Submission Guidelines

Main Submission Period

Submissions are Closed.

Our editorial staff is in the process of reviewing submisisons for Issue 22. Please allow at least 6 weeks before reaching out to confirm status of your submission.  

This Side of West publishes an annual issue of UVic undergraduate writing and artwork. All UVic Undergraduate students may submit to TSOW.
This Side of West aims to uplift the writing & artwork of Black, Indigenous, and people of colour at UVic. Our goal is to publish 50% BIPOC writers & artists in Issue 22. BIPOC writers & artists are strongly encouraged to submit to TSOW.

Important Notes:

This Side of West no longer accepts PDF submissions. All PDF submissions will be rejected. Please see our FAQ (at the bottom of this page) and Style Guide for more information.
Each emailed submission should contain only ONE file (excluding Visual Art – see below). If you are submitting work in more than one genre (i.e. submitting Fiction and Poetry), please submit separately to each respective genre’s email. Submissions that include more than one file will be rejected.
If you must withdraw a submission, please reply to the original email (you MUST CC and let us know.

Cover Letters:

Alongside your submission, please include a brief cover letter in the body of the email that includes your name, the title of your submission, and a short bio. Check out our Cover Letter Guidelines/Example if you do not know how to write a cover letter.
To respect the limited time of TSOW’s volunteer staff, submissions that do not follow our Submission Guidelines will be rejected.

Fiction and Nonfiction

We publish short stories, flash fiction, personal essays, and other works of fiction and nonfiction which are 4000 words or less. You may only submit one fiction piece AND one nonfiction piece per submission period, regardless of word count. Follow these guidelines when submitting:
  1. Edit your prose before submitting it.
  2. Style Guide:
    • Use 12 point font.
    • Use Times New Roman font.
    • Double space your entire document.
    • Include a word count at the top of the first page.
    • Paginate all pages.
    • Name your file as FULL-NAME_TITLE_GENRE
  3. Submit your story as a .docx file with the subject line: Issue 21 – [GENRE] “[TITLE”] by [FULL NAME]. (Other file formats will not be reviewed.)
Email fiction submissions to You MUST also CC
Email CNF submissions to You MUST also CC


You may submit up to 3 poems with a total combined page count of 5 pages. If you are submitting more than one poem, please submit them in ONE document. Also:
  1. Edit your poem before submitting it.
  2. Style Guide:
    • Use 12 point font.
    • Single space.
    • Use Times New Roman font.
    • Paginate all pages.
    • Name your file as FULL-NAME_TITLE_GENRE
  3. Submit your poem as a .docx file with the subject line: Issue 21 – [GENRE] [“TITLE”] by [FULL NAME]
  • If your poem requires special formatting, see the FAQ below.
Email poetry submissions to
You must also CC

Stage plays and Screenplays

We publish stage plays, monologues, and screenplays that are 20 pages or less. You may submit excerpts, so long as they stand alone. If you submit in one of these genres, follow these guidelines:
  1. Edit your writing before submitting it.
  2. Style Guide:
    • For stage plays, use 12 point, Times New Roman font.
    • For stage plays, single space.
    • For screenplays, we no longer accept PDFs. Please copy and paste your screenplay from your screenwriting software into a .docx document, and reformat to 12 pt. Courier or Courier New font. Please center all character names, parentheticals and dialogue with all other text (scene headings, action lines, etc) aligned to the left margin, leaving spaces in between elements. Submit your drama with the subject line: Issue 22: [GENRE] [“TITLE”] by [FULL NAME].
    • Additionally, please do not number your scenes. All scripts should be in industry standard spec script format. While we are aware that this is not considered “proper” screenwriting formatting, this is the style that we have found easiest to read and publish in a non-PDF format. Thank you.

      If you have any concerns about formatting your screenplay, see the FAQ at the bottom of this page.

      Email drama submissions to You must also CC

Visual Art

We accept all forms of visual art. You may submit up to 3 visual artworks. If you are submitting more than one work of visual art, please attach them all to one email. Please indicate whether your works are to be considered as a collection or as separate pieces in your cover letter. Also, follow these guidelines when submitting:
  1. Title your work.
  2. If you are sending a photograph/scan of your artwork, make sure it is high-quality (300 dpi).
  3. Please submit a .jpeg (preferred) or .png of your artwork with the subject line: “Issue 21: [GENRE] [“TITLE”] by [FULL NAME]
Email visual art submissions to You must also CC


Still have a question?

The Main Submission Period will be announced soon.
Yes. UVic undergraduate students may submit to every genre. However, a given writer or artist may only be published in one genre per issue. For example, if we publish your poems, we will not also publish your nonfiction piece.
Yes. All UVic undergraduate students are encouraged to submit to This Side of West, regardless of their major and classes.
We will notify all submitters about the status of their submission at a to-be-determined date.
This Side of West does not retain any rights to your work once it has been published in one of our issues. This Side of West places no restrictions on what you do with your work after you publish it with us, however some publishing venues may consider work published in This Side of West to be previously published. Please contact individual magazines or publishers to inquire if you are concerned.
No, This Side of West does not pay contributors. But, every writer and artist published in This Side of West is entitled to recieve one free contributor copy.
Please email us at so we can assess if this is possible.
No, being solicited to submit to This Side of West does not ensure your submission’s acceptance.
Keep ya head up and see the “Writing Resources” section of our website.
For formatting reasons, we can no longer accept PDFs. If you have any concerns, please email us at
If your poem is chosen for publication, please inform our staff of your concern, and we’ll request a PDF version of the poem. Our designer will copy the formatting from the PDF. If your poem is NOT chosen for publication, a PDF will not be requested.
We acknowledge that submitting a screenplay as a .docx is not ideal. Unfortunately, we can no longer accommodate PDFs. Please copy your screenplay from your screenwriting software into a .docx file, center justify the text, single space, and change the font to 12 pt. Courier. If you have any issues doing so, please contact us at – we’d be happy to assist.

Certainly! The example we are using is from Star Wars: A New Hope.


As Han is about to leave, Greedo, a slimy green-faced alien with a short trunk nose, pokes a gun in his side. The creature speaks in a foreign tongue translated into English subtitles.

Going somewhere, Solo?

Yes, Greedo. As a matter of fact, I was just going to see your boss. Tell Jabba that I’ve got his money.

Han sits down and the alien sits across from him holding the gun on him.

It’s too late. You should have paid him when you had the chance. Jabba’s put a price on your head, so large that every bounty hunter in the galaxy will be looking for you. I’m lucky I found you first.

Yeah, but this time I got the money.

If you give it to me, I might forget I found you.

I don’t have it with me. Tell Jabba…

Yes, but please inform us immediately if your work is accepted by a different venue by emailing tsowsubmissions(at)gmail(dot)com.