Fiction Ed’s Blog: New Submissions Process Q&A

Shutterstock / SunnyGraph © submissions

Our new submissions process — for unpublished “Friend” authors only — launched last week.

Here are the answers to some questions we’ve received so far.

“What is changing?”

The only thing we are changing is the process by which authors who have not previously been published in the magazine can submit their work to “The People’s Friend”.

We are not changing the way established authors, who have already been published in the magazine, submit.

We are not changing the type of stories we accept, or the word counts or genres, the tone of our stories, or our Terms and Conditions — these remain the same.

“Why is there a new process?”

Due to coronavirus restrictions, the “Friend” Team are still working from home, and are unable to access submissions from unpublished authors which have been posted into the office.

To give unpublished authors the opportunity to submit, we’ve put a new system in place.

“What is the new process?”

Full details are outlined in our Submissions Guidelines.

In essence, we’re asking authors who have never had work published in “The People’s Friend” to now submit by email, attaching one story per email as a Word document attachment.

No headers, footers, or formatting, please, and make sure your file name matches your Subject Line exactly.

“I’ve emailed a story and haven’t received a response.”

If you’ve sent your story to and have not received an immediate, automatic response, your story has not been received. Please check the submission guidelines and try again.

Please do not reply to the automated response. This email address is for submissions only.

“I’m a published author. Are submissions from unpublished authors being read before mine?”

Stories from published authors will continue to be read by assigned Editors as a priority.

We make time to balance reading fiction from both established and aspiring authors, as a mix of both is what our readers enjoy.

“I’ve already posted a USM submission. Will the team read these in chronological order?”

Yes. Our Mail Team have been working safely throughout the pandemic, and have stored USM postal submissions safely, and in date order. We will work through them in date order, when it’s safe for us to return to office working.

Please do not resubmit a story which has already been posted.

“What’s happening with poetry submissions?”

No change here. If you are an established “Friend” poet, please continue to email your work to Abbie. If you’re an aspiring poet, please continue to post your work for now.

“Can I submit Pocket Novels to the new email address?”

No, please continue to follow the guidelines for submitting pocket novels.

“I’m an overseas author – how should I submit?”

Please follow the submissions guidelines and submit using the new email address:

“When will you go back to the office?”

We’ve followed government guidance as regards home working throughout the pandemic.

We’ll return to office working when it’s safe to do so.

Keep an eye on our website for updates.

For more from Lucy, read her blog here.

Click here to read our updated Submission Guidelines.


Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!