FIYAH is a quarterly speculative fiction magazine that features stories by and about Black people of the African Diaspora. This definition is globally inclusive (Black anywhere in the world) and also applies to mixed/biracial and Afro-appended people regardless of gender identity or orientation.
Scroll down to review the submission guidelines and use the form button to send us your work.
FIYAH now accepts submitted reviews of long-form fiction (novellas and novels) from Black and Indigenous readers.
Upcoming Themes and Submission Schedule
Submission windows for our 2021 publication year are as follows:
January and April 2021: UNTHEMED | Window open Sept 1, 2020 – Dec 31, 2020
Unthemed issues do not share a central theme but must be speculative fiction
July 2021: SOUND AND COLOR | Window open March 1, 2021 – April 30, 2021
A new world hangs
outside the window
beautiful and strange
These lyrics open the song “Sound and Color” by rockstar Black woman Brittney Howard and her Alabama Shakes from way back in the before-time of 2015. The album by the same name went on to win one Grammy and some nominations for others. Its also-award-winning video features a Black astronaut coming out of cryo-stasis and awakening to a new world…hanging…outside the window. We want to see to stories and poems about experiencing new worlds with particular emphasis on sensory detail. Magic systems based on color schemes, aural spectres in northern lights, the hearing of mysterious voices, the intoxicating scent of alien flowers luring our heroes to their deaths, etc.
October 2021: LOVE, DEATH, AND ANDROIDS | Window open June 1, 2021 – July 31, 2021
Fantastical futures and mechanical pasts. Androids taking over the world and magic that proves that humans are survivors. Inspired by an animated series of a similar name, we’re looking for work that gets weird, that examines the construct of humanity, the relationship between humans and their machines or which blurs the lines between them.
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 only consider unpublished work, and we do not consider reprints (work that has been published in another magazine or on your blog or other social media) 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.
- Please do not resubmit previously rejected stories in a new submission period. Resubmissions are by editorial solicitation only.
- 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.
Writers previously published in an issue of FIYAH must wait 1 year or 4 issues to submit work again. Works submitted before that time is up will be automatically rejected.
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.
FIYAH is currently closed to portfolio submissions for consideration for 2021’s issue covers. Commissions pay $350.00 USD for original artwork and we purchase rights to First Use and six months exclusivity.
Artists should submit portfolios or work samples which illustrate an understanding of composition, and which feature fantastical elements and/or can be categorized as fantasy, science-fiction, horror, and their related subgenres. Standard portraiture and/or still life will not be a good fit for us.
In keeping with our mission, we prioritize Black creators as the face and content of our magazine.
Beginning with submissions for the 2020 publication year, we are using a simple form to collect submissions for prose and poetry. We understand the use of a form may not be accessible to disabled users. If you require an alternative means of submission for your work, please contact us at team[@]fiyahlitmag.com and we will arrange one for you. You will see a confirmation message when the form is completed, indicating your submission was successfully received. You will not receive an e-mailed confirmation.
- Click here to learn more about how to write a professional cover letter.
- Submissions should be submitted in proper short story manuscript format with your name, email address, and the story’s total word count on the first page. For our purposes, you do not need to include a mailing address or phone number. Click here for an example of proper short story manuscript format.
- For poetry, you may submit up to four (4) separate poems, one (1) poem per form submission.
Payment + Rights
Our payment schedule for 2021 is as follows (all amounts USD):
Short stories (2,000 – 7,000 words): .08/word
Novelettes (<15,000 words): .08/word
Poetry: $50 USD
FIYAH is a SFWA-qualifying market as of 2021. Works of prose published with us count toward SFWA membership.
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.