WE ACCEPT NONFICTION, POETRY, PHOTOGRAPHY, AND ART
2023 Schedule of Calls for Submissions
Winter 2023 Issue: July 1 to August 15
Spring 2023 Issue: September 15 to November 1
We welcome previously unpublished nonfiction (including essay, memoir, and creative nonfiction) of up to 2,500 words that explore mortality, death, and dying-related topics. (Please note, WE DO NOT PUBLISH FICTION.) We also accept poetry as well as art and photography submissions. Please note that “unpublished” includes not published on personal websites, blogs, or any form of social media such as Instagram, Twitter, and others.
Months To Years now accepts submissions only via Submittable.
We publish new work to our website (New Work page) in the weeks leading up to the publication of an issue. Those works are then eventually compiled into the next digital issue of the magazine.
We seek personal stories with universal appeal. Tell us your story but make it fresh, compelling, unusual. We receive numerous submissions. The stories that stand out are the ones that tell us a story we think we know but then surprise us or delight us. Or make us laugh. Despite the seriousness of topic. Please read past issues before submitting your work to us.
Here are ideas for questions to explore when considering submitting to us:
- How do you live well after receiving a terminal prognosis?
- How do you face death when it likely will be sooner than you expected?
- How do you find joy when facing intensive medical treatments and the prospect of dying?
- As a caregiver to a terminally ill patient, how have you managed and survived the experience?
- How does the culture and your community treat you when you are likely to die?
- How does cultural silence surrounding death and dying impact you?
- If you have lived through loss due to COVID-19, as either a family member or a medical provider, we are interested in your story.
- If you are a doctor, nurse, or hospice volunteer, how do you help the dying live their best life?
- If you are a doctor or nurse, how have you reconciled medicine’s role of perpetuating life with the reality that this is sometimes not possible? Write about your experiences interacting with patients and their families.
- Are you part of a culture whose practices differ and conflict (or coincide) with predominant culture surrounding death?
- Have you found humor in death and dying, dark comedy amidst the horror? Sick humor to keep you sane? We are interested in the quirky and unexpected angles on death.
- How do you continue and find peace after a devastating illness or loss?
- What does the world need to know about the experience of dying or being labeled as someone who is dying?
- This is not an exhaustive list but is meant to give you an idea of the kinds of topics in which we are interested. We may not be able to immediately respond to your submission, please have patience. We may accept your submission, suggest edits/rewrites, or let you know that we cannot publish it at this time.
The Fine Print of the Submission Guidelines
Please read these guidelines carefully and adhere to them when you submit to us. Submissions that are not in conformity with these guidelines will be automatically rejected.
- We accept previously unpublished nonfiction works of up to 2,500 words as well as previously unpublished poetry, art, and photography. Please note that we consider work posted to a website or a personal or other blog as “published” and therefore, it does not qualify as previously unpublished. If your work is pending publication elsewhere, it would also not qualify as unpublished.
- We accept simultaneous submissions but please let us know right away if your submission is selected for publication elsewhere.
- Please limit your submission whether it be nonfiction, poetry, or art/photography to one per call for submissions.
- Writers and artists must own the rights to their work. By submitting to us, you are agreeing to have your work published on our site and maintained in our archives. You further agree to have your work compiled into a digital edition. The writer retains ownership of the copyright to his or her work.
- By submitting to us, you are agreeing to allow us to make minor copyedit and technical corrections to your work. Any substantive edits will be made only with your consent.
- Please DO NOT include your name or identifying information in the file name or the file itself. Please DO include a word count (for nonfiction and poetry submissions) at the start of the file.
- When submitting a photograph or artwork, please ensure its resolution is at least 300 ppi.
- Please include a bio written in the third person of no more than 100 words. It should tell us the official stuff about you as well as something interesting or quirky. Please use complete sentences in a format ready for publication. (If you have published books that are included in your bio, please include the publisher and year published in parentheses after the title.) Bios that exceed 100 words will be edited.
- While we will consider stories about the death of pets and animals, we are primarily interested in human stories
We receive a large volume of submissions. As a tiny nonprofit with a mostly volunteer staff, please understand that someone has to read each submission. Our mission is to participate in the literary arts community and offer what we create to as many people as possible. For that reason. we do not charge reading fees and we do not charge subscription fees. Our website and the digital issue are entirely free. And we don’t want to clutter them up with advertising. But all of this requires us working on a shoestring budget which then means we are slow to respond. Since we started using Submittable, we now respond to each submission within a reasonable time.
But please do not email us asking why we haven’t responded yet. We haven’t responded because we lack bandwidth to respond. We will respond when we can and when we have something to say. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
As we reach the one-year anniversary of the devastating pandemic, Months To Years is launching COVID Flash Folios. We will publish (online-only) COVID true stories throughout 2021. In some respects, we are all sick of hearing about COVID. And yet, there are stories, nuances, joys, horror, humor, and surprises about this pandemic year that remain yet untold.
While we recognize that each loss from COVID has devastated someone and has rippled out to devastate a community, this collection is not so much intended to recount the chronology of specific losses but rather to explore the unexpected and the yet untold aspects of this era. We will select the stellar writing and the fresh perspectives from the submissions and publish those pieces to our website periodically. Submissions will be accepted on an ongoing basis.
Please limit to your submission to 1,000 words that have not been previously published (including on a personal blog or other online venue). Please DO NOT include your name as part of the file title or within the document you upload. Your story must be true. No fiction and no poetry. Selected works may be compiled into an anthology in the future at the discretion of Months To Years.