**Due to a backlog of incredible work, as of June 22, 2022, The Fiddlehead is closed to fiction and creative nonfiction online and mailed submissions until later in 2023. Please check back for updates on when we will be accepting fiction and creative nonfiction submissions again.**
***Please note, due to overwhelming submission volume we will not be accepting poetry submissions from international authors during the January 1 - March 31 period. We will politely decline all international submissions received during this reading period. Please think of The Fiddlehead during our next submission period in the fall.***
The Fiddlehead publishes excellent writing in English, or translations into English, from all over the world and in a variety of styles, including experimental genres. Our editors are always happy to see new unsolicited works in fiction (including excerpts from novels), creative nonfiction, and poetry. We also publish reviews and occasionally other creative work, such as excerpts from plays. Our acceptance rate is around 1-2% (we are, however, famous for our rejection notes!).
We particularly welcome submissions from BIPOC writers, writers with disabilities, LGBTQQIA+ writers, and writers from other intersectional and underrepresented communities. If you are comfortable identifying yourself as one or more of the above, please feel free to mention this in your cover letter.
The Fiddlehead does not publish work that is ableist, misogynistic, queer-phobic, or racist. Strong writing treats identity categories with nuance.
Our two Submittable submission periods are January 1 - March 31 (Canadian only) and September 15 - November 30. If you don’t already have a Submittable account, you will be prompted to sign up for one before you submit. It is free and it only takes a few minutes.
For those who prefer snail mail and handwritten responses, we accept mailed submissions in any category all year round.
Want to submit to our contests? Check out our annual contest guidelines here.
General Guidelines for Unsolicited Submissions
We strongly encourage online submission through the Submittable platform, but as stated above, we are still open to mailed submissions. Many of the guidelines apply to both methods.
• No faxed or emailed submissions are accepted. Please do not send CDs, DVDs, USB drives, etc.
• Pay is $60 CAD per published page, plus two complimentary copies of the issue with your work. Contributors may purchase additional copies of an issue at a discount.
• The Fiddlehead buys first serial world rights; copyright is retained by the author at all times, and authors are free to resell the work, though we do ask for a 90-day exclusive from our first publication of the work.
• Writers may only submit once per calendar year per genre. (This does not include our contests. See complete contest guidelines here)
• Please wait for an editorial response before submitting again. We try our best to respond in a timely matter, but due to volume of submissions, a response may take 6 months or more. Please wait 6 months before querying.
• We only consider unpublished work. Please do not submit work that has been previously published or accepted for publication, including in anthologies, chapbooks, blogs, Facebook pages, or online journals.
• For online submissions, please submit one file containing your creative work (.doc, .docx, .or .pdf). Log back in any time to check the status of your submission.
• For hard copy, mailed submissions, all submissions should be typed/word-processed, spell-checked, and paginated. Please use white paper, print on one side only, and put your name on every page of your submission.
• Due to overwhelming submission volume, once your work has been submitted, we cannot process substitutions or modifications.
• For online and mailed submissions, a cover letter should be included with contact information (especially your email address, if you have one), the title(s) and genre of the work(s) you are submitting, and a 50-word biographical statement. In Submittable, please copy and paste your cover letter and biographical statement in the appropriate fields.
• Tell us in your cover letter whether your submission is exclusive to The Fiddlehead or whether you have submitted it to other magazines simultaneously. If another magazine accepts your work for publication that you have also submitted to us, then please advise us immediately.
• All responses to mailed submissions will be sent via email. If you do not include an email address, you will not receive a response unless your submission is accepted for publication. Please do not include a SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) with your submission.
Please send mailed submission to:
11 Garland Ct
University of New Brunswick
PO Box 4400
Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction
• A short fiction submission should be one story, double spaced and maximum 6,000 words. Unless a story is flash fiction (under 1000 words), please send only one story per submission. Please specify at the top of the first page the number of words in the story submitted. For flash fiction, we accept up to two stories per submission. If submitting two, please include both stories in the same word document and ensure that the second story begins on a new page with the title included to mark the beginning of the new story.
• A poetry submission may be single-spaced. Please submit no more than 6 poems per submission, and no more than 12 pages total. No more than one poem on a page. If a poem runs more than one page, please put the poem’s title in the headers of the additional page(s) and make sure the pages are numbered. The Fiddlehead prefers to accept several poems by the same author; please do not limit your submission to a single poem.
• Creative nonfiction (CNF) is construed widely and can include personal essays, narrative non-fiction, think pieces, etc. Check out the Creative Nonfiction Collective Society’s definition here. Submissions in this genre should be double-spaced and maximum 6,000 words. Unless a CNF work is very, very short (under 1000 words), please send only one work per submission. Accompanying images may be considered, but permissions for the images are responsibility of the author and must be arranged beforehand.
• Excerpts from novels and scenes from plays are occasionally accepted, but short fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction are the preferred genres. Excerpts from novels should be double spaced, while play excerpts may be single spaced. Novel excerpts should be no more than 6,000 words, while play excerpts should be 10 pages max.
• Translations of creative work are also considered and occasionally published. With these submissions we need a copy of the text in its original language and a copy of a permissions letter from the copyright holder (usually the author or the original-language publisher).
The Fiddlehead pays $200 plus two copies of the issue for use of artwork on our cover . We do not consider unsolicited artwork for the cover or interior unless the artist is a current resident of Atlantic Canada. Please query by email with a link to your online portfolio.