Please note that  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 by us before, please wait at least one calendar year before submitting again. 

Please note we only accept previously unpublished work for all categories.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. 

We offer fee-free submissions for Black and indigenous writers. This will be available as a separate form when submissions are open. 

If you are not a Black or Indigenous writer and the submission fee presents a financial hardship, please email us at sotospeakjournal@gmail.com for a fee waiver.

For more information, please visit our submissions page.

So to Speak is seeking poetry from an intersectional feminist lens! Being an intersectional feminist  is a commitment to lifelong learning—an intellectually open  acknowledgement that systems, institutions, individual people, and places do not operate the same for every person.  We want to read poetry that excites us, that challenges our understanding of form and language. We want poetry that seeks and speaks its own embodied truth. Poetry can be a medium that invites the reader into the poet’s world, and we want to see new worlds, unexplored spaces, and strange landscapes. We’re interested in poems that dive deep into the varied images, identities, and idiosyncrasies you’re exploring. Right now, we’re particularly engaged with intersectional poetry that also explores themes of film and/or ecology. Some poets we adore are Donika Kelly, Oliver Baez Bendorf, Mary Oliver, Aracelis Girmay, Natasha Trethewey, and Claudia Rankine. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines    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 Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/. Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/.

So to Speak is seeking nonfiction with an intersectional feminist lens! For work that we admire, look to the work of Shze Hui Tjoa in our 2020 contest issue, Daniel Garcia in our 2019 contest issue, and Chelsea Hernandez in our 2019 online issue. Outside of our journal, we deeply admire the work of Melissa Febos, Jeannie Vanasco, T Kira Madden, Claudia Rankine, and Eula Biss. We also appreciate work that is distinctively voiced and that provides  moments of unexpected, pathos-laden humor. A wonderful example of that is Jessica Laurel Kane’s piece in our 2021 online issue. In the past, we have received many submissions on the topics of birth, breastfeeding, menstruation, and the male/female divide. We have also received several cis-centric submissions and work that ignores the perspectives of people who are not white, cisgender, heterosexual. While no content area is “off limits” for us, we ask that you submit work  that contributes something new to the conversation. We aim to be a space for voices occupying intersections that are not always heard. We deeply admire complex and sophisticated nonfiction that puts its subject under a tight lens. We appreciate the seamless integration of research as a means for diving deep into the personal. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines    In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:   

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose nonfiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All 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 nonfiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.    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/.

The So to Speak is seeking fiction with an intersectional feminist lens!  The fiction team is looking for short stories and flash fiction pieces that engage, challenge, and surprise us. We particularly love stories that tackle multiple intersections (of race,  class, ability, sexuality, and/or gender identity) and allow us to hear  points of view that are not often heard. We’re inspired by many great intersectional feminist authors doing important work—for instance, we’re currently in love with the stories  of Carmen Maria Machado, who uses the speculative and  the surreal to investigate the lives of queer women and the complex stories of their bodies. We also admire novelist Jesmyn Ward, who brilliantly captures complex intersections with beautiful, thoughtful prose and a distinct voice; Celeste Ng, who deftly explores intersections of class, race, and privilege; and R.O. Kwon, who crafts engaging narratives that interrogate the connections between race and religion.  In our time at So to Speak, the fiction team 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 point of view 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. While we appreciate that writers can write  outside their own experiences, we prefer to read stories that come from  an "Own Voices" perspective—in other words, we prefer stories that  feature characters who explore intersections and perspectives that the  writer themself is familiar with. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines    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 Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.     Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/.

$4.00

So to Speak is looking for art which is implicitly or explicitly intersectional. Both formally educated and self-taught artists are welcome to submit. We strongly believe that art should be accessible to everybody, and that artists do not have to have classical training to make great art. Artists of all backgrounds and experiences are encouraged to submit work of any visual medium (though we are not able to publish video or audio art in our print issue). We love art that challenges us to experience the world through the artist’s lens. Overtly political or activist themes are encouraged. We appreciate strong emotional content, and innovative techniques excite us. We often see submissions which interpret So to Speak’s mission to be solely (or mostly) about cisgender women. While we welcome work from the perspective of cis women, that which focuses on anatomy, birth, and/or menstruation as the cornerstones of womanhood will generally be a poor fit for our journal; such themes can be seen as excluding trans/nonbinary people. That said, we would love to see these topics addressed through a fresh and intersectional lens. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines 

  • 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.                                                                                                                                                                                             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/.

$4.00

So to Speak is seeking poetry from an intersectional feminist lens! Being an intersectional feminist  is a commitment to lifelong learning—an intellectually open acknowledgement that systems, institutions, individual people, and places do not operate the same for every person.  We want to read poetry that excites us, that challenges our understanding of form and language. We want poetry that seeks and speaks its own embodied truth. Poetry can be a medium that invites the reader into the poet’s world, and we want to see new worlds, unexplored spaces, and strange landscapes. We’re interested in poems that dive deep into the varied images, identities, and idiosyncrasies you’re exploring. Right now, we’re particularly engaged with intersectional poetry that also explores themes of film and/or ecology. Some poets we adore are Donika Kelly, Oliver Baez Bendorf, Mary Oliver, Aracelis Girmay, Natasha Trethewey, and Claudia Rankine.  All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines   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 Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.   Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

$4.00

So to Speak is seeking nonfiction with an intersectional feminist lens! For work that we admire, look to the work of Shze Hui Tjoa in our 2020 contest issue, Daniel Garcia in our 2019 contest issue, and Chelsea Hernandez in our 2019 online issue. Outside of our journal, we deeply admire the work of Melissa Febos, Jeannie Vanasco, T Kira Madden, Claudia Rankine, and Eula Biss. We also appreciate work that is distinctively voiced and that provides  moments of unexpected, pathos-laden humor. A wonderful example of that  is Jessica Laurel Kane’s piece in our 2021 online issue.  In the past, we have received many submissions on the topics of birth, breastfeeding, menstruation, and the male/female divide. We have also received several cis-centric submissions and work that ignores the  perspectives of people who are not white, cisgender, heterosexual. While no content area is “off limits” for us, we ask that you submit work  that contributes something new to the conversation. We aim to be a space for voices occupying intersections that are not always heard. We deeply admire complex and sophisticated nonfiction that puts its subject under a tight lens. We appreciate the seamless integration of research as a means for diving deep into the personal. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines    In your submission, please upload and enter the following information:     

  • A single doc., docx., or pdf. file with a single prose nonfiction piece. Your submission should not exceed 4,000 words. All 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 nonfiction piece), so long as you pay the submission fee each time.    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/

$4.00

The So to Speak is seeking fiction with an intersectional feminist lens!  The fiction team is looking for short stories and flash fiction pieces that engage, challenge, and surprise us. We particularly love stories that tackle multiple intersections (of race,  class, ability, sexuality, and/or gender identity) and allow us to hear  points of view that are not often heard. We’re inspired by many great intersectional feminist authors doing important work—for instance, we’re currently in love with the stories  of Carmen Maria Machado, who uses the speculative and  the surreal to investigate the lives of queer women and the complex stories of their bodies. We also admire novelist Jesmyn Ward, who brilliantly captures complex intersections with beautiful, thoughtful prose and a distinct voice; Celeste Ng, who deftly explores intersections of class, race, and privilege; and R.O. Kwon, who crafts engaging narratives that interrogate the connections between race and religion.  In our time at So to Speak, the fiction team 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 point of view 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. While we appreciate that writers can write  outside their own experiences, we prefer to read stories that come from  an "Own Voices" perspective—in other words, we prefer stories that  feature characters who explore intersections and perspectives that the  writer themself is familiar with. All contributors will receive a $100 prize. Formal Guidelines   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 Submission Guidelines here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/guidelines/.    Find more information on our Mission Statement here: http://sotospeakjournal.org/about-so-to-speak/

$4.00

An all-new collection of intersectional fiction, poetry, CNF, and visual art! 

Our Spring 2024 Issue of So to Speak is available for purchase as a digital PDF for $4!

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 $5! (We'll even throw a back issue or two in with your order, free of charge.) 

So to Speak: intersectionality + language + art