Miss Gwendolyn Brooks was an iconic poet, feminist, mother, activist, and Chicagoan. Chicago is celebrating her 100th birthday and [Y]volve Publishing, the teen press of Revolving Door Arts, wants to include your teen voice for We Real Cool: Chicago Teens Celebrating Our Miss Brooks.
We want your poems and stories that explore:
- Feminism: The equal rights movements of history and how the fight still rages on. We want to see your conviction in your writing, to understand your story.
- Poetry: The strength and power that comes from being able to speak through as few words as possible. We want to see your life as a poet, your feelings about poetry, and how poetry shapes who you are.
- Mothers: We welcome all stories that explore relationships with mothers, or being a young mother.
- Chicagoan: The culture of Chicago and how it shapes the individuals stories of everyday people. How being a Chicagoan shapes you. We want to see your "city experience."
- Must be between the ages of 14-19, and Chicagoland-based.
- All writing must be inspired by the words, life, or spirit of Miss Gwendolyn Brooks.
- Poetry: Submit up to 5 poems in a single document. Each poem should be on its own page.
- Short Story and Creative Nonfiction: Submit up to 2 pieces no longer than 10 pages total. Please use single-spacing.
- One submission per genre. If you'd like to submit to more than one genre, please create a separate submission for each manuscript.
- Upload 1 document per genre (pdf, doc, docx).
- Accepted fonts: Times New Roman or Serifs.
WHERE CAN I FIND INSPIRATION FOR MY MISS BROOKS POEMS?
Let's start with one of her most famous poems: "We Real Cool"
We Real Cool We real cool. We Left school. We Lurk late. We Strike straight. We Sing sin. We Thin gin. We Jazz June. We Die soon.
You can find more poems by Miss Brooks at the following links:
Our Miss Brooks 100
WHAT'S SO SPECIAL ABOUT THIS ANTHOLOGY BESIDES CELEBRATING MISS BROOKS?
Questions? Feel free to send us any question you may have at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are a teen between the ages of 14-19 interested in becoming a published author, please send us your work. This is an opportunity to see your work in its own published book, and could award you further opportunities for exposure in the wider literary community of Chicago.
Your submission can explore any topic or theme you are drawn to in the genres of Poetry, Fiction, or Creative Nonfiction.
Important Info You NEED to Know Before Submitting:
Accepted manuscripts will be matched with a professional writer for mentorship inclusive of 3 check-ins.
Selected authors will be able to work on new pieces for consideration in the manuscript.
Authors with also be matched with an [Y]volve editor for collaboration and feedback.
This opportunity requires a commitment and engagement of 7 months.
Accepted authors will be required to participate in photo/video shoots, readings, and workshop sessions over the course of developing their books. Authors can expect to meet in-person monthly to review and edit work. There will be expectations to work on the book in between these monthly meeting.
Accepted authors will receive a letter of agreement to be reviewed and signed by parents. We encourage you to share this opportunity with your parents to best understand the commitments, if selected.
- Must be a Chicago resident.
- Must be between ages 14-19.
- We accept manuscripts that explore any topic or theme.
- Curse with purpose and intention.
Acceptable fonts: Times New Roman, Serifs, Garamond
Acceptable fonts sizes: 11 or 12
Accepted files. Doc, docx, pdf
Only one submission per genre is allowed
10-20 pages of poetry.
Each poem must appear on its own page.
We dissuade centering poems unless there is a specific, artistic reason.
We encourage attention to line-spacing and breaks.
Please use page numbers.
Fiction & Creative Nonfiction Guidelines:
2-4 short works.
The entire manuscript must total no more than 30 pages.
Please use 1 inch margins.
Please use single-spacing.
Please include page numbers.
Hybrid Genre Submissions:
If submitting a manuscript that includes more than one genre, only one submission is allowed.
Follow formatting guidelines stated above that are relevant to the genres your submission includes. This means, poems should match the poem guidelines and fiction/nonfiction should match those guidelines.
No more than 20 pages of writing.
I HAVE QUESTIONS!
How many teen authors are chosen each year?
3-5. We also select 2 runner-ups.
How many books will be printed?
75-100. Authors receive 5 copies each.
Does it have to fit a certain theme?
No. Feel free to create and explore your own individual theme(s). We want to project YOUR story!
Do I have to be from Chicago to submit?
Yes! At this time, we are focused on providing Chicago teens with this specific outlet that might otherwise be hard to access. We hope to grow in the future and include teens from other parts of Illinois and beyond!
Can I make my own cover art?
Selected authors are able to select and direct the cover art for their books. They will have input in the final cover, but will not have the opportunity to create the art themselves. It is our hope to work with other Chicago teens to produce the cover art in collaboration with the selected authors.
Will the books be sold?
Yes! Revolving Door Arts manages the sale of books.
Do I get a profit?
Yes! Authors will be provided a percentage of the sales.
Can I submit more than once?
Yes. You can submit one manuscript per genre. We will only review the first manuscript submitted for any given genre.
Can I curse?
We know you curse. Period. We don’t want to censor you. Therefore, feel free to curse, but let’s be artists and think about cursing artistically and with purpose in our writing. However, please be aware that we will not support or publish any work that is racist, homophobic, gender bias, or otherwise offensive and derogatory towards others.
This is great! What else do I get?
While publishing your own books is great in itself, there are many other opportunities that can come along as result of being a Teen Chapbook Series author such as: interviews, readings, and possibly presenting at conferences across the country, and more. These are not guaranteed, but are very likely.
I have other questions that are represented here.
That's perfectly fine! Email us at email@example.com. We look forward to reading your work!