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Taking Submissions: Ember – The Carrot Is Mightier Than The Sword

December 31, 2015


Deadline: December 31st, 2015
Payment: We pay 2 cents per word or $20 per work, whichever is more

Are you feeling inspired to write a short story but stuck for ideas? “Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things” is currently looking to purchase a themed submission entitled:


Ember 2.2 Front CoverScheduled for the Spring 2016 issue, the chosen story will bring to life the amazing cover which has been specially designed by by artist and illustrator Sean Greenberg.

Deadline: December 31, 2015

Let your imagination go wild for this one! We want your best, most creative stories using the picture as inspiration, or even telling the story of the artwork itself – it’s up to you! Our submission guidelines for this piece are the same as always and can be accessed at http://emberjournal.org/submission-guidelines/.

We are really looking forward to seeing your work! Surprise us. Entertain us. Make us forget that it’s a cold, wet, November out there and brighten up our lives with your scintillating wordplay and deft descriptions. Please send in your work by the end of December in order to make the publishing deadlines.



  • There is no special submission queue for this call. Submissions are made through our online submission form.
  • You do not need to title your manuscript “The Carrot is Mightier than the Sword” but you should give your submission this title so we know it is in response to this call.
  • We are primarily looking for prose for this call, but metered poetry will also be considered.


Ember is a semiannual journal of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction for all age groups. Submissions for and by readers aged 10 to 18 are strongly encouraged.


Submissions are managed through our Submission Manager, powered bySubmittable . If you submit by e-mail, we will direct you to use our Submission Manager instead. A link to the submission manager can be found at the bottom of this page, after you have read through the submission guidelines.


Most forms are considered, both metered and unmetered, traditional and experimental. Poems from 3 to 100 lines have the best chance of acceptance. You may submit up to three poems at a time, but a separate submission form must be completed for each poem.
Short Stories
Short Stories up to 12,000 words will be considered. However, more important than word count is the quality of your work: we are looking for excellent, polished writing that pulls us into an engaging story.
Flash Fiction
The ideal length for Flash Fiction submissions is about 500 to 750 words, but pieces up to 1500 words may be submitted in this category. Remember that Flash Fiction is not the same as “vignette;” even very short works should still present an interesting and compelling story.
Creative Non-Fiction
Creative Non-Fiction is the beautiful union of exposition and literature. Tell us a true story, and tell it well. Word count limits are the same as for Short Stories.


Profanity, Vulgarity, Sex, and Violence
As an all-ages publication, our refusal to print profanity/vulgarity is based on an understanding of our audience, not on censorship. Similarly, while allusions to the occurrence of love and sex, anger and violence may be integral to some stories, we tend to err on the side of making Ember accessible to middle-grade readers. Submissions with graphic and/or explicit descriptions of sex or violence will be rejected without comment.
Prose: Great Stories, Compelling Characters
Ember is looking for great writing that tells a compelling story, regardless of length. Even very short pieces, like flash fiction, should tell a story, though there will certainly be fewer dramatic elements developed than we’d see in a longer piece or novel. The presence of “story” is what distinguishes flash fiction from “vignette.”
Poetry: Paint With Language
For poetry, we also look for a story, but the story may be implied. Of course, there is a lot more flexibility for poetry, and some styles tend to emphasize descriptive language over storytelling. We’ve also seen some poetry submissions which go too far, focusing so much on story that they are little more than prose stories with poem-style line breaks. So, for poetry, we tend to use the very subjective measure of accepting poems which make us say, “Wow!”
Be Accessible, Not Condescending
We believe that even our younger readers are smart and capable of advanced reasoning and interpretation. However, not every accepted piece will be appropriate for or of interest to ten-year-olds, who are the youngest readers in our target audience. Many readers will simply skip over stories and poems which exceed their developmental maturity. Submissions with the best chance of acceptance will be meaningful on some level to both older and younger readers without being condescending. We also consider works which require some maturity for full comprehension, so long as the content is not inappropriate for younger readers who might choose to explore the more advanced pieces.


We pay 2 cents per word or $20 per work, whichever is more, for worldwide first publication rights in English. You retain all other rights (including other languages, audio, and reprint rights), but we ask that you not reprint the work in another publication for six months after it first appears in Ember.

Via: Ember Journal.


December 31, 2015