We will be accepting submissions under a variety of categories: Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Poetry, Articles/Essays, Ekphrasis and Newforms.
Every piece of fiction, poetry, non-fiction and essay submitted will be accompanied by an AI-generated computer image. We’ll be in charge of generating these images, but you will have plenty of input and final say as to what image accompanies your story. We expect this part to be very fun for both of us.
We are open to flash fiction and longer pieces. For flash fiction, 1000 words or under. For non-flash, anywhere up to 7000 words. (In time we are likely to stratify flash fiction and fiction, maybe with separate readers, but for now the line is essentially meaningless.)
We imagine the bread and butter of Cold Signal’s fiction will be sci-fi, horror and weird fiction with notable glimmering exceptions. Think schizophrenic, kaleidoscopic, psychedelic but also sincere, emotional, human. The stories may, of course, relate to technology, but don’t let that limit your imagination. Our appetites for beauty and horror run wide so long as it rings true. Anything that explores the aesthetic question in a meaningful way will be considered, but to be frank we’re not particularly interested in 7000 words of completely indecipherable prose. We enjoy narratives, characters, dialogue and themes and want to see them twisted and explored rather than wholesale abandoned (that being said, if you reacted to this with “Screw that, I know what’s really good,” We’ll read your stuff anyway and you might win us over and that can be an extra special delicious kind of victory. Just step up to plate believing in it completely.)
Poetry is a pretty open-ended art form to begin with and extremely well-suited for explorations of humanity, organic and synthetic consciousness, memory, identity, evolution and more. Surprise us! All we ask is that the work is language-based, addresses the core aesthetic question of Cold Signal according to how you understand it and is something you think sincerely kicks ass.
We’re open to works of CNF up to 7000 words. We’d love to see projects of dissonance here. How does the theme of “the fusion of organic and synthetic expression” relate to creative nonfiction? Is it somewhere blending truth and lie? Is it using inhuman forms, ideas or tools? Is it in narratives of online gaming? Avatars, message logs, r/AITA posts? Dig deep.
While this can be understandably bundled with CNF, we’d love to see articles on Artificial Intelligence (image generation, god complex, etc.) or any concerning emerging technology written with an artist’s sensibility. Take impossible concepts and boil them down. Share your monkeybrain take on all our modern horrors. This category is also open to interviews with writers, scientists, lunatics, you name it. if you can convince us it fits, we’re open.
All the previous categories will be words first, images second, but we wanted to create a category for submitted work inspired by previously created AI-generated images. Confusing, we know, but we want to leave the field broad here. Fiction, Poetry, CNF are all welcome (with regular size limits) bundled with the art that inspired it.
This is a separate category partially because of the difference in creative process and its juicy potential, but also to allow Cold Signal more wiggle room in developing its own curated aesthetic. We’re all about vibes here but we want your dope work all the same.
When submitting an Ekphrasis, we ask for a copy of the image as well as the submission itself. We also ask that you also inform us whether the Ekphrasis is fiction, CNF or poetry.
Okay this is a little wild and very [SUBJECT TO CHANGE], but we wanted to toy with a category of submissions that might not fit into the traditional literary magazine format that still feel kindred to Cold Signal. Whatever the medium, we’re hoping to see submissions of literary and aesthetic value.
- curated AI-generated writing
- Audiovisual mediums (music, video, collages, gifs, etc.) utilizing artificial intelligence tools or aesthetics
- Video games (pixel games, hyperlink choose your own adventures)
- SURPRISE US
This will need to be a conversation, less a submission. Include New Forms in your email header so we know. Speaking of!
Sending Your Submission:
We are currently unable to pay writers for their work. Because of this, simultaneous submissions are encouraged and we’ll never be offended if you pull a submission prior to acceptance. Get that bread. What we hope to provide is an extremely supportive and strange place to showcase your work!
For the time being, we hope to have submissions responded to in 30 days or less.