14-Day Response: "QUEER" Special Issue 2023-2024
Rarely in the history of our English language has a word so quickly and so profoundly shifted in meanings and usage as the word queer has throughout the last century. As such, The AutoEthnographer is excited to announce a new call for submissions that celebrate, problematize, challenge, or illuminate the many meanings of “queer” whether referring to emotion, difference, critical theory, or sexuality.
“You have some queer friends, Dorothy,” she said.“The queerness doesn’t matter, so long as they’re friends,” was the answer. - L. Frank Baum, The Road to Oz, 1904
Submissions will be accepted in any of our main categories (writing, poetry, multimedia, video, art, performance) through June 1, 2023 and may respond to the following prompts:
- Tell us a story of lived experience where culture and queerness intersect in some way
- Tell us a story of lived experience where the word queer has been used in a culturally-specific way
- Tell us a culturally-specific story of lived experience where a character explores queer identity
- Tell us a culturally-specific story of lived experience in relation to queer theory
Your work need not respond to the above prompts; these are merely suggestions or starting points. Accepted submissions will be published throughout 2023 as part of our special issue.
WHO ARE WE?
The Autoethnographer is an award-winning, non-profit, open-access, peer-reviewed, digital literary and arts magazine open for submissions. Our independent editorial team of international artists, performers, writers, and scholars invites evocative stories – sometimes textual, audio, visual, or multimodal – crafted in conjunction with autoethnography that celebrate the intersection of personal expression and cultural inquiry. Simultaneous submissions to other outlets are permissible so long as you notify us immediately should you decide to publish elsewhere.
Please review the definitions, advice, examples, and submission instructions below carefully to improve your chances of acceptance. As of end of 2022, our acceptance rate is ~40%. We strongly encourage all contributors to review current articles at our magazine before submitting their work to us. Likewise, the editor invites proposals and inquiries at [editor at theautoethnographer dot com].
WHAT IS AUTOETHNOGRAPHY?
Autoethnography is a qualitative research method that utilizes lived experience as evidence with which to explore cultural phenomena. It is often described as a hybrid form of ethnography & autobiography in that autoethnographers use lived experience to explore cultural issues. Autoethnography then can be a purposeful short story, a video monologue, a gallery of images, a quilt, a song, a poem, a dinner menu, artwork, and even a live performance when such expressions also celebrate or investigate cultural experiences.
We also recommend the following article as a user-friendly primer on the basics of autoethnography:
- Autoethnography: An Overview (Adams, Ellis, & Bochner, 2011)
Consider the following discussions of autoethnography from the article above:
Autoethnographers recognize the innumerable ways personal experience influences the research process… Consequently, autoethnography is one of the approaches that acknowledges and accommodates subjectivity, emotionality, and the researcher’s influence on research, rather than hiding from these matters or assuming they don’t exist.  When researchers write autoethnographies, they seek to produce aesthetic and evocative thick descriptions of personal and interpersonal experience. They accomplish this by first discerning patterns of cultural experience evidenced by field notes, interviews, and/or artifacts, and then describing these patterns using facets of storytelling (e.g., character and plot development), showing and telling, and alterations of authorial voice. Thus, the autoethnographer not only tries to make personal experience meaningful and cultural experience engaging, but also, by producing accessible texts, she or he may be able to reach wider and more diverse mass audiences that traditional research usually disregards, a move that can make personal and social change possible for more people (BOCHNER, 1997; ELLIS, 1995; GOODALL, 2006; HOOKS, 1994). 
Adams, T., Ellis, C., & Bochner, A. (2011). Autoethnography: An overview. FQS, 12(1).
ADVICE FROM THE EDITORS
- Video: What do Editors Look for When Reviewing Creative Autoethnographies, and How Have Editors Evolved Their Vetting Approach?
- Video: Technicolor Third Space: Why I Developed The AutoEthnographer Magazine
- Article: What Do Editors Look for When Reviewing Evocative Autoethnography?
- Article: How to Embrace Creative Nonfiction
- Essay Example: Stray Words, Turbulent Art: Translation, or How to Love English
- Video Example: The Pandemic Nature Project, Filmed Vignettes of Life During COVID
- Duoethnography Example: When Your Student Goes to War
- Fiction Example: Three Bangladeshi Women
- Flash Example: “The Things They Carried,” A Glimpse Into the Funeral Industry
- Poetry Example: “Tired”
- Art Example: Ode to Bygone Birds of Childhood, Part 1 – Drawings
- Multimedia Example: “Drifting,” an Exploration of Sibling Loss
- Dance Example: The Twerking Academic
FAQ's ABOUT THIS PUBLICATION
- The Autoethnographer is primarily an English language publication. However, we do welcome trans-languaging, multilingualism, and code-switching. If multilingual, the artist’s memo should provide useful context and translations that can help the reader embrace the work. If translated, we encourage submission of both the original language work and the English translation to highlight and celebrate the author’s linguistic choices.
- Each year we also invite thematic submissions in addition to our general submissions; see our SUBMIT page for more info.
- Contributors may be at any stage of their creative journeys and need not have previously published work.
- If accepted, contributors may also be invited to participate in the magazine podcast and biennial print edition.
- Submissions are accepted 365 days of the year.
- Because our focus is literary and expressive, works that are theoretical, academic, and/or philosophical are recommended for submission to The Journal of Autoethnography (unaffiliated).
- We strongly encourage all contributors to review current articles at our magazine before submitting their work to us.
- Please review the Contract and Publication Rights at our website prior to submission; publication implies consent with this policy.
- View our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) HERE.
CATEGORY 1: EVOCATIVE EXPRESSIONS ($25 USD/article)
Expressive works of any medium that have been created as, or in conjunction with, autoethnography. Author’s/Artist’s memos are required for submissions in this category; see below.
Contact the [editor at theautoethnographer dot com] to explore alternatives. For longer works, we welcome pitches for columns and ongoing features. Likewise, we may request to post your work over a number of articles over time in order to create a more suitable audience experience.
If accepted, contributors may also be invited to participate in the magazine podcast and biennial print edition.
We pay $25 USD per article and request a $5 donation submission fee. Your tax deductible donation helps sustain the future of our non-profit magazine; thank you!! Response time is generally within 14 days or sooner.
- WRITING (Fiction or Nonfiction; Flash; Essay) – No length requirement but we suggest 1000-2000 words max for readability, no minimum; for longer works, we may request serialization. You may also suggest columns and ongoing features. Please submit .doc/.docx files. Please follow APA 7 for general formatting of citations and references when applicable. Click me for more info.
- POETRY/LYRICS – While single poems or song lyrics are appreciated and welcomed, we will give preference to a collection of poems or lyrics (3-10 works) due to their breadth and depth. You may also suggest columns and ongoing features. Please submit .doc/.docx files. For longer collections, we may request serialization.
- AUDIO, VISUAL, PERFORMANCE: Creative, performing, and fine arts such as singing, spoken word, photography, assemblage, quilting, weaving, sculpting, dancing, potting, painting, drawing, cooking, metalwork, landscaping, make-up, tattooing, jewelry-making, fashion or home decor design, stand-up comedy, performative rituals, etc. should be represented visually or multimodally. No length requirement but please be sensitive to your viewer; for longer works or groups of images/videos/recordings we may request serialization. You may also suggest columns and ongoing features. Work should be presented in .wav/.mp4/.mp3/.mov or .jpeg/.png and may be externally hosted at the time of submission (send the link). HD images and video should be readily available if work is accepted. Contact the [editor at theautoethnographer dot com] if using another file format.
Note that as we are a digital magazine, our main goal is to see your article rank highly in searches. To do this, we may edit titles as well as your actual text; we will always do our best to preserve the integrity of your work. Here are some strategies for future articles:
- Avoid passive tense in your writing.
- Keep sentences short rather than complex.
- Avoid starting 3 or more consecutive sentences with the same first word.
- Use headings as often as possible.
- Use transition words as often as possible.
- Paragraph lengths should be less than 300 words.
- Use a title checker or headline analyzer: https://www.monsterinsights.com/headline-analyzer/ Your title should score 70 or higher to be effective in a digital context.
- Identify your keyword or phrase for the article and use it in a) the title (preferably towards the beginning of the title), headers, and 1st paragraph 1st sentence of your memo.
- REVIEW EXAMPLES: We strongly encourage all contributors to review current articles and memos at our magazine before submitting their work to us.
- REMOVE IDENTIFYING INFO: In order to preserve a fair and impartial vetting process, submissions are refereed anonymously; please ensure that where possible, no identifying information accompanies your submission. You are encouraged to use an alias if necessary for submission purposes; this can later be changed for publication.
- INCLUDE DETAILED AUTHOR'S/ARTIST'S MEMO (300-500 words): An artist’s memo is your opportunity to contextualize or explain your submission in relation to autoethnography; it answers the questions “How is this work autoethnographic?" and "Which culture(s) or cultural issue(s) is/are being addressed?” Submissions that do not include a clear, detailed memo will not be considered for publication.
We pay $25 USD per article and request a $5 donation submission fee. Your tax deductible donation helps sustain the future of our non-profit magazine; thank you!!