About Magazine provides award-winning, ground breaking coverage for LGBTQ+ news in Texas. They are now accepting submissions for articles, columns, poetry, essays, and prose. The magazine accepts submissions year round. Their publishing house About Editions is also accepting fiction, nonfiction, and poetry manuscripts for their 2019 catalogue until May 1st, 2018. Their top priority is look at the work of LGBTQIA writers, but they are also interested in work from allies.
I wondered how and why this magazine came to be, so I asked Editor-in-Chief Anthony Ramirez a few questions to find out. See my interview with Ramirez and a link to their submission guidelines below.
HOPKINSON: Tell me a little bit about About Magazine.
RAMIREZ: About is a news, multimedia, and lit platform for the LGBTQIA community and its allies. I recently took over as editor-in-chief and I’ve had the good fortune of getting us away from just the news and am starting to push us more toward the literary side of things, as well as personal essays, spotlights on community members, and thoughtful, introspective opinion pieces. We’re now not only a magazine, but we’re also a publishing house (About Editions), as well as a production company that’s focusing on podcasts and web shows.
HOPKINSON: How/why was About Magazine originally started?
RAMIREZ: About was started 9 years ago by my friend Cade who wanted to provide a news source for the LGBTQIA community in Houston that wasn’t already there. There were others, but he wanted something a little more fresh that contained content the others weren’t talking about. And from there, it sort of became this entire thing. About used to host its own LGBTQIA award show every year that all the local celebrities came out for and we were heavily involved in the community, with Pride Houston, and all sorts of neat stuff. Now, we maintain all of that, and we are expanding beyond it. Especially on the literary side.
HOPKINSON: What type of work are you looking for?
RAMIREZ: I am looking for any sort of written work. Whether that be articles, poems, opinion pieces, prose, flash fiction—so long as it is applicable to the queer community. We don’t publish exclusively queer writers (we have lots of allies that have written for us in the past and a few that work on our editorial board), but we do give queer writers the first look, as that is our demographic. In terms of books at Editions, I’m open to anything. We take full-length collections, novels, chaps, anything that we think is special gets a shot at publication.
HOPKINSON: What do you wish you’d see submitted, but rarely comes in?
RAMIREZ: I’m very partial to opinion pieces that are clever, funny, and thoughtful. I also love any poetry or stories that have a magical feel to them, especially in long form that I can really savor over a long period of time. I love me some magic. I’d also like more novels. We get a lot of chaps and collections, but not too many novels. Anything with a strong queer and/or female lead. Nonbinary stories are great too. I love anything that you wouldn’t see come across your desk every single day. Unique stories, I guess.
HOPKINSON: What are some of your favorite lit mags/journals?
RAMIREZ: Okay, so not to brag, but one of the authors in our 2018 catalog, Christine Stoddard, is a founding member for an online journal called Quail Bell Mag which I have recently become obsessed with. It’s got all of these odd stories and a lot of them are really magic-centric and witchy and fun. I absolutely love it. It’s been around since 2013 I think. I also love Agape’s blog. I love Agape and their entire team a lot anyway. Fox Foley is just a goddess if there ever was one. Oh, and Glass. A lot of these I got introduced to through working at ELJ when I did, and I’m so lucky to have gotten some.
HOPKINSON: Where can folks send submissions?
HOPKINSON: If someone has a question, how can they contact you?
RAMIREZ: They can contact me at email@example.com. I usually check my email every single day at least 50x an hour, haha.
DEADLINE: Year round
SUBMISSION FEE: None
FORMS: articles, columns, poetry, essays, and prose
For About Editions manuscripts: fiction, nonfiction, poetry (DEADLINE: May 1, 2018)