Things aren’t all so tangible and sayable as people would usually have us believe; most experiences are unsayable, they happen in a space no word has ever entered, and more unsayable than all other things are works of art.

Rainer Marie Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

Status: Menagerie is currently closed to submissions

Menagerie publishes fictions, essays, and poems. We believe in sentences so sharp they draw blood, the strange and inexplicable, the wild and weird and uncanny, words in thickets, clusters, and flocks, pieces that move us beyond caring what others think about said pieces.

Things we like: fictions ala Borges, Link, Calvino, & Sparks; weird lyric essay; engagements with the environment and natural world; poems that explode form; bricolage, masala, & sagul sagul; forays into the omnipresent information-saturated online architecture we live in.

Things we don’t: lukewarm prose, sentences bereft of emotion, formulaic attempts at being on trend, conformity, pat endings, sentiment-drenched rhyming poems, neat and orderly stories.

We care about writers and artists. That means if you’ve entrusted your work to us, you’ll get a response. And we pay for the work we publish. Because it’s important that we value what you’ve made. Menagerie is open for two reading periods a year: Feb-May and Aug-Nov. Subs are free till we hit our monthly cap, so get in early. Tip Jar subs are also available during reading periods.

We’ll do our level best to promote your work, pairing each piece with original artwork, and providing social posts you can use on your own channels. It’s our hope that Menagerie will serve as an accelerator for bringing your work into the world and getting it noticed.

We observe the following guidelines:

  • Simultaneous submissions are allowed. If your work is accepted elsewhere, please withdraw it.
  • Please submit to only one category at a time. A focused submission is better than hitting all categories at once.
  • Poetry submissions may include 3-5 poems at once. If one of the poems is accepted elsewhere, notify us, and we’ll continue considering the other poems in your submission.
  • Stories and essays should be no more than 5K. We tend to publish in the 1-3K category more frequently, through, given the short attention span we all have on the web.
  • We pay $50 per acceptance (e.g. one piece of prose or one to three poems) and acquire first serial rights. We do not republish work that has already appeared elsewhere.
  • Please expect a response time of 30-60 days.

In short: if you’ve written something and don’t know what to call it, we want to see it. Our menagerie is vast and unending, and contains all size and shape of curios. 

Perhaps yours will soon be one of them.

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