OUT/CAST is a journal of queer Midwestern fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and visual art. Here are just a few ways you can interpret “queer Midwestern”:

  • Queer Midwesterners writing about anything
  • Queer Midwesterners writing about queer and/or Midwestern stuff
  • Non-queer and/or non-Midwesterners writing about queer and/or Midwestern stuff

That said, we’ll also take any writing from anyone, as long as the work and its author respect our vision.

Also: while we love to see work by writers who are queer and have Midwestern connections, we also recognize queer writers’ right to keep themselves as out as they want to be, hence the grey area. In this vein, we also allow submissions with pseudonyms, pen names, or any other non-legal names. Feel free to reach out if you have questions/concerns about privacy or anything else.

OUT/CAST nominates for Best of the Net, the Pushcart Prize, and Bettering American Poetry.

what we want to read

We like:

  • Rural/suburban queer experiences
  • Work from queer PoC and Midwestern PoC (and all intersections therein)
  • Tales of moving from somewhere else to the Midwest (or vice versa)
  • Writing that is validating, even if it’s not hopeful

We don’t like:

  • Non-queer, self-identified “allies” that make everything about them
  • Unchallenged queerphobia (homo-, trans-, ace-, etc.), but also racism, sexism, bestiality, fatphobia, and so on

regarding publication

We publish an issue every other month and are open for submissions year-round (except for a brief period in the week or two leading up to an issue’s publication). If you don’t hear back from us regarding your submission by the time the issue you submitted it for comes out, please feel free to query us. We will email all contributors when the issue with their work comes out.

OUT/CAST reserves the right to immediately remove any published work that we learn was written or created by an abuser.

Submissions to OUT/CAST will always be free. Our Submittable does offer the option to contribute a small “tip” with your submission, but this will purely act as a donation toward site upkeep and will have no bearing, positive or negative, on whether your work is selected for publication.

Unfortunately, we are unable to pay contributors at this time. Although we recognize the necessity of financially compensating queer writers for their labor, we just don’t have the funding.

We ask for first-time electronic publishing rights, but all rights revert to you upon publication. We kindly request that if you republish work that appeared here first, you credit us with first publication.