Promote our newest email course and win registration + accommodation at AWP 2019

If you’re one of the thousands of hopefuls in the midst of applying to MFA programs in creative writing this fall—or even considering whether an MFA might be right for you in the future—this brand-new email course from Literistic has got your name all over it.

Literistic has partnered with an MFA veteran to bring you “MFA Applications 101”, a free 10-day email course that breaks down each element of your portfolio and tackles the big questions of the grad school application process.

And to help this course get off the ground, we’re running a promotional contest with our biggest giveaway prize ever: registration and three nights of accommodation at AWP 2019 in Portland, Oregon.

To enter to win, simply share the MFA Applications 101 course page on Twitter or Facebook before November 30th.

Attending AWP is an essential bucket list item for any writer. It’s the largest literary conference in North America, with over 12K attendees, 2K presenters and 550 readings, panels, and craft lectures. This year’s conference runs March 27–30, 2019.

Good luck!

Read more

“What’s the Difference Between the Literistic Longlist and the Literistic Shortlist?”

Since 2014, we’ve been offering two versions of our much-loved list of literary deadlines. One version, the Shortlist, is free. The other, the Longlist, is paid. Our hope is that subscribers on the Shortlist will see the value that we provide (and form a connection with us and the community that we’re trying to build), and eventually upgrade to the Longlist, which allows us to keep the lights on.

Both lists are curated by our editorial team but with a few key differences. If you’re on the Shortlist, here are a few reasons you might want to upgrade:

  • You’ll receive our full list of literary deadlines which you can filter by genre, location, and pay preferences. The Longlist typically contains twice as many deadlines as the Shortlist. Read more about how you can customize your Longlist here: “How can I customize Literistic?”
  • You’ll unlock a personalized and always up to date deadline calendar (syncs with iCal, Google Cal, Outlook etc.). Read more about this feature here: “Your very own personalized deadline calendar.”
  • You’ll unlock a system of opt-in Calendar invites and notifications for specific deadlines.
  • You’ll receive access to a supportive and private Facebook community group (great for forming connections, staying accountable and/or crowdsourcing questions).
  • You’ll be supporting our free programming (like our Submissions 101 course.)
  • You won’t receive emails from our editors urging you to upgrade.

Here’s a few nice things people have to say about the service (more on our “Wall of Love”):

  • “Thanks to @literistic I’ve found new markets for my writing–love your wide-reaching lists!” — Julie P
  • “How much do we love @literistic? SO MUCH YES. Best curated lit contest/submission/fellowship lists ever.” — The Mackinac
  • “The team of @literistic must be made up of demigods. How do they do it?” — Karen C
  • Just sent a submission to The Threepenny Review. First submission since late October. Thanks @literistic for keeping me on my toes! — Steve M.
  • “Just got my first email from @literistic, and it’s already clear that submitting work has gotten a whole lot easier.” — Pamela S
  • “Literistic is a gem, writers, use it to stay on top of your submitting game, im getting published bc of it” — Jeevika V
  • “Dear writers: If you’re not using @literistic you’re missing out! Great newsletter with sub calls. Published in 3 journals using them! 😃” — Jillian P
  • “Just submitted to like three or four places from your amazing email, @literistic. Thank you. You’re awesome. I do this research for myself..” — Illana M
  • “Being your own “literary secretary” sucks. Yay @literistic! Personalized literary+contest deadlines=more time to trick myself into writing.” — Domenica B.
  • “Discovering you was like walking into the staff room on a bleak Monday to discover a box of delicious donuts!” — The Banff Centre

Convinced? You can purchase a subscription for $58 per year right now by clicking here. All annual subscriptions come with a 90 day no-hassle refund policy.

Submitting a Featured Video to Literistic

Ever wanted to feature your opportunity in our newsletter? Ever felt frustrated by our complete prohibition on advertising? Well have we got something for you. Introducing Featured Videos.

Featured Videos allow literary organizations to get a little bit more exposure in our newsletter. They’re displayed prominently and separate from our deadlines and they’re likely to drive more interest in whatever opportunity you’re promoting than our regular listings. We’re also happy to broadcast Featured Videos throughout our network in order get you a little bit of extra exposure.

Featured Videos are about developing our subscribers understanding of the kinds of writing that organizations like yours are looking to attract. Using their web cam, editors or administrators are encouraged to record themselves responding to the survey questions provided. We don’t want the videos to feel overproduced or to feel like an advertisement. Video quality doesn’t need to be amazing—web cam and ear bud microphones are entirely sufficient.

Interested? Send us an email. We can’t promote every opportunity, so we encourage you to reach out to us beforehand to make sure that what you’re promoting meets our editorial standards.


Please use a modern webcam (equipped on most Apple computers) and a dedicated microphone (such as the microphone attached to most Apple earbud headphones). Please record in a quiet place. Please make sure that you are evenly lit (do not record with a light source behind you). Please try not to read from a script or a pre-prepared press release. Speak naturally and try not to be vague (“we’re looking for good writing”). We recommend using Apple’s Quicktime video player to record your video and a service like Dropbox, Vimeo or Youtube to upload it. Once it’s uploaded, use our Submit a Deadline form to submit the link to the uploaded video, or email us at [email protected] If you would like to record a video but have never done anything like this before, shoot us an email at [email protected]

Survey questions

Please answer all of the survey questions provided, preferably in order. Here’s a link to our survey: Literistic Featured Video Survey.

large organization?

If you’re a larger organization with a lot of pre-existing interest, we’re happy to help out and record it for you over Skype. Just send us an email.

Your very own personalized literary deadline calendar

We’ve just released two new features for Literistic Longlist subscribers: you can now download calendar events for individual deadlines and you can now subscribe to a personalized deadline calendar that automatically updates every time we release a new list. The latter feature is super exciting. We’re currently supporting iCal, Google Calendar and Outlook, though I imagine these features will also work for other calendar applications as well. I’ve broken down the features below.

Personalized Deadline Calendar

You can now subscribe to a personalized deadline calendar by clicking on the link (which sits underneath our monthly “Letter from the Editors” section) in your next Literistic email. The link looks like this:

Clicking on that link will subscribe you to your calendar using your existing calendar application. Don’t worry: most calendar applications have ways to hide/show events associated with particular calendars (in other words, this won’t pollute your calendar with a million events), and you can always unsubscribe from it if it seems like too much.

The calendar is self updating, which means that when we release a new Literistic, your calendar will populate automatically. Each event has details on the deadline, including our descriptions and genre classifications. It’s basically Literistic but in calendar form.

If you have any questions, shoot us through an email.

What Calendar applications can be used for this?

Google Calendar, iCal and Outlook. It should work with other calendar applications as well. If it doesn’t, send us an email and we’ll see what we can do.

Does it take into consideration my subscriber preferences?

It sure does. Updating your subscriber preferences updates your calendar. If you toggle off poetry and submissions that have fees, you won’t see ’em in your calendar.

What if I change my mind?

Unsubscribing from the calendar is as easy as removing it from your calendar app. You can unsubscribe from your calendar at any time.

What if I unsubscribe from Literistic?

You’ll automatically be unsubscribed from your calendar as well. But why would you?

Download deadlines to your calendar

Each Literistic deadline now comes with a little clock icon next to it. Clicking the little clock will send you to a page where you can download an individual calendar event for that deadline. Here’s an image of a deadline with the little clock next to its title:

The calendar event comes complete with our description and genre classifications. You can set your own reminders for it within your calendar app. Right now, we support Google Calendar, iCal and Outlook, but it should work with other calendar applications as well. If it doesn’t, send us an email and we’ll see what we can do.

Both of these features were requests from subscribers just like you. So, if you have a good idea that you’d like to share with us, send it over. That’s it for now.

Literary Submissions 101: A Free 10-Day Email Course on How to Submit to Literary Magazines

We’ve wanted to write a course on how to submit to literary magazines for almost two years now, and we’ve finally done it. Starting today we’re now offering a free 10-day email course on the basics of submitting your work. You’ll learn how to write a proper cover letter, how to gauge whether a magazine is appropriate for your work, you’ll learn about publishing rights and simultaneous submissions, and hopefully you’ll come away feeling like an expert.

The course is broken up into bite-sized chunks of a few hundred words, and lessons are emailed to you every day at 7AM (ET) sharp. We’re hoping that you’ll roll out of bed and read a lesson while you drink your morning coffee.

The course is instructed by the illustrious Eliza Robertson. Eliza studied creative writing at the University of Victoria and the University of East Anglia, where she received the Man Booker Scholarship and Curtis Brown Prize. In 2013, she won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and was shortlisted for the Journey Prize and CBC Short Story Prize. Her debut collection, Wallflowers, was shortlisted for the East Anglia Book Award, Danuta Gleed Short Story Prize and selected as a New York Times editor’s choice. Her first novel, Demi-Gods, comes out with Penguin Canada and Bloomsbury this fall. She’s a perfect guru.

Here’s what a few people have to say about it:

“I thought it was so well-written and relatable and each email was the perfect length.” — Rev. Chelsea MacMillan. “I loved it. Looked forward to it. And am referring to it right now.”  — Susan Hahn, “Eliza’s course gave me a lot more clarity. I feel like she is especially helpful for people who, though they love to read and write, are not necessarily connected to the literary world as an industry. The tone was perfect – that of a real person who wants to help.” — Grace Eyre, “I enjoyed the course – particularly the short daily email format. It kept the material from feeling overwhelming, or like there was too much to read at that particular moment in time. I thought it was very accessible and helpful for submitters of all experience levels, and I learned some great tips.” — Constance Renfrow, “Smart, informed, funny and full of resources to take the next step. Really appreciated.” — Christine Sang. “The course was perfect for new writers not familiar with the process and a good reminder to those who are..  Thanks.” — Connie Kallback, “I appreciated your course on submitting work. I looked forward to what you would deliver every morning. It was always to the point and  meant I didn’t have to clear away a lot of fat to get to the meat. I’d open your email right away instead of waiting until I thought I had time, and then ending up never getting back to that particular email and eventually deleting it.” — Rita Pomade, “I thought overall it was wonderful, great insight that covered all the basis, loved the tone and charm of the language. Keep up the great work!” — A.P. Figueora Jr.

Sign on up below. You can unsubscribe at any time (but you probably won’t).


If you have any questions, feel free to shoot us an email at [email protected] You can also tweet at us: @literistic.


Who is this course for?

Writers of literary fiction, non fiction and poetry. If you’re already a Literistic subscriber, chances are this is for you. Might not be the best for writers of genre fiction, journalists or playwrights.

Does the course cost anything?

Nope! It’s free for good.

How can I provide feedback?

Just reply to one of our emails. It’ll go straight to us.

Who are you?

We’re a small team of writers who manage Literistic, an online service that curates a list of  literary publications, contests and fellowships every month. You can subscribe to Literistic here, and you can read more about us here.

I have discovered a typo.

Oh no! Just shoot us an email at [email protected]

I have discovered a typo and I am going to be kinda shitty about it.

Just email us at [email protected]

Introducing the New Literistic


We just finished our new website, and with it, we’d like to introduce you to “Literistic on steroids.”

Our intention from the beginning has been to create a list of deadlines that’s short and sweet. You’re not going to respond to each of the 50+ deadlines that we send you every month. But you might respond to 10 – 15 that are actually relevant to the type of writing that you do. Being presented with a small list of a few highly-qualified deadlines should significantly reduce the amount of time that you spend managing submissions every month. It’s also typically a job preformed by most literary agents. This is what we want Literistic to be.

We’d like to introduce you to the Literistic “Longlist,” or Literistic on steroids as we’ve come to call it. The Literistic Longlist takes the free version of Literistic, offers 30% more deadlines and is tailored to your subscriber preferences. It’s your new literary agent. If you want to receive nothing but fiction deadlines for publications that pay for submissions and are located in the United States, well, you can do that now. If you’re interested in reading more about how you can customize what you receive every month, here’s a blog post for you.

Right now, the Literistic Longlist costs $4.83/month or $58/year (changed . If, after a month or two, you’re not satisfied, you can have your money back. But, if you’ve been keeping track of the amount of time you spend managing deadlines every month and you consider that time to be worth roughly the price of a cup of coffee, it’s an easy to decision to make. We’ll be raising the rate to $48 after a few months, after all of our current subscribers have had time to sign up, and after we’ve released a few more personalization features, so, if you’re interested, click this click to subscribe at the lower price.

There will still be a free version of Literistic (now dubbed “The Shortlist”), and we’ll still put love into it. But our focus will be on making something that sustains the work that we do every month. We want to make Literistic an indispensable tool for writers, and there’s still a lot of ground to cover.

If you have any questions about the Literistic Longlist, send us an email! We’ve also launched a handy Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

Thanks for listening. We’ll see you on the 1st!

How can I customize Literistic?

We’ve just released the full-featured Literistic, and with it, we’d like to introduce you to the all new subscriber preferences. Subscriber preferences let you tell us what you want to receive every month. If you’re a poet who doesn’t have any money and wants pay for poems, you’re going to love this. Preferences are available to anyone who has purchased a Literistic subscription. Let’s talk about how they work.


There are four groupings of checkboxes within your preferences: “Genre,” “Category,” “Money,” and “Geography.” The checkboxes within these groupings function as filters. By default, everything is turned on, which means that you’re receiving absolutely everything that we’re sending you.

The checkboxes under “Genre” allow you to filter out genres that you aren’t interested in. Don’t worry, you’ll still receive listings that have cross over (for example, publications that publish poetry, fiction and non-fiction will still appear if you only have non-fiction checked).

The checkboxes under “Category” allow you to filter out certain types of deadlines. Don’t want to see Grants and Fellowships? Uncheck that box. Think contests are just the worst? Uncheck that one too.

The “Money” section sounds ambiguous and believe us we tried our hardest to make it easy to understand. The Money section lets you filter out unpaid deadlines, deadlines with fees and paid deadlines (why would you want to filter those out?). This section functions a little differently than the others though: checking the “Fees” and “Paid” checkboxes while unchecking “Unpaid” will not show you deadlines that only have fees. Instead, it’ll show you deadlines that pay, and deadlines that pay and have fees. Got it?

The “Geography” section functions like “Genre”: this section allows you to filter out organizations by their location. This is not to be confused with being able to filter out deadlines that only allow work from a person who holds a certain type of citizenship. If a listing is going to exclude you based on where you’re from, we’ll note it in its description.

It’s important that you’re not too zealous with your preferences. You may find yourself only receiving a few listings. But hey— maybe that’s what you want. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments below. Alternatively, you can always send us an email.

Ready to subscribe? Well friend, here’s a conveniently placed link for doing just that.

Don’t know how to get to your preferences? Scour your inbox for a Literistic email, scroll to the bottom of it, and click the “Preferences” link in the footer. It’ll look like this.

Just the Stats: Diversity in Canadian Poetry Prizes (1981 – 2015) [Updated]

Screenshot 2015-03-01 11.26.16Following  the announcement that VIDA will include a “Women of Color VIDA Count” as part of their annual data, Canadian poet Colin Fulton is working on a damning piece of research that reveals the racial uniformity of poetry prize-winners in Canada. We’ll let you guess who comes out on top.

In such a culturally diverse country, it’s disappointing that such a bias still exists. Fulton’s research also shows the effect of such a bias: the majority of the judges of Canada’s most prestigious prizes are also white.

As long as prizes beget prestige, and prestige turns writers into gatekeepers, the bias is likely to continue, unconsciously or not.  Fulton’s research is still ongoing. We’ll update you as it progresses.

(March 2, 2015) We’ve updated the post with a preface by Fulton.


The image presented by this simple and cursory list – that prize culture in Canadian Poetry is explicitly white supremacist – should be unsurprising. It’s only been a week since I started to compile the opaque histories of poetic ‘excellence’ and its evaluation in this country, but carefully typing out white winner, white shortlist, white judge over and over again while trying to resist that confirmation becoming automatic makes the research slow-going. The suffocating ephemerality of this ‘excellence,’ decaying or lost in unmaintained lit-journal websites and cached press releases, is just as obvious as its whiteness. At the same time the names are very present in contemporary Canadian poetry. It’s difficult to name a ‘successful’ Canadian poet who hasn’t had some kind of contact with prize culture.

Yesterday I posted the beginnings of the list to my Facebook page and since then it has been shared, reposted, spread through Twitter, etc., in a manner reminiscent of work done by CWILA with gender and reviewing in the Canadian poetry context. Responses to the list from a variety of different audience (mostly white, like me) have seemed copy-pasted from that moment too. (The judge says: “Well most of the people submitting were white, so it’s no surprise the winners were white! We’re not racist, submissions are read blind!” The cynic says: “Well prize culture is inherently problematic anyway! I already knew about this. Get rid of awards and you get rid of the issue.” The reformer says: “Well all we need to do is attribute more value to diversity and tone down this false rhetoric of universality and absolute judgement, as allies.”)

I’m not interested in combatting pre-readings, and honestly part of the project was to draw them out. But some clarifications might help. First, not all of the prizes I’ve gotten around to looking at are open to submission, and not all of them make judges and the method of judge selection public. Second, the limitations (and ridiculousness) of the list’s ‘white/non-white’ categorization, the elision of names therein, is again part of the questions the project is trying to raise. Third, the image of prize culture’s racial purity should not be disentangled from wider issues concerning the way prizes are ‘necessary’ to finance austerity-struck publications, the way the university workshop system exists as a feeder into prize culture, and so on. All this aside, the bottom line is that these venues for poetry, especially longstanding awards that have NEVER had a non-white winner, nominee or judge, would be left unchanged if they blatantly stated “whites only” on the eligibility page. Would anyone notice if they did?

The list first and foremost articulates a game called “white people giving other white people money,” sometimes called ‘the Canadian poetry prize,’ which is undeniably a benchmark of the production of literary value and career-building. Not much more commentary than this is needed: it isn’t about poetry contests, and it’s not about moving towards an image of poetry more palatably diverse to a white audience – it’s about who gets to exist and who doesn’t, about who they exist for and who decides.


Griffin Prize (Canadian winners)

2015 – Judges: All White, Winner TBD
2014 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2013 – Shortlist: 2/3 White, Winner: White, Judges: 2/3 White
2012 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2011 – Shortlist: 2/3 White, Winner: Non-White, Judges: All White
2010 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: 2/3 White
2009 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2008 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2007 – Shortlist: 2/3 White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2006 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2005 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2004 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2003 – Shortlist: 2/3 White, Winner: White, Judges: All White
2002 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: 2/3 White
2001 – Shortlist: All White, Winner: White, Judges: All White

Matrix Litpop Award (Poetry)

2014 – White Winner, White Judge, White Shortlist
2013 – White Winner, White Judge
2012 – White Winner, White Judge, White Shortlist
2011 – White Winner, White Judge, White Shortlist
2010 – White Winner, White Judge
2008 – White Winner

Robert Kroetsch Award

2015 – Winner TBA, White Judge (White Shortlist)
2014 – White Winner, White Judge
2013 – White Winner, White Judge
2012 – White Winner, Non-White Judge
2011 – White Winner, White Judge
2010 – White Winner, White Judge
2009 – White Winner, White Judge
2008 – White Winner, White Judge
2007 – White Winner, White Judge

Robin Blaser Award

4th Winner: TBD
4th Judge: White
3rd Winner: White
3rd Judge: White
2nd Winner: White
2nd Judges: White

bpNichol Chapbook Award

2014 – White Winner, White Judges
2013 – White Winners, White Judges (^)
2012 – White Winner, White Judges
2011 – White Winner, White Judges (^), White Honorable Mention

AM Klein Poetry Prize

2014 – Winner: White
2013 – Winner: White
2012 – Winner: White
2011 – Winner: White
2010 – Winner: White
2009 – Winner: White
2008 – Winner: White
2007 – Winner: White
2006 – Winner: White
2005 – Winner: White
2004 – Winner: White
2003 – Winner: White
2002 – Winner: White
2001 – Winner: White

Governor General Awards (Poetry)

2014: 4/5 White Shortlist, White Winner
2013: 3/4 White Shortlist, Non-White Winner
2012: White Shortlist, White Winner
2011: 3/4 White Shortlist, White Winner
2010: White Shortlist, White Winner
2009: 3/4 White Shortlist, White Winner
2008: 1/2 White Shortlist, White Winner
2007: White Shortlist, White Winner
2006: 3/4 White Shortlist, White Winner
2005: 3/4 White Shortlist, White Winner
2004: White Shortlist, White Winner
2003: White Shortlist, White Winner
2002: White Shortlist, Non-White Winner
2001: White Shortlist, Non-White Winner
2000: White Shortlist, White Winner
1999: White Shortlist, White Winner
1998: 1/2 White Shortlist, White Winner
1997: White Shortlist, Non-White Winner
1996 to 1981, 14/16 White Winners

Lemon Hound Poetry Prize

2014 – White Winner, White Judge

CBC Canada Reads (Poetry)

2014 – White Winner, 2/3 White Judges
2013 – White Winner, White Judges
2012 – Non-White Winner, White Judges
2011 – White Winner
2010 – (unknown)
2009 – White Winner
2008 – White Winner
2007 – White Winner

Montreal International Poetry Prize

2013 – White Winner, White Judge
2011 – White Winner, White Judge

Bronwen Wallace Award (Poetry)

2013 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
2011 – Winner: White, Finalists: 1/2 White
2009 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
2006 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
2004 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
2002 – Winner: White, Finalists: 1/2 White
2000 – Winner: Non-White, Finalists: White
1998 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
1996 – Winner: White, Finalists: White
1994 – Winner: White, Finalists: White

Malahat Review Prizes


2013 – Winners both White
2011 – Winners both White
2009 – Winners both White
2007 – Winners both White
2005 – White Winner; other no info
2003 – Winners both White
2001 – Winners both White
1999 – 1/2 Winners White
1997 – Winners both White
1995 to 1988 – Winners all White


2014 – Non-White Winner, White Judge
2012 – White Winner, White Judge
2010 – White Winner, White Judge
2008 – White Winner, White Judge
2006 – White Winner, White Judge


2014 – White Winner, White Judge
2013 – White Winner, White Judge
2012 – White Winner, White Judge
2011 – White Winner, White Judge
2010 – White Winner, White Judges

Trillium Awards (Poetry)

2014 – Non-White Winner, 1/3 Finalists White
2013 – White Winner, White Finalists
2012 – White Winner, White Finalists
2011 – White Winner, White Finalists
2010 – White Winner
2009 – White Winner
2008 – White Winner
2007 – White Winner
2006 – White Winner
2005 – White Winner
2004 – White Winner
2003 – White Winner

* (^) – the same judge used the following year

[Note: winners and shortlists/finalists within a given year are counted separately.]

What does Literistic actually look like?


We don’t have a FAQ yet and many people are asking for an example of what Literistic looks like. We’ve taken a huge screenshot of March’s list and pasted it below. The list is not totally representative of what we’re going to be sending in the future — this is our first list — but it should give you an idea of how the list is formatted and whether or not it’s something you want to see in your inbox every month. Remember, we query each subscriber about their tastes in publications and fellowships when they sign up, so the tastes reflected below may change in the future. Take a look:


Interested in subscribing? Head on over to

The Best Advice Neil Gaiman Got But Completely Failed to Follow

Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman’s commencement speech at the University of the Arts in 2012 is incredibly inspiring. Gaiman tells the story of getting his first few freelancing gigs (he lied about being published by a bunch of magazines in order to get employers to pay attention to him), about ignoring good advice, and about his publisher going insolvent and being unable to pay him. Sit back, grab a tissue box and prepare to get a little weepy: