Call for submissions: Shops & Stores

We’re back in action after our August publishing break with submissions on the topic of “Labor.” Behind the scenes, we’re looking ahead to our November issue on “Shops & Stores.” With the holiday shopping season approaching, we thought it seemed like a good time to share our stories about the places where we buy our goods, whether in celebration or critique.

Images, poems and essays are all welcome, and there are more details below about how and where to submit, and what we’re looking for. Thank you for your consideration!

Editorial guidelines
Online submission form

Shops & Stores

Submission deadline: October 1
Publishing dates: November 7-25

Shops and stores are about relationship: we exchange money (or in some cases services or goods) for stuff we didn’t make. There’s a story before the exchange—sourcing, manufacturing, transport—and a story after, all the way to the end of the stuff’s useful life. But there’s also the story of the place where the exchange happens, the bricks and mortar locations that take on a spirit of their own. This issue will both celebrate and critique the places where we get our stuff.


  • What shops and stores stand out in your memories of childhood? Why do those places stick with you?
  • Have you or one of your family members ever run a store? What was the story and motivation for that place? What was/is that place like—the atmosphere, the stuff, the people…?
  • What is the shopping district nearest your home like? Do you enjoy spending time there? What is your favorite shopping district (if there is such a thing for you) and why?
  • What kinds of shops and stores will you be investing in for Christmas gifts? What kinds of shops and stores do you invest in on a regular basis?
  • What do you feel when you consider the overall trajectory of retail in your place over the past hundred years?
  • If someone offered you a building and $100,000 to start a shop in your neighborhood, what would you create?