Friends Journal welcomes articles, poetry, art, photographs, and letters from our readers. We are also helped by your comments and questions. We are an independent magazine serving the entire Religious Society of Friends. Our mission is “to communicate Quaker experience in order to connect and deepen spiritual lives,” which allows for a variety of viewpoints and subject matter. We welcome submissions from Friends and non-Friends alike.
We prefer articles written in a fresh, non-academic style. Friends value an experiential approach to life and religious thought. Our readers particularly value articles on: exploring Friends’ testimonies and beliefs; integrating faith, work and home lives; historical and contemporary Friends; social concerns and actions; and the variety of beliefs across the branches of Friends.
Friends Journal prefers articles with a constructive approach to spiritual seeking. We seek an open, curious and respectful tone even when discussing controversial subjects. We prefer articles rooted in the author’s own experiences of the divine. Submissions should show an awareness of Friends’ ways and concerns, as well as sensitivity to them.
Upcoming Issue Themes and Deadlines
These theme ideas are meant as a guide in seeking and selecting contributions. We expect two or three of each month’s feature articles to address that month’s theme; the remaining features will cover the diversity of interests in our mandate of “Quaker Thought and Life Today.” Although we seek balance, we do not necessarily intend for our Focus Topic issues to serve as a comprehensive overview of a particular issue. We seek articles that are rooted in the author’s experience and that speak to their understanding of the spiritual roots of their concern or viewpoint.
May 2014: Mental Health and Wellness
How do we as individuals and meetings deal with the spectrum of mental health issues that affect us? How do we engage in pastoral care of those in our communities with mental illnesses or disorders? Does Quaker worship and practice affect our mental wellness? What can we learn from our Quaker forebears about mental health and the Quaker faith?
Submission deadline February 1.
June/July 2014: Concepts of God
How do you conceive of the center of your Quakerism? Whether you identify as a believer, agnostic or nontheist, whether you use the “G” word or not, we hope you’ll share what is at the center of your Quaker practice. We welcome all to the table so that we can better understand the diversity and richness of Quaker belief.
Submission deadline March 15.
August 2014: Quaker Myth-Busting
Did you ever learn a “fact” about Friends that turns out to be dead wrong? How do we counter misperceptions of Quakers and Quakerism in our lives, in our communities, and in the culture and media? What “unwritten rules” of Quakerism need to be put to paper and then set alight?
Submission deadline May 1.
September 2014: Un-themed Issue
We regularly publish topics of interest to Friends that don’t fall into our pre-planned categories. September will be the next full wide-ranging issue.
October 2014: Experiences of Friends of Color
Voices of people of color in the Religious Society of Friends. This will be an opportunity to hear from an under-published group of Friends. We hope contributors will share both positive and challenging stories and provide some much-needed self-reflection back to the Quaker community.
Submission deadline July 1.
Types of Submissions
Click the plus box on the right to see the expanded guidelines:
Three ways to send text:
Please include quotation references in the text itself, as we do not use endnotes. Your name and address should appear on the body of the submitted text along with brief information about yourself. Please indicate if the material has been published (in print or online) or if you are also submitting it to other publishers. We strongly prefer that you email your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org, although we do accept submissions on paper. We acknowledge receipt of submissions within a month; writers can expect to wait longer to hear whether their manuscripts have been accepted.
We are generally not able to pay for writing. Authors of feature-length articles receive four free copies of the issue in which the article appears, while poets receive two copies. Authors of shorter material appearing in the departments will receive two free copies upon request. All published material will be protected under Friends Publishing Corporation’s copyright unless otherwise arranged or indicated.
We welcome inquiries about potential articles and invite you to contact Martin Kelley, editor, at email@example.com.
Epistles and reports of Quaker events (450 words).
Friends Journal welcomes Milestones that families or meetings send us. While we would like to receive Milestones material in a timely fashion (we hope within six weeks of the event), we understand that this is not always possible and will make every effort to publish material sent to us. Since publication depends on having all necessary information and on space available, we cannot guarantee the publication date. The minimum lead time is two months.
Births/Adoptions: Please include date of birth or adoption, names of child and parents (both first and last names), and meeting affiliations.
Marriages/Unions: Please include names (both first and last names), date of ceremony, location, meeting affiliation of the parties, and (optionally) under which meeting’s care the event took place.
Death notices: These can be a rich source of spiritual wisdom gleaned from the life stories of others and can benefit not only those who may have known the deceased, but also the entire community of Friends Journal readers. While we do not publish memorial minutes as such, we frequently incorporate wording and information from them and try to preserve their tone for our readers. Although we do ask for certain essential information (please see below), we hope you will also include a freeform narrative description of the life of this person to serve as the basis for the Friends Journal notice. We encourage narratives focusing on one’s spiritual life as a Friend. Topics to consider are: childhood, education, marriages/unions—dates and (perhaps) how the couple met, how a person became involved as a Friend, meeting involvement, spiritual searching, family life, career, activities, interests, witness, good works, accomplishments, publications, awards, and obstacles faced. Specific examples are preferred over general statements. The order should be more or less chronological. You may include as much information as you like; we will edit it for length (maximum of 600 words).
Please be sure to include the following essential information:
- date and place of birth (and if possible, names of parents);
- date and place of death (cause of death is optional);
- meeting affiliation (whether member or attender, and meeting name and place) at time of death and (perhaps) earlier meeting affiliations and transfers; and
- names of survivors (both first and last names) and relationships to the deceased.
You may send material by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, by fax to (215) 568-1377, or by postal mail to Milestones Editor, Friends Journal, 1216 Arch Street, Suite 2A, Philadelphia, PA 19107-2835.
Please be sure to include your contact information (e-mail address, phone number, and/or postal address) for follow-up questions. Thank you for your cooperation.
The author’s name and address should appear on the body of the submitted text. If you submit poetry that has been published or which you are also submitting to other publishers, be sure to indicate this. Please only submit up to three poems at any time. We encourage email submissions to be sent to email@example.com. Submissions are acknowledged within two weeks; however, writers can expect to wait longer to hear whether their poetry has been accepted.
Join our Flickr group: You can upload your photos and scanned art work right to the Friends Journal Flickr group at www.flickr.com/groups/friendsjournal. If you do not have a Flickr account or would prefer to send them by email, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Original photos and artwork: If you are able to scan artwork and photos, send them as digital files. Scanned artwork should be sent to us at 300 dpi or more for color or grayscale artwork, and 600 dpi for line art. If you need to send original photos or artwork you may mail them to us with your contact and credit information. We will treat them carefully and either keep or return them to you according to your instructions. (Note: Use pencil or ballpoint pen rather than ink stamp or marker if you mark on the backs of photographs.)
If you have an idea for an article or questions about any of our guidelines, please contact FJ Editor Martin Kelley at email@example.com.