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Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Strange Horizons Poetry Submission Guidelines

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We're looking for high-quality literary, SF/F, speculative, and slipstream poetry.

We're looking for modern, exciting poems that explore the possible and impossible: stories about human and nonhuman experiences, dreams and reality, past and future, the here-and-now and otherwhere-and-elsewhen. We want poems from imaginative and unconventional writers; we want voices from diverse perspectives and backgrounds.

We want poems that understand "literary" doesn't equal "boring," poems that know how to write strange without being senseless, and poems that balance inventiveness with traditional structures. We like mischievous poems, pensive poems, and everything in between.

We don't see enough innovative science fiction or formal poetry. We are also open to confessional and hypertext poetry. However, poems must substantiate their forms; a weak concept in rhyme is still a weak concept. Sonnet plus spaceship is not enough.

To give you an idea, here are some of our current and long-term favorite poets:

A.E. Housman, Albert Goldbarth, Alexander Pope, Amal El-Mohtar, Anna Akhmatova, Anna Margolin, Bogi Takács, Bryan Thao Worra, C.P. Cavafy, Carl Phillips, Catullus, Charles Baudelaire, David Kirby, dg okpik, Dominik Parisien, Dylan Thomas, Edward Lear, Frank O'Hara, Frederick Seidel, Gawain/Pearl-Poet, Geoffrey Chaucer, H.D., Halee Kirkwood, Iain Sinclair, Inua Ellams, James Tate, Jean Toomer, Jennifer L. Knox, Joy Harjo, Jo Walton, Kay Ryan, Laura Da', Liliana Ursu, Lisel Mueller, Li-Young Lee, Louise Glück, Marie de France, Margaret Atwood, Michele Bannister, Nayyirah Waheed, Ogden Nash, Ovid, Patience Agbabi, Phyllis Gotlieb, Qwo-Li Driskill, Rae Armantrout, Rainer Maria Rilke, Richard Siken, Rika Lesser, Robin Robertson, Rose Lemberg, Rudyard Kipling, Sappho, Seamus Heaney, Sean O'Brien, Sharon Olds, Shweta Narayan, Sofia Samatar, T.S. Eliot, Tanaya Winder, Tapiwa Mugabe, U.A. Fanthorpe, Ursula K. Le Guin, W.B. Yeats, Warsan Shire, William Carlos Williams, and Yrsa Daley-Ward.

This is by no means a complete list. For more, you can read nearly every poem Strange Horizons has published since 2000 in our archives. We publish very short poems, very long poems, illustrated poems, and even prose poems. Above all, we publish poems we love.

Pay Rate
Our pay rate for new poetry is $40 (U.S.) per poem, regardless of length or complexity.

We buy first-printing world exclusive rights for six months. After that period, you are free to republish the poem elsewhere. We hope (but don't require) that you'll allow us to post the poem in our archives indefinitely. You have the right to remove your poem from the archives at any point after six months. Please contact the Editors-in-Chief on management [at] strangehorizons [dot] com if you would like your work to be removed.

How to Submit

Please use our Moksha submissions system to send us your poems.

Please send us no more than 6 poems at a time (all in one file is fine).

No simultaneous submissions, please. We adhere strictly to this rule.

Also, we do not accept unsolicited reprints. This includes poems previously published on personal websites or message boards. If a search engine can find it, so can we.

Strange Horizons responds to poetry submissions within 4 months.  If you haven't heard from us once the 4-month mark passes, please send a query.

The Poetry Department staff operate on a rotation system; depending on when you submit, you may be read by a different editor each time.  In order to determine to whom you should be addressing your submission(s), please refer to the following schedule:

January - April 2019: A.J. Odasso (they/them/theirs)

May - August 2019: Romie Stott (no pronoun preference; conventionally she/her/hers)

September - December 2019: A.J. Odasso

January - April 2020: Romie Stott

How to Query
If you don't hear from us within 4 months, please sign into Moksha and click on the My Submissions tab, where you will see a link called Get Status; from there, you will enter your email address and submission ID.  If Moksha gives you any difficulty, please query using the old submissions listserv address (poetry [at] strangehorizons [dot] com), but do not send submissions there.  We only respond to submissions sent via Moksha.

Please ignore the queue number that Moksha has automatically assigned to you; it has absolutely no bearing on when you will hear from us within the allotted 4-month period.  As a rule, we reject faster than we accept, so if you get a quick rejection from us, please know that you can try again as long as you have no more than 6 poems in with us at a time!