Fiction: For our upcoming issue, Rock & Sling is looking for long stories. By that, we mean stories closer to 10,000 words than to 5,000 and up to 15,000. As a journal of witness we look for pieces that testify to the complexity of being human in the world. We look for stories that open our eyes to see human life differently – its heartache and joy, its violence and care. Its overall beauty and inherent dignity. Long stories by their very nature can take us on nuanced journeys, can open up space to investigate, say, secondary characters or the complexities of human emotions. They can let us witness the unfolding of time and a human life in a way shorter stories can’t. If you want to read some writers whose long stories Jake loves, have a look at Jamel Brinkley, Ted Chiang, Edwidge Danticat, Edward P. Jones, Yiyun Li, and of course Alice Munro.

Poetry: Please submit no more than five poems, as separate documents.

Creative Nonfiction: Work of 5000 words or less is preferred, but longer work will be considered.

Art and photography: No more than five pieces, in jpg or gif format. High resolution files must be available upon acceptance.

Graphic fiction and essays, comics: Color or b/w accepted. Submit as PDF.

A note on the submission and reading process:

Submissions to Rock & Sling are read by undergraduate students at Whitworth University. Materials screened with a yes are passed to genre meetings, which are led by trained student assistant editors and faculty genre editors. Pieces that move through those meetings reach monthly packet meetings where they are considered by the faculty editors and trained assistant editors.

Student editors enroll in a rigorous course in content and developmental editing and beginning in fall 2020, a training in diversity, equity, and inclusion. All faculty editors have similar training, to ensure from beginning to end our screening process is fair and equitable, and all editors and readers are aware of how their biases factor into the decision-making process.

Beginning with our summer 2020 reading period, we will also collect voluntary demographic information from all submitters. The information will be collected and stored separate from the submission and be invisible to readers and editors during the decision-making process. The anonymous, aggregate data will be used internally to track our progress in areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and will be reported publicly, so that we may be accountable to our audience.