100 Submissions in 100 Days – #17 Bracken

The process of finding work to fit into the theme of a publication is the hardest part of all of this right now. On the home page of Bracken, it says it is “A new market for lyrical fiction and poetry, inspired by the wood and what lies in its shadows.” O-kay. Sounds lovely. It also sounds deeply intimidating because I don’t have poems that I would describe this way.

From their About page:

Bracken is an open-minded, quarterly magazine with a preference for magic realism.

Inspired by old world storytelling with roots in the wood’s shadows, we embrace both the literary and the fantastic—an open scope exploring the Other’s consciousness in the present day.

From their Submit page:

Bracken supports diversity in speculative fiction and welcomes stories by and about individuals of all ages, classes, disabilities, ethnicities, genders, nationalities, races, religions, and sexual orientations.

Bracken purchases first worldwide English-language serial and electronic rights. Each story or poem we acquire will be published on brackenmagazine.com in an electronic quarterly issue. We may also excerpt stories and poems for promotional purposes. The author retains all other rights.

Simultaneous submissions are considered. We just ask that you let us know if your piece was accepted elsewhere.

Send all submissions in the body of an email to subs AT brackenmagazine.com.


We accept most styles of poetry, although we are somewhat biased toward the lyrical over the narrative. Rhymed verse is not discouraged, but we know how difficult it is to do well.

Send us poems that will have us feel the wood’s presences, material and immaterial, known but to be seen anew, or unknown and to be revealed. We want poems that will slip in under the skin, grasp us by the throat, and change the light in the room.


up to 4 poems per submission
no longer than 100 lines (we prefer shorter pieces)
original and unpublished
no multiple submissions

subject line: Poetry Sub “<A poem title>”
your name and contact information
titles of your poems
a bit about yourself, including brief publication history
your poems in the body of the email; no attachments
Payment: we pay $15/poem

Sadly, my best and most favorite poem that TOTALLY fits into the theme of this magazine is one that is published in my most recent charity poetry book that was done via Swimming with Elephants Publications so I could not include it in this submission. I don’t really have much “forest” or “woods” based poetry or even anything nearly related like the poems in the online samples.

I did the best I could with what I had and submitted the four poems that I was going to send in for a contest but I decided not to submit to anything that has a fee. Even though I like the poems I sent, I am not confident about this submission. I’ll be crossing my fingers anyway.

Are you submitting your work to journals and magazines? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


100 Submissions in 100 Days – #16 Another Chicago Magazine (ACM)

The process of this submitting thing is slow sometimes. Between reading the criteria, then any sample work that’s available online, then going through my work to find appropriate pieces… it takes a bit of time!

Another thing that has taken time is organizing the information I have about WHERE to submit. I’ve merged the original doc with the information Trish Hopkinson got from Entropy to make a new Google doc titled “SUBMIT POETRY FOR FREE” to work from. Today’s submission is from the new list: Another Chicago Magazine.

They don’t have an “about” page so here is the information from the submissions page:

Another Chicago Magazine is a literary magazine that publishes work by both new and established writers. ACM does not accept hard copy submissions.

What Are We Looking For?
We look for nonfiction, fiction, and poetry that goes beyond the artistic and academic to include and address the larger world.

What Do We Publish?
Poetry (No more than 5 poems per submission; please include in the same file.)
Fiction (7,500 words or less)
Nonfiction (25-page limit)
What Do We Not Want?
At this time we are not publishing et al., art, audio/video, interviews, or book reviews. Please contact ACM if you have any inquiries about this.

They use Submittable to accept entries. Here is some additional information from their Submittable page:

(Yes, we have re-opened to submissions for the fall of 2016. And yes, that does begin with a month of fee-free submitting, beginning today, September 13th and going until Wednesday, October 12th.)


Submit only one piece at time. We will respond to it as quickly as we can, and as soon as we do, you’re free to submit again. Unless submissions are closed. Closed off to you like so many of the better things in life — is what I’d say if I were some blue-blooded aristocrat getting my jollies by ragging on the hoi polloi.

Yes, you can submit your work here and elsewhere simultaneously, but please let us know your work has then been accepted for publication as soon as possible. We’d do the same for you, possibly — one is free to speculate, though.

No previously published work, thank you.

The stipulation of “no previously submitted work” limits me since most of the poems I *really* like, I put in my two perfect-bound chapbooks that are available on Amazon. Pressing on! (Pun fully intended.)

They do have a “magazine” link which gives a peek into the zine, but not the full issue online. I didn’t see any actual examples of the work they accept… so… that meant that I was shooting in the dark on this submission. Not the best practice, but I wanted to get in while the getting was free (The deadline for free submissions is October 12,2016).

I did find five poems to submit to them. I hope they fit into the theme of the zine. Wish me luck!

Are you submitting your work to journals and magazines? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


100 Submissions in 100 Days – #15 Notre Dame Review

Using my edited copy of the public Google doc Journals That Pay FOR POEMS and I am down to today’s submission to Notre Dame Review

From their about page:

The Notre Dame Review is an independent, non-commercial magazine of contemporary American and international fiction, poetry, criticism, and art. Our goal is to present a panoramic view of contemporary art and literature—no one style is advocated over another. We are especially interested in work that takes on big issues by making the invisible seen, that gives voice to the voiceless—work that gives message form through aesthetic experience.

There’s more,  but I will let you read it for yourselves. :-)

From their submissions guidelines:

Excellence is our sole criteria for selection, although we are especially interested in fiction and poetry that take on big issues.

The best way for writers to get a feel for the types of literature that we publish is to read back issues.

We only read submissions from September through November and from January through March. Submissions sent during summer months will be returned unread. We only accept electronic submissions through our Submittable page.

A small gratuity is paid after publication.

Thankfully, they have an issue online so I could look at examples of what they usually accept. I only looked at the current one since the archived issues page is to buy the print version and I don’t have time for that right now.

Are you submitting your work to journals and magazines? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


100 Submissions in 100 Days – #14 Ellipsis

I’m back to using my edited copy of the public Google doc Journals That Pay FOR POEMS and today I am looking at Ellipsis. The original document had a bad link so I did a Google search to see if they were even still in print. Found that they had a Facebook page that hadn’t been updated since January of this year and the FB page had the same bad link. So, I messaged them on Facebook to see if they were even still in existence. Got a message back with a new link and went to work.

They don’t have an “about” page per se, but they did have this blurb on the main page:

ellipsis is a literature and art journal published each April by the students of  Westminster College in Salt Lake City (since 1965).

On the same page is does mention this about their submissions:

ellipsis accepts submissions of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and drama August 1 through November 1.  We accept submissions in visual art until January 1.

When I clicked the Submit link on the top menu bar, this is what I found:

We accept English language submissions in poetry, short fiction, creative non-fiction, drama, and art. Our submission period is August 1 through November 1 for poetry, short fiction, drama, and creative non-fiction. We accept art submissions from August 1 through January 1. Please read the guidelines for each genre below.

Please include a cover letter with a brief contributor’s note with the following: your address, telephone number, and email address.

Simultaneous submissions are welcome but withdraw your submission immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.

We pay our contributors $10 for each poetry or art piece and $50 for each prose piece, plus two free copies of the issue.

Submissions cannot be accepted via email.

There was not a link to any online samples of the work they have previously accepted so I basically was taking a shot in the dark with the five poems I sent. Keeping my fingers crossed nonetheless.

Are you submitting your work to journals and magazines? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


100 Submissions in 100 Days – #2 AGNI

I am going down the list from the public Google document Journals That Pay FOR POEMS. Yesterday’s post was A Public Space, where I did TWO submissions of a total of FIVE poems but I am only counting it as ONE submission.

Today’s submission will be to AGNI. AGNI was founded in 1972 at Antioch College by undergraduate Askold Melnyczuk, a then-aspiring (now accomplished) writer with his own vision of a vehicle for alternative news, visual arts, and literature. Melnyczuk was interested in creating a magazine that would feature a new generation of writers and visual artists. AGNI publishes poetry, short fiction, and essays.

From their guidelines page is some good news for those accepted:

Thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, every writer AGNI publishes in 2015, whether in print or online, will receive double our old standard rates. AGNI now pays $20 per page for prose and $40 per page for poetry, with a $300 maximum. We believe writers should be paid as well as possible, and we’re proud to have been paying equally for print and web publication since the advent of AGNI Online in 2003.

To submit, you have to create a profile. The submission guidelines are linked on the profile creation page. I couldn’t find where it gave an approximate time for them to let people know if the work had been accepted or not. I also didn’t see any specification on what type of file they preferred to receive. In the Google document linked above, it lists the average response time as 70 days so I will add that to my submissions reply reminder calendar.

The submission fee is listed as zero on the public Google document Journals That Pay FOR POEMS, but you can’t read full prior issues online. You have to order the print magazine issue to see the full content, but they do have a few titles available to read online. Just like with my prior submission, I read the items found online.

From the items they have on their online magazine, the overall style feels intellectual and sometimes abstract. It also seems that they favor shorter poems. I am going to send a three of my best poems (different than the ones submitted to A Public Space) and see what happens. Wish me luck! ^_^

Are you submitting your work? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!



100 Submissions in 100 Days – #1 A Public Space

The first submission I will do is to A Public Space.

A Public Space is an independent magazine of literature and culture founded in 2006. Most of the categories are accepting submissions until April 2017, but there are a couple that end soon so be sure to check these out ASAP. Their submission guidelines can be found on the About page (you’ll have to scroll down to see the section).

From the first paragraph of the guidelines:

We accept unsolicited submissions from September 15–April 15, and recommend reading an issue or two before you submit your work—subscribe today or explore the online archive. The best way to submit is through Submittable: it’s easy to use, saves time and paper and postage, and enables you to keep track of your submission.

It is pretty much standard advice to read the journal you are submitting to so that you know what their “sound” or “vibe” is and can submit work that compliments it. The reading is the part that makes submitting take so long for me. If not for that sage bit of instruction, I could just pick random files from my archive and send away willy-nilly. This is NOT a good way to do it! :-P

Now be advised that for this particular publication they DO NOT let you read full prior issues online if you are not a subscriber to their magazine. There are a few items listed as “Public Access”, but most of the entries are just the first paragraph. So, even though the submission fee is listed as zero on the Journals that PAY FOR POEMS  public Google document, if you actually want to read the ALL content, it will cost the price of a subscription. I personally only read the public access content since my life does not allow for much recreational reading these days.

I submitted one poem to one category and four poems in another. Because they are a quarterly journal, the response time can be upwards of four months. Wish me luck! ^_^

Are you submitting your work? What has your experience been so far? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


100 Rejections in 100 Days

The day after tomorrow there will only be 100 days left in 2016. I can’t even remember where I read about having a goal of 100 rejections in a year. With the year winding down I guess that means I will have to go for 100 rejections in 100 days.

I have THOUSANDS of poems if one counts haiku/senryu/couplets and the like. Heck, even NOT counting the micro-poetry, I have HUNDREDS of poems. So the hard part will be to decide WHICH poems to submit WHERE.

Because I am on a budget, I will have to find 100 literary mags that DON’T charge a submission fee. This public Google Doc has 172 lit mags that pay for poetry and a lot of them are free submissions.

Now, I could have titled this “100 SUBMISSIONS in 100 Days,” but the idea is that the ratio of acceptance is low so it’s best to just assume that they all are going to be rejected and then it is slightly less heartbreaking to get the “no” letters. That is the theory anyway. We’ll see how it actually goes.

Wish me luck and stay tuned for updates as I submit and get replies! ^_^




On things that should not be… (thoughts and a poem)


First, read this article: http://therumpus.net/2012/08/explicit-violence/

Once you have read it then the rest of this post will be even clearer… 

This: “I didn’t tell anyone. In fact, later that year? I went home with him again. On purpose.” was the part that for the first time in nine years opened the “I’m not alone” door in my soul… it also made me realize that my nine years of NOT telling my story have robbed so many people of that moment they may have needed. I *still* don’t feel strong enough to speak about it from a stage, but I will whisper it like right now… hope whoever needs to know will get this message in a bottle. ♥


she only has one infant memory of it
a shout
walk away
parental disagreement
diaper baby fear and tears

but then came the step
and the witnessed sex
then later
more shouting
sometimes with bruises
or hits with no leftovers
mother’s issues seen

the little boy
on the playground
hits her arm
runs away
“It’s because he likes you”

she wonders about the brokenness
of boys who show love with fists
who don’t know how to be kind
the deficiency of heart space
when it can’t softly touch
to show affection

why are we this way?
she thinks
why can’t we just love?
instead of boys who become men
who’s throats close at the truth of it
somehow crush
is a better violence 

it stays this way
boys hitting and running
men hitting and running
but she is grown now
runs too
flight over fight
not wanting
the badges of honor
her mother bore

once bitten
twice shy
is for fools she said
once hit
is once gone
out alone rather than stay
rather than be broken
with the boy-man
who still can only love with his fist

she does not take discipline
does not want a father figure who hits
daddy issues aside
she has her pride

but some harm other ways
start out soft and beautiful
like she feels it should be
so she trusts
but then retreats
or tries to
only to be forced
to feel a different kind of violence
a word she still finds hard to say:

“date rape”
“acquaintance rape”
words that mean
her mind was not allowed
to change at the last moment
that arms and legs were held down

she blames herself of course
we all do when it is so close to us
what did she wear?
where did she go?
how much did she have to drink?
how far did she let it go?
why didn’t she scream?

why didn’t she?
somehow experience
did not push down naivete
“this can’t be happening”
“he wouldn’t really”

Now she looks back
at all those boys
those men
who loved with fists
echoes their error in her heart
choosing the wrong ones
over and over
quietly pushing her pain further

she thinks about it all
how normal it seems
to be this way
she came of age like this
up and through male violence*

decades into adulthood
she wonders
how do we change?
there must be some way
to stop this


“she came of age like this / up and through male violence” taken directly from the article