These guidelines were updated on March 31, 2013.
Hippocampus Magazine enthusiastically accepts unsolicited submissions in the following categories:
- memoir excerpt – a self-contained portion (chapter or selection) of a larger, book-length work
- personal essay – a short narrative reflecting on a particular life experience or observation
- flash creative nonfiction or a work of creative nonfiction in an experimental format
Please read our current and past issues to familiarize yourself with our publication. We can tell you this: we like quirky, we like edgy, we like witty, we like smart, we like to be moved, we like pieces that stick with us.
Guidelines: Word Count, Formatting and Submission Information
- Submissions should be no more than 3,500 words in the memoir and essay category and less than 800 words for flash creative nonfiction pieces.
- Submissions should be in Times New Roman, 12 pt. font.
- Submissions should be double-spaced.
- Submissions should NOT include your name or other identifying information.
- Do not send us multiple submissions. Hippocampus will only accept one submission at a time from an author; we will automatically decline any additional submissions. If you are interested in submitting more than one piece to us, please wait until you receive a decision on one before submitting another.
- Submissions not following the above guidelines will most often result in automatic decline.
- We accept simultaneous submissions. Just use Submittable’s “withdraw” feature to make us aware if another magazine accepts your publication.
Hippocampus Magazine prefers previously unpublished work, but will entertain submissions that have appeared elsewhere. Please let us know if work was previously published elsewhere, and if we are required to notate that in our publication. (Ex: “This essay first appeared in XYZ Journal”)
How to Submit Your Work
Hippocampus Magazine has partnered with Submittable (previously known as Submishmash) to provide an efficient way for both writer and publisher to track and organize submissions. If you frequently submit to literary magazines you may already be familiar with this superb submission tool.
Our submission software gives you the option of providing a cover letter along with your submission. This information certainly helps us get to know you better and provides your important contact information, should we need to reach you. However, your letter is kept separate from your creative work. Your work will stand alone in our blind reading process–the way it should be. Feel free to use this space to share information about yourself, your writing or how you found us. The cover letter is not required, however: If your work is selected for publication, we’ll then ask you for a photograph and a bio.
Submission Turnaround Time
We will respond to everyone who submits, but please be patient. Typical turnaround time is 8-10 weeks. We accept–and expect–simultaneous submissions so, if another publication picks up your work in the meantime, please let us know via Submittable, as noted above (not through email).
Hippocampus Magazine publishes new material monthly and likes to plan ahead. We accept submissions on a rolling basis. If we accept your submission, we will let you know in which issue we’re using it so you have something to look forward to. We do plan issues several months ahead, so we ask for your patience should your piece be accepted soon, but slated to be published a few months down the line.
Terms of Publication
By accepting publication, the author grants Hippocampus Magazine one-time electronic rights. The author retains copyright and may publish the submission elsewhere after it appears in Hippocampus. By accepting publication, the author gives Hippocampus Magazine the right to publish the work on hippocampusmagazine.com and to archive it as part of the issue in which it appeared. Works may be removed from the archive at the author’s request. Authors whose work is selected for publication will receive a contract outlining these terms in more detail.
Hippocampus Magazine is a non-paying market; however, every published contributor gets a bio and link to his website or blog from the published article. One contributor from each issue can win bragging rights AND a prize if his piece is deemed “Most Memorable.” Also we have an annual contest, The Remember in November Contest for Creative Nonfiction and other various, spontaneous contests and giveaways. We try to maintain a very fun and interactive magazine!
About Passing on Submissions
Just because we pass on a particular submission does not mean it does not have merit. Do not take this personally. Just sitting down and getting your thoughts on paper is a task for which you should feel great pride–not everyone can do it. Every piece of written work is art. Every piece of writing has value. We feel it is important to spread the message of being persistent and diligent in your search for publication. Never let rejection discourage you from sharing your story. Just because it is not right for us does not mean it will not find a more fitting home. Write on.