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General Submission Guidelines
Thank you for your interest in Sequestrum. Please take a moment to familiarize yourself our general guidelines below. When ready to submit, use our online submission manager.
Sequestrum is a competitive, paying market which publishes high-quality short fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and visual arts on a rolling basis. Recent contributors include Pulitzer Prize nominees, Guggenheim and NEA Fellows, award-winning novelists and poets, as well as many new and emerging voices. We’re committed to publishing the bulk of our publications from unsolicited manuscripts and are open to all stylistic schools and “isms,” including the occasional genre piece. The best way to familiarize yourself with our tastes is to read what we’ve published. Sequestrum offers pay-what-you-can subscriptions: as little as $2.50 gets you access to everything we’ve published and allows you to make free submissions, making it easy for everyone to get an idea of our editorial direction. Our sole guideline regards manuscript length.
We’re serious sticklers for concise, evocative writing. Like, bloodshot-eyes, skin-scoured-raw, Tolstoy-is-the-reason-we-drink, serious. As such, Sequestrum publishes only short prose and poetry. Read About Us to learn more about our publication philosophy.
What We Publish:
Fiction: Submissions should generally not exceed ten thousand* (10,000) words. We prefer our writing succinct over sprawling (we will consider micro, flash, short-shorts, etc.), but our only true requirement is quality. Most pieces average 5,000 words or less. If you have a piece you feel is a good fit with us, send it.
Creative Nonfiction: Submissions should generally not exceed ten thousand* (10,000) words. All genres of nonfiction (articles, reviews, memoirs, personal essay, cross-genre, etc.) are acceptable, though we rarely publish scholarly essays or literary criticism.
Poetry: We like our poetry short. Submissions should be no more than thirty-five* (35) lines. Maximum four (4) poems per submission.
*Length guidelines are just that: guidelines. Pieces exceeding these limits will be considered but generally have a harder time being published. If your work is outstanding, we’ll make room for it.
- We accept and read submissions year-round via our online submission system. We do not accept mailed or electronic submissions in other forms.
- Multiple and simultaneous submissions are allowed, so long as we’re notified via Submittable should your work be accepted elsewhere.
- All manuscripts must be previously unpublished. This includes any print or online format.
- General submissions are unthemed.
- A nominal reading fee is charged via Submittable which allows us to offer streamlined services like Submittable, advertise publications, compensate staff, maintain a newsletter, and otherwise compete for the best writing possible. In addition to a small honorarium, Sequestrum contributors receive a complimentary 6 month subscription redeemable at any time after acceptance. This is maintained by our subscribers and reading fee, about equal to the cost of sending manuscripts by post. See “Payment” for more information.
- Subscribers are not charged a submission fee at a limit of one pending submission at any time. Subscribers may withdraw their submission at any time and send another if they so choose. Sending only your best, most polished work helps keep our response times reasonable. More on becoming a subscriber member here.
- Your name should not appear anywhere on your manuscript.
- Include a short (75 words or less) bio including publication history, education, and any other relevant information in a cover letter to be used as a contributor bio in the event of publication.
- Response times range between six minutes and six months. We reply to all submissions via Submittable. Please be patient in the event of delays. Answering queries slows our reading and response time.
Publication Rights: We publish only previously unpublished work. If we select your submission for publication, you grant us First Internet Publishing Rights and Exclusive Rights for the first three months your work appears with Sequestrum. Rights include Nonexclusive Archival Rights: We archive all published work indefinitely in our online archives. At the time of publication, all other rights revert to the author. If your work is republished elsewhere, credit Sequestrum as original publisher.
Payment: We believe good writing deserves recognition and offer a small cash honorarium of $20 for all writers we publish. In addition, all contributors receive a complimentary 6 month subscription redeemable at any time after acceptance.
Deadlines: Sequestrum occasionally closes general submissions to finalize upcoming issues, catch up on reading, keep our eyes from bleeding, etc. Subscribe to our newsletter for updates: https://www.sequestrum.org/submission-updates.
Subjectivity: The literary industry is highly subjective and competitive. Like any market, Sequestrum can only publish a small portion of the work it receives. That said, submissions are encouraged from writers of every nationality, race, religion, and gender. We’ve published established, award-winning writers and featured the very first publication of others. We mention this in hopes that ever writer is encouraged to pursue the work they love. Keep writing. Everyone.