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For all submissions, please refer to the Femspec manual of style.

Copyright notice: Femspec retains copyrights to all published material unless otherwise negotiated, due to our contracts with databases which allow us to make the work widely accessible.  Don't forget to subscribe, which is required of all who submit.

Critical Essays, Poetry, Art, Memoir, Drama, Fiction

For critical essays, poetry, art, memoir, drama, or fiction, please prepare a clean copy in which no identifying information is available, as well as a cover letter including your name, contact point, fifty word bio, abstract, and proof of subscription. For style see the Council of Editors of Learned Journals guidelines for authors.

Critical essays are typically approximately 12-30 pages in length including bibliographies, although longer works will be considered.  Creative works for up to 25 pages will be considered per issue; serialization is possible for longer works. 

Obituaries, Conference and Event Coverage

Send emails to Batya Weinbaum. Please send us your submission with a suggested length of 1000 words, attached to an email with a cover letter including your name, contact point and proof of subscription. For style see the Council of Editors of Learned Journals guidelines for authors.

Book and Media Reviews

Head your review with the title of the book or media. Next is the bibliographic information, including author, title (in italics), city of publication, publisher, year, page length, binding, price, and ISBN number. If you are reviewing a serial, include the ISSN number. Please include all of this information.

Sargent, Pamela. Climb the Wind. New York: HarperPrism, 1999. 436 pp., cloth, $25. ISBN 0-06-105029-6.

Reviewers should keep Femspec’s diverse audience in mind: writers, readers, and scholars of feminist speculative fiction, poetry, and theory. Reviews should encourage critical rather than merely aesthetic response, and, especially in the case of fiction, should avoid summarizing a book’s narrative. Writers should consider the following questions in writing their reviews. Note that since Femspec reviews fiction, poetry, and academic work, not all questions will be relevant to all books reviewed. Contact us if you need clarification.

  • What is the book about? Don’t summarize the plot, but do identify the genre or sub-genre the book belongs to (utopia, dystopia, alternate history, etc.). Your description should enable scholars and teachers to decide whether the book is useful to their research or classroom curricula. What courses would the book be good for? What level (freshman, senior, etc.)?

  • What is the context of the book? Where does it fit into the author’s other works, if any, and into the tradition(s) of feminist speculative fiction and criticism? Context should place the book in terms of its relationship to other texts with which it can be compared. If the book is an anthology, indicate whether it contains mostly new essays.

  • What is the scholarly potential of the book? What interesting issues are raised? What insights are offered? What moral problems are addressed and how useful is the author’s treatment of them? How well researched is the book, and does the author’s bibliography (if applicable) provide useful resources for further study?


Specific Style Notes:

  1. Do not use footnotes. All references to the text should be noted in parentheses with the relevant page number.

  2. If you refer to other works in your review, include a separate list of works cited at the end of your review. Include relevant page numbers in parentheses in the text.

  3. Do not refer to other reviews of the book.

  4. Double-space your review. If you are using a computer, it will be immensely helpful if you use Times New Roman 12 pt. font.

  5. Finish your review with your name in capital letters, your institutional affiliation, if applicable and you wish to include it, and email address, if you wish to include it. Right-hand justify this block of text.


Reviews of anthologies may be up to 1200 words, depending on whether you have been asked to review the entire contents or only selected contributions. Consult the book review editor. Reviews of poetry and fiction should not exceed 1000 words. Do not feel that you must meet the length limit. Sometimes a short review is preferable.

Reviews are due 8 weeks after you receive the book. They must be submitted by email.

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