The Affirmative Action Submissions Opening

The recent US elections revealed an ugly underbelly of fear and bigotry that surprised the world and has terrified many marginalized groups across the country.  We here at Pulp Literature feel for our American friends, most of whom are not racist, sexist, homophobic, ableist, or anti-immigration.  And while we can’t open Canada’s borders for you, we can open submissions.

To balance the rhetoric coming from south of the border, we are calling specifically for stories that give voice to the rest: to queers, women, immigrants, indigenous people, disabled people, and people of colour.  We want stories by and about humans of all shapes and sizes: feminist, LGBTQIA, people of colour, Métis, First Nations, differently-abled … any and all segments of the population historically lacking representation in the mainstream.

12-issue-spiralBut what if you happen to be a straight white dude?  We’ll still read your stuff, but it will help to have a character with at least one of the above attributes, and who is convincingly portrayed.  Don’t think it can be done?  Read Bob Thurber’s ‘Wager’, PE Bolivar’s ‘The Lament for iCarus’ and Rob Taylor’s ‘Here I Lay Down My Heart’.  They’re all astoundingly beautiful stories by white North American men writing outside their own experiences.

Submissions will be open from November 15th – 30th.  Writers, poets, artists, send us your best and most diverse works.  We invite you to self-identify if you like.  We’ll look forward to your voices!

Submissions Guidelines here.

To read a sample issue, back our Kickstarter campaign at the $5 level.  We’ll send you your choice of back issue right away, no money down.



4 thoughts on “The Affirmative Action Submissions Opening

  1. “But what if you happen to be a straight white dude? We’ll still read your stuff, but it will help to have a character with at least one of those attributes, and who is convincingly portrayed.” Thank you for this. I’ve read a lot of calls for submissions that require the author to be from one of the “Traditionally underrepresented groups”. Funny thing is, I’ve never been asked my sexual orientation, gender, if I have any disabilities, and only submit a bio after my work has been accepted. So, how would anyone know if certain groups are underrepresented?

    1. Exactly, Slapy. We can tell very little from a name, and neither can readers. We feel it’s important both to reach out to underrepresented groups, and to include stories about them. Publishing writers from these groups helps the writing community, and publishing stories about them makes our magazine more representative of all the population, regardless of the identity of the author.

  2. I am very disappointed to read that you include a quota system for your submissions. So, shall I apply to be your token white-male?

    1. There is no quota. We’re just getting tired of stories about straight, white, able-bodied males, since literature is already full of those. If your story features women, people of colour, LGBTQIA+ characters, etc the chances are better we’ll take a second look at it versus another story of equal literary merit.

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