Now accepting submissions for:

Issue 10 Youth on Power. Deadline March 31, 2017. See details.

Issue 11 Service. Deadline June 15, 2017. See details.

Issue 12 African Nova Scotian Women (digital and print editions). Deadline September 1, 2017. See details.

Understorey Magazine is a Canadian online magazine of literary writing and visual art. Submissions are open to writers and artists who identify as women and live in Canada (or are Canadian citizens living abroad). Before submitting work, please read our mission and the guidelines below.

Understorey Magazine aims to publish as many different voices, styles, and perspectives as possible. We welcome submissions from women of various ages, cultures, ethnicities, gender identities, abilities and disabilities, and educational and economic backgrounds.


We love a good story. Part of Understorey‘s mission is to publish voices of Canadian women, particularly underrepresented voices. As such, we lean toward personal stories, whether told through fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry. We are open to traditional short story, essay and poetic forms as well as letters, prose poems, rants, anecdotes, dialogue, or any shape your story wants to take. Surprise us!

Please note we do not publish “how-to” articles or expository essays. Nonfiction pieces should be “creative” or literary. See What is Creative Nonfiction? for a detailed description.


We invite guest posts on subjects related to writing, visual art, recent books, and issues of current relevance to women in Canada. Please send ideas to [email protected]

Spoken Word Artists

We would love to include more spoken word on Understorey. If you would like to submit your work, please contact us at [email protected]

Visual Artists

Understorey Magazine illustrates each published story with visual art by Canadian women. We welcome photos of art or craft. Please see our current and past issues for examples.

The Details

  • Creative writing submissions must be original, unpublished work.
  • Keep submissions under 1,500 words.
  • Poets, submit no more than five poems at one time. Prose-writers, please submit only one piece per issue.
  • Visual art may be published elsewhere online. Please send a jpg file of approximately 800 x 600 pixels.
  • Writers and artists, please include a short biography with your submission and be sure to indicate that you are Canadian.
  • We encourage simultaneous submissions but let us know if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • Writers and artists retain copyright of their work. Writers grant Understorey Magazine nonexclusive Internet rights to publish their work.
  • We offer a small honorarium ($30-$60) to writers and artists whose work is accepted for publication. Please note: Due to our administrative partnership with Mount Saint Vincent University, to receive an honorarium, contributors to Understorey are required to provide their Social Insurance Number. This can be done through Understorey‘s editor or directly (and confidentially) to the university. Email [email protected] with any concerns.
  • Email your submissions [email protected] Writers, include your work in the body of the email.
  • You can also submit by regular mail. Send your work to Editor, Understorey Magazine, PO Box 743, Lunenburg, NS, B0J 2C0
  • Submissions for Issue 10: Youth on Power, Issue 11: Service and Issue 12: African Nova Scotian Women are now open.