Submit Work: General Submissions
CICADA welcomes submissions from readers ages 14-23. We also accept submissions from contributors ages 23 and up. Guidelines follow.
CICADA, for readers ages 14 and up, publishes original fiction, poetry, and first-person nonfiction by both adult and teen writers. In some cases, CICADA purchases rights for excerpts from books yet to be published. Each edition also includes reprints of high-quality selections. Please keep in mind that CICADA's readers are intelligent and sophisticated and can handle complexity with respect to theme, characterization, and plotting. The editors want to provide a balance of serious and humorous writing within each edition.
CURRENT NEEDS: While we are open to all genres, we are especially looking for HUMOR: satire, lighthearted romance, deadpan humor, black humor, screwball comedy, humor with heart, contemporary realism with absurdist overtones ... whatever makes you smile, even if it's through your tears. IMPORTANT: Please make sure the word HUMOR appears on the outside of your envelope or in the "Title" field on your Submittable form. [Scroll down for info re: Online Submissions.]
WE ARE ALSO LOOKING FOR EXPRESSIONS FROM READERS AGES 14-23. Please see below for guidelines. When you submit, please put EXPRESSIONS in the "Title" field on your Submittable form. [Scroll down for info re: Online Submissions.]
NOTE: WE ARE RUNNING BEHIND WITH EVALUATING MANUSCRIPTS DUE TO THE VAST NUMBER OF SUBMISSIONS. WE ARE TAKING STEPS TO CATCH UP, BUT PLEASE BEAR WITH US. WE WANT TO GIVE EACH STORY, POEM, OR EXPRESSIONS CAREFUL CONSIDERATION.
All manuscripts should be neatly typed and double-spaced. Include your name and full address in the upper left-hand corner of the ﬁrst page of the manuscript. Please tell us a little bit about yourself in your cover letter. If you submit by snail mail, enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope for our reply only. Manuscripts will not be returned. Please note that Cicada is now open to electronic submissions. Scroll down to ONLINE SUBMISSIONS for details. We will notify you within 3-6 months if we are able to use your story, essay, poem, or art. Please let us know if the submission has been published elsewhere, such as a school newspaper, literary journal, blog, or e-zine.
Expressions is a regular feature expressing our readers' opinions and observations on just about anything, from school life to on-the-job experiences, from getting a driver's license to picking a college, from travels near and far to babysitting on the home front, from concerns about social or cultural issues to humorous essays about human foibles.
Length: 500-1,500 words
Fiction and novellas
We are interested in realistic, contemporary, and historical fiction, as well as humor, mysteries, fantasy, and science fiction.
Length: up to 5,000 words; we will consider novellas up to 9,000 words
We would like to see first-person experiences of interest to teen and young adult readers.
Length: up to 5,000 words
CICADA publishes serious, humorous, rhyming or free verse.
Length: up to 25 lines
CICADA seeks talented artists who are making thoughtful (or flippant), beautiful (or unsettling), exuberant (or quiet) comics, zines, visual poems, sequential graphic narratives, or any other work in image and/or text. Comic submissions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. COMIC SUBMISSION should be the subject line of the email.
CICADA does not distribute theme lists for upcoming issues.
Check out a sample issue of CICADA magazine online.
We now accept, and prefer, online submissions via Submittable. Submittable Submissions Manager makes it easier than ever to submit and track your manuscripts online. Our Submittable page, cricketmag.submittable.com, contains simple forms for submitting to BABYBUG, LADYBUG, SPIDER, CRICKET, and CICADA. Once you register with Submittable, you can track and manage your submissions to many popular publications all in one place. Submittable is especially convenient for international submissions.
The only place we accept online submissions is cricketmag.submittable.com. Please do not email submissions to editors or Customer Service, and please do not attach manuscripts to forms on this site or our children’s websites.
Before submitting, be sure to familiarize yourself with our magazines. Sample issues can be viewed at www.cricketmag.com/preview. You can purchase sample issues online, by emailing email@example.com, or by calling 1-800-821-0115. Issues are also available at many local libraries.
CRICKET Magazine Group will consider all manuscripts sent on speculation.
1. Please submit a complete manuscript. We do not accept queries.
2. Fiction and nonfiction manuscripts should include an exact word count; poetry manuscripts should include an exact line count.
3. Include full contact information: phone, email, and mailing address.
4. Manuscript should be submitted as a .doc, .docx, .txt., or .rtf file.
5. Please allow up to 3-6 months response time.
We do accept hard copy submissions. When submitting a hard copy of your manuscript, please follow the instructions above, as well as these additional instructions:
1. Please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope (SASE) for our reply only. We will recycle manuscript pages. Domestic submissions without a SASE address will be discarded.
2. Submissions from outside the U.S. do not need to include a SASE. We will respond via email. International authors are encouraged to submit via our Submittable page, cricketmag.submittable.com.
3. Manuscript should be typed and double-spaced.
4. Address hard copy submissions to:
Submissions Editor, CICADA
70 E. Lake Street
Chicago, IL 60601
See our submission guidelines for artists.
What Happens Next?
The Manuscript Review Process
1. After they are received, manuscripts are reviewed by first readers. First readers consider each submission's literary potential and whether it might be a good fit for one of our magazines.
2. Promising submissions are then carefully reviewed by at least three editors: an assistant editor, the magazine's editor, and the editor-in-chief.
3. The editor-in-chief, in conversation with the magazine’s editor, makes a final decision on whether to reject or accept the manuscript. For manuscripts that show some promise but need further development, the editor may write the author to request revisions on speculation.
1. If we accept your manuscript, we will send you an acceptance letter detailing payment and rights information and any revisions we would like you to make.
2. Once we've received your revisions, we carefully line edit the manuscript. The manuscript is then returned for your review. We work closely with our writers to bring out the best in each story, essay, and poem.
3. Once the manuscript is edited, it will be kept on file until it is assigned to an issue. Because we work 6-8 months ahead of each issue, it can be a year or more before a manuscript is placed.
1. Stories and poems previously unpublished: Rights vary.
2. Stories and poems previously published: CICADA purchases second publication rights. Fees vary, but are generally less than fees for first publication rights.
1. Stories and articles: up to 25 cents per word
2. Poems: up to $3.00 per line
CICADA is a paying market. Rates and contract rights vary.