Submission Guidelines

Looking to Submit?

We love your submissions! Whether you’re an academic, a student, a librarian, a bookshop owner, the proprietor of provocations and startling suggestions, or even just the humble owner of an interesting book – we want your insights into the Arts and Humanities!

Send us finished pieces. Whilst we love a good abstract, and we won’t be mad if that’s what you send us, we are mostly likely to ask for the full piece right away. On that note, please do observe the 5-minute rule. If our editors are reading your article and can’t get to the end without their tea going cold, then we have a problem. No one likes tepid tea.

Give us some personality in your writing. We hate stuff that sounds like it was written to deliberately bamboozle readers with perfunctory musings… Just tell it how it is!

Ask questions. Everyone loves an exciting theory, or a crackpot conspiracy, but no one likes to be told what the answer is before they’ve had a chance to think for themselves. You’re here to engage in conversation with an audience, not to provide them with bitesize pedagogy.

Be appropriate. We love to chafe sensibilities now and then, but if you send us something that is blatantly offensive, insulting, and/or generally void of intellectual merit, we simply won’t publish it. That goes for adverts too. We know how much of a big deal your latest book release or your upcoming bebop flute recital are, but all of our articles have to adhere to an evergreen policy outlined below.

Original work only. It’s pretty simple. We don’t want you making simultaneous submissions either – it really peeves us.

Express your creativity. We welcome creative pieces and even have a few ‘creatives’ on our editorial team who get incorrigibly excited by the prospect of fresh work.

Speaking of the editorial team, they are lovely. Find them here. From the moment you submit to us we will put you in touch with your very own team who will love and care for your article with the utmost dedication. It’s a completely open, collaborative effort so you’ll always know what’s going on with your piece. We also promise not to be mean.

Inquiries and/or submissions can be sent to IncitingSparks@gmail.com. There are a few legal bits and pieces that you’ll need to check out beforehand. These can be found below.

The Hard and Fast of it

We are looking for short pieces that ask questions and incite a response from readers, rather than pedagogic articles, formal essays, or journalistic reporting on seminar series or lectures. Our broad definition of questioning includes scope for current affairs, cultural debates, research insights, developing methodologies, and innovation of all sorts in the Arts and Humanities. We only ask that posts related to specific events consider an “evergreen approach” — that is, please account for a readership beyond the event’s specific timeframe. As we engage with the non-academic community, colloquial language is important. For more, check out our ethos.

For all posts:

Please include an image that can be used as a thumbnail for your article. If you do not, one will be chosen for you. We will also need a 50 word contributor biography, as well as any contact information (twitter handle, LinkedIn profile, email, etc.) that you want us to include. Please be aware that the first 50 words of your submission will appear as an abstract.

For written posts:

The article will be 750 words or less. The article must contain no more than three citations/references. The file should be sent in a standard format (.pdf, .doc, .xml preferred).

For video and audio posts:

Files will be 5 mins or less and will need to be hosted on another site such as Youtube, Vimeo, or Soundcloud. Files will be formatted with a brief write-up of no more than 250 words. Supply us with an up-load ready URL (we will not provide file editing services).

For visual art/photography:

Images and/or photographs should be formatted within a brief write-up of no more than 750 words. The images must be either your own work or part of a creative commons (or other agreement that makes them freely available to public use). Files should be sent in standard formats (.png, .jpg, and/or .pdf preferred). Image files should not exceed 5 MB.

 Terms and Conditions

Any submissions to Inciting Sparks should be sent to IncitingSparks@gmail.com. By doing so, you confirm to having understood and agreed to the following terms and conditions:

  • The views expressed within posts are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Inciting Sparks or our editors.

  • Our website is edited by a team of graduate students from the University of Edinburgh and all submissions will be reviewed by members of this team in an open-review process.

  • We reserve the right to request minor revisions to content and form before posting, but any revisions will be done in collaboration with authors/creators.

  • Posts will be reviewed primarily for relevance to our stated website ethos, which can be found here. Posts not adhering to this ethos, no matter how interesting, will not be accepted for publication on Inciting Sparks.

  • All posts must be original and must not have been published in their current form elsewhere. We will accept topics that have been discussed by an author or creator on other platforms, provided the post is not an exact reproduction of another piece.

  • We do not accept simultaneous submissions.

  • Articles will be reviewed with longevity in mind. Whilst we do encourage posts on current events, such posts will only be accepted if they provide a lasting perspective beyond the event’s immediate timeframe.

  • Any work submitted to Inciting Sparks will remain your own intellectual property and is covered under a creative commons license. This means that your work can be freely shared and discussed, but will always be appropriately cited. Your work will not be used for any commercial purposes.

  • Although our editors will endeavour to ensure that all posts are free from plagiarism and other copyright infringements, full responsibility remains with the author/creator.

 All work on Inciting Sparks is licenced under Creative Commons.