We are currently open for submissions.

So to Speak is open for submissions to our Summer 2019 Online Issue until the end of the day on April 18, 2019. 

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. 

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES 

So to Speak Journal is looking for poetry which is (implicitly or explicitly) intersectionally feminist. Below are some poets that we love and why we love their work: 

Maggie Nelson combines research, genre-bending poetry in another kind of intersection while examining the self and identity in respects to her place within the world and LGBTQ communities.

Ada Limon’s work addresses intersections of womanhood, ethnicity, and the complications of building identity in poetry that is often autobiographical tinged with reproach for societal expectations.

Natasha Tretheway dwells in spaces that allow her to balance many intersections within her work—research, race, the domestic work of women—and creates thought-provoking poems that elevate lost voices.

We receive a lot of poems about menstruation and motherhood that can all start to blend together when you read so many submissions; this typically means we don’t hold onto those unless they are adding something new to the topic/conversation in a fresh way. Other topics this happens with can include coming out stories, revisionist myths that just retell the story that’s already well established, and discussions of the generalized negative versions of men—the politicized listing of the crimes of men. Feel free to submit poetry on these topics, but be sure to ask your poems: “What is this adding to the conversation? What new perspective is here?” We want to read your joy and your trauma, but we also want to learn something or see something in a new way while we do so.

We love work from poets in the LGBTQIAP+ community. We would love to see more work from immigrants and children of immigrants that celebrate the cultures they represent. There is also often a lack of poetry by poets who are in multiple marginalized groups that talk about those experiences, especially the positive and joyful parts of existence. Of course, we also welcome poetry from people of multiple intersections that interrogates, exposes, and challenges societal norms, the political climate, or racism/misogyny/ableism/etc. Seeing more implicitly intersectional work that embraces emotion and feeling, rather than using the poem as an agenda for politicization would be truly wonderful for us as well. Poetry is pain and pleasure in equal parts, so more voices, and more ideas that need a platform like ours are the things we want to see.


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 description of how you see your piece (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

Please only submit once. Additional submissions beyond your first one will not be considered for publication. 

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/

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES
So to Speak is looking for short stories and flash fiction pieces that engage, challenge, and surprise us. We are dedicated to So to Speak’s intersectional feminist mission, and we prefer to read works that align (explicitly or implicitly) with that mission. We particularly love stories that tackle multiple intersections and allow us to hear points of view that are not often heard.

We’re inspired by many great feminist authors doing important work—for instance, we love the stories of Carmen Maria Machado, who uses the speculative and the surreal to investigate the lives of women and the complex stories of their bodies. We also admire novelist Tayari Jones, who brilliantly captures complex intersections with beautiful, thoughtful prose and a distinct voice; and Gillian Flynn, who unflinchingly examines the darkness and violence of her female characters in fresh and captivating ways.

So to Speak has seen many stories that reflect the perspective of white, cisgender, heterosexual women. While this perspective is not necessarily a bad one, it is a perspective that is often featured in fiction. We would love to see more works that challenge this hegemony and feature voices and stories that are not typically heard.

What we most want to read are stories that approach intersectional feminism in new and exciting ways, that add to and further the conversation. We want stories that see tried-and-true topics—motherhood, coming of age, assault—in new ways, and stories that see fresh topics—immigration, sexuality, disability—in new ways, too.

In short, we’re looking for work that both engages with So to Speak’s intersectional feminist mission and engages us on a craft level. What happens in that space is up to you. Thank you for submitting! We’re so excited to see what you have to show us.


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 description of how you see your piece (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

 Please only submit once. Additional submissions beyond your first one will not be considered for publication. 


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/

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES 

To find work that we admire, look to the work of Elizabeth Brina in our 2018 Contest Issue. Her essay blends a collective narrative with the individual story of her parents. Outside of our journal, we love the world of Elissa Washuta, a writer whose work encompasses intergenerational ties and the trauma we carry in our lineage. We love experimental forms, and blended essays that look to the smallness to get at the largeness of theme and their respective topics.

While we love to read about a spread of topics, we often receive multiple submissions which explore the same topics in similar angles over and over again. Some of these are: birth, breastfeeding, sexual assault, rants against [insert topic here], and on the male/female divide. While it is perfectly okay to include these topics in a piece about something bigger, we hope that the scope of your nonfiction work will approach these topics from new angles, and offer new perspectives and ideas on the topic in a literary lens.

Areas where we don’t receive enough content, that we would LOVE to read about in fresh and effective ways are: toxic masculinity, mental health, and positive perspectives on sexuality. We also love work that occupies multiple intersections (addresses race and gender, or perhaps Socioeconomic Status and incarceration, or sexual identity and immigration or… you get it).

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

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with up one nonfiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All submission 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 description of how you see your piece (implicitly or explicitly) fitting into our intersectional feminist mission.

  Please only submit once. Additional submissions beyond your first one will not be considered for publication.

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/

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES
So to Speak Journal is looking for art which is implicitly or explicitly intersectionally feminist. Whether you are a classically trained painter, sculptor, photographer; graphic designer, digital artist; or a self taught artist you are welcome and encouraged to submit. Visual art should be accessible to all people and the work of those who have been historically marginalized must be upheld in the canon—this is essential So to Speak’s mission. There are numerous artists we love, but there are a few artists whose work we’d like to highlight as work that embodies So to Speak’s mission as example:

Sculptor Leilah Babirye crafts incredible and innovative structures out of reclaimed objects—welding, weaving, whittling, and assembling pieces which address and challenge tradition, cultural identity, gender, and power structures.

Instagram digital illustrator and typographer, Hello My Name is Wednesday is an incredible queer activist. Their work is a visual delight, which captures an unbreakably hopeful and resilient spirit.

Kehinde Wiley creates highly naturalistic portraits with ornate floral backdrops which often parallel historical portraits in modern settings. His work purposefully disrupts the tropes of traditional portrait painting and examine critically the intersections of gender and race.

We often see submissions which interpret So to Speak’s mission to be solely about the cis-woman’s body. This interoperation leaves out the experiences and work of so many artists. We would love more submissions that examine multiple intersections of identity or go beyond acknowledging the commodification of cis-women’s bodies—or if this is what the art is focused on, to go beyond the generalizations around these ideas. We’d love to see more work which is explicitly activist in tone or subject. We’d love to see more visual art in a diversity of mediums.

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. You may enter multiple submissions (ex: 2 submission packets of 5 art pieces), so long as you pay the submission fee each time. 
  • 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.

 Please only submit once. Additional submissions beyond your first one will not be considered for publication. 


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/

Our 2018 Issue of So to Speak is available for purchase! The work in this issue was selected by judges Sandy Lowe (Fiction), Jeannie Vanasco (Nonfiction), Eileen Myles (Poetry), and Jessica Kallista (Art). The issue features some of the best work that So to Speak has published to date, and we are thrilled to provide a platform for their voices. 

Table of Contents: 

  • Fiction: Marlene Olin 
  • Fiction: C.R. Resetarits
  • Fiction: Sarah Harshbarger
  • Nonfiction: Elizabeth Brina
  • Nonfiction: Amanda Fields
  • Visual Art: Samanta Tello
  • Poetry: Marina Weiss
  • Poetry: Emily Carr

The issue was designed by Doug Luman, and features black and white interesection lines on the cover. The cost is $9. Please fill in the shipping information on the following pages to complete your order. You may also opt to purchase a back issue for half-price ($4). 

**If you are interested in ordering a journal and you live outside of the US, please see our International Purchase form.**

Before you go: we ask that you please consider donating whatever you can afford to Ayuda, an organization that "provides legal, social, and language services to help vulnerable immigrants in our neighborhoods access justice and transform their lives." So to Speak views the work that Ayuda is doing as vital to our greater Washington D.C. community as well as vital to the greater discussion of how to support, protect, and welcome immigrants in the United States of America. We appreciate whatever support you can show to this wonderful organization. You can donate online or by mail. Learn more here: https://ayuda.com/get-involved/ways-to-donate/

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.
So to Speak: feminist journal of language and art