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Read all the editors' answers to Duotrope's interview question: Describe the ideal submission. Learn more.
Here is a small sampling from our recent Editor Interviews. We have interviewed over 1,600 editors.
Q: Describe the ideal submission.
A: Well thought out and developed and in adherence to our guidelines.
A: The ideal submission tells a story. It is not a vignette, but has some form of dramatic tension, narrative through line, or character arc. It offers up a hopeful vision of the future, or a pointed commentary on our lack of climate action. It questions cultural, economic, technological, or moral frameworks through the lens of solving climate change.
A: Clear images, lyricism, well crafted, clever, multi-layered, memorable, includes particular lines or moments that stay with the reader
A: A clear literary voice that plays with convention, tells a unique story, and triggers critical thinking and reflection.
Wish the Hell I Wrote It.
A: The ideal submission is intentional. To us, intentional means a submission manipulates language/its art medium with skill, has a message it delivers subtly but powerfully, and makes us see something in a new way. It rings with authenticity as a story or as artwork that the creator HAD to share, not as one created to meet a trend or seem edgy. It's real, it's relevant, it's radical.
A: The ideal submission is scholarly but approachable, does not cover ground well-trodden by other critics, and leaves the reader wanting to explore the author or topic further. It should follow our guidelines and instructions for submission and revision carefully.
A: article of 10,000 words with innovative research on Greek or Roman literature and culture
A: Everyone says it, but the thing we haven't seen before. Even better, the thing that tells the story that a thousand other writers have tried to tell, but that does it with the twist that works, or that does it more beautifully than any other. Again, let the piece's heart show through, not its brain (you've got to be hella smart to write the piece that works, but I don't want to see on the page those seams and workings).
A: We look for a combination of "speech" (well-crafted images) and "story" (a coherent aesthetic impression). All genres and techniques are welcome, straight to strange. We keep censorship to a minimum but steer away from gratuitous violence and porn.
A: The ideal submission is around 8000 words, has a strong and clear argument which can be followed by readers who are not experts in the field, is lively and fluent, opens up discussion, is based on primary research or a strong analysis of secondary literature, pays attention to recent literature in the field, includes attractive images or well set-out tables and has a captivating title!
A: Poetry: 3-5 poems with an accompanying short bio and a physical address where we can send a copy of the journal should the submission be published; In the case of prose, (fiction, memoir, essay) around 2500 words or fewer with bio and address. Submit in a Word document, in the case of prose, double spaced with a name and email address at the top of each page; in the case of poetry, one poem per page with name and email address on each page. The bio and address can appear anywhere in the submission or in a seperate cover page. The font should be 12 point and easy to read - we publish in Goudy Old Style so we love receiving submissions in that font but that isn't a requirement. For poets who write long lines, keep in mind that the size of our journal is 6-1/2 x 9 so lineate accordinly.