Dear writers of the Black literary community,
We invite you to submit a previously unpublished letter addressed to any person or group—to writers, to a friend, to a family member, to fellow Black writers, to the publishing community, to us—and speak about whatever you wish as it loosely pertains to you as a writer. It could be a reflection or a call to action or an anecdote or a meditation—we welcome both formal and personal approaches to letters.
Our intention is to select and publish a collection of these letters in Poets & Writers Magazine. Here are some examples of the kinds of letters we’ve shared with our readers in the past:
“A Letter From a Black Woman in Publishing on the Industry’s Cruel Hypocritical Insistence That Words Matter” (6.9.2020) by Mariah Stovall
“Dear President: A Message for the Next Commander in Chief From Fifty American Poets and Writers” (September/October 2016)
We will pay between $60 and $300, depending on length, for both print rights and online rights. While we are currently looking for letter submissions by June 25 to publish in our September/October print issue, we are eager to hear from you whether it’s this week or next year. Please e-mail us at email@example.com.
We want to publish more Black writers in our pages. Those of us who have the power to assign and acquire pieces have often failed to do so in the past. We hope this call and future openings at the magazine will be the first step toward a more equitable publication.
We know this call comes at a time when so much is already being asked of the Black community—we want to give you a platform, not to place a burden on you to process, explain, or offer solutions. Thank you for your time and consideration.
The editors of Poets & Writers Magazine