Four years ago, we started the Where to Submit list in an effort to provide a free resource for writers looking to submit their work, especially after other similar resources had switched to paid models. Since then, we’ve heard countless stories from readers, who have had their first pieces of writing published or found new publishers and journals to engage with; from editors, who have seen an increase in submissions and reach; and from teachers, who have used this list as a resource for their students.
With some recent transitional changes, namely in leadership and procedures, we’ve noticed an increase in comments and questions about the Where to Submit list, namely concerning how it works and how presses and magazines can be sure they are included. We’re writing now to address those concerns and help us better connect with the people who use the list.
How to Get Your Opportunity (Press, Magazine, Residency, etc.) Included on the List
First, we wanted to describe in more detail the process by which the editors of presses and journals, and the managers of fellowships, residencies and other literary opportunities, can assure that their opportunities are on the list.
We request that you email us with your formatted call in advance of the list’s publication date, which occurs on the 1st of March, June, September and December. While we try to find as many opportunities as we can during the process of making the list, we cannot account for everything out there.
We understand that it can be frustrating to operate a press or magazine and not see it on a given list. We promise that this isn’t malice or indifference! It’s just that it’s difficult to account for everything, given the huge amount of information we sift through while assembling the list. This is why we ask for your help in reminding us of your opportunity by sending us an email.
In short, if you’d like to be on the list, please help us find or remember you by sending us an email.
Basic Submission Call Template
We ask for a formatted call because it expedites the process of assembling the list and guarantees that your information will appear as you want it. Here is the basic template we use:
Name / Date(s) (For instance, “Date 1 – Date 2” or “Deadline: Date,” if your call is already active when the list goes up. For year-round submissions, write “year-round” here) / Genre(s) / Fee (if applicable)
For contests, please add the following information if relevant:
Prize / Judges (with the genre they’re judging in parentheses after their name, if there are multiple judges and genres)
As an example, a formatted free contest call would appear as:
Entropy / Year-Round / Poetry, Fiction, Nonfiction, Hybrid, Interviews, Reviews, Art / Prize: 100,000,000 Master Balls / Judge: Bulbasaur (Poetry), Charmander (Fiction), Squirtle (Nonfiction)
Also, we’ve decided to standardize the order of genres, so as to create a more navigable and organized listing on the site. The order we will publish in is:
Poetry, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Nonfiction, Flash Nonfiction, Hybrid, Interviews, Reviews, Art, Anything Else.
Your support in following these above guidelines helps us to more efficiently and accurately include your opportunities in the list, navigate through the mass of emails, and get the list formatted on time each quarter.
How the List is Assembled
Here is a description of how the list is put together each quarter:
As they arrive, emailed calls are coded into the page for the forthcoming list and, as with documented calls, are edited for clarity if necessary.
In the few weeks preceding publication of the list, our Where to Submit editor goes through a master document of over 1,000 submission pages containing all of the calls that have ever been published on the list, manually checking each site to see what information is available for any given venue. If there is clear, up-to-date information on a site, then that information is added to the page for the forthcoming list — clarity and consistency in submissions guidelines help us greatly when updating the listings.
Final edits, including the addition of artwork, the “shortcut” table, and a final proof of all calls and coding, are made. For the most recent list, there were approximately 650 calls.
All of the editors at Entropy, including the Where to Submit Editor, work on a volunteer basis; while we strive to create as inclusive a space as possible, crafting the list entails a lot of labor and, inevitably, some mistakes and oversights will happen. If it comes to our attention that we’ve missed your email or misrepresented your opportunity, just send an email to the editor, and we will rectify it as soon as we can.
Please know that after the list goes live we are unable to add calls for submissions (except in the case of mistakes on our part). We are always happy to add you to the coming list, but continuous updates of the current list are too time-intensive for us to take on.
We have said yes to almost every opportunity we’ve been contacted about, as long as we’ve felt that it fits Entropy’s mission, which includes maintaining a safe and supportive community of readers and writers. This can be a judgment call on our part, but we try to say yes to as many opportunities we can. We want the list to be a community resource, so that readers can continually discover all of the amazing platforms out there for their work.
A few additional notes based on questions we frequently receive:
The Where to Submit list is published four times a year, on the first of March (for March, April and May), June (for June, July and August), September (for September, October and November) and December (for December, January and February).
If you’re a writer, there’s no need to “get on the list.” There may be an email list in the future, but for now, the list is just published online.
This list takes a lot of labor to curate, but it is a labor of love. Knowing that we’re providing a helpful resource is what makes this all worthwhile.
Again, we thank you so much for the support that this list, and Entropy as a whole, has received from the literary community. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
Justin Greene (Small Press Editor/current Where to Submit Organizer), firstname.lastname@example.org
Dennis Sweeney (Small Press Editor/previous Where to Submit Organizer), email@example.com
Janice Lee (Executive Editor), firstname.lastname@example.org