Open Submission for Short Stories and Photography

This is an example of the cover. Here could be you!

Let me tell you a few words about this magazine. I am starting a periodical issue ‘Scaffolding’ and inviting you to participate in this startup. I have ambitious plans to make it both literary and, at the same time, a marketing tool for everyone involved.

(noun) a temporary structure on the outside of a building, made usually of wooden planks and metal poles, used by workers while building, repairing, or cleaning the building; the materials used in scaffolding. – Dictionary

The overarching theme of the magazine is growing, emerging, becoming, transforming, as human analogy to a building under construction and reconstruction. Scaffolding, in this respect, is the vehicle and the support system. We are interested in transforming fictional characters,  their creators, and impactful visual arts.

I am also  excited to announce that the magazine works with a brilliant editor Brittany Micka-Foos, who will make the issue shine. Brittany is a former editor of the American University law journal and currently works with the fiction writers.

What we accept for submissions:
– original short stories that somehow reflect the loosely defined theme of the magazine.
– original photography or illustrations – we are big on photography and want to make art an equal part of the issue.
– self-reflective or issue-driven articles from artists in different genres.
– introspective or theme-driven interviews.

What we offer:
– marketing of the artists – free, in form of bios and references to their creative body of work,
– artists retain their rights to their creative works. You can publish it again, no restrictions.
– most of all, it’s a networking tool, especially for the up-and-coming artists.

What we believe in:
– creative freedom (minus typos 🙂 ),
– equality and inclusiveness.

What market segment are we trying to reach:
– collaborators’ fanbases. The readership multiplies with more collaborators. It’s like a pyramid scheme, only legal 🙂
– literary and art inclined audiences worldwide (I am reaching out to UK, US, New Zealand, and Canada already in the first issue, so we are looking for the distribution options worldwide).
– gift/collectible section in the book stores for the hardcopy issues.
– marketing tool for the collaborators for meet and greet, signing events, giveaways, etc.

Submissions for the October issue are due on August 25, 2016 , but if you are interested, please let me know what exactly you’d like to contribute and provide approximate word count (so far the submissions are around 3.000 words, but this is not a rule, but merely a direction). In order to submit, send us your art and a short cover letter, where you relate your work to the theme of the magazine and tell us a few words about yourself. We will use it in the issue to introduce your work.

Email with the subject line ‘Scaffolding’.

If we receive more material than we can accommodate, we will make a selection by September 1, 2016, or will include your work in the next issue.

[August 17, 2016update]. There are certain topics and themes which under no circumstances we will publish and support. We will not accept any piece that discriminates based on race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression, age, height, weight, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations, and marital status or that promotes illegal activities. We will not accept a piece that advocates for a political party, leader, or platform. Please keep the content of your writing and visual art within G-PG-PG-13 rating.

Source and more information here: About Entertainment

[August 3, 2016 update]. I am putting together a Kickstarter campaign. Hoping this will provide better financial structure to this startup. I will keep you posted. Meanwhile email me any questions, I’d be happy to answer them.



We received questions about visual art. Some of them are addressed in the comments below. I also am posting a mock layout of the pages completed from my own photographs. I don’t know if it will be helpful, but this is what we imagined as a ‘look and feel’ for the magazine. Don’t take it literally, just use it as an inspiration. Text, fonts and other details may vary greatly partly because we will be using pro software to create the layout, so it should be an eye candy in the end. Text on the photos bellow is irrelevant.

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Copyright 2016 Ellie Maloney. All the images in this post are a property of Ellie Maloney and cannot be used, altered, or reproduced without owner’s permission.



  1. This sounds interesting – good luck with it, I hope it works. I would like to find out more, I’m not sure I’m the type of collaborator you’re after 🙂

    1. I was thinking about you Simon, your short stories. A Sci fi story would work, but think about the theme of the magazine. The theme of becoming, transforming. You are becoming a writer, that’s one way to look at it. The story should be thought provoking too. Maybe a bit mysterious. If you connect it with a short cover letter, should be good. Let me know!

      1. You we’re really thinking of me? That’s so awesome… Thanks. So you want stories with transformation or becoming theme? I can do mysterious… I think, I’ll have a go at thought provoking. I’ll have to get thinking. I’ll email you though, is that OK?

        1. I really was considering sending you a message alert you to this. We have an editor, she will work with you to make it look good, as long as the story is interesting, it’s a win.

          1. Really?? Wow… You’ve got me excited for this now Ellie. This is something I can’t pass up. How often will you be publishing this magazine? Will you want something regularly? I need to get thinking…

          2. I’m hoping quarterly. But at minimum twice a year. I hope quarterly. And yes, get excited! Better stories come out of excited mind!!!! Cheers! 🙂

  2. I received some good questions regarding this submission. Maybe it will be helpful to someone. Posting the Q&A as the conversation went:

    I’ve been to your site and read the submissions requirements, Ellie. Just a few questions. Can the story (science fiction) literally be about someone undergoing a radical physical change? Do you want the text of the story copied and pasted into the email or would you prefer a Word doc? Your site says that graphic art should be submitted with a cover letter. Does that also include short stories? Do you want any sort of author’s bio (with or without links to blog, twitter, etc…) to accompany the submission? Sorry to be a bug (and sorry for the off topic conversation, Aidan), but I want to make sure my submission is up to specs. Thanks.

    1. Transformation should be defined however the author sees it. I have topics of social transformation, looking to add a transgender story in a form of an interview [or an article], my [own] short story is a horror – ish story about a beauty blogger who disappeared while removing makeup. In other words, it should be thought provoking. Take your creative liberty to define and reimagine scaffolding. In your short cover letter you should write a bit introducing your story and making the connection. Make your pitch to the reader to explain your feelings about the topic. Radical physical change is great too!
    2. Please send it in the word document format.
    3. For the purposes of the magazine, visual art is an equal partner to the written word. You don’t have to include it. But if you can, it must be of at least the best resolution. Secondly, it must be artistic and also thought provoking, interesting, maybe challenging. It could be shots of you as an author, but they must be so interesting, that they will go on the whole two-page spread of the magazine, serving as a background for the text. Also could be illustrations of your story, awesome as well. It could be a whole individual concept photography project. In this case it may not necessarily be paired with your story, or it may, we need to look at the material as a whole. In any case, a story and visuals are two separate projects and count as two submissions, [which is great for you!]. Cover letter is a separate item. It’s in part or in whole will be used to introduce your story. We are looking to see your personality as an author.
    4. Bio and marketing references – yes, you can send it now, but that part will be composed when we get all the submissions and understand better the layout. But we definitely want to make you famous, so that will be included as well.
    Thanks for the questions. Let me know if you have more.

    1. Thanks for posting those sample pages so I (and everyone else) can get a visual idea how the magazine will be formatted. Like I said before, it’s much easier for me to write than to draw or photograph, so what would happen if I submitted the story and no art work? I know you said this was allowed, but your sample pages seem very dependent on high quality photos.

        1. OK, so I can submit just the short story, cover letter, and bio and it won’t hurt my chances at having my submission being selected. Sorry for peppering you with all these questions, but I thrive on details. Thanks again.

  3. I really love the feel of the sample pages you shared. Is my understanding that this is going to be strictly a print publication correct, or will it also be available digitally?

  4. I read Tsunami a couple weeks ago but now finally getting around to writing a review:

    I thought Ellie’s writing is phenomenal. Some science fiction I come across is very rudimentary and not at all challenging to the reader. Ellie writes with precision and purpose and I consider heady, much to my liking.

    I’m a cook so I process Tsumani as a pleasing appetizer to what I’m sure will be a great main course with a satisfying taste to the pallette.

    I’m looking forward to what more comes from the mind of this clever author.

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