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About

Voiceworks is a national, quarterly literary journal that features exciting new fiction, nonfiction, poetry, visual art and comics by Australians under the age of 25. Voiceworks is produced entirely by people yet to hit the quarter century mark, and relies on contributions from readers to make up its content. Each selected piece goes through a collaborative editing process, and individualised feedback is provided for all unsuccessful submissions. All published contributors are paid for their work.

What we’re looking for

The best way to get a sense of the kinds of work we publish is to read Voiceworks! You can get yourself a copy by ordering it online, subscribing or by waltzing into one of these fine retailers.

Inside Voiceworks you’ll find a varied selection of short stories, poems, nonfiction, art and comics. We’re always on the lookout for writing in all of these forms, but what we’re chomping at the bit for is nonfiction. Just quietly, we get far more people sending us fiction and poetry than nonfiction. This means we want to read more of it, and frankly your odds of publication are better if you send us some. This doesn’t mean we compromise on the standard of nonfiction we publish—it needs to have a specific angle and offer some sort of insight, whether that’s a keen interest in researching something, expert knowledge on a topic, a unique experience or perspective, or a combination of these things. We recommend you pitch your nonfiction before sending it to us, especially if you’re not sure if your piece appropriate, or what you want to do with it. Pitching is our chance to help you out before you submit. So before you send us your work, we (strongly) urge you to read our handy nonfiction guide on how to construct your pitch and write good nonfiction in general.

The same goes for art and comics—we receive fewer art submissions than in written categories, and want to publish more of it inside Voiceworks. But before you send it our way, be sure to flip through a copy of the mag to make sure your work is suited to the page dimensions, colour limitations and design specifications of Voiceworks.

If poetry‘s your thing, read our poetry guide to get a better sense of what we look for in poetry submissions, or if you’re keen to improve your poems before sending them to us.

Theme: Retrograde (Issue #108, Winter 2017)

The theme of our winter 2017 issue is ‘Retrograde’, but you don’t have to stick to it. Our themes are a prompt more than anything else—a springboard to get the creative ideas flowing. Most of all, we just want good work. Our motto is…

—Themed work: good

—Good work: better

—Good themed work: BEST

200wMercury is in retrograde and so is the (dis)united state of the world. Billions of people have a vivid episode of déjà vu in unison. Weren’t you at this same protest yesterday, and the day before? Your clothes nod to prior decades but your grandmother still doesn’t approve. You think you’re turning into your mother and into a child at the same time. Your laptop crashed and deleted a story you were almost finished working on. Your phone has stopped sending and receiving messages. Communication seems impossible. Your dog is upset with you and you can’t figure out why. You take her outside for a walk and you could have sworn you were going forwards, but the trees are shrinking into the horizon and only the buildings get larger. All the frogs are growing tails and turning black, and your breakfast burrito is travelling upwards along your oesophagus. Time is warped. History is spiralling back on itself. You’re having a nightmare about an orange demon and you can’t wake up. Your horoscope says better just to stay in bed this week.

~Thanks to EdCommers Caitlin McGregor and Mira Schlosberg for the blurb~

Guidelines

Voiceworks accepts fiction, poetry, nonfiction, art and comics, but before you send it our way, here are some rules (they help control the fun):

—We are only able to publish writers and artists who are under the age of 25 (that is, 24 and under) at the time of submission.

—We only accept work by people living in Australia (including international students) or by Australians living overseas.

—We only consider previously unpublished work.

Each category has its own submission page with specific guidelines, but here are the basics:

Fiction: send no more than two stories, each no more than 3000 words.

Poetry: send no more than three poems, each no more than 100 lines. We recommend reading our poetry guide here before sending us your work.

Nonfiction: we recommend that you pitch your nonfiction work before sending it to us. Head here for advice on how to construct your pitch and write good nonfiction. For completed work, send no more than two pieces, each no more than 3000 words.

Art and comics: please keep in mind, we print in black-and-white (greyscale) and our page dimensions are 170 x 245 mm. For comics, we recommend you pitch them before sending them to us. For advice on how to pitch your comics, check out our handy guide here. Please send no more than three artworks.

We encourage you to submit across genres, but please send us no more than four submissions in total (excluding visual art).

Deadlines

Nonfiction pitches are due Sunday 19 March, 11:59pm.

Fiction, poetry and completed nonfiction is due Sunday 2 April, 11:59pm.

Art and comics are due Sunday 30 May, 11:59pm.

Rates of pay

$100 for written work or for one image
$150 for multi-page comics or suites of images

You’ll find further details on each category by following the link below. Please read the information carefully and contact Voiceworks Editor Lucy Adams if you have any questions or concerns. Alrighty then, it’s time to submit!

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