Written by Emily Harstone February 16th, 2023

Opportunities for Historically Underrepresented Authors this February

This list of publishers meet our guiding principles, but are only open to free submissions from historically underrepresented writers or focus on publishing content produced by historically underrepresented writers. Some of these publications are open to a wide range of writers including writers of color, gender non-conforming and LGBTQ+ writers, and those living with disabilities. Some have limited definitions and are only interested in work by Black authors. We try to make it as clear as possible who the publisher is seeking work from. Sometimes the focus of the press is limited, even though there are no limitations on who can submit. A few of the opportunities are also limited by geography, again, we try to make this clear.

If you belong to a limited demographic that is not listed here, this list might be helpful to you.

As long as a press/opportunity/journal is open to submissions we will continue to list it, so some of the content on the list is new, some overlaps from the previous month. This article is an ongoing collaborative effort by Emily Harstone and S. Kalekar. NmaHassan Muhammad has also contributed a couple of opportunities for this month’s list. Please send us an email at support@authorspublish.com if you have any feedback or an opportunity/journal/publisher, to recommend.

Every month we highlight a different organization that focuses on helping support underrepresented authors. This month we are focusing on We Need Diverse Books and are specifically encouraging any US based person actively involved in the education system, to look into the possibility of applying for the Books Save Lives Grant on behalf of a school near them.


This is a fiction magazine and they accept stories by Latinx writers only. Their website says, “LatineLit promotes fiction by and about Latinx people. We publish short stories, though we might consider publishing longer works in serialized form. We are looking for works that are primarily written in English, though we expect there will often be other languages imbedded in these stories.” Pay is $250 for stories up to 6,000 words. They have ongoing submissions. Details here and here.

The Healing Muse
This is the annual journal of literary and visual art published by SUNY Upstate Medical University’s Center for Bioethics & Humanities. They publish narratives, memoirs, fiction, poetry, and art, particularly but not exclusively focusing on themes of medicine, illness, disability and healing. They accept prose up to 2,500 words. The deadline is 15 April 2023. They also have a poetry prize for medical students and physicians, of $250.

Apparition Lit: Symmetry 
This is a quarterly speculative fiction and poetry magazine. They are reading submissions on the Symmetry theme. As part of their equity initiative, they have a one-week extra reading period for writers who self-identify as BIPOC in their cover letters. Their general reading period (for all writers) is 15-28 February 2023, and they it is extended by a week for BIPOC writers. Send 1,000-5,000 words for fiction, or up to 5 poems. Pay is $0.05/word for stories, and $50/poem. (They’re also open from 1st to 14th of each month for flash fiction, based on a prompt – this is for all writers.)

Solarpunk Magazine: Colorful Roots – Call for BIPOC authors
They will open for the first half of next month for solarpunk submissions for BIPOC writers only – they publish fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and art on solarpunk themes (see the schedule, and detailed guidelines for the kind of stories they publish, on the guidelines page). Nonfiction is always open. Length and pay guidelines are: fiction – 1,500-7,500 words ($.08 per word, $100 minimum); poetry – up to 5 poems or 5 pages of poems, whichever is shorter ($40 per poem); nonfiction –  1,000-2,000 words ($75 per essay or article). The reading period for the Colorful Roots issue is 1-14 March 2023. Details here and here.

The Hopper
This established environmental literary journal is open to BIPOC submissions only for its latest issue. This is what they have to say about it: “For a special issue that will be published in Summer 2023, we welcome submissions of environmental writing and art from people who self-identify as BIPOC. We are especially interested in work that explores goals for climate justice, emphasizes intersectionality in relating to more-than-human nature, depicts joy found in both rural and urban environments, and imagines and enacts Black and Indigenous futures.” Submissions close on March 31st.

Kweli Journal
They seek “to publish work of writers and artists of color that is relevant, engaging, and uncompromising”. They are reading submissions through 30 May. Submissions of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry are fee-free. Payment is after publication. Details here and here.

The Healing Muse
This is the annual journal of literary and visual art published by SUNY Upstate Medical University’s Center for Bioethics & Humanities. They publish narratives, memoirs, fiction, poetry, and art, particularly but not exclusively focusing on themes of medicine, illness, disability and healing. They accept prose up to 2,500 words. The magazine submission deadline is 15 April 2023. They also have a poetry prize for medical students and physicians, of $250.

They publish a variety of genres, and are open for online and print issues occasionally. They also have a Comfort Food section – “The COMFORT FOODS series publishes creative responses to the relationship between food and culture, identity and cuisine, from people in diaspora or those from various marginalised identities. From eating away exile to 2,000 word philosophical treatises on biryani, we’re here for it. … We’ll accept creative non-fiction, food writing, poetry, and artwork on this theme.”

Midnight & Indigo
They publish work by Black women writers only. They are currently looking for character-driven fiction, all genres are welcome and there are specific genre guidelines for speculative fiction (for speculative fiction, they have a rolling deadline). They are also open to essay submissions.  They want a minimum of 1,500 words for fiction and minimum 1,200 words for nonfiction. Pay varies but is listed. Deadline: March 31, 2023 at 11:59pm ET. At the time of writing, they were also open to queries about online teaching positions.

Torch Literary Arts
Torch Literary Arts is a nonprofit organization. They publish and promote creative writing by Black women only; you can read more about them here. They publish contemporary writing by experienced and emerging writers. “We are interested in work that challenges and disrupts preconceived notions of what Black women’s contemporary writing should be.” General submissions are accepted for Friday Features only, in which they publish fiction, hybrid works, poetry, and drama (including that accompanied by video or dramatic audio). Send up to 2,500 for fiction/hybrid works, up to 10 pages for drama, or up to 5 poems. Pay is $100. Submissions are accepted on an ongoing basis; you can submit here.

Tagg Magazine
Tagg is a US-based queer women’s publication. Their website has several themes they accept articles on, including personal essays, listicles, dating advice and fashion-related content. Articles are 350-1,000 words long and pay $75-175. They welcome pitches for article ideas. See the pitch guide for contributors here.

Bi Woman Quarterly
BWQ features the voices of women “with bi+ sexualities (i.e., bi, pan, fluid, and other non-binary sexualities)” and they see “woman” as a broad category and welcome contributions those who identify as trans, non-binary, cis, etc. They publish articles, creative writing, musings, and more.

A bi monthly zine that pays their contributors $40 for creative work, and priortizes BIPOC and LGBTQ+ creatives. Their submission guidelines are here.

They publish art, fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction submissions  primarily by Asians, but they are open to submissions from non-Asians. Their uniting theme is Asian Folklore. Submitters must be over 18.

Tangled Laces
A magazine focused on publishing writing by queer teen authors between the ages of 14-18.

Fantasy Magazine
This is a digital magazine of fantasy and dark fantasy; send flash or short fiction (up to 7,500 words), or poetry. Pay is $0.08/word for fiction and $40/poem. They were open for submissions by BIPOC authors only, at the time of writing.

Arc Poetry Magazine: Crip Lives — Restoring Subjectivity
Arc Poetry Magazine is accepting fee-free submissions for their Crip Lives: Restoring Subjectivity issue, from “artists who live with disability/chronic illness/mental illness and other forms of existence that are impacted by ableism to send us poems, prose, essays, and reviews exploring what it means to be in the world, or your topic of choice”. They pay. The deadline for their Crip Lives issue is 15 May 2023. They list other opportunities too, which are fee-based. Details here (general guidelines) and here (Submittable, with theme guidelines).

We only usually include journals currently open to submissions, but this list is always published on the third Thursday of a given month, and this journal is only open to submissions through the 1st to the 10th of each month, so we are listing it and encouraging you to set a calendar alert for when it reopens on the 1st of the next month. They only publish African poets, and pay N2,500 per poem.

Afternoon Visitor
This is an online quarterly publication of poetry, hybrid text, visual poetry, and visual art, and they’re particularly interested in giving space to trans + queer writers in each issue.

Dream Pop Journal
They welcome submissions from marginalized voices, and are especially interested in publishing work from emerging writers working in experimental, non-narrative forms. “Please send us your strange utterings, hybrid works, collaborative pieces, visual poetry, collages, and linguistic inventions. We hope that you will challenge the limits of what literature can be and that you will share your results with us.” They publish poetry, a speculative diary, visual art, as well as visual poetry & erasure. They are open year-round.

This is a space for Queer creators and Queer representation. “You do not have to be Queer to submit, but your work should be related to Queer representation”. Also, “If a connection to the Queer community is not readily apparent in your work, let us know your connection in the body of your submission email or your bio.” Send fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art, and multimedia. They have detailed guidelines for each category. They can offer token payment, of $4 or less. They are open to submissions on a rolling basis.

Cosmic Double
Cosmic Double publishes work from underrepresented writers – including, but not limited to, Black, indigenous, & other writers of color; members of the LGBTQ+ community; adopted, displaced, or separated writers; writers without formal education, including high school, college, or masters level degrees; writers with mental or physical disabilities; new & emerging writers. They’re always open for nonfiction submissions (send up to 4 pages); the deadline for fiction and poetry is 1 April 2023 (see Submittable). Details here (guidelines) and here (Submittable).

Class Collective
Their website says, this is “An annual literary magazine that illuminates the class struggle(s) hidden in the shadows of our culture.” They accept submissions from all writers. They publish poetry, including visual poetry (up to 5 poems), fiction (up to 5,000 words), essays (pitches and submissions), and commentary — writing that has a class-based perspective on politics and culture. Pay is CAD10 for poetry and CAD20 for prose. Submissions are open on a rolling basis.

Reappropriate: Filipinx American identity
Reappropriate is an Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) race advocacy and feminism blog, focusing on race, gender, identity, Asian American history, and current events. Pay is $75-150 for work of 800-2,500 words.

The Gay & Lesbian Review: Three themes
The Gay & Lesbian Review is a bimonthly magazine of history, culture, and politics targeting an educated readership of LGBT people, and their allies that publishes themed features (2,000-4,000 words), reviews, interviews, and departments. They have announced three themed calls, and they also invite suggestions for future themes.

— The Age of Innocence: Gay life in the time of Wilde
– The Great Transformation: From bar culture to hookup world
LGBT Science: New research on gender & sexual orientation
Writers can send proposals or complete pieces. They pay for features ($200) and full-length book reviews ($100).

The Acentos Review
The Acentos Review publishes writing, art, music and multigenre work by Latinx writers. They are open to submissions all year long.

A journal of queer plant-based writing, open on a rolling basis.

Wishbone Words
A new literary journal that publishes work, including poetry, creative nonfiction, personal essays, and illustrations, by chronically ill and disabled writers and artists.

the archipelago
They publish creative work that rewrites the map. Rewriting the map may involve oceans; islands; travel; movement; the decolonial/transcolonial; multilingualism; geography; cartography; displacement; relationships between unlikely places. They primarily publish short stories, poetry, creative nonfiction essays, fine art, photography, film.. They publish work in  فارسی ,  اَلْعَرَبِيَّةُ , Somali, မြန်မာဘာသာ, bahasa Indonesia, español, français and English. While they prioritize writers of color they are open to submissions from all. They pay for accepted work and also have an ongoing mentorship program which you can learn about at the bottom of this page. To submit, visit the link and email pitches@thearchipelago.org.

This respected literary journal is open to creative work from authors of all backgrounds, but they offer free submissions + fast response times to BIPOC and other mis- and underrepresented writers, here. Craft pays $100 for flash and $200 for short fiction and creative nonfiction.

They want work by non-native English speakers only – poetry, translations, fiction, and hybrid work. Send up to 5 poems, or up to 2 prose pieces, up to 2,500 words each.

Spoonie Magazine
Spoonie Magazine is a new weekly digital publication; they published their first volume in June 2022. “We want art, articles, poetry, and prose by disabled, chronically ill, and / or neurodivergent individuals (or their loved ones) that engages with these topics in some way. We’re not looking for any specific form or perspective; we’re looking for honesty.” They publish art, articles, poetry, and prose (including fiction and creative nonfiction). They are always open for submissions. They also have Spoonie Journal, a print journal, which has specific reading periods.

The Lighthouse / Black Girl Projects
The tagline of The Lighthouse is, “Cultivating spaces of solidarity and safety for southern Black girls to shine through focused programming and research.” They have an extensive guide for pitching articles, including “We … are always looking for thought-provoking stories and other content from marginalized communities, Black girls, (in particular, but not exclusively) and gender non-conforming people. In addition to story and long-form story pitches and op-eds, they accept photography and original artwork for their online blogging platform, The Black Girl Times, and their monthly newsletter, The Black Girl Times Redux. Also, “Each month, we have an editorial theme board (kind of like the mood boards interior designers use) we post on our social media accounts (@luvblkgrls). The theme board is intended to be an inspiration and provocation of thoughts, ideas and feelings. Your response(s) can be literal or abstract and loose. And again, it might not have anything to do with anything we’ve seen.” Pay is $0.10-0.75/word, which averages out to about $200-1,250 per story. Pay for art (graphic design, cartoons and photo essays) is $150-1,000. (Also see their Reese/Brooks/Gilbert Collegiate Leadership Initiative for college-age Black women with interest in reproductive justice, Black liberation, womanism, feminism, advocacy, and/or community organizing; the stipend is $1,500 per academic year for the two-year fellowship, with some mandatory in-person attendance — the deadline to apply is 24 February 2023.)

Singapore Unbound: SUSPECT
Their website says, “SUSPECT grew out of SP Blog, the blog of the NYC-based literary non-profit Singapore Unbound.” They want poetry, literary fiction, essays, and any kind of writings that do not fall into these categories, written or translated into English by authors who identify as Asian. They also publish reviews of books by Asian authors and interviews with Asian writers and artists. Pay is $100, and there is no deadline listed. Scroll down the page to see the listing.

Hyphen Magazine
Their tagline is “Asian America Unabridged”, and their primary audience is Asian Americans in their 20s and mid 30s. They publish a wide range of work including but not limited to creative nonfiction, original fiction, original poetry, as well as articles pertaining to news, politics, and social justice. They pay $25 per published piece. They are only open to submissions by Asian Americans. They have detailed submission guidelines, please read them carefully.

Breath & Shadow
Breath & Shadow only publishes work from people with disabilities. This is how they define disability: “We use the term “disability” broadly to encompass anyone with a physical, mental, emotional, cognitive, or sensory impairment that significantly affects one or more major life functions.” They accept writing on any topic in terms of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction and drama. Pieces do not have to be about disability. The academic or article type nonfiction, including profiles, interviews, and opinion pieces, do have to relate to disability in some way. They pay $20 for poetry and $30 for prose.

Screen Door Review
They only publish work by individuals who are Southern and queer. You can learn more about how they define Southern here. They publish flash fiction and poetry.

Emergent Literary
An exciting new literary journal that accepts a wide range of submissions from Black and Brown authors.

LatinX Lit Audio Mag
LatinX Lit Mag is a safe space for literary work written by authors who identify as Latinx or Hispanic.

smoke and mold: Across/With/Through–Trans Writers in Translation
smoke and mold is a magazine of trans and Two-Spirit nature writing. You can read more about them here and see their Twitter feed here. “The journal will publish 24 issues: 2 each year for 12 years — the amount of time allotted us by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.” For the current submission call, Across/With/Through – Trans Writers in Translation, they say, “The root of this issue is simple: a desire to see more work from trans writers working in a language other than English. How are writers around the globe bending their tools of story and language to push at the strictures and structures of categories, from genre to gender? What is left out of “trans literature” when the only authors included are those working primarily in English? And who are Western audiences missing out on because they aren’t considered “trans enough” in a framework of colonial gender norms reinforced by centuries of war, white supremacy, and eugenics? … We look forward to introducing readers to voices they didn’t know they were missing in our spirit of small, focused issues devoted to uplifting trans writers working today at the intersection of place, geography, land and language.” Submissions will be accepted on a rolling basis from authors, translators, and teams working together, with publication in spring 2023. Pay is $100.


Through the Portal: Stories from a Hopeful Dystopia, and other calls

They welcome international submission, but 90% of the work for the ‘Through the Portal’ anthology will be from people who live in/have ties to Canada. They have extensive guidelines, including, “Send us your eco-fiction stories or prose poems––literary, magical, speculative, solarpunk, supernatural, slipstream, reimagined folk/fairy tales. We want eco-fiction that envisions imaginaries and relationships in a new or changing world. How do we walk through the portal to the other side? How will we address or overcome the legacy of the past: the negative actors and social constructs, environmental devastation, racism, exploitation, pathologies? … We want submissions from everyone, emerging through established, and from all communities––including but not limited to LGBTQ2S+, Black, Indigenous, marginalized, culturally diverse, the deaf and disabled. Stories can be literary or speculative, with the environment playing an essential role in the narrative. We welcome visual content in the form of illustrations accompanying a story or prose poem, or as graphic stories.” They want works up to 3,500 words, and pay CAD0.05/word. The deadline is 31 May 2023.

(They also have other fee-free projects: ONWAACHIGEWIN – Prophecy and AKI Mother Earth anthologies, for which they want fiction submissions from Indigenous writers only: First Nation, Inuit, Métis, Status or Non-Status. “We’d also love to consider Indigenous writers who do not live in Canada, but a restriction is that at least 90% of the authors in the anthology must live in Canada, or continue to maintain ties to Canada”. Pay is CAD0.05/word for these anthologies, and the deadline for both anthologies is 31 March 2023. They have detailed guidelines for each anthology, please read those before submitting.)

fifth wheel press: come sail away anthology
They want submissions on the ‘come sail away’ theme. “For this call, we are looking primarily for poetry, prose poetry, and other experimental writing by queer, trans, and gender-nonconforming writers. Shorter prose pieces (<1500 words) will be considered as well. Visual components and hybrid formats are welcome, but we are not looking for artwork that is not connected to writing in some way at this time.” Do not send work that directly references the pandemic. Pay is $10, and the deadline is 28 February 2023. Details here. See their other projects here.

Random House Canada
The Canadian arm of Random House changed their submission policy have opened their policy exclusively to LGBTQIA2S+ and BIPOC writers, as well as those from other traditionally underrepresented communities. They are particularly looking for “High quality commercial fiction in the following genres: literary, romance, speculative fiction, historical fiction, and mystery. Please note that we do not currently accept screenplays, stage plays, young adult fiction, children’s fiction, or picture book queries. All non-fiction submissions must be submitted via a literary agent.” They are open to submissions internationally, this is not limited to Canadians.

The Black Lawrence Immigrant Writing Series
This opportunity, from Black Lawrence Press, is for immigrants living in the US – for manuscripts of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and hybrid writing. “Poets and authors, at any stage of their careers, who identify as immigrants are welcome to submit a book manuscript of poetry or prose or a hybrid text for consideration. Submissions are accepted year-round. However, selections are made in June and November for a total of two books per year. In addition to publication, marketing, and a standard royalties contract from Black Lawrence Press, authors chosen for the Black Lawrence Immigrant Writing Series will receive a travel stipend of $500, which can be used for book tours or in any manner chosen by the authors.”

Arsenal Pulp Press
A Canadian independent press that publishes a wide variety of work,  prioritizes work by LGBTQ+ and BIPOC authors. We have reviewed them here.

Blind Eye Books
Blind Eye Books publishes science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and romance novels featuring LGBTQ protagonists. They are a print publisher and their book covers are beautifully designed and really stand out. The books they have published have won and been nominated for a number of awards, including the Lambda. We have reviewed them here.

Peepal Tree Press
The world’s leading publisher of Caribbean and Black British writing publishes around 15 titles a year. They try to respond to all submissions within 20 weeks.

Flashpoint Publications
They historically specialized in publishing books of interest to lesbian readers but their focus expanded a while ago to include LGBTQ+ work. They have been using their re-branded name of Flashpoint Publications for over a year now. They mostly publish popular fiction, but they have also published short stories, essays, and anthologies. They have a nonfiction imprint as well. We have reviewed them here.

A small poetry press that publishes work of varying length. Submitting shorter work is free for everyone, but submitting poetry manuscripts is free only for poets who identify as Black. They are always open to these submissions.

We’ve reviewed Sourcebooks here, and their adult nonfiction imprint and their romance and horror imprints are always open to all submissions, but they also deserve to be on this list because their fiction imprint, their mystery imprint, their young adult imprint, and three of their children’s book imprints, all say “Our submissions are currently CLOSED to unagented projects, with the exception of works that directly promote diversity, equality and inclusion. For more information please email InclusiveFiction@Sourcebooks.com.” So if you have work that matches that description in those genres, please reach out to them.

The romance imprint of Hachette Book Group and Grand Central Publishing is open to direct submissions from BIPOC-identifying authors.

Angry Robot
A great science fiction publisher that only accepts direct submissions from Black authors.

Amble Press
Amble Press an imprint of Bywater Books, publishes fiction and narrative nonfiction by queer writers, with a primary, though not exclusive, focus on queer writers of color.

Scholastic Canada
They are open to direct submissions from Canadian authors or focusing on Canadian content, who are from underrepresented communities, including Black writers, Indigenous writers, writers of colour, writers with disabilities, LGBTQIA2S+ writers and writers who identify with other marginalized groups.

Heartdrum is an imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books, which is edited by Cynthia Leitich Smith, and is in partnership with We Need Diverse Books. Native and First Nations writers and writer-illustrators are welcome to query her directly via a form on her website. Native and First Nations illustrators are also invited to reach out.

Tundra Books, Puffin Canada, Penguin Teen Canada
These children and teen focused Canadian imprints are open to direct submissions by underrepresented authors and illustrators only. Authors need not be Canadian.


GIJC23 Fellowship
The 2023 Global Investigative Journalism Conference is offering more than 150 fellowships to both established and promising journalists in developing and transitioning countries, and for journalists from disenfranchised communities, to participate in this event. It’s open to full-time print, online, television, video, radio, documentary, and multimedia journalists in developing or transitioning countries. Experience in investigative or data journalism is a plus. Western journalists based overseas are not eligible. Please check out the full list of eligible countries.

Following the conference, fellows are required to either produce a story directly related to #GIJC23 or give a presentation based on the knowledge you gained at #GIJC23 to your colleagues or the journalism community at-large. Please read the detailed guidelines and examples given in the Google document link provided. Benefits include a round-trip airfare to Gothenburg, Sweden; hotel room for four nights and some meals; and conference registration fee. The fellowship does not include a per diem, visa fees, or transport to and from your home country airport. This is a training conference, and fellows are expected to pay for these costs. Deadline is February 28, 2023. Details here. Submission here.

Las Hermanas Mentorship Program
Las Hermanas is a selection-based mentorship program for traditionally unpublished Latinx kidlit writers and illustrators. It will connect unpublished creatives with current Madrinas. Mentees will benefit from the craft and industry experience of their mentor and will have the opportunity to ask for publishing/marketing related advice and/or receive help with a specific manuscript.

Mentees should be Latinx women and otherwise marginalized people (whose gender identity aligns with femininity), authors and/or illustrators who would like guidance on a specific Picture Book, Chapter Book, Middle Grade or Young Adult project for a period of six months.

​Priority will be given to marginalized/underrepresented community members and those who can demonstrate advanced progress on their projects. Those previously published by indie presses and are currently agented but have not sold a project are eligible to apply. (If you’ve sold or are currently in the process of signing a contract for a project with a publishing house, you are not eligible). Most mentors will be available for 1-2 hours weekly. Specific availability will be determined before the beginning of the mentorship during an interview period. Before you apply, please see the ‘Read Before You Apply’ section carefully. Deadline is February 28, 2023. Details here. Submission here.

International Thriller Writers Scholarships
They are awarding two separate scholarships for ThrillerFest 2023: one scholarship to a BIPOC author writing a thriller manuscript featuring a BIPOC protagonist, and one scholarship to an unpublished author who is writing a mystery/thriller novel (80-100k words). Each scholarship recipient will receive a cash stipend of $1,000 and a free pass to attend ThrillerFest XVIII, which takes place May 30 – June 3, 2023 in New York City. One of the application requirements is a writing sample. Application is via a form. The deadline is 20 March 2023.

Poetry Foundation Grants for Organizations in the USThey have various grants for US-based nonprofit organizations (not individuals) through the following priorities: Continuing relief funding in 2022 to nonprofit poetry and literary arts organizations impacted by the pandemic; Investing in building and strengthening the capacity of BIPOC leadership at nonprofit poetry, literary arts, and publishing organizations, and programs; Cultivating and engaging new, diverse audiences for poetry; and Fostering new collaborations and partnerships, as well as innovation and new technologies in the field. The grants range from $10,000-$100,000, and the deadline to apply is 1 March 2023.(Poetry Foundation also has grants and awards for individuals, and you can read about them here. Keep an eye out for this year’s application announcement dates, including for the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships for young US-based poets, which usually open in March. And Poetry Magazine’s Submittable is here.) 

Graywolf Press African Fiction Prize
The prize will be awarded for a first novel by an African author primarily residing in Africa. They are seeking novels that are engaged with the current moment and that approach contemporary issues with innovative prose and fresh perspectives.
Submissions must be full-length, previously unpublished first novels, or first novels published in Africa that have not been distributed or available for sale outside of the continent of Africa.
The submission portal for this prize will be open in February. They will award $12,000 advance, and publication. The deadline is 28 February 2023.

Poetry Northwest: James Welch Prize for Indigenous Writers
This is a poetry prize for Indigenous writers in the US – “new, emerging, and established poets who are community-recognized members of tribal nations within the United States and its trust territories (including American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, Chamorros, and American Samoans). Only poets who have not published more than one book-length collection are eligible; however, previous publication is not a requirement.” Submit up to three poems. Apart from cash prizes of $1,000 each, two poets will also be invited to read at a literary venue. The prize has been Kickstarter-funded for the next few years – see here. The deadline is 28 February 2023. Details here and here

The Welkin Writing Prize
This is for a piece of narrative prose of up to 400 words. “The competition is open to all forms of narrative prose, be that flash fiction, short-short, vignette, haibun, hermit crab, prose poem or work that sits outside such labels.” The contest is open to all writers. Apart from the top three prizes, there are other prizes of £25 each – for a writer with a disability or chronic health condition, LGBTQ+ writer, working class writer, writer whose first (or home) language isn’t English, carer for an adult dependent, new writer, as well as for historical fiction, speculative fiction, and humorous prose. The prizes are £150, £75, and £50; £25 each for special categories. The deadline is 28 February 2023.

Black Caucus of American Library Association Awards
This is for the best self-published ebooks by African American authors born in the US. The prizes are for fiction and poetry genres. They have a prize of $2,500 in each category, and the deadline is 28 February 2023.

Society of Authors: Dursilla Harvey Access Fund
These are small grants for UK-based/British writers, giving authors support for travel, subsistence, childcare or access needs for events, residencies, and retreats. Usual grants will be under £100 and no more than £350. They are accepted on a rolling basis starting 1 January 2023, and they are accepting applications on an ongoing basis.
(Society of Authors also has awards for works in progress as well as contingency funds – all their grants are here.)

PEN America: US Writers Aid Initiative
This is intended to assist fiction and nonfiction authors, poets, playwrights, screenwriters, translators, and journalists, who are facing acute financial need following an emergency situation. To be eligible, applicants must be based in the United States, be professional writers, and be able to demonstrate that this one-time grant will be meaningful in helping them to address a short-term emergency situation; there are other eligibility requirements, too. This grant is not for subsidizing writing-related expenses. Writers do not have to be PEN members to apply. Various deadlines are listed for 2023 (subject to change): 1 April, 1 July, and 1 October.

The Writing Barn Scholarship
The Writing Barn has a small but budding scholarship program available for our programming. Scholarships are awarded on the following criteria: seriousness of purpose, talent and financial need. They also offer specific Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity scholarships for BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, Neurodiverse writers, and writers with disabilities.

Emergency Fund for Diverse Creatives and Educators
WNDB provides emergency grants to diverse authors, illustrators, publishing professionals, and K-12 educators who are experiencing dire financial need. They aim to bolster these marginalized groups by giving grants between $500 and $1,000 each.

Forward Funds: Creative Capital x Skoll Foundation Creator Fund
The crowdsourcing platform for creatives, Kickstarter, now has Forward Funds. Their website says, “Forward Funders are foundations, nonprofits, and organizations that back Kickstarter campaigns related to their visions and missions around a more creative and equitable world. Each Forward Funder makes a public commitment and then backs projects just like anyone else—through single pledges that bring the works one step closer to reality.” One such fund is the $500,000 Creative Capital x Skoll Foundation Fund. This backs projects by Asian, Black, Indigenous, and Latinx creators in the US on the crowdfunding platform – “Effective immediately, funds will be awarded on an ongoing basis to creators with active projects across all of Kickstarter’s categories: Arts, Comics & Illustration, Design & Tech, Film, Food & Craft, Games, Music, and Publishing.” Projects launched on Kickstarter following their rules are eligible, and creators can nominate themselves for specific Forward Funds via a form. This is for both, creators and organizations.

BIPOC scholarship for Emily Harstone’s classes at The Writer’s Workshop at Authors Publish
Each time Emily Harstone offers a class through the Writer’s Workshop at Authors Publish, there is now an opportunity for one to two writers who identify as BIPOC to take it for free. If you registered last year, please note that the form re-set in January, and you are encouraged to fill it out again. Last year about 50 people who filled out the form, and out of that 14 received a scholarship.

Emily Harstone is the author of many popular books, including The Authors Publish Guide to Manuscript SubmissionsSubmit, Publish, Repeat, and The 2022 Guide to Manuscript Publishers.

She regularly teaches three acclaimed courses on writing and publishing at The Writer’s Workshop at Authors Publish. You can follow her on Facebook here.


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