The stories we are looking for throughout October, November and December 2021
Calling all writers!
I hope you are enjoying the seasonal changes (if you live in the Northern hemisphere, that is) and managing to cosy up inside with a book and your favourite beverage to accompany you. I love watching the trees change colour and being able to get jumpers out of the wardrobe.
Following on from the last call for submissions I put out back in June — which was very successful, by the way — I’ve decided to do another one to get everybody’s inspiration flowing.
Feel free to use this as a prompt, source of inspiration or something to bounce ideas from. Of course, we will still be open for all kinds of submissions, but these are the kinds of stories we are specifically looking to publish throughout the next few months.
🍂 Books that feature seasonal changes
These can be books that are set during any seasonal change. I’m always fascinated by watching the seasons change and am interested in how this is presented in novels and if featuring this transition changes the way certain themes are presented.
Stories can be in the form of book reviews, recommendation lists or even articles about reading during Autumn or Winter. Here are some ideas to get the ball rolling. Don’t steal these, but feel free to bounce off of them to generate your own:
- On Ali Smith’s seasonal quartet and why it matters
- Read these X books to get you in the mood for Winter
- X Books everyone should read in the Autumn
- Why reading is the perfect activity for cold, Winter nights
- An ideal Winter bookish routine
💟 Your ‘go to’ favourite books and why
If somebody asks you to name your favourite books on one hand, what do you say? What are the first ones that come to mind? I love asking people about their favourite books and learning about how they shaped them as readers and informed their reading habits.
What was the one book that set you off as a reader? Are there certain ones you go back to over and over again? What are the books that comfort you? Or the ones you have re-read?
Once again, this prompt would suit book reviews, reading pieces or recommendation lists.
💡Authors you’ve discovered this year
As we approach the end of another year (they seem to pass quicker every time, I swear), I’m inviting you to get reflective. Tell us about all the new authors you’ve discovered this year and how they influenced you.
Maybe you got into a new genre because of them? If so, what was that? Perhaps you were once a devout rom-com reader, and now you’re into fantasy. I’d love to hear about how your reading journey has changed this year.
Let’s celebrate all the new authors whose books you enjoyed. This prompt is probably most suitable for list pieces or stories about reading — but feel free to get creative. Here are some of my brief ideas you could build from:
- I discovered 5 new authors this year (here’s why you should read their books too)
- Authors I fell in love with this year and why
- 4 Authors that deserve more attention
🎉 What are your reading goals for 2022?
Again, this prompt encourages you to get a bit reflective as the year draws to a close. It’s never too soon to start thinking about your future reading goals, so why not let us know and make a pledge?
It could be that you want to commit to a reading challenge and read a certain amount of books, tackle your TBR pile once and for all, or discover some new authors. On the other hand, maybe you don’t want to set reading goals at all. Whatever it is — we’d welcome all sorts of stories on this topic.
We’d encourage you to avoid posts such as ‘Here are my reading goals for 2022’, as it’s a bit generic, and there will probably be many of those. Instead, craft your story in a way that provides actionable value for a reader.
Here are some ideas to start you off:
- Here’s why I’m not setting any reading goals for 2022
- In 2022 I want to read more books by X (here’s why)
- Why a reading challenge should be less about quantity and more about quality
🌟 Books that have inspired or challenged you
We always want to hear about these as it’s why we became a publication in the first place. But I wanted to reiterate the importance of reading books that challenge you and the importance of sharing them with others.
When I say challenge, I mean the books that shifted your perspective, encouraged you to think differently or opened up your way of thinking. These are the books you’ll remember and then to again and again. And I want to hear about them.
Again, this prompt is probably most suited to lists or recommendation pieces, but it could also work with a book review. Something along the lines of: ‘X Taught me to view X in a different way (and it may for you too).’
The central theme we are going for in the next few months is reflection — taking time to pause and reflect on what we’ve read and sharing that with others. Whether that be in the form of creative reviews, listicles, pieces on reading or writing, we’d love to hear from you.
If you’re already a writer, please submit stories in the usual way. If you are interested in becoming a writer, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org 💻
We can’t wait to read your work.
This was initially published on Medium.com.