Thinking about International Women’s Day, sometimes you wonder how any of us manage to live to grow up, the world can be so hard on women; and sometimes you want to celebrate everything we can be. Being of a cheerful disposition, we’ve gone for celebration.
We thought today was an excellent time to launch our submission call for an anthology of women’s writing. We are giving you a spectacularly long run in on this one, because we want it to be truly amazing, and because we are planning some writing workshops which will be run by editors Cherry Potts and Catherine Pestano (as soon as the funding is in place, we’ll let you know!). These will definitely be available online, for maximum reach, and may also be in person, depending on where we can find suitable writer-friendly venues and what the position is with Covid.
Our October 2023 Anthology is aimed firmly at older women, lesbians and women from the global majority. Our theme is menopause, and the book will be published on Menopuase day 2023 (October the 1st), we want your stories, flash and poems that go waaay beyond the empty nest and feelings of sexual redundancy. Tell us something we don’t know, go wild and magnificent…tell us about surgically induced menopause, unexpected benefits, the freedom of not bleeding… whatever genre you want (within our guidelines), but surprise us.
We’ve just started looking at the submissions for our anthologies and have decided on titles, for books which were just anthology shaped holes in the schedule – which somehow makes them feel so much more real!
Well that was a suprise. When we cranked open the vault at Submittable to see what you’d sent us, there were hundreds of stories and poems in there! Like a spider nest full of baby spiderlings. We thought spiderlit was a niche of minute proportions, but it turns out lots of you share our passion for creatives with eight legs and a talent for weaving.
This does mean a lot of reading. We will do it as fast as we can! Definite ‘No’s will be out fairly quickly, but then we’ll have to compare the ‘maybe’s and the ‘yes’es and see what’s what. There already some themes and similarities rising from the mass, so we’ll need to decide if some pieces are too similar, and so on.
A note from our friends at University of Greenwich
Story Cities – a call for flash fictions
‘The city is redundant: it repeats itself so that something will stick in the mind . . .
Memory is redundant: it repeats signs so that the city can begin to exist’
– Marco Polo to Kublai Khan in Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities
In Calvino’s masterful work, Marco Polo explores images of distant cities where time, space, objects and individuals are presented in visions. Each description is filled with varying degrees of enchantment, absurdity, impossibility and allure.
The weaving of these accounts questions what is real and unreal; recollections of disparate lands invoke the realisation that perhaps all reveal a single place so that:
‘the more one was lost in unfamiliar quarters of distant cities, the more one understood the other cities he had crossed to arrive there’ (Calvino).
The city is a place where populations meet and strangers pass one another. Where stories are created, told, remembered and discarded. One city connects us to the memory or spirit of another; repeating rituals and behaviours which provide spectacle for the tourist
and uniformity for the global citizen. As we move within the city we operate within the systems that transport us, the signs that guide us, the encounters that confront us and the thoughts which carry us.
Brief – call for submissions
This brief invites submissions for new short works of fiction in any genre that address the theme of the city. It asks you to explore the journeys we take; the situations we encounter and interact with; the dialogues and connections we make – in order to highlight universally shared experiences and understandings of the city and / or imagine them
Working under one (per story) of the following themes:
the Market, Square, Café, Hotel, Park, Station and Port, Main Street, Side Street, Crossroads, On the train, On the bus / tram – writers are asked to create narratives that speak of / to / through the city.
Story Cities is a collaborative research project initiated by lecturers at the University of Greenwich, London Rosamund Davies, Senior Lecturer in Media and Creative Writing and Kam Rehal, Senior Lecturer in Graphic and Digital Design. It explores ways in which
stories might respond to, reference, reflect and reimagine the city. Selected works will be published in a physical book that readers can carry into cities – to experience the city through stories. Acting as guides, companions and tools for reflection, we hope that the stories can encourage the reader to experience the city differently.
You are invited to participate in this project by submitting new short works of fiction in any genre that address the theme of the city.
There are a set of guidelines that we ask contributors to work with:
1. All contributors must be aged 18 and over
2. Each story can be between 1–500 words in length (no longer), excluding title
3. Up to 3 stories may be submitted by each contributor
4. Names of specific places must not be used – nor should characters be given names. Your story should be written so that it works in any city
5. All submissions must be works of fiction and the author’s own work, unpublished and in English. If this work is under consideration elsewhere you must inform us immediately if it is accepted
6. All work must be submitted with author’s name and a contact email – please do not supply any additional contact details at this stage
7. All work must be submitted by the named author and he/she must hold rights to the material
8. All contributors must sign and complete the consent form and submit this with
9. There will be no monetary reward for inclusion in the publication but a copy of the book will be presented to each contributor. Copyright will be retained by the author, with licence for exclusive publication for a to-be-agreed period not exceeding one year.
Once we have received and considered all submissions we will edit an initial selection of stories for publication.
If you have any questions please contact:
Kam Rehal and Rosamund Davies at the University of Greenwich on: StoryCities@gre.ac.uk +44(0)20 8331 9013
SUBMIT TO StoryCities@gre.ac.uk Deadline for submissions: 16/09/2018
We are short listing the songs received for Dusk, and because of the geographical element we are short of songs for the following areas: Inverness, Birmingham, Lancaster, Rossendale, Nottingham, Redruth, possibly London, possibly Barnstaple.
So if anyone is, or knows a singer/songwriter, or a folk singer or a community choir, in those areas who might have a suitable traditional or original song in their repertoire, please alert them to our need!
Come on writers, you’ve got two days left to send in something wintery for The Story Sessions deadline 4th January. If you need some inspiration have a look at the videos from Solstice Shorts. Story or poem under 2000 words. Must be to theme.
We have a small budget for travel expenses so you can get to us to read on Wednesday 18th January 7pm, at The Brockley Deli 14a Brockley Cross SE4 1BE
We video/ audio record the performances so that there is a (small) chance of world-wide reknown, not just the SE London crowd who turn up on the night, and its an opportunity to give your calling card to us as publishers. We have a resident actor to read for you if it’s too far for you to come, although we only do a maximum of 2 stories/poems that way.
WRITERS AND MUSICIANS: you have until 23:59 tomorrow to submit your story, poem or music on the theme of Shortest Night, for This year’s Solstice Shorts Festival to be held on 21st December 2016.
EVERYBODY especially Shakespeare enthusiasts: Tomorrow is our free Midsummer Night in the Garden event. It looks like the weather will be fine so book you place via the library on 0208 314 7794 bring a picnic blanket and some insect repellant! We will be selling books, strawberries and cake, and there will be alcohol available for a donation.
Because it’s a leap year the Solstice is actually today. looking at the torrential rain I’m glad we went with the day people think is Midsummer even though it isn’t. quite.