Hematopoiesis is the body's method of creating new blood cells. As a digital publication, our intention is to offer refuge to this process while disrupting dominant conversations on (dis)embodiment.
We come to you with questions: What is written, and being written, in the body and how do we express our physiology? How do we claim bodies through language, in a world that diminishes and erases so many bodies? How, like the continuous process of making new blood, do we create meaning in a world of loss & violence? What exists in the borderlands of body?
Our publication operates by consensus as much as possible, and similarly we would like for this publication to hold space for dialogue. We invite first-time writers & artists, published writers & artists, everyone in between, and anyone who resists categorical definition.
Editor-in-Chief & Poetry Editor // Brighde Moffat
Fiction Editor // Rachel Economy
Creative Nonfiction Editor // Jennifer Patterson
Art Editor // Cosi Nayovitz
Issue three: Scarification
Submissions open OCtober 1- January 3
A place where the wound has closed. A place where the wound won’t bleed even if you need it to.
Rip and scatter, roughed up by this rearrangement of cells. Languages of injury and repair. What happened here.
Not all tearing is visible. Have I torn through you?
Skin is branded with other hands. You can’t tell which did what or who held the hot metal (or sharp blade) to skin. Who asked for it and who begged for it to stop. Stick your head into a well and scream. There is always an echo.
Wounding is not always transactional.
There are etchings that a body holds, there is cutting that a body takes. Skin knows what to do when a blade runs through it. Knows how to take it. First it bleeds, runs red. Then the mending begins. A thin moonlike sliver that hardens where once it hurt. There is a severing of time. There is a break in time. The scar as the edge. The cut as a threshold. A gateway. Interior becomes exterior. Stick your head inside and scream.
Scars to mark time. To mark passage. Scars to encode memory on the body on a piece of a cloth on the soil. Do not salt the wound, the soil, let it close over, let it feed again, bleed again, but remember where the wounding was. Scar like marbled rock, timeline drawn across the body. Reaching through time, changing as your life does. Blending into ourselves, eroding just so.
We are not asking for a universal story of scarification. Rather overlap, overlap, lineage, nonlinear, lines, lines, lines, on the body, or often not on the body, where are the scars that we can feel but can’t see? What is the evidence? Why do we need it? What are the spaces in between?
Thank you for considering submitting to Hema! A few things...
We invite and encourage writers and artists from communities traditionally excluded from or underrepresented in publishing to submit. Multiple submissions across genres are accepted, and hybrid work is strongly encouraged and can be submitted under the category which you feel is most appropriate. See below for submission specifics according to genre.
In terms of content, do not send us work that contains gratuitous violence or promotes harmful stereotypes about groups of people, especially if you do not identify as belonging to that community.
Send your submission as a docx file attachment to email@example.com with "submission-(insert genre)" in the title line. Your name and a brief bio should appear in the cover letter, while the submission file itself should be bare of identifying information. Our editors first read through submissions outside of a personal context, and then consider bios during the final phase of selecting work. We do this in order to ensure a more ethical reading practice. Again, do not include your name or any identifying personal information in the body of your submission.
We charge no reading fee for submissions, but unfortunately cannot pay contributors at this time. We will respond to all work within a month of submission close. Our editors may offer feedback for accepted written work. We ask for first serial rights for our digital issue, and accept no previously published works.
Questions, as well as pitches for longer work, can be directed towards firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please send 1-3 poems, no more than 5 pages
Poetry is a revelatory practice. The underneath, the between, and the unseen. A rhythmic fragmentation of breath. Notice the weighting of space between your words, sinking deeper into the sediment of bone. Follow the call between language and neuron.
Where is the meeting place of revelation and liberation? Answer this hunger. Seek to understand the defenses of body and the rituals of remembering. What are the poetics and politics of your body? How do you hold the world and does the world hold you?
I want to know how you interpret. I want to know how you survive.
Please send up to 10 pages of fiction
I want love. Love of words, and of the world they witness and render, and of the bridges in between. I am reading to find evidence, excavations, imperfect or even imaginary though they might be, of that love. That love does not need to be saccharine or even kind or even loving- I feel it in the attention given to language and to world, whether exuberant or harsh, scraping, fierce or furious, painstaking or devastatingly simple or playful or florid or raw. It can look like anything, sound like anything. World can live outside or inside or across the skin. I lean towards fiction that finds a sense of place or body, or a sensory path into [dis]placement or [dis]embodiment. I go in search of rich language, or simple sharp unexpected tongues.
Will we encounter the unexpected, the absurd, the magical, the dark, the humorous, the playful, the painful, the unknown, the faltering, the brave, in this wandering through? Welcome. Welcome fictional forms: whatever the piece wants to be. Hybrid, unexpected, lyric, micro, short, anything that is not a novel may be considered (nothing against novels they’re just usually longer than literary magazines). Character-hood, agency could belong to a piece of a human, a particle of soil, an ocean, a bone. Contradictions that can hang out together are welcome too. Any or all: new writers, old writers, writers who’ve been trying to get their stories out of their notebooks or their mouths, writers who have been systemically and systematically shut out from the traditional publishing world, writers whose words have been waiting, longing to sing.
Please send up to 10 pages of nonfiction
Where in your body does language live? When you close your eyes, when you are at rest and moving too, can you feel words protruding from the pockets in between skin and bone? Where lives the things you can't forget and also struggle to remember? Where lives the discomfort? The righteous anger? The pain? The political fury? The grief? Where lives the joy? Where, oh where, lives the pleasure? Find these places, find yourself in these places and take us there with you.
Welcome non-linearity, welcome the way your brain meanders and darts when it’s racing, when it’s scared, when it finds something that feels like home sometimes. Welcome when you lose your way. Welcome the places where I know this happened but I don’t know when and deeply rooted unforgettable memory strands tangle. Welcome the shapes our bodies make when they are heaving, when they are leaving, when they are taking on new forms. Welcome the wisdom in a wound. Let it be your teacher. Welcome the complication, the disruption of peeling letters out of skins. Welcome the writing that keeps you alive.
I have no love for the rules of writing, no love for the right ways to write that keep us so small, keep us so quiet. No love for the publishing gatekeepers, the good text. You don’t have to be good anymore. Reject form, reject craft. Break into new shapes. Buck the binaries and dominant narratives, the shoulds and nevers. You can be a rule follower or a rule breaker but please, please, give us the words you want to give.
Attach 1-5 pieces, individual or series, in an email. Videos or clips should be no longer than 10 minutes long.
For when there are no words, there is this (animal? instinctual? wordless? impulsive? reflexive?) body. Eyes, ears, touch. Show me what you feel, bypassing frontal cortex of the brain to lungs, gut, skin. Show me something that makes no sense but filters in sideways. Overwhelm me.
Let me in on the secret of your implicit, breathe life into form. How do you turn texture, light, noise into meaning? Where in your body do you reside?
Art can be as broad or narrow as your interpretation of it is. Visual art, videography, choreography and movement, sound clips, photography; all is welcome.