The reading period for Issue Three is now closed. Thank you for all of your submissions. Stay tuned for submissions for the print issue of Volume 1.
Demeter’s Spicebox is a paying market that offers a flat rate of USD$10 per accepted story. Two stories will be accepted per submission period. We are looking for works of up to 6000 words. Prose only, no poetry. Please send your submissions and all related queries to to [email protected].
Call for Submissions: Third Issue
The Third Issue of Demeter’s Spicebox will continue the journey for the items from Mari Ness’s and Shveta Thakrar’s stories, but will also incorporate elements from Joshua Gage‘s and Mae Empson‘s stories from Issue Two. We invite brave writers who are willing to join this storytelling experiment and dialogue between tales. We would also like to encourage writers from diverse backgrounds to submit; Demeter’s Spicebox is and always will remain a diversity-friendly venue. Our goal is to highlight voices that are strong, unique and brave. We pay attention to the strength of the story and to the strength of your voice as a writer.
For Issue Three, we would like you to sweep us away from sand-dunes and salt-mines to the mystery, adventure and allure of islands! We have chosen the Aarne-Thompson type 2031C, The Mouse Who Was To Marry The Sun, a delightful fable of pride, humility, and of finding your place in the world. Variants of this story have appeared in The Panchatantra of India, in Japan, and in Francophone North Africa. We hope you will have fun with it — we are totally fine with people deciding to use either humans or cute, fuzzy animals for this retelling!
There are additional requirements for stories that are submitted for Issue Three. Do bear in mind that it is absolutely necessary that you comply with these requirements as your story needs to connect to the stories of the previous two issues! It may sound hard, but it’s definitely do-able and we hope you enjoy the journey!
You have a wealth of choice here!
Polynesia OR The Caribbean OR Off the African Coast OR the Pacific Rim. Woo us with accounts of the ocean, of voyages or of coastal adventures!
UPDATES: We have already accepted a story which uses both Ayana’s Sarong and the teapot from Sister and Bones, so please use the remaining prompts! Thanks!
(1) Suha’s Jar of Tears
OR Ayana’s Sarong (Since the Sarong is a delicate thing, this will only work within a plausible timeframe or if something magical has been done to it)
(2) The Chappals from Lavanya and Deepika
OR the teapot from Sister and Bones .
(3) A wooden spicebox with carvings on it that tell a story.
IMPORTANT: Please Read The General Guidelines in addition to the Issue-specific guidelines!
Demeter’s Spicebox Submissions General Guidelines
1. Our goal is the exploration of lesser-known fairytale types set within regions of the world which have not gained enough exposure in both literature and the arts.
2. While this endeavour is aimed at exploring lesser-known fairytale types as well as folk traditions from lesser-represented regions of the world, we require our writers to be ethical in their revisions of fairytale types and in regards to positioning their narratives within what may be cultures that are different to their own.
3. Demeter’s Spicebox does not encourage or condone “literary tourism” and must be made to feel that the story rings with authenticity, that common kernel of humanity which suffuses the best fairytales. Know your folktales and be respectful of the areas you are writing about.
a. We strongly disapprove of certain forms of cultural appropriation, although we encourage diversity, hybridity and ambiguity in the texts that we solicit.
b. For example, do not give us stories in which your subject is exoticised, or any race, culture or minority is demonised in order to cast your protagonist in a more favourable light. Just to make it clear, this publication frowns on misogyny, ableism and homophobia. If you are incapable of writing a story without these elements, DS is probably not the publication for you!
4. We would also like to remain genre-ambiguous, but we lean rather strongly towards literary writings with fantastic and mythic elements or magic realism within these retellings. Certain genres such as horror or science fiction may therefore be a hard sell for this particular project unless you’re brave enough to write a story that convinces us otherwise.
5. Demeter’s Spicebox is a diversity-friendly and inclusive market. We therefore encourage writers from around the globe, whether established or struggling, to send us stories.