We are open for submissions to our online issue from September 10 to November 14, 2021. For information on what our editors are looking for, please look at the corresponding genre. Please note that current students of contest judges (if applicable), as well as current students/affiliates of George Mason University's MFA program, and GMU MFA graduates who are within 5 years of graduating, aren't permitted to apply. If you have been published on our website before, please wait at least one calendar year before submitting again. If you have been featured in our contest issue, please wait at least two calendar years before submitting to another contest with us.

Please note we only accept previously unpublished work for all categories. Please do not send us a piece you have sent us before unless we ask to see another version.

Blog submissions are open year-round. Please submit book reviews, essays, event reporting, etc. See our website for additional submission information. It's always a good idea to read a few of our blog posts (outside of a limited series) for a sense of what we're looking for. 

For more information, please visit http://www.sotospeakjournal.org. 

Our Spring 2021 Issue of So to Speak is available for purchase as a digital PDF for $3.99! The work in this issue was selected by judges Natalie Lima (Fiction), Sophia Shalmiyev (Nonfiction), Roya Marsh (Poetry), and Sheilah & Dani ReStack (Art). From the issue's Letter from the Editor, written by Editor-in-Chief Kyra Kondis: The pieces in this issue are bursting with life and emotion. They depict love and beauty, as well as loss and grief; they examine identity, and challenge stereotypes and prejudices; they explore trauma, healing, and the messy spaces in between; they are authentic and defiant and a breathtaking body of work. I am incredibly grateful for our contributors, whose careful, complex, and creative pieces are as compelling as they are important.

To receive a print hard-copy of the contest issue, you can select the add-on of "mail me a print copy!" for just an extra $6! (We'll even throw a back issue or two in with your order, free of charge.) 

 





SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

The So to Speak Blog team has been inspired by such artists as Cheryl Strayed and Ryan Van Meter. Cheryl Strayed’s vulnerable, but incredibly distinct voice sustains you as you read about her struggle with drug abuse and the loss of a parent. Ryan Van Meter’s narrative storytelling and his sentence-level craft carry us through his work as he explores his identity as a gay man. We love work that explores the complexities of experiences and identities, work that lends itself to a larger meaning in every aspect.

The So to Speak Blog is unique in that it opens itself up to multiple forms of storytelling. We love the poetry, essays, and short stories we receive and we encourage artists to continue to submit pieces that fall into those genres. However, we want to see more work that bends form and genre, work that extends outside of the personal essay or the traditional poem, and work that is visually stimulating. Hybrid works, reviews, interviews, and visual art are welcomed submissions. We also would love to see more multimedia, like videos and podcasts, on the So to Speak Blog. In summary, we want to see art that tells a story in an exciting way and gives us a new perspective.

While we enjoy reading all of the pieces we receive and sincerely thank everyone who shares their work, a lot of submissions explore similar topics and issues through a similar lens. These topics include: motherhood, womanhood, sexual assault/rape, and misogyny. While these are all important to bring into conversation and can definitely be discussed in submissions, So to Speak’s mission is to explore the intersections of feminism, identity, and culture. We wish to see pieces that go deeper, offer new perspectives, and flip what has been considered the “literary canon” on its head.

Some topics we would love to see more of include: positive perspectives on gender, especially from transgender and non-binary artists, toxic masculinity, mental health, disability/ableism, and sexuality. And to go along with our mission, we love submissions that explore different intersections, like race and motherhood, economic status and healthcare, gender and immigration, and more.

If you are submitting Visual Art: (1) All submissions must be in .jpg, .tif, or .png formats at 300 dpi; (2) Please label each file as LastName_Title; (3) You may submit up to 5 pieces of artwork in a single entry; (4) Please include the dimensions (if applicable), the medium (if applicable), and an artist statement with a brief description of the submission.

Nonfiction and Fiction pieces should not exceed 1,200 words. Please submit one document (doc., docx., or pdf. files) with a single prose piece. All prose submissions should be double-spaced with numbered pages. Poetry submissions should not exceed 8 pages. Please submit one document (doc., docx., or pdf. files) with up to 3 poems. Hybrid work should not exceed 10 pages. Please submit one document (doc., docx., or pdf. files) with a single hybrid piece. Reviews and Interviews should not exceed 1,500 words. Please submit one document (doc., docx., or pdf. files) with a single review or interview. 

Videos and Podcasts can be variable in length, but should not exceed 20 minutes. Please include a brief summary/artist statement, to be published alongside your video or podcast should we accept your submission. Closed captions are required for videos, and typed transcripts are required for podcasts. Please be sure you have permission to use whatever media (sound, music, visuals, etc.) you incorporate into your video or podcast submission. Video submission will be uploaded in our YouTube account should we accept your submission for publication. Per their guidelines, “YouTube does not set a minimum resolution but recommends a resolution of at least 1280x720 for video that has a 16:9 aspect ratio and a resolution of at least 640x480 for video that has a 4:3 aspect ratio.” We accept .mp3 and .wav file types for audio submissions and .mp4, .mov, and .mpg file types for video submissions. Please submit high-quality video and audio for consideration -- submissions with excessive background noise, issues with lighting or resolution, poor sound quality, etc. will not be selected for publication. If you have questions about your video or audio submission, please send us an email titled “Blog - Video/Audio Submission Question” prior to submitting. 

In addition to your submission, we’ll ask you to submit:

  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications.
  • A brief description of how you see your piece(s) (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

Krys Malcolm Belc will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

About Krys: Krys Malcolm Belc is the author of the memoir The Natural Mother of the Child (Counterpoint) and the flash nonfiction chapbook In Transit (The Cupboard Pamphlet.) His work has been featured in Granta, The Rumpus, Black Warrior Review, and elsewhere, and has been anthologized in Wigleaf Top 50, Best of the Net 2018, and in the anthology The Best of Brevity: Twenty Groundbreaking Years of Flash Nonfiction. Krys lives in Philadelphia with his partner and their three young children and works as an educator in a pediatric oncology clinic.

What Krys is Looking For: I have to admit that I read--and love--widely. What I love most in fiction is getting to be fully immersed in something else that is not my kitchen counter where I sit to read. Whether that's immersion in plot, character, form, or something entirely different, I want to be transported.

 ______________________________________

 In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose fiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All fiction submissions should be double-spaced with numbered pages.


  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 


  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 



You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets each with a single fiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Krys Malcolm Belc will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.  

About Krys: Krys Malcolm Belc is the author of the memoir The Natural Mother of the Child (Counterpoint) and the flash nonfiction chapbook In Transit (The Cupboard Pamphlet.) His work has been featured in Granta, The Rumpus, Black Warrior Review, and elsewhere, and has been anthologized in Wigleaf Top 50, Best of the Net 2018, and in the anthology The Best of Brevity: Twenty Groundbreaking Years of Flash Nonfiction. Krys lives in Philadelphia with his partner and their three young children and works as an educator in a pediatric oncology clinic.   

What Krys is Looking For: I have to admit that I read--and love--widely. What I love most in fiction is getting to be fully immersed in something else that is not my kitchen counter where I sit to read. Whether that's immersion in plot, character, form, or something entirely different, I want to be transported.

______________________________________

In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose fiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All fiction submissions should be double-spaced with numbered pages.


  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 


  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 



You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets each with a single fiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Alysia Sawchyn will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

About Alysia: Alysia Li Ying Sawchyn is a Senior Features Editor for The Rumpus and lives in the DC area. Her debut essay collection, A Fish Growing Lungs, was a finalist for The Believer Book Awards. She has been awarded fellowships to the Sewanee Writers' Conference and the Kenyon Review Writers' Workshop. You can often (too often) find her on Twitter.

What Alysia is Looking For: I love nonfiction that incorporates research, and I think of research as a wildly expansive term. There is so much "world" out there—secondary sources, yes, but what about buying a kilo of clementines and methodically peeling off the skin so that it remains whole again and again and again making sure that we've got the right language for the action? What about how the structure of a fairytale can help us to make sense of our messy experiences? I am looking for nonfiction that is paying close attention, regardless of where it fixes its gaze.

 ______________________________________

 In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose fiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All fiction submissions should be double-spaced with numbered pages.



  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 



  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 




You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets each with a single fiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Alysia Sawchyn will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

About Alysia: Alysia Li Ying Sawchyn is a Senior Features Editor for The Rumpus and lives in the DC area. Her debut essay collection, A Fish Growing Lungs, was a finalist for The Believer Book Awards. She has been awarded fellowships to the Sewanee Writers' Conference and the Kenyon Review Writers' Workshop. You can often (too often) find her on Twitter.

What Alysia is Looking For: I love nonfiction that incorporates research, and I think of research as a wildly expansive term. There is so much "world" out there—secondary sources, yes, but what about buying a kilo of clementines and methodically peeling off the skin so that it remains whole again and again and again making sure that we've got the right language for the action? What about how the structure of a fairytale can help us to make sense of our messy experiences? I am looking for nonfiction that is paying close attention, regardless of where it fixes its gaze.

 ______________________________________

 In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose fiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All fiction submissions should be double-spaced with numbered pages.




  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 




  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 




You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets each with a single fiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Susannah Nevison will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Poetry Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

Bio: Susannah Nevison is the author of three collections of poetry: Teratology, Lethal Theater, and, with writer Molly McCully Brown, the collaborative collection In the Field Between Us. She teachings at Sweet Briar College, where she is Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing. Originally from Massachusetts, she now lives in Virginia with her husband and daughter, and their two raucous dogs.

Poetry I’m looking for: I admire poetry that navigates risk: in voice, in sound, in form. I’m always taken with poems that push the envelope, that challenge my notion of what a poem can do or how a poem works. A poem that shows me something new and surprising, regardless of how it gets there, is a poem I’ll follow almost anywhere.

 ______________________________________

 In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

 

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with up to 5 poems. Your submission should not exceed 10 pages. 


  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 


  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 



 You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets of 10 poems), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Susannah Nevison will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Poetry Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies. 


Bio: Susannah Nevison is the author of three collections of poetry: Teratology, Lethal Theater, and, with writer Molly McCully Brown, the collaborative collection In the Field Between Us. She teachings at Sweet Briar College, where she is Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing. Originally from Massachusetts, she now lives in Virginia with her husband and daughter, and their two raucous dogs.

Poetry I’m looking for: I admire poetry that navigates risk: in voice, in sound, in form. I’m always taken with poems that push the envelope, that challenge my notion of what a poem can do or how a poem works. A poem that shows me something new and surprising, regardless of how it gets there, is a poem I’ll follow almost anywhere.

______________________________________

In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:


  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with up to 5 poems. Your submission should not exceed 10 pages. 


  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications. 


  • A brief statement about intersectional feminism. 



You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets of 10 poems), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.



Find more information on our Contest here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/contests/.

Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.

Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

Ghislaine Fremaux will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

About Ghislaine: Ghislaine (Ghi) Fremaux holds her MFA from the Pennsylvania State University, conferred in 2012. Her undergraduate studies began at Bard College at Simon’s Rock in 2003, and culminated in a BFA from Tufts University with SMFA, Boston, in 2007. She is Associate Professor of Art and Area Chair of Painting at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX. Current and nascent projects examine erotic perception, bioethics, aging, the gut-brain axis, and body image culture within intentional communities. In the service of these, Fremaux has collaborated with sociologists, gerontologists, and gastroenterologists. She has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally, with curators such as Omar Lopez-Chahoud, Carter E. Foster, Juana Williams, Leslie Moody Castro, and Katie Pfohl. Fremaux is presently working in collaboration with her partner, Tony Orlando (Lando) Valdez. Heavily collaged and physically immense, their work emphasizes the making and unmaking of the body through surgery, desire, and grief. They live and work in Lubbock, TX.

www.ghislainefremaux.com

@ghislainefremaux

What Ghislaine is Looking For: A compelling artwork is, to me, one that shows conviction–both in the conceptual intent and in the handling of the medium. I am interested in artworks with slow hands, that act on me incrementally, in both physical and intellectual ways. I appreciate works that enable me to know with parts of myself other than my brain, to know without recourse to language or reason.     One thing that all submissions must have is quality photos or renderings of the work. It is absolutely essential that the resolution, lighting, and framing of the piece is ready to print or publish online. It pains us to have to turn down what looks like incredible art due to image quality issues. If you need help photographing your art, here is a helpful article titled “How To Take Great Photos Of Your Artwork.”   We are open to any form of artwork. Past issues have included photography, sketches, paintings, digital media, and images of various installations and sculpture. In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • All submissions must be in jpg or tif formats at 300 dpi. Please label each file as LastName_Title.
  • You may submit up to 5 pieces of artwork in a single entry. Dimensions if applicable, the materials used as applicable, a brief description of the submission.
  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications.
  • A brief description of how you see your piece (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

You May Submit as many times as you like, so long as you pay a separate submission fee for each submission.                                                                                                                                                        Read previous online issues here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/online-issues/.                                                Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.  Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/.

Ghislaine Fremaux will be the judge for So to Speak's 2022 Fiction Contest. Winners will be awarded an honorarium, publication in our 2022 print issue, and two contributor copies.

About Ghislaine: Ghislaine (Ghi) Fremaux holds her MFA from the Pennsylvania State University, conferred in 2012. Her undergraduate studies began at Bard College at Simon’s Rock in 2003, and culminated in a BFA from Tufts University with SMFA, Boston, in 2007. She is Associate Professor of Art and Area Chair of Painting at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX. Current and nascent projects examine erotic perception, bioethics, aging, the gut-brain axis, and body image culture within intentional communities. In the service of these, Fremaux has collaborated with sociologists, gerontologists, and gastroenterologists. She has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally, with curators such as Omar Lopez-Chahoud, Carter E. Foster, Juana Williams, Leslie Moody Castro, and Katie Pfohl. Fremaux is presently working in collaboration with her partner, Tony Orlando (Lando) Valdez. Heavily collaged and physically immense, their work emphasizes the making and unmaking of the body through surgery, desire, and grief. They live and work in Lubbock, TX.

www.ghislainefremaux.com

@ghislainefremaux

What Ghislaine is Looking For: A compelling artwork is, to me, one that shows conviction–both in the conceptual intent and in the handling of the medium. I am interested in artworks with slow hands, that act on me incrementally, in both physical and intellectual ways. I appreciate works that enable me to know with parts of myself other than my brain, to know without recourse to language or reason.     One thing that all submissions must have is quality photos or renderings of the work. It is absolutely essential that the resolution, lighting, and framing of the piece is ready to print or publish online. It pains us to have to turn down what looks like incredible art due to image quality issues. If you need help photographing your art, here is a helpful article titled “How To Take Great Photos Of Your Artwork.”   We are open to any form of artwork. Past issues have included photography, sketches, paintings, digital media, and images of various installations and sculpture. In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:

  • All submissions must be in jpg or tif formats at 300 dpi. Please label each file as LastName_Title.
  • You may submit up to 5 pieces of artwork in a single entry. Dimensions if applicable, the materials used as applicable, a brief description of the submission.
  • A Cover Letter that includes your name, address, phone number, email address, how you heard about So to Speak, and brief bio describing your background as a writer or artist and any applicable awards or publications.
  • A brief description of how you see your piece (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

You May Submit as many times as you like, so long as you pay a separate submission fee for each submission.                                                                                                                                                        Read previous online issues here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/online-issues/.                                                Find more information on our Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.  Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/.

Because our University's offices are restricted due to COVID19, shipping may be slightly delayed; our team is still filling orders periodically! 

Our Spring 2020 Issue of So to Speak is available for purchase! The work in this issue was selected by judges Anita Felicelli (Fiction), Angela Pelster (Nonfiction), t'ai freedom ford (Poetry), and Sarah Irvin (Art).

From the issue's Letter from the Editor, written by Editor-in-Chief Kristen Greiner: The works within these pages turn preconceived notions on their heads. They push back against prejudice, dismantle oppressive power structures, and strive to create agency in situations where it often isn’t found. From familial bonds to significant others, relationship dynamics are challenged and explored in new and exciting ways. The implications of violence, the traumas it creates, and its impacts on society permeate the pieces in this issue. They can be hard to read and hear, but do not look away; it is important to shine a light on these matters. I am thankful that our contributors examine them in such thoughtful and compelling ways.

With your purchase, you will receive two back issues of So to Speak! We can't wait for you to enjoy.


So to Speak: feminist journal of language and art