Coming in October 2019: The 2020 Open Call for Chapbooks

THE OPEN CALL

Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC (SwEP) is hosting a chapbook open call to find some fresh work and new voices. With over 70 publications under our belt, SwEP works hard to represent our authors and create publications of which our authors are proud. Please visit our website and check out some of our publications to see if we are a good fit for your writing, then polish up your best pieces to submit.

From our submissions, our guest judges will choose three chapbooks for publication. All our publications include an ISBN, Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC contract, and creative control over cover and production (including release date, cover artwork). For more information on what SwEP provides its authors or to see a general contract, please contact us.

There will not be a ranking system for chosen submissions (1st place, 2nd place, etc), instead, our judges will choose three (3) to publish. All three chosen publications will receive the same award of 25 author copies.

WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR

SwEP is seeking previously unpublished manuscripts of poems 25-75 pages in length. We are looking for well-crafted, visceral and daring material. We are looking for diverse voices and are particularly interested in poetry that promotes an innate intersectionality of social issues and a deep respect for humanity. We like our poetry achingly raw and true to who YOU are as a writer. We have a goal of promoting marginalized voices and those who are most often overlooked. If you feel your work doesn’t have a place to ‘fit,’ it may be perfect for us.

Open to writers worldwide, the open call is facilitated as a blind submission process via SwEP Submissions Manger. Additionally, only submitted will be considered for further SwEP publications and features. Even if our judges don’t choose your manuscript, you must submit to be considered by SwEP.

HINTS

  • Get to know our press to make sure we are a good fit for you and your publication goals. Explore our website, stalk our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, order some of our publications, review our works on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads.
  • Send your best work. Make sure your collection is complete, edited, and polished before hitting the submit button. The more polished it is, the more likely it will chosen for publication.
  • Follow the submission guidelines.
  • We insist on blind submissions. If you submit a manuscript with your name on it, it will not be sent to the judges and automatically disqualified.

HOW TO SUBMIT

Swimming with Elephants Publications accepts submissions and payment of the entry fee ($25) exclusively through our online submission manager, Submittable. We are not able to accept submissions via email or postal mail. The submission fee is strictly to cover the price of production and pay our guest judges for their time and hard work. To learn more about why we charge a submission fee, click here.

All entries are read blind. All manuscripts should include a title page (listing only the title of the collection). Manuscripts should be paginated and formatted in an easy-to-read font such as Times New Roman. (More creative fonts may be incorporated during production.)

Identifying information for the author should not be included anywhere on the manuscript itself, including in the name of your file or in the “title” field in Submittable. Please include a brief bio and your publication goals in the cover letter on Submittable, which will be made accessible to the editorial panel only after the Finalist manuscripts have been chosen. It is important to include your publication goals. We are a small press and have limited abilities. If your goals are outside of our abilities, we will let you know.

Simultaneous submissions are acceptable and encouraged, but please notify us by withdrawing your manuscript from Submittable immediately if it is accepted for publication elsewhere.

Multiple submissions (the submission of more than one manuscript to the open call) are permitted. A separate submission fee is required for each submission.

OUR 2020 GUEST JUDGES

 

SaraEve Fermin (she/her) is a performance poet and epilepsy/mental health advocate from northeast New Jersey. A 2015 Best of the Net nominee, she has performed for both local and national events, including the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Los Angeles 2015 Care and Cure Benefit to End Epilepsy in Children, as a reader for Great Weather for MEDIA at the 2016 NYC Poetry Festival on Governors Island, and in 2019 was a part of the viral #FreeChurroProject. A poetry editor, contributing blogger, and book reviewer, her work can be found or is forthcoming in GERM Magazine, Words Dance, Rising Phoenix Press, Great Weather for MEDIA’s Birds Fall Silent in the Mechanical Sea, and Homology Lit, among others. Her first full length poetry anthology, You Must Be This Tall to Ride, was published by Swimming with Elephants Publishing in 2016 and her follow up, View from the Top of the Ferris Wheel, was publish by Clare Songbird Publishing House in 2017. Her third book of poetry, Trauma Carnival, was released in March 2019 (Swimming with Elephants Publications). She believes in the power of foxes, hair dye and living #furiouslyhappy. She loves Instagram and follows back: @SaraEve41

Kat Heatherington was delighted to join the SwEP Parade in Fall 2017 with the publication of The Bones of This Land (available from amazon.com), which was the first-place winner in the chapbook open call that year. As a guest judge for 2019, she is looking forward to reading a wonderful variety of poetry, ideas and styles. She has been writing her whole life, and performing and publishing poetry for longer than she wants to think about. She lives in Sunflower River intentional community south of Albuquerque. Kat can be found online at sunflowerriver.org, and on instagram at @yarrowkat (photography) and @sometimesaparticle (poetry).

Zachary Kluckman, the National Poetry Awards 2014 Slam Artist of the Year and 2015-2016 Slam Organizer of the Year is a Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Gold Medal Poetry Teacher, Red Mountain Press National Poetry Prize recipient and a founding organizer of the 100 Thousand Poets for Change program, now recognized as the largest poetry reading in history. Kluckman has appeared multiple times at the National and Individual World Poetry slams and tours the nation as a spoken word artist. Recently he was one of 3 poets invited to represent the United States at the Kistrech International Poetry Festival in Kenya. He previously served as Spoken Word Editor for Pedestal magazine and has authored two poetry collections; The Animals in Our Flesh, Red Mountain Press 2012 and Some of It is Muscle, Swimming With Elephants Publications 2014.

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Chapbook Open Call 2019 Selections

Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC has concluded our Open Call for Chapbook Submissions. We had literally over three times as many submissions as last year and many, many quality works to choose from. This was no easy task.

We are excited to be welcoming four new poets to our Parade.

Many thanks guest judges Maxine Peseke and Gina Marselle who did a wonderful job selecting the manuscripts. Not only did they read, discuss, and select the manuscripts, but they did an AMAZING job writing the reply letters. Like many writers, I receive lots of regret letters and many are generic and curt. Sometimes it doesn’t even seem like the publisher read the submission. But these two ladies did an amazing job reaching out and giving personalized feedback to every submitter.  I am grateful to have them on the team and representing Swimming with Elephants Publications.

We would like to thank everyone who submitted and all of our amazing supporters who have kept us afloat over these past five years. We are grateful and very appreciative.

Keep your eyes on the site and the Facebook page for updates on the progress of our new publications.

 

And now…

…without further ado, the selected manuscripts are…..

….in no particular order….

drum roll

…actually they are in alphabetical order….

drum roll

Belly-up Rosehip: a Tongue Blue with Mud Songs

by Tyler Dettloff

I’ve Been Cancelling Appointments with My Psychiatrist for Two Years Now

by Sean Dever

Shorn: apologies & vows

by Benjamin Bormann

Thalassophile

by Abigayle Goldstein

Swimming with Elephants Publications Chapbook Open Call 2018 Has Closed

Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC has closed submissions for our Chapbook open call in 2018.

We had a great submission experience with more than double the submissions of previous years. Our judges are working diligently to read all the of the wonderful manuscripts and make their decisions.

The three manuscripts chosen for publication in 2019 will be announced in January 2019. Please stay tuned and follow along for the announcement of our chosen manuscripts and up coming publication information.

We have an excited 2019 planned for Swimming with Elephants Publications, including the creation of the Weekly Write, new releases from our Parade of Poets (including Jessica Helen Lopez and SaraEve Fermin), and the continuation of our yearly anthology, Parade. We will once again run an Open Call for Chapbook is the fall of 2019, as well as be looking for future features for our Weekly Write and artwork submission. Keep an eye on the website for upcoming Submission Calls.

Currently, we are looking for Prose Submissions for an upcoming anthology focusing on Eating Disorders. If you have a story regarding Eating Disorders, whether it is a personal telling or an observation of another or even a commentary regarding the issue, please consider submitting it for the upcoming anthology. Find more information on our Submittable Page. Chosen submission receive publication, two contributor copies of the anthology, and the ability to purchase the anthology at publisher cost for the lifetime of the publication.

We are also seeking artwork for two upcoming publications in the Spring. We do not charge a submission fee for artwork and chosen artwork will be purchase from the artist. Please see our Submittable Page for more information on what we are looking for and how to submit.

Seeking Prose on the Subject of Eating Disorders

Seeking Non-Fiction Prose for the second edition of the anthology Light as a Feather which focuses on eating disorders.

View Submittable Form here.

Assumptions about eating disorders have historically fallen upon the shoulders of feminine presenting individuals with white skin, typically suffering from anorexia. However, the reality is much more complex, touching on people from every race, creed, socio-economic background, gender identity, sexual orientation, with each person standing at different crossroads of privilege and marginalization. We still discuss eating disorders in hushed voices, with shame and confusion cracking our words. It is the intent of this publication to shed a little more light on this subject.

This is where YOU come in!

We want to know your story. You do not have to be a  professional writer to be considered for this work. We are looking specifically for nonfiction prose, with special consideration for humor, confessions, and memoir.

You can write about anything that comes to mind, as long as it is authentic to your experience. It doesn’t have to be “heavy” or overly serious, unless you want/need it to be; we are looking for raw, honest pieces and believe that you would contribute a deep and meaningful facet to the larger story of hope and resilience.

Also, different view points are welcome. Perhaps you have lived with a person experiencing an eating disorder and have a story to tell or maybe you are in the medical field and have an introspective on the disorder you would like to share.

To Submit:

  • All submissions will be done through Submittable. Find the form by clicking here.
  • Please submit 1-3 pieces of short prose (3000 words max).
  • Please title your work and edit to the best of your ability for stronger consideration.
  • Include a brief cover letter and bio in the space provided by Submittable.
  • Writers are encouraged to use their real names. However, pen names will be accepted. No submissions will be accepted under “Anonymous.”
  • Contributors will be given two contributor copies and the ability to purchase more copies at publisher cost.
  • All proceeds are donated to a non-profit TBD
  • We would love to broaden the view of eating disorders, so if you feel your story is unusual/atypical, it might be just want we are seeking.

The first edition of Light as a Feather was published in 2014. It’s described as- “With themes centered on eating disorders and mental health issues, many may hesitate to pick up this collection, expecting either a morose and somber compendium of struggle, or perhaps thinking there is nothing here they can relate to. They would be wrong on both counts. Light as a Feather is a potent and surprisingly gentle assemblage of voice and experience threaded together with a delicacy that almost belies the harsh, at times almost violent, brutality of body image, external perspectives and self doubt that go hand in hand with the issues being discussed.” For reference, please check out the first edition of Light as a Feather,available through all major bookstores/distributors. Click here to find it on Amazon.

In Search of Amazing Artwork

Are you an artist who has interest in seeing your work pass through the hands of an audience all around the world? Do you want to get paid for your artistic creations?

Consider submitting your artwork to our open call. Currently, author and poet, Jessica Helen Lopez, is looking for artwork to represent the cover of her upcoming book. This publication will be a second and more complete edition of her best selling chapbook, Cunt.Bomb. However, as opposed to the stark, plainness of her first cover, she would like this one to be colorful, symbolic, and eye catching.

Do you think you have some artwork that would fit this collection? It could be brand new or something hidden in your archives? Let us take a look at your art!

For inspiration, grab a copy of the original Cunt.Bomb. or check out some of Jessica’s poetry on youtube.

Please submit your file in a JPEG or PNG format through our submittable account. You may submit as many different times as you like. Include a short cover letter to let us know what your goals are as an artist.

We are not seeking a full cover design but an image that can be place on a book cover. We are capable of editing and/or resizing the artwork as needed. Although if you are interested in creating the full cover, we can discuss that process at time of selection.

There is no fee to submit your artwork. The artwork chosen by the author will receive a commission plus publication.

If you would like more information, please send us an email.