Submissions

FIYAH is a quarterly speculative fiction magazine that features stories by and about people of the African Diaspora.

Submissions are currently OPEN.

Issue 5 Theme: Ahistorical Blackness  |  Accepting submissions October 1, 2017 – October 31, 2017
Y’all know Black people existed before 1865, right? Black folks have constantly been erased from historical fantasy and alternate history, and even today folks are less interested in including stories of Black folks thriving than they are putting them back in metaphorical chains (*cough* Confederate *cough*). So give us your alternate histories, your historical fantasies, your stories of Black folks thriving in days of old. Just remember to include speculative elements in the mix (and not just time traveling, yo).

 

Fiction Guidelines

We accept submissions of short fiction 2,000 – 7,000 words and novelettes up to 15,000 words.

We are looking for brave works of speculative short fiction by authors from the African continent and diaspora that reject regressive ideas of blackness, respectability politics, and stereotype. Please submit your bravest, blackest, most difficult to sell stories to us. We want to read them.

We want stories that are well written, of high quality, and generally easy to read on a screen.

We are open to receiving stories around many themes, but we will immediately reject stories that feature any of the following:

  • Graphic depictions of rape or sexual assault
  • Needless brutalization of women and children
  • Depictions of brutalization or abuse of people with disabilities
  • Graphic abuse of animals

We are only considering unpublished work, and we are not considering reprints (work that has been published in another magazine or on your blog) or fan fiction.

We do not accept multiple submissions, so please wait until you have heard a response to a submission before submitting again.

We do not accept simultaneous submissions.

We are only accepting submission from authors from the African diaspora and the African continent because #BlackWritersMatter. This is an intersectional definition of blackness, and we strongly encourage submissions from women, members of the LGBTQIA community, and members from other underrepresented communities within the African diaspora.

 

2018 Themes and Submission Schedule

We’re doing things a bit differently this year. Submissions for each issue will only be open for a period of one month, so do pay attention to the dates. Stories sent outside the time frames for each theme will be deleted unread. We do not want your submission for MUSIC in October. We do not want your submission for PILGRIMAGE in April. There is no reason you should be sending us anything at all in February, March, May, June, August, September, November, or December. Pay attention.

Issue 5 Theme: Ahistorical Blackness  |  Accepting submissions October 1, 2017 – October 31, 2017
Y’all know Black people existed before 1865, right? Black folks have constantly been erased from historical fantasy and alternate history, and even today folks are less interested in including stories of Black folks thriving than they are putting them back in metaphorical chains (*cough* Confederate *cough*). So give us your alternate histories, your historical fantasies, your stories of Black folks thriving in days of old. Just remember to include speculative elements in the mix (and not just time traveling, yo).

 

Issue 6 Theme: Big Mama Nature | Accepting submissions January 1, 2018 – January 31, 2018
Everyone knows that you need to respect Mama. We’re looking for stories of Nature and her swift backhand when folks get out of line. Give us your stories of ecological wastelands, futures full of solar powered punks, or natural disasters. Climate fiction is the name of the game, and Big Mama don’t play.

 

Issue 7 Theme: Music | Accepting submissions April 1, 2018 – April 30, 2018
Black contributions to musical genres are unmatched. Music is the language of the soul, and for this issue we’re looking for stories where music plays a central role. Maybe the devil really does hand out talent at the crossroads, or maybe that lounge singer isn’t quite what she seems. Send us all of your stories featuring music as magic, music as catalyst, or whatever your devious little hearts come up with.

 

Issue 8 Theme: Pilgrimage | Accepting submissions July 1, 2018 – July 31, 2018
Every journey starts with a single step, and this issue is all about the trip, not the destination. We’re looking for stories of journeys to new worlds, of returning to lost worlds, and journeys of the soul. But, like always, make it weird, make it magical, make it Black.

 

Submission Formatting 

  • The subject line of your submission must read “FICTION SUBMISSION: [Story Title]”.

  • Submissions should include a cover letter written in the body of the email. Click here to learn more about how to write a professional cover letter.
  • Submissions should be attached as a .doc/.docx file to your submission email. Stories pasted into the body of an email will not be accepted.

  • Submissions should be submitted in proper short story manuscript format with your name, address, email address, and the story’s total word count on the first page. Click here for an example of proper short story manuscript format.

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Poetry

What we want in speculative poetry is verse that struggles, reveals, instructs, comforts, and fights back. We are looking for weird, complex, honest and challenging work with a clear speculative element from black authors. You can check out this post from our Poetry Editor for more on what we’d like to see in your poetry.

  • The subject line of your submission must read “POETRY SUBMISSION: [Poem Title]”. Include a cover letter written in the body of the email.
  • Attach your poetry submission as a .doc file. Poems pasted into the body of an email will not be accepted.
  • You may submit up to four separate poems, but each poem must be submitted separately, in its own email.
  • Many of the guidelines about short prose still apply here. That means: no graphic violence or abuse, no reprints (including work that you’ve shared on your social networks), and no simultaneous submissions.

 

Payment and Rights

Our payment schedule is as follows:

Short stories (2,000 – 7,000 words): $150

Novelettes (<15,000 words): $300

Poetry: $50

FIYAH will publish accepted stories in a quarterly ebook magazine format, as well as archiving them on our website. Thus, FIYAH will claim first world electronic rights, nonexclusive archival rights, and nonexclusive anthology rights to your story.

This means that we are buying the rights to publish your story on FIYAH’s website and in electronic issues of our magazine. This also means that you can only publish your story as a reprint after it appears in FIYAH, and it cannot appear anywhere else online or in print prior to submission, or for 180 days after we publish it. After that it can be reprinted online, in a magazine, or in an anthology.

 

Response Times

Response time will vary by volume of submissions. You may query after one month, and  please include the date that you submitted and the title of your story.