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Contributors' Guidelines

Mslexia welcomes previously unpublished submissions from women for every part of the magazine. We commission work by prominent authors and artists as well as talented newcomers. For a clear idea of the full range of material we publish, why not take advantage of our SAVE 25% offer and subscribe.

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Meanwhile, we’re inviting submissions for the following regular slots and competitions:

New Writing

This is a substantial section of new poetry and/or prose in the magazine, written by published and unpublished authors, selected and introduced by our New Writing Guest Editor or Competition Judge. Previous Mystery Guests and Judges include Fay Weldon, Carol Ann Duffy, Michèle Roberts, Helen Simpson, Wendy Cope, Jackie Kay, Fleur Adcock and Val McDermid. We publish two magazines a year of themed new writing, and two containing the winners of our annual poetry and short story competitions. The themes/competitions and deadlines for the upcoming issues are:

ISSUE 64: Coming soon

Keep an eye out here for the New Writing theme for our Dec/Jan/Feb 2014/15 issue, announced soon.


If you are living in the UK, you MUST send your Themed New Writing submission by post. If you would like a response, please ensure you include your email address. You need only include an SAE if you would like an acknowledgement of your submission's arrival. The address for submission is:

Mslexia Publications
PO Box 656
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE99 1PZ.

Sorry, but we only accept email submissions for Themed New Writing from overseas writers.


Mslexia Women's Poetry Competition 2014

for previously unpublished poems of any length, and on any subject. Judged by Wendy Cope. First prize is £2,000. Special new prize of £1,000 for the best poem written by a previously unpublished poet. All winning entries will be published in Mslexia
Closing date: 16 June 2014
More information on this year's competition »

Mslexia Women's Pamphlet Competition 2014

for previously unpublished collections of poems (20-24 pages of 18-20 poems) on any subject. Judged by Amy Wack of Seren Books. First prize is publication of the pamphlet by Seren Books in 2015. A sample of the winning pamphlet will also be published in Mslexia
Closing date: 16 June 2014
More information on this year's competition »

Mslexia Women's Memoir Competition 2014

for previously unpublished memoirists, send us up to 5,000 words of your full-length memoir. Judging panel to be confirmed. First prize is £5,000
Closing date: 22 September 2014
More information on this year's competition »


You can enter online or by post wherever you are in the world. Click on the 'More Information' link above to find out more.

Feature articles

Ideas for one-off features are welcome, as a 200-word proposal plus a brief CV and a published or unpublished example of your writing. Please note that feature articles are commissioned weeks in advance, and have a rolling deadline.


The deadline for all 'OTHER SUBMISSIONS' (including the blog) for consideration for Issue 62 (Jun/Jul/Aug 2014) – and the associated quarter – is 14 April 2014 . Any submissions received after this date will be considered for the following quarter.

PLEASE NOTE: If you are sending submissions to multiple submission slots, please email each one separately with the appropriate topic in the subject line: e.g., if you are sending us a Monologue and a Rave, send each one in a separate email with 'Monoloue' and 'Rave', as appropriate, in the subject line. We also need your land address and telephone number with each submission.

Poetry and Short Story reviews

We now commission these reviews. If you would like to be considered as a Mslexia reviewer, please send a 200-word description of what you would like to review for us and why, plus a brief writing CV and a published or unpublished sample of your writing.


For writers of script: send up to 200 words on any topic in a single character’s voice. This quarter we're looking for monologues in the voice of a sculptor.

Four Lines that Rhyme

ABAB, AAAA or AABB, ABCA, any combination, serious or flippant, we don’t mind; but no more than 40 words, please.

A Week of Tweets

Monday through Sunday, tell us about your writing – and your life – in seven flavour-packed slices of up to 140 characters apiece.

Pen Portrait

Convey a character in second or third person – and in no more than 200 words. This quarter we're looking for a pen portrait of a caged animal.


Grumpy Old Women, this is your chance to vent a bit of spleen, in 80 words or fewer, about something that really irritates or enrages you.


Calling all Polyannas, raise our spirits by telling us about something or someone you applaud, enjoy or admire in up to 80 words.

Writing group

In 200 words, please explain how you run your meetings, and describe a recent exercise for other groups to follow.

Reading group

If you belong to a reading group and would like to review a book for us, get in touch - and get the books for free!

How I did It

Back due to popular demand! Send us 200 words on how you achieved publication of your book with the subtitles 'The Book', 'The Long Haul' and 'The Advice' (roughly 65 words in each section).

How I keep going

200 words of advice on how to keep the creative fires burning in the face of discouragement and rejection.

Mslexia Blog

We’re always looking for guest bloggers for the Mslexia blog. Are you working on an interesting short-term writing project or in a key role in publishing? Perhaps you’re researching your novel or finalising your first poetry collection; freelancing as a journalist or reading submissions at a literary agency?

We've opened out our blog to a limited number of women writers with something interesting to say about the writing process, writing projects they're involved in, the publishing industry, their particularly inspiring journey on the rocky road to publication or anything writing-related that other authors, published or not, will be inspired by.

If you'd like to apply for a three-month guest appearance on the Mslexia blog, send us a pitch of up to 100 words telling us what you'd write about – and how that might differ from what you're already doing, potentially, on your own blog – plus a link to your own blog and/or a link to blogs you've appeared on (or a relevant example of your writing) and your full contact details.

You’ll need a working knowledge of Wordpress and we’ll expect you to blog at least twice a month throughout your residency. It’s a great opportunity to raise your profile and have your say to an audience of likeminded writers. Email with your pitch, putting 'Guest Blog' in the subject line. Make note of when we have slots available – we have to work quite far in advance.

Deadline for consideration as a blogger for a three month residency starting from May-July 2014: 14 April 2014

>>The Mslexia Blog


Sorry, we can’t accept email submissions for New Writing except from overseas writers (this DOES NOT include entries to our writing competitions, for which we accept email submissions). If posting, you only need to enclose an SAE if you want an acknowledgement. If emailing OTHER SUBMISSIONS, please put ‘Rants’, ‘Tweets’, ‘Reading Group’ etc. in the subject line, as appropriate. Please note: if you are sending submissions to multiple submission slots, please email each one separately with the appropriate topic in the subject line: e.g., if you are sending a Four Lines that Rhyme and a Rave, send each one in a separate email with 'Four Lines that Rhyme' and 'Rave', as appropriate, in the subject line. We also need your land address and telephone number with each submission.


We pay for published submissions. The basic rates for New Writing are £25 per poem, and £15 per thousand words of prose. For Rant we pay £20; Rave £20; Pen Portrait £20; Writing Group 'What We Do' Exercise £20; Four Lines that Rhyme £20; Monologue £20; Week of Tweets £20; and £100 for a three-month guest blog. Feature articles, reviews and illustrations are commissioned.

Send submissions to:

PO Box 656
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE99 1PZ

PLEASE NOTE: we now accept email submissions from all writers for anything in the 'OTHER SUBMISSIONS' category. However, we are unable to accept email submissions for themed New Writing unless you are overseas.

For further information, contact us. We look forward to hearing from you.


Mslexia publishes a comprehensive literature listings section, including the UK, the Republic of Ireland and Further Afield. If you know of – or are involved in – anything that might be of interest to Mslexia readers, please contact us, and we will do our best to include you in the magazine or on the website.

Listings deadline for issue 62 (Jun/Jul/Aug 2014): 1 May 2014, for events from 10 June 2014 to the end of August 2014


This is a brand new section of the magazine directory which offers Mslexia readers some well-deserved space to shout about themselves and get their writing noticed. Tell us about your latest publications, blogs or events. Do you want to find a writing group in your area or promote your proofreading service? The Mslexia Noticeboard is the place to be seen.

With prices starting from just £20 for up to 50 words, you'll reach 27,000+ readers just like you – self-promotion has never been easier! To find out more, contact Robyn .

Noticeboard deadline for issue 62 (Jun/Jul/Aug 2014): 16 April 2014

For a more prominent position in the magazine, why not advertise with Mslexia, or insert your flier?


poem's workings


Writing Workshops

Mslexia publishes writing workshops devoted to the upcoming theme in each issue of the magazine. For the latest workshop, and a collection of other new and archived writing workshops, visit our workshops page

Get inspired by exploring a selection of features and inspirations drawn from recent issues of the magazine:


The Mslexia MA in Novel Writing – Character, led by Jenny Newman

...with life coach Bekki Hill
Use metaphors

Explore the unconscious and turn your life into literature
Hayfields or horse-dung

In which a published author compares a segment of her book to an earlier draft, dicussing how - and why - she made her editing choices.
Deborah Moggach's First Draft
Wendy Cope's First Draft

Poets are interviewed about the process of writing a selected poem.
Polly Clark
Jean Sprackland

Read others' work

Browse New Writing to sample short stories and poems that have been selected by previous Guest Editors.

Mslexia Writing Workshops

Get Published



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