Call for Papers: Barzakh Magazine

deadline for submissions: 
January 15, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Barzakh Magazine
contact email: 

What we’re looking for:

By defining ourselves as barzakh—a space of crossings & connectivity between histories, articulations, & media—we hope to make Barzakh Magazine a site of inquiry & revitalization. We want your fiction, poetry, criticism, personal essays, translations, paintings, drawings, photographs—any work that pushes against complacent taxonomies & forges new paths.

For Barzakh’s 11th annual issue, we are seeking previously unpublished creative & critical work for our special themed section, “On Incarceration.” We are accepting work that deals in the realities & consequences of incarceration on the lived & emotional experiences of incarcerated peoples, their families, & communities.

Additionally, we are looking for work that illuminates & explores the liminal spaces between aesthetic modes & fields, between tongues, between histories. We especially seek works that engage with global & local crises & the acts of resistance with which individuals & communities attempt to address these crises. Topics may include:

  • Immigrant & refugee dislocation & dehumanization

  • Race, police brutality, & protest in the era of Black Lives Matter

  • The gendering & policing of bodies

  • Rights & responsibilities of speech

  • Traumas, hauntings, & healings across time

  • The effects of climate change on the human experience

But as always, we welcome submissions beyond these specific themes.


Please submit your work via our online submission manager. Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but please let us know immediately if your piece is accepted elsewhere. Be sure to include a brief third-person biography in a language of your choice with your cover letter so that we may properly credit your work should it be accepted. Barzakh is currently a non-paying market.

If you would like to submit by postal mail, please send your work to the address below. Typed manuscripts are preferred, but we will also accept handwritten work. Snail mail submissions are always free, but if you would like your manuscript returned to you be sure to include a self-addressed & stamped envelope:

Barzakh Magazine
c/o Yolande Schutter
Department of English, HU 374
University at Albany, SUNY
1400 Washington Ave.
Albany, NY 12222

Genre-specific guidelines:

  • Prose (Fiction/Creative Nonfiction/Essay/Criticism) – One single submission including up to 3,500 words total (one piece or multiple flash pieces).

  • Poetry – One single submission including up to 5 poems & totaling up to 10 pages.

  • Multigenre/Hybrid/Digital Work – One single submission including up to 5 works & totaling up to 10 pages.

  • Visual Art – One single submission including up to 6 pieces.

  • Translation (Any Genre) – One single submission including up to 10 pages of translated work. Translations should be accompanied by both the source text in its original language & a written confirmation that you have English translation rights to the piece.


Submissions for our Spring 2020 issue will be open from October 15, 2019 to January 15, 2020. Due to the capacities of our submission manager, we will be accepting up to 800 submissions per month of our open call. If you are having problems submitting through our submission manager, please email your submission to

In the interest of accessibility for incarcerated peoples, we will continue to accept submissions for our special section, “On Incarceration,” until 2 weeks before our projected publication date of May 1, 2020.

Contributors’ Rights:

Barzakh asks for First North American Rights to publish accepted works in the Barzakh 2020 online issue. Following publication, all rights revert back to the author. We simply ask that Barzakh Magazine be credited as the place where the work first appeared. Barzakh retains the right to remove work from our website without prior notice. 

In the event we wish to republish any work from the online magazine in future print editions, anthologies, or broadsides, we will contact contributors to request those rights separately.


All work published in Barzakh Magazine is considered for nominations for the Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, Best New Poets, Best American Essays, & Best American Short Stories.