Submission Bombers

In May 2012, I started a private Facebook group called the Submissions Bombers. The group's main goal is to submit our writing collectively to markets seeking to hear from more diverse voices.

Below you can read a modified version of the groups FAQ. If you are interested in joining the group as a writer, please add me as a friend on Facebook and send me a message me asking to join. Or if you know a friend who's involved, she/he/zhe can invite you as well. Anyone who feels they are marginalized in some way may join.

If you are an editor seeking more diverse submissions, fill out this form to schedule a bombing.

Who are the Submission Bombers?

We’re writers who want to be heard.

What does it mean to “bomb”?

To bomb, as it applies to the Submission Bombers, means taking large-scale action.

In other arenas, bombings are stealthy, such as yarn bombing or seed bombing. The point is to surprise. We might do stealth submission bombings in the future, but for now we’re aiming to be bomb-like in size (numbers).

What about the already over-extended editors? Won’t this just make them angry? Some of us are editors! Don’t bomb us, please dear god, don’t bomb us!

Submission Bombers only seek to bomb publications that have agreed to participate. The editors will be happily awaiting our poetry napalm and flash fiction grenades. Think of it as an explosive collaboration.

Which publications are you bombing?

We're always looking for new publications to bomb. We strive to target publications with at least some online content so writers can read past issues before submitting. Email us to schedule.

How long do bombings last?

New events begin each Sunday and last a week, ending the following Sunday.

I only write in one genre. Can I still participate?

Yes. We do our best to target places that accept as many genres as possible. Sometimes, if we target a fiction-only market, we may simultaneously target a poetry-only.

Do I have to submit work with every bombing? What if my work doesn't fit with that market?

No, you don't ever have to participate. You can just join for the discussions. If you don't like the market, or you don't think you have anything the editors would like, don't submit. Though, don't discount your work too quickly. Sometimes you might have something that the editors didn't know they wanted!

We highly recommend bombing as frequently as is comfortable for you. Our goal is to gain a critical mass so that if only some of us bomb, it's still makes an impact.

What effect will the bombings have?

Some members are reporting higher acceptance rates. Others find they are more motivated to submit thanks to event reminders and community support. Most members feel a sense of camaraderie with fellow writers.

What is the purpose of Submission Bombers?

To take positive action on a large scale.

More specifically:

ACTION = writing awesome stuff! sending awesome stuff to editors hungry for your awesomeness!

LARGE SCALE = big ass Facebook group of people! (that’s us!)

Side benefits include:
  1. writer-ly camaraderie
  2. sharing and discovering friendly, diverse markets
  3. smart discussions about big questions like “What is diversity?”
  4. getting motivated to submit
  5. commiserating our rejections
  6. celebrating our acceptances
But, won’t we all just get rejected?

No, not all. Most will get rejected.

Let’s say the average acceptance rate for a mid-tier publication is 5%. If 300 of us submit, in theory, 15 people from our group should get an acceptance.

But if you never submit, there’s a 100% chance you’ll never get acceptances.

When we take any action, we can’t control the reaction. What can we control? Our actions. The more bombings, the greater the chance of increasing the acceptance rate as a group.

Is this some kind of revenge on a publication who has rejected you?


Can I invite my friends to join?

Sure! We hope you will. Anyone who feels his/her/zher voice has been marginalized

What do you mean by marginalized?

Excellent question, tough to answer. Members should feel free to discuss this, and related topics, in the group feed. New members, check older group discussions or raise your own questions. In the mean time, here are some definitions we found on the interwebs:
Is this really going to change anything? Shouldn't we do more?

There is always more to be done. Submission Bombers is just one part of the equation. If you have another idea, consider putting it into action.

Who the heck started this group and who picks the targets?

Laura E. Davis. I’m a poet, editor, instructor and chronic project-starter living in San Francisco. I'm the author of Braiding the Storm (Finishing Line Press, 2012), a poetry chapbook. I’m the founder/EIC of Weave Magazine, a publication that has always sought out diversity in our pages. Every issue of Weave has featured at least half women. We also publish a lot of LGBT writers. We strive to have more ethnic, age, ability, socioeconomic, and regional diversity. I can often be found starting new projects before finishing old ones. Much like this group.