FIYAH is a quarterly speculative fiction magazine that features stories by and about Black people of the African Diaspora. This definition is globally inclusive (Black anywhere in the world) and also applies to mixed/biracial and Afro-appended people regardless of gender identity or orientation.
Upcoming Themes and Submission Schedule
The 2024 submissions schedule is as follows:
April 2024: UNTHEMED (Guest Editor Tonya Moore) – December 1, 2023 – January 31, 2024
July 2024: DISABILITIES (Guest Editor Emmalia Harrington) – March 1, 2024 – April 30, 2024
Show us life at the intersections of Blackness and disability. We’re not your magical negros, we’re not your inspiration porn. We do not want to be scorned or pitied. Life can be difficult in a racist world which too often denies access. We are worthy of being protagonists, just like anyone else. Let’s demonstrate what we can do!
What Emmalia is looking for:
- Variety: stories about visible disabilities, invisible ones, chronic illness, mental illness, and neurodivergence to name a few.
- Tales centered on disability, and others where it’s part of the story but not the focus. Stories where magic and technology add accessibility, as well as SFFH settings adding unique barriers to access.
- Let’s avoid “cure narratives” which include a device or other product which eliminates the disability, and portrays this as an unproblematic good. Similarly, avoid stories where disabilities are automatically markers of supernatural power.
- Understanding of medical, social, and diversity models of disability and how they affect narratives.
October 2024: SPACEFARING AUNTIES (Guest Editor Kerine Wint) – June 1, 2024 – July 31, 2024
It’s time to explore the adventures of bold, fearless women who defy societal expectations and embark on daring space voyages. From thrilling space operas to quiet character studies, we want to see Aunties who are scientists, engineers, pilots, and leaders guiding their crews through uncharted territory.
What Kerine is looking for:
- Women-led stories, not as sidekicks but fleshed-out protagonists.
- SHOW how cool these Aunties are through their actions. Quiet moments on a spaceship are good, but make enough tension to highlight the bravery of these women.
- A wide spectrum of women- queer, disabled, etc. – without feeding into the “Strong Black Woman ™” tropes that often dehumanize and stifle characters.
General Submission Guidelines
Below you will find specific guidelines for each of our areas of submission. The following guidelines apply to all areas of submission and will be take into consideration regardless of medium.
We are open to receiving work around many themes but we will immediately reject work that feature any of the following without providing feedback:
- Graphic depictions of rape or sexual assault
- Needless brutalization of women and children
- Depictions of brutalization or abuse of people with disabilities
- Graphic abuse of animals
Additionally, we reserve the right to reject and not provide feedback on work we believe may be harmful to our readers. Like our staff, our readers come from a variety of backgrounds and work that has elements of homophobia, fatphobia, colorism, ageism etc. that go unchallenged will not find a home with us.
- We only consider unpublished work, and we do not consider reprints (work that has been published in another magazine or on your blog or other social media) or fan fiction.
- We do not accept multiple submissions for fiction, so please wait until you have heard a response before submitting again. Submitting under different aliases does not evade this policy; we will recognize your writing style.
- We do not accept simultaneous submissions.
- Please do not resubmit previously rejected stories or poems in a new submission period. Resubmissions are by editorial solicitation only.
- We are only accepting submission from authors from the African diaspora and the African continent because #BlackWritersMatter. This is an intersectional definition of Blackness, and we strongly encourage submissions from women, members of the LGBTQIA community, and members from other underrepresented communities within the African diaspora.
- FIYAH is committed to publishing only those works which are entirely created by and original to the human author attached to each submission. If submitted under false pretenses, the piece in violation of our no-AI policy will be rejected and the author will be banned from future submissions to FIYAH.
Writers previously published in an issue of FIYAH must wait 1 year or 4 issues to submit work again. Works submitted before that time is up will be automatically rejected.
We accept submissions of short fiction 2,000 – 7,000 words and novelettes up to 15,000 words.
We are looking for brave works of speculative short fiction by authors from the African continent and diaspora that reject regressive ideas of blackness, respectability politics, and stereotype. Please submit your bravest, blackest, most difficult to sell stories to us. We want to read them.
We want stories that are well written, of high quality, and generally easy to read on a screen.
What we want in speculative poetry is verse that struggles, reveals, instructs, comforts, and fights back. We are looking for weird, complex, honest and challenging work with a clear speculative element from Black authors. You can check out this post from our Poetry Editor for more on what we’d like to see in your poetry.
Additionally, poetry submissions should be no more than 1,000 words.
FIYAH is currently OPEN to portfolio submissions for consideration for 2024’s issue covers. Commissions pay $400.00 USD for original artwork and we purchase rights to First Use and six months exclusivity.
Artists should submit portfolios or work samples which illustrate an understanding of composition, and which feature fantastical elements and/or can be categorized as fantasy, science-fiction, horror, and their related subgenres. Standard portraiture and/or still life will not be a good fit for us.
In keeping with our mission, we prioritize Black creators as the face and content of our magazine.
We are using a simple form to collect submissions for prose and poetry. We understand the use of a form may not be accessible to disabled users. If you require an alternative means of submission for your work, please contact us at team[@]fiyahlitmag.com and we will arrange one for you. You will see a confirmation message when the form is completed, indicating your submission was successfully received. You will not receive an e-mailed confirmation.
- Click here to learn more about how to write a professional cover letter.
- Submissions should be submitted in proper short story manuscript format with your name, email address, and the story’s total word count on the first page. For our purposes, you do not need to include a mailing address or phone number. Click here for an example of proper short story manuscript format.
- For poetry, you may submit up to four (4) separate poems, one (1) poem per form submission.
- All submissions should be in .doc/.docx format
Payment + Rights
Our payment schedule for 2023 is as follows (all amounts USD):
Short stories (2,000 – 7,000 words): 0.08/word
Novelettes (<15,000 words): 0.08/word
Poetry: $50 USD
FIYAH is a SFWA-qualifying market. Works of prose published with us count toward SFWA membership.
FIYAH will publish accepted stories in a quarterly ebook magazine format, as well as archiving them on our website. Thus, FIYAH will claim first world electronic rights, nonexclusive archival rights, and nonexclusive anthology rights to your story.
This means that we are buying the rights to publish your story on FIYAH’s website and in electronic issues of our magazine. This also means that you can only publish your story as a reprint after it appears in FIYAH, and it cannot appear anywhere else online or in print prior to submission, or for 180 days after we publish it. After that it can be reprinted online, in a magazine, or in an anthology.