Since 1997, Stanford Anthology for Youth has published an annual literary and artistic review of work by Bay Area middle school students.
We give young writers and artists the opportunity to hone, revise, and publish their best work. Most of all, we aim to spark conversation between students, parents, and teachers about the things that are most important to them.
SAY 2018 opens for submissions in December. In the meantime, check out these helpful tips as you work on your pieces!
SAY loves all types of writing: poetry, stories, and everything in between and beyond. Great writing has:
Originality. All submissions should, of course, be your own work. Let your imagination go wild! Send us something that only you could write.
Note: We prefer submissions that are not based on another piece of writing (a book or poem you read in class, for example). Your writing should stand on its own, even if we haven't read the book! However, any submission that is truly original and full of your own voice - even if it was inspired by another author's work - will impress us.
Clarity. You have something important to say, and we want to be able to understand it! If there's a narrative in your piece, can we follow it? Does the structure of your piece, and each sentence within it, make sense? Eliciting a strong emotional response is also a form of clarity. While there is no strict page or word limit, we strongly encourage you to be mindful of the length of your submission. In order to publish as many great works of poetry and prose as possible, SAY prefers to publish shorter pieces.
Polish. We want to see that you put time and care into your work. Has it been double-checked for spelling and grammar? Did you think carefully about where to put paragraph, line, or section breaks? We recommend giving your work to a trusted friend or family member before you submit it - often they'll catch things that you've missed! Reading your work out loud to yourself is also a great technique.
Brevity. Most of the prose we publish ranges from 500 to 1000 words. Due to space constraints, we cannot consider anything longer than 5000 words.
Many of the ideas from above go for writing as well, but here are some specific guidelines:
Originality. As with writing, we want to see the unique art only you can create! The art you submit should be your own work and should not be a reproduction of someone else's art.
If your work was inspired by an existing piece of art, please cite the original artist and the specific work that inspired your piece in your bio.
Polish. We much prefer finished art to sketches. We accept drawings, paintings, photography, and anything else that will look good in print! Make sure that the photo or scan you send us presents your work at its best and that you crop out floors, walls, and anything else in the background that is not part of your art submission.
Check back soon! Our submission system will go live in late November.
We can't wait to see what you've got!
Stanford Anthology for Youth is a nonprofit organization run by students at Stanford University.
Are you a teacher looking to bring SAY into your classroom? A young writer or artist with questions about our submission process? A Stanford student interested in becoming an editor?
Whoever you are and however you got here, you can always drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.