Poetry can be of any form, including lyric verse that employs rhyme and meter, and there is no word limit. Short stories can be anywhere from very short to 10,000 words. Essays should surround writers or literary works. Profiles of contemporary writers are very much welcome!
We also do a few book reviews with each issue (we prefer poetry and fiction, but occasionally we review non-fiction as well). Most of the books we choose to review are by past contributors to Whistling Shade. If you are a publisher or author and would like us to review your work, please query us at our admin at whistlingshade.com address.
Whistling Shade abides by a a code of literary ethics, as described below.Starting in 2021, we will publish only one issue per year. Our reading period for 2021 will be January 1 - June 1. All submissions should be by e-mail and should contain:
No reprints please. Simultaneous submissions are okay, just let us know when they are accepted elsewhere by emailing the poetry, fiction, or editor address (the same address you used to submit the original piece). It is very important that you inform us if submitted work has been accepted by another journal. Not only does it save our editors time in reviewing a work already taken, there is sometimes not enough time to redo our layout or plans for a theme issue. So if we inform you that your piece has been accepted, and you tell us that sorry, it was already accepted elsewhere and you were just too lazy or disorganized to inform us, we may go ahead and publish it anyway. And that can wind up being rather ... er, awkward, for you.
Also, please take it easy on our submissions staff and don't submit more than 5 poems or 1 story at a time (up to 3 stories for flash fiction under 1000 words). Please do not submit again until you hear back from us.Fiction submissions should be e-mailed to fiction at whistlingshade.com (substitute the "@" symbol for "at").
Poetry submissions should be e-mailed to poetry at whistlingshade.com.
Essay and all other submissions should be e-mailed to editor at whistlingshade.com
We can handle most formats (PDF, RTF, HTML, even FrameMaker), or you could just paste the submission in the body of the e-mail. Note that we don't have access to a Mac, so if it is in a Mac format please use one of the above.
No mailed submissions, please.We try to respond to submissions within 3 months. It takes this long because we have more than one editor and we have to meet and chat about these things, and getting a bunch of editors in one place at one time can be tricky. Feel free to query us if we have not responded within 3 months and we will give you a status update.
When we do respond it will often be a "sorry, we didn't select your work" sort of response. Don't feel bad though, because statistically we only accept about 1 in 20 pieces submitted. We may or may not comment on your work. If we do take it in good faith that the feedback is meant to help you gain some perspective on the work. Because we have many submissions and lack time for carefully thought out responses, ours might be rather brief and cryptic ... if you would like more detailed feedback say so in your cover letter and we'll see what we can do.
If we do accept your work, we will inform you and give you the details of publication. The copyright will stay with you. For a story, we might ask you for an illustration ... if you don't have anything in mind we will have a member of the staff or an artist create something. We'll also try to e-mail you a PDF galley of your work prior to publication so that you can look it over. Then when the issue is ready we will mail you copies, or (if you are local to Mpls/St. Paul) invite you to the issue release.Payment is in the form of 2 contributor's copies. At this time cash payment is not in our budget. However, if you are a starving artist, please mention that once the work has been accepted and we will send you a small check.
Other than that, you get the glory of appearing in Whistling Shade, being read by a couple thousand readers (more readers than many books) and furthering your book sales or literary career. And heck, there's just the sheer pleasure of appearing in print.Because there are many more writers shopping their work than there are 'zines to publish them, writers are sometimes taken advantage of. So, we've formulated some guidelines, a code of ethics if you will, that we follow here at Whistling Shade. We hope that you will trust us with your work; we understand that to be a good literary magazine we need to publish great writing, and to publish great writing we need to attract the best writers, and do that we need to treat the writers well.