Where to Submit: Black History Month



Whether you’re submitting now or focusing on reading, check out these awesome publications that promote artists of color. And, of course, happy Black History Month!

aaduna gallery

Smooth Operator” Josh Byer 2017

Aaduna seeks emerging writers and visual artists whose work gravitates towards the experimental and innovative. At the core of their publication is a mission to provide a publication venue for artists of color, giving preference to those traditionally denied access to publication (though they are open to receiving all work that addresses multicultural issues with dignity and thoughtfulness). They have subscribers in over 60 countries, so if you’re accepted, people in over 60 countries will have access to your work. Pretty cool. Read about how to submit to Aaduna here by March 14th for their Summer issue.


Polychrome Ink is a biannual literary magazine that celebrates diversity in literature by seeking under-represented voices and narratives, focusing on authors and poets who do not embody the majority of the publishing industry (White-Cis-Neurotypical-Abled-Heterosexuals). Oh, and they pay! But more than that, what I appreciate about this magazine is their mission, their aesthetic, and the spectrum of the work published. I don’t know, it’s like if you try and normalize diversity, you end up with really interesting and beautiful work, rather than the same old tired cliche writing. Send them your poems, short stories, short non-fiction, and essays here.

Layout 1The African American Review is a scholarly journal of poetry, fiction, book reviews, essays on African American literature, theater, film, the visual arts, and culture. AAR has featured renowned writers Trudier Harris, Arnold Rampersad, Hortense Spillers, Amiri Baraka, Rita Dove, Charles Johnson, and Toni Morrison. They have serious editors, so send them your pore polished work. Submit here.


Founded in 1975, Obsidian supports contemporary poetry, fiction, drama, performance, and visual and media art of Africans globally. The journal has been recognized by the National Endowment of the Arts as one of the premier journals dedicated to Africa and African Diaspora Literatures. Obsidian is published biannually in print and online. Submissions re-open September 15th, so if you need a minute to polish up some things, this would be a good thing to mark on your calendar.

callalooCallaloo is devoted to publishing work, both creative and critical, of African Americans and peoples throughout the diaspora. They publish an issue five times a year (and if that’s not impressive enough, check out this amazing 2015 cover art by Amy Sherald, the artist who painted Michelle Obama’s official portrait). Submit all manuscripts of poetry, fiction, scholarly articles, book reviews, interviews, nonfiction essays, and visual art.

Where to submit: February 2018


Love is in the air, or so they say. I figure if people are going to have a little more love in their hearts this month, then it’s a good time as any to submit. Perhaps an editor who’s been looking for poetry in all the wrong places will fall in love with my work. Or maybe they hate Valentine’s day and the whole damn month surrounding it and they’ll be more open to what I’ve been writing lately, which err… is not exactly what you’d call mushy (blame it on petty Mercury or an even pettier political climate and then sue me). Either way, I’ve been bitten by the submitting bug. And since I’m saving up for an extra big box of chocolates for myself this month, I’ve gone out of my way to find journals that have no submission fees. So here’s my advice to you, Valentine. Have a cheap date with whatever you’ve been working on and treat yourself to some visions of grandeur. The stakes are low, and you can always ghost a piece if it doesn’t work out. Just be sure not to lead other journals on if you’re simultaneously submitting… if your writing finds a loving home somewhere else let the others know right away… it’s just good etiquette. Xoxo and happy writing.


Ninth Letter is a collaborative arts and literary project from the Creative Writing Program and School of Art & Design at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The writing is exceptional and is complemented by cutting-edge graphic design. The journal has published work selected for Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize, Best American Short Stories, Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and the list goes on. I was immediately drawn to the curating success of some amazing 3-D art by Monique Marchwiany that seemed to perfectly compliment the words on the page, and the fact that they published one of my favorite fiction writers, Colin Winnette. Submit fiction, non-fiction, and poetry here by February 28th.


Lettuce Please you

Dream Pop Journal is a literary quarterly that publishes experimental, non-narrative writing with a penchant for the transcendental. They seek to make space for non-narrative, linguistically inventive writing. The kind of writer they want represented in their journal is a “lyric memoirist, a cross-genre experimenter, or a poet who dreams in made-up languages.” I know that includes at least a few of you, friends. Even though they’re a newer journal, when I read through the work they’d chosen for issue 3, there were definite gems. This is the kind of nice thing your writing deserves. Read about how to submit prose, poetry, and visual art here.

The Wanderer was launched in April 2016 as the weekly poetry feature of Harlot Magazine. In addition to paying their writers ($25 upon publication), they invite their readers to further support artists through their Patreon campaign. While I was reading dozens of literary journal mission statements, I was always appalled to read that a magazine wasn’t “looking for political work.” Freak that. The Wanderer openly condemns fascists, racists, trolls, “and the white supremacist capitalist patriarchy in general.” Support them. Submit to them. Share them. And check out the beautiful work they have this month from one of my favorite poets, Fisayo Adeyeye.


Pacifica Literary Review publishes poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction from emerging and established writers. The writing is definitely high quality, and until recently I lacked the confidence to even think about submitting work here. But they claim sonnets and memes will receive equal consideration (finally), and so long as the heart is in the work, it stands a chance. Like most journals with a rep, they do not want cliche writing. They do not want to read about your penis. Other than that, if you have an interesting story that is ready, really ready, send it here (and if you are writing about your penis, please stop.) If you are thinking about sending the piece everyone in workshop struggled to comment on or stay awake through, probably don’t. If you have a piece that everyone keeps telling you to clean up and send off, get that word-Windex and scrub till it squeaks.

Whether you’re a lover or a fighter, happy Valentine’s Day, Writer.