• Allie McFarland

On Issue 6: Theme Change

Hi Friends! A while back—before we opened for submissions to antilang. no. 4—we announced that our three issues for the year would be themed: “succinct speculations,” “pithy politics,” and “blunt blogs.” While we hyped our next issue in our most recent blog post, we’ve made some changes to its theme.


Originally, we had wanted to do an issue featuring work that other lit mags consider ‘previously published,’ i.e. self-published pieces on personal blogs, Twitter, Instagram, etc. Basically, we were frustrated that so many CanLit mags WON’T accept these types of submissions, even though these publications don’t count when a writer applies for grants or residencies or anything to support themselves.


So, what happened? Well, we figured out the reason behind this double-standard: the rules and restrictions for receiving Canadian grants. If a lit mag wants to qualify for federal funding (which, as a not-for-profit, we do), then only a small percentage of that lit mag’s content can be ‘previously published’ pieces. And, you guessed it, the federal guidelines specifically state that works on personal blogs and social media count as ‘previously published’ (even though they are the same agency that says those publications don’t count toward qualifying for personal funding…).


While we wish we could stand on principle and do the issue we had planned, we just can’t afford to disqualify ourselves from funding opportunities. We use our donation money to pay our contributors in the form of $20 OR a copy of antilang.’s annual anthology, but we currently rely on grant funding to cover our operating costs.


Therefore, we changed our theme to “Abrupt Environments,” a topic that is particularly salient in recent weeks, tightly intertwined with our Pithy Politics theme, and universally relevant in the anthropocene. In this issue we expect to receive eco-critical submissions, but also submissions that test the boundaries of what constitutes an ‘environment’ (particularly an ‘abrupt’ one), or that otherwise delve into setting and place. So, start thinking about what you want to submit and remember that submissions open November 1st! We will be introducing our guest editor for antilang. no. 6 after no. 5 – Pithy Politics launches in October, and she will tell you more about the type of writing she wants to see.

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