Scroll to the bottom of this page for the link to submit your work electronically. But, please read the guidelines thoroughly first. We must decline submissions that do not follow the guidelines.
Open Minds Quarterly is a literary journal that features explorations of life in a mad world. More specifically, it welcomes writing and art from people with lived experience of what is variously called mental health challenges, mental illness, madness, neurodiversity etc.
You can learn more about who we are, what we do, and why we do it on our website: www.openmindsquarterly.com
What We Publish
Please note: The Summer and Winter issues are themed; Fall and Spring issues are open-theme. Our scope is purposefully broad, and OMQ accepts work under the following sections:
- NONFICTION—First-hand accounts, personal essays, and memoir. 3000 word limit.
- FICTION—Creative explorations of life through a mad lens. 3000 word limit.
- POETRY—From poets well-versed in mental health challenges. 4 piece/8 page limit.
- EXPERIMENTAL—Thinking and writing outside of the other boxes. 4 piece/8 page limit.
- VISUAL ART—Visual, digital, and mixed media expressions. 4 piece/8 page limit.
- RESEARCH—Studies on mental health that pass a formal ethics review. 3000 word limit.
- REVIEWS—Reflections on books, movies, and other art forms. 3000 word limit.
- LETTERS—Opinion pieces and letters for our editor or readers. 3000 word limit.
A submission is defined as either one piece of prose (including nonfiction, fiction, research, reviews, or letters) of up to 3000 words, or, four pieces of either poetry, experimental work, or visual art, totalling no more than eight pages. To ensure everyone has a fair chance to have their submission carefully and expertly reviewed, we will consider only one submission per person each issue. We accept simultaneous submissions. Please notify us immediately if your submission is accepted elsewhere.
Diversity: We recognize the ongoing marginalization and oppression many of us face because of colonization, racism, misogyny, transphobia, homophobia, ableism, classism, ageism, and capitalism, and the ways these and other injustices make us unwell. We welcome people belonging to marginalized communities to submit to OMQ, and we work to prioritize voices that are currently underrepresented in the media.
Payment: It is in the best interest of the magazine to compensate our writers for their hard work, and it is in the best interest of Canadian literature on the whole for writers to earn a decent, sustainable income from their work. It is simply fair for publishers to share profits with writers. OMQ is a project funded by NISA/Northern Initiative for Social Action, a non-profit consumer/survivor initiative in Northern Ontario. Currently, sales and subscription revenues do not cover the cost of publishing the magazine—we do not turn a profit. We are doing everything we can to secure funding for cash payments to everyone who contributes to OMQ. In the meantime, we offer an honorarium of $50 to artists whose work is featured on our front and back covers. Writers and artists published in OMQ receive two contributors’ copies of the issue in which they are published.
Publication rights: If your submission is accepted for publication in OMQ, we will ask you to grant us one-time, non-exclusive serial and/or electronic publication rights to your work. That means we’re asking for permission to publish your work once, in the print (serial) and/or future online (electronic) editions of OMQ, but you retain ownership of your work and can freely submit it for publication elsewhere. This is true whether OMQ is the first place you’ve published your submission, or you have previously published it in another magazine (non-exclusive). If your submission has previously been published in another magazine, book or website, check that they do not own exclusive rights to your work before you submit it to OMQ.
Review process: Submissions to OMQ are reviewed by the editor with the help of one or two assistant editors, who advise the editor on whether to accept or decline a piece. Our assistant editors conduct an anonymous review of the submissions so please ensure your name or other identifying information are not included within your actual submission file or in the file name anywhere. Submissions will receive a response within 60 days of the end of the submission period. Editorial decisions are final.
Business inquiries can be directed to Audrey O’Brien at firstname.lastname@example.org or 705-222-6472 x 314
Editorial inquiries can be directed to Ella Jane Myers at email@example.com or 705-222-6472 x 303
Thank you for choosing to submit your work to Open Minds Quarterly: Explorations of life in a mad world!
This submission form gives us the information we need to review your submission and, if it is accepted, to publish it in the magazine. We happily accept simultaneous submissions during the initial submission period. Please let us know right away is your submission is accepted elsewhere.
Before submitting, please view our submission guidelines at openmindsquarterly.submittable.com/submit.
Submissions that do not meet the guidelines will be declined.
Fall 2019 - Open Theme
Submissions for this issue will open on June 1, 2019, and will remain open until July 31, 2019.
OMQ publishes submissions from anyone with lived experience of madness/mental health challenges/accessing mental health services, and who has experiences to share and a voice to be heard. We are seeking submissions that are insightful, intelligent, and creative, because we know that's what those of us with lived experience are.
Your writing needn't focus on madness/mental health if you are submitting poetry, fiction, or visual art; however, nonfiction, reviews, open letters, and research should relate specifically to experiences of madness or mental health challenges. We welcome submissions from friends and family members of mental health consumers, but these submissions should be related to your experience with mental health issues as the family member or friend.
OMQ encourages submissions that relate to experiences of marginalization including being gendered, racialized, colonized, queer, disabled, or otherwise Other, as well as from authors whose communities are typically under-represented. There is an optional space in the submission process to self-identify as belonging to marginalized communities; as we understand some people may not feel comfortable or safe self-identifying, it is by no means mandatory. Any information you share with us on this subject will be kept strictly confidential.