Please See Me is a new “online literary journal that features health- and healthcare-related stories in the form of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, and digital media, including photography, podcasts, and short films. At the heart of our publication is the cultivation of meaningful patient–provider partnerships in the spirit of wellness. To that end, we publish work written by patients, family members, creatives, caregivers, and providers.” They are currently running a no fee contest for their March issue. The prize is $250.
You can read their first and second issues to see what kind of work they are publishing. I wanted to know more about what they are up to, so I asked Editor-in-Chief Tracy Granzyk a few questions to find out. See the interview and a link to submission guidelines below.
HOPKINSON: Tell me a little bit about Please See Me.
GRANZYK: Please See Me (PSM) is an online literary journal for healthcare narratives in the form of poetry, short stories, creative nonfiction, essays and digital art.
HOPKINSON: How/why was Please See Me originally started?
GRANZYK: PSM was created to cultivate a community of people wishing to share a health-related story in any form. I wanted to create a space where patients, families, healthcare professionals and students, as well as writers and artists from all walks of life and from every corner of the globe feel like their voices can be heard.
HOPKINSON: Who is your target reader audience?
GRANZYK: Our target audience is anyone who cares about the future of healthcare, who wants to feel like they’re not alone in any diagnosis, caregiving situation, professional burnout or bullying situation, or who wants to feel uplifted by reading stories of triumph over tragedy. Every reader who feels health—physical or mental, wellness—mind, body, and spirit, and/or living life to its fullest while at the same time knowing death and dying is part of that life, is a part of our target audience.
HOPKINSON: What type of work are you looking for?
GRANZYK: Poetry, short stories and fiction up to 3,000 words, creative nonfiction or essays up to 3,000 words, and digital art in any form.
HOPKINSON: What do you wish you’d see submitted, but rarely comes in?
GRANZYK: Fiction is our lightest submission category. I think reminding writers from all walks of life that nonfiction events can be fodder for excellent fiction — think Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried—it’s a way into this genre. More stories of triumph over illness, health disparities, or entities getting in the way of wellness, are personal favorites, and we’ve received only a few that fall into these categories.
HOPKINSON: What are some of your favorite lit mags/journals?
GRANZYK: PSM was modeled after Tin House. Glimmer Train too is/was a favorite. In the medical narratives arena, The Examined Life and Auscult are two that I recently found to be good examples of places that medical professionals and learners are submitting work.
HOPKINSON: What is your favorite part of being on staff with Please See Me?
GRANZYK: I have two favorite “parts” of being the Editor-in-Chief at PSM. One — I love working with my Editors and the writers preparing their submissions for publication. Writing is re-writing — it’s where the magic happens. I used to think good writers spilled a perfect novel or essay out on to the page, and if I couldn’t do that, than I wasn’t a writer. During my MFA program at UC-Riverside Palm Desert, I learned that couldn’t be further from the truth. Good writing takes time and effort, and you can do it! And two—I have had the chance to interview some incredible people for the first three issues: Cat Gywnn, a photographer and Triple Negative cancer survivor; Alex Kotlowitz, a writer I’ve long admired and followed who is also a producer and advocate for equity in Chicago; and Kimberly J Soenen, a journalist, producer, and creative director in the healthcare space.
HOPKINSON: Where can folks send submissions?
HOPKINSON: If someone has a question, how can they contact you?
CONTEST/SUBMISSION DEADLINE: January 15, 2020
SUBMISSION FEE: None
PAYMENT: None for regular submissions
FORMS: poetry, inspirational essays/articles on poetry topics