The Publishing Life: Journal Submission Journal 6/9/20 The Shrunken Summer Reading Window

Journal Submission Journal 6/9/20
The Shrunken Summer Reading Window

What a year. My goodness. But you can read about current events, well, pretty much everywhere. We're here for a distraction from all that. So, I hope everyone read "Poems to Quarantine With: National Poetry Month in a Time of Pandemic".

For April, instead of producing a ton of poems for "NaPoWriMo", or submitting a lot perhaps in another gesture at the month's designation, I read my pants off, and delved the trenches of Youtube for all sorts of poetry videos for my daily "Activity Packs" with prompts, a handful of videos, 3 poems from anytime, and 3 poems published in the last couple years. I collected the 90 poems published within the last couple years into the aforementioned anthology and incidentally, if you're looking to find new journals, that's an invaluable resource now because I linked the journals at the end, and made sure not to use the same journal twice (making one exception for a Ray Gonzales poem in Poetry Magazine). A personal favorite surprise was "Don't Tell Me to Write More Love Poems" by Jiordan Castle from the legit journal Taco Bell Quarterly.

Sooooo, because of that and a couple other large time sinks I didn't submit a ton during April or May. Well, some. But I didn't have time to write a JSJ, so here we are, in June, and I have a ton to say, but yet more over my head so it's time to get on with it. There will be another issue of JSJ in a few weeks with more editorial content. If you are stressing about writing a cover letter, don't. But also, just use one of the cover letter templates from this past Journal Submission Journal.

Journals That Read During the Summer

Lists are where it's at, aren't they? But there are already so many of them, I feel like I'm just adding to the pile, so here are a bunch of links for your own 'diggin the crates', as there are far more journals that read during the summer than the few I'll be highlighting. But first, there's last year's summer journal post which is all still current. That's a perfect place to start. Read that then come back.

Call for Submissions June 1, 2019: Beat Summer Submission Blues with 9 Publications Opening for Creative Writing Submissions

Other Lists
Photo by Sebastian Herrmann on Unsplash

Entropy Mag's list of where to submit is a great resource and while this is the list for June/July/August, there' s a good amount of places that have rolling deadlines or aren't until sometime in the summer.
Derek Annis' Submission Calendar. He has a long list of journals with rolling submissions and a calendar with journal openings linked in the calendar (not closing, when they start reading). Very useful resource.
Zebulon's Flash Fiction Submission Guide. Yeah, I'll admit I referenced this, I put a lot of work into it, and though it's almost 5 years old and needs an update, there are a lot of smaller and lesser known journals I reminded myself with using this guide.
Duotrope. Always. A great search and browse function.
Submittable Discover Tab. Good for deadlines. There are a few June deadlines and definitely some end of the month/July 1st ones to keep your eye on.
Poets & Writers Contest Calendar. If you've got a little extra scratch and want to enter some contests this is one of the best places to go. 
New Pages Calls for submissions. New Pages is a tremendous resource, they have lots of supplemental information about hundreds of journals including lit mag reviews, which you don't see too many places.


8 Poems: This monthly online poetry journal publishes 8 poems each issue, and they are pretty eclectic so be sure to so read at least a couple issues in your research. I really enjoyed, from the newest issue, the poem "The Burning of Buffalo" by Justin Karcher, which ends: "for teenage gardeners / ‪to plant lit cigarettes // ‪in the floorboards / ‪so fire-flowers / ‪can bloom". Send 1-2 poems by email.

Santa Clara Review: This is the online and print journal from Santa Clara University is in its 150th year. It leans to the more accessible side, and they publish a lot of great stuff. Read a bunch before you submit, of course, and luckily they now publish a fair amount online in addition to their print edition, making your research much easier. Their submissions are fee-free, however, while they accept submissions during the summer, it isn't clear if they read them or not. Either way, great journal.

OrcaThis online fiction journal publishes three times a year, one of which is dedicated to speculative literary fiction. They accept 100 fee-free submissions each month as well as $3 submissions, so if you are tight on money be sure to check them early in the month. They're still not at their limit as of posting, but they could close at any time. If money's not tight, consider shooting them the $3. Every little bit helps keep lit magazines afloat. Submit 1 story of up to 8000 words, or 3 flash fictions under 1000 words.

Trouvaille Review is a daily journal of creative writing that occasionally will publish more than one piece by the same author in a day, but generally there's just the one. They are a more approachable journal and a good one for people new to the submission process because they need more content than periodicals. They don't publish any old thing, they still reject far more pieces than they accept, but compared to some journals that accept 2-.1% of submissions, if your craft is solid, you have a better chance. Read at least a week's worth of their pieces before submitting to make your chances better. They take email submissions, so no fee, submit 3-10 poems, and 1-3 pieces of fiction or non fiction. They also respond LIGHTNING fast. Like, under 24 hours fast.

Pacifica Literary Review is a print and online journal from Seattle that has been publishing since 2012. I'm a big fan of this journal, they are pretty eclectic and have a good amount of writing online for researching. I included one of their poems, "Blur" by James Croal Jackson, in the National Poetry Month Activity Packs/Poems to Quarantine With anthology. Submissions cost $3 for three poems, one piece of prose under 5000 words, or three pieces of flash fiction/sudden fiction of up to 1000 words.

Words and Whispers is a fledgling online journal accepting submissions for their inaugural issue. They don't give you much to go on, so your guess is as good as mine as to what their tastes are. But hey, they accept email, no-fee submissions so might as well give them a shot, right? You might be in on the historic first issue of an amazing journal. It may disappear after a couple years too, I've seen both. I think they'll do well, though. They accept submissions year round, 1-4 poems or 1-3 pieces of flash fiction under 1000 words.

from my personal collection
Straylight: This is the literary magazine from University of University-Parkside which is both print and online. Notably they DO NOT ACCEPT SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS. So don't send work that you've sent them to any other journals. While they do publish fiction, nonfiction, novellas, comics and more at different times of the year, they are only open to poetry right now in June. They definitely aren't afraid of prose poetry, and you can submit to either the online or print journal. They're a great journal that leans a little toward the accessible side of writing, but they do print a wide variety.

Threepenny Review is a legendary journal both for the quality of their work and the speed of their responses/reliability of rejection. Don't be daunted by their minuscule acceptance rate that has to be under .1%, but revel in the lotto-ticket nature of that submission. Like Straylight, they emphatically DO NO ACCEPT SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS. But they publish tons of heavy-hitters in the literary world, and with their lightning fast responses (just a touch slower than Trouvaille Review), it's definitely worth sending them your favorite poems that aren't already submitted elsewhere.

Brilliant Flash Fiction is a quarterly online journal of flash fiction. Very well-known in the Flash Fiction world, Brilliant Flash Fiction publishes an eclectic bunch of flash fiction, give their newest issue a read and see if it might be a place for your flash. Word limit is 1000 words. Email submissions so no-fees, submit only twice per quarter.

A couple summer contests

Boulevard Poetry Contest for Emerging Poets 
Requirements: The poet must have "not yet published a book of poetry with a nationally distributed press." Deadline June 14, 2020. Cost: $16 for up to 3 poems (includes a subscription to Boulevard). Prize $1000.
This is one of those contests I highly recommend because it includes a subscription to Boulevard. It's a great journal and a wonderful opportunity. But, don't send better poems than I'm sending, I want to win this before I get a first collection.

Lascaux Review's Flash Fiction Contest
Requirement: Under 1000 words. Deadline June 31, 2020. Cost: $15. Prize: You actually get a bronze medallion! And $1000, or whatever. But it totally reminds me of a Newbery Medal.


Check out the lists, get your work out there! I'd love to hear other journals you fine folks have found recently, or are your favorites too. And if this post or my blog in general has been helpful, I'd really appreciate any donations you might be able to spare. Submission fees can add up for me too.