want monsters, myths, fairy tales, supernatural visions—we want horror that can take place in our imaginations.

We would also like to emphasize that we are not interested in works that exploit mental illness as a trope of horror, and thereby further marginalize and stigmatize people. As well, we are not interested in works that exoticize and demonize non-Western religious as the basis for some kind of evil.

If you would like more guidance on what kind of horror we are interested in, please consult with us at thepsectatorial@gmail.com.

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