Star*Line Magazine Wants Speculative Poetry from Black Authors for Historic Issue

Star*Line issue 43.4 will exclusive feature Black voices, and the magazine wants your work! This week, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association‘s flagship publication put out a call for submissions for its historic October issue, seeking science fiction, fantasy, and horror poetry from Black writers.

The issue, entitled “All Black Everything,” will be guest-edited by Black & First Nations poet and short fiction writer Melanie Stormm, whose work can be found here. Additionally, it will feature cover art by a Black artist, who has yet to be announced. You can find more details, as well as a Q&A about the issue, here.

From the call for submissions:

While the greater world of science fiction & fantasy has made some hard-earned progress in exploring, promoting, and recognizing the work of Black authors in the field, it remains that Black voices continue to be underrepresented and marginalized. We see Star*Line Issue 43.4 as an opportunity to advance the art, increase the wonder and sense of discovery that readers can share in, and do what is right. It is only a beginning.

In so doing, it is our goal to make a statement: Black speculative fiction and poetry IS speculative fiction and poetry. White voices, particularly white male voices, have been incidentally and intentionally centered in the field for generations. Through this fact, the lens through which a community evaluates a genre that can imagine anything is intrinsically limited. Readers and writers need authentic voices and perspectives delivered to them with the same ease and access as other offerings. Bit by bit, through consistent effort, our systems have been shaped into what they are. Bit by bit, through consistent and revolutionary effort, we can shape them into something better. Speculative fiction and poetry have everything to gain.

We are actively and eagerly seeking submissions of science fiction, fantasy, and horror poetry from Black poets worldwide. Who does this include? It includes Black African poets on the continent of Africa, Black poets from the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, the Americas, and beyond. It includes mixed-race poets who trace their lineage to Black African ancestry. It does not include Rachel Dolezal.

The submission deadline is August 31, 2020. You can submit up to 5 speculative poems with a brief bio at this link, which contains more information about guidelines.

For more sci-fi, fantasy, and horror poetry from Black writers, check out guest-editor Melanie Stormm’s list of “10 Black Spec Poems That Invoke Madness.”

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