SPECIAL EDITION: Book of Delights essayettes

Smith Writes is seeking student essayettes modeled on the Smith Reads book for 2023-24, Ross Gay’s Book of Delights for a special edition to be published in spring 2024.  Some details:

1. Essays should be on the short side, like Gay’s, somewhere between 300 and 500 words (though a bit shorter or longer would be fine, too).

2. We’ll be looking for essays that are conversational and show a nuanced understanding of the balance between darkness and joy.

3. Priority will be given to essays that explore race and delight.

4. Students can bring their rough drafts to the Jacobson Center for help with revisions before submitting.

5. Accepted essays will go through a collaborative proofreading/ editing process before publication.

6. Essays should be submitted to smithwrites@smith.edu.

Deadline for submissions of “Delights” essayettes: November 10


Submissions for General Issues

Smith Writes accepts nonfiction in any genre or area of study.  This includes, but is not limited to, academic research papers, persuasive essays, creative nonfiction/memoir, and journalism. We are especially interested in work that engages a public audience beyond the gates of Smith and academia; we look for work that demonstrates an awareness of an educated, but lay, reader and employs an arresting authorial voice. We also welcome work produced in digital platforms and work that incorporates the use of image or video elements.

Work must be produced by first-year students in writing-intensive courses at Smith College (including Ada Comstock students in their first year of study at Smith), and must be submitted with the recommendation/approval of the faculty member in whose course the work was produced.  Students may submit one essay for review; multiple submissions are not accepted.  The work is reviewed by the Managing Editor, Editorial Assistants, and professional staff at the Jacobson Center, who select the strongest essays for publication in the digital journal. Students whose work is chosen for publication are asked to make final revisions and edits with the help of the Jacobson Center staff before publication goes live.  The publication is visible to anyone with a smith.edu email address, but not to the general public.

Smith Writes will accept submissions on the following schedule for the 2023-2024 academic year:

  • Work from fall semester 2023 will be accepted through January 15, 2024.
  • Work from interterm 2023-24 will be accepted through March 15, 2024.
  • Work from spring semester 2024 will be accepted through May 26, 2024.

Work is reviewed and selections made within 4-6 weeks of the final deadline above. The journal goes live at the start of fall semester. We have no guidelines for length, but we ask that you consider concision when editing your work: we value clarity over breadth. Be diligent about grammar, style, and citations.  We highly recommend looking through previously published editions to get a sense of the magazine’s scope and direction.

Submit your work to the managing editor, Sara Eddy, at smithwrites@smith.edu. Your file must be sent in .doc, .docx, or Google doc format.