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Taking Submissions: Apparition Lit November 2023 Window (Early)

November 30, 2023

Submission Window: November 15th – 30th, 2023
Payment: $0.05 per word for fiction, $50 per poem
Theme: Blight

Apparition Lit is a speculative fiction magazine that publishes themed issues four times a year.

We publish poems and stories between 1k-5k words in January, April, July, and October.

We also hold monthly flash fiction contests between the 1st and 15th of each month. Flash stories must be under 1000 words and be inspired or based on the chosen theme.

Read our submission guidelines and submit your work through our Moksha portal.


Apparition is a semi-pro rate magazine, paying $0.05 per word, minimum of $50.00 dollars for short stories and a flat fee of $50 per poem. If we accept your story, we are purchasing the right to publish the story online and in the quarterly edition. Rights will revert back to the artist after one year.

Equity Initiative

As Apparition Lit works to create a more equitable publishing community, we recognize that our open submission period is concurrent with some other really great literary magazines where marginalized writers also like to submit. Voices should be heard and we want to help increase that opportunity.

Our submission window will remain open for an additional week each quarter for writers who identify as BIPOC and self-identify in their cover letter. 

We will also accept simultaneous submissions from writers who identify as BIPOC or LGBTQIA+. Please just note how you identify in your cover letter, that it is a simultaneous submission, and see further details in the menu below on how to submit for each category.

Past Contributors

Once you are published by Apparition Lit, you join our tiny but mighty family. We love our alumni and will always do what we can to support their publishing career.

We want to continually discover and champion new voices and different point-of-views. If we have published your work in any of the quarterly issues, please wait 3-4 submission periods before subbing again.

If you’ve won a monthly flash fiction contest, feel free to submit for the quarterly issues right away, but please wait 6 months after winning the flash contest to submit flash again.

What We’re Looking For

Please note that we will not accept AI-generated content submissions. This includes stories or poetry that are written or co-written by AI.

We are open to unpublished speculative fiction stories and spec fic poems!

Speculative fiction is weird, almost unclassifiable. It’s fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and literary. Send us your strange, misshapen stories with enough emotional heft to break a heart, with prose that’s as clear and delicious as broth. We love proactive characters and settings that feel lived in and real enough to touch. Stories with style, stories with emotion, stories with character. We want it all.

Please see “How to Submit” in each of the drop down categories below for formatting, subject line, and cover letter guidelines. Submissions that are sent outside of submission period or do not follow guidelines will be deleted unread.

If you want to better determine if your writing fits with our style, you can purchase past issues or check out our stories page.

What We Won’t Accept

We do not accept simultaneous submissions or multiple submission. Please send only one submission for poems and one submission for short story per theme. (See Equity Initiative for exceptions). If a story is withdrawn and a separate story is sent during the same themed submission period, it is considered a multiple submission. (This includes the extended BIPOC writer submission window. It is still considered the same theme.) Multiple submissions are not accepted, including withdrawn stories.

At this time, we do not accept nonfiction, reprints or resubmissions, excerpts from other works, or unsolicited interviews or reviews. We do not accept stories that have been published, whether in paper or on the internet. Do not send us stories we have rejected in the past. We currently do not accept translations.

Hard Passes

  • While we love dark stories with macabre elements, we will not accept stories with gratuitous and graphic violence or rape, this includes any type of child abuse including sexual abuse.
  • We will not consider stories that have extreme, purposeless violence toward animals.
  • We do not publish erotica or thinly-veiled fan fiction.
  • Stories sent outside of the reading periods will be deleted unread.
  • Stories or poems with attached/embedded images or graphics files will be deleted unread.

Our Themes & Reading Periods – 2024:

Apparition Lit is open for poetry and short story submissions four times a year.

Our submission periods are extended by a week for BIPOC creators only.

BLIGHT (Submission period: November 15-30, 2023  CLOSED – Publishing January 2024)

MERCURIAL (Submission period: February 15-28 CLOSED – Publishing April 2024)

ANACHRONISM (General submission period: May 15-31 is CLOSED – Publishing July 2024)

HARBINGER (General submission period: August 15-31 is CLOSED – Publishing October 2024)

Please note that we will not accept AI-generated content submissions. This includes stories or poetry that are written or co-written by AI.

We will only accept previously unpublished, complete stories between 1000-5000 words. If the story is complete with an extra hundred words, then it will still be considered. Any stories over 5,100 words, excerpted from a larger work, or incorrectly formatted, will automatically be rejected.

We are now accepting submissions through Moksha. Please follow the guidelines below when submitting your work:

  1. Format the story using theShunn manuscript  — you do not need to include your physical address or phone number.
  2. Please only use Times New Roman or Arial font in your document.
  3. Name the file using the story title and your last name, i.e. THE SWAMP EXCHANGE_Barker. This helps us find your story in the submissions list.
  4. Provide a brief cover letter that includes your full name, the title of the short story, word count, and any relevant publications. Please do not include a synopsis.

All acceptances and rejections will be emailed by the 15th day of the following month after submissions close. We currently do not have the available time or staff to provide personalized feedback on rejected submissions.

If you have not heard back by the 15th, send a query to: [email protected] with the title of your submission. Before emailing, please check your spam folder.

To make sure you receive all emails from Apparition Lit, please add us to your Safe Senders list in your email client.

Via: Apparition Lit.


November 30, 2023


Apparition Lit
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Apparition Lit
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