We like short stories and micro stories. We like narrative and minimalism and words that dance across the page. We like dialogue that is direct and sounds like a real person talking. We believe in Elmore Leonard’s Rules of Writing numbers 3 & 4:
- Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue.
- Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said” … he admonished gravely.
If a photograph is worth only a thousand words, then a great line or three of a poem is the silver halide of our dreams. Poetry should grab us and make us want to feel ready to fix the world, or destroy it if need be, to defy gravity and end time.
For us, nonfiction is a place where memoir and journalism and criticism can meet and have a coffee and discuss the beauty of a maparium without falling for ideology.
We don’t like sci-fi, fantasy or horror, but occasionally fancy a good ghost story, or a new take on myths. Just no zombies, dragons, vampires or orcs. When it comes to mysteries and westerns, we have a short attention span. We find blatant erotica boring.
We like photography. Please query first and include a web page where we might see your work.
It should go without saying that what you read here is generally what we’re looking for. We are literate adults, submit accordingly.
Please submit no more than five poems, or one short story (no more than 2000 words), or two short-short stories (less than 500 words is ideal), or one creative non-fiction piece (no more than 3000 words). We insist that you send multiple pieces in a single file, and, most important, we insist that you start a new poem, or piece on a new page. Please add a 50-word or less bio. We allow simultaneous submissions so long as you notify us if your work has been accepted elsewhere.
If you have not heard from us within a reasonable amount of time (2-3 months), a gentle query as to the status of your submission should suffice to get our attention.
Though, at this time, we can not pay anything other than our undying gratitude and appreciation, we ask for first North American serial rights only. Copyright reverts to the author upon publication. Acceptance will be for our quarterly online issues, with consideration for the annual “best of” print edition.
Nixes Mate does NOT accept unsolicited manuscripts for its book series. Thank you.
Cover image by Robert L. Sheridan, used with permission