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Upcoming Inscribe workshops for NEXT!

Upcoming Speculative Fiction Workshops

Sign up to the Inscribe Newsletter for fuller details when published.

Places will be limited at these low-cost workshops to sharpen your submissions to our NEXT! anthology of speculative short fiction.


Date: Saturday 28 Sept
Facilitator: Ronnie McGrath
Venue: Brighton - The Writers' Place
Time: 11-5 (tbc)


Saturday 12th October
Facilitator: Pete Kalu
Venue: Manchester, Commonword/Cultureword
Time: 11-5


Saturday 2nd November
Facilitator: Pete Kalu
Venue: London Torriano Meeting Place NW5
Time: 11-5


Ronnie McGrath (aka “ronsurreal”) is a socially conscious visual artist, poet and novelist. He teaches creative writing at Imperial College London and in a diverse range of educational settings. A former creative writing Director at The University of The Arts London, he is also a founding member of the now defunct musical group The London Afro Blok, who toured throughout Europe and performed for the Queen. In 1993, he was commended for his writing by ACER, which later published and awarded him first place for his writing. He is the author of two poetry collections, Gumbo Talk (2010) and Data Trace (2010), the novel On the Verge of Losing It (2005), and the chapbook, Poems from the Tired Lips of Newspapers (2003). He has work in IC3, The Penguin Book of New Black Writing in Britain, Filigree (2018), and the anthology Black Lives Have Always Mattered, 2Leaf Press (2017). Ronnie has published paintings in Callaloo: Journal of African American Arts and Letters – The Politics Issue and in 2008, appeared on the BBC4 documentary Front Room. To date he has held a solo exhibition of his paintings at Goldsmiths College (2018) and delivered a talk: The Consciousness of Black Art, at Bristol University. He is currently working on a novel which takes a unique approach to the Windrush Generation.

Pete Kalu: story weaver, storyteller, novelist, poet, mentor, workshop facilitator…director, event manager… curious, eclectic, committed to spreading wonder, curiosity…. hugging doubt…equality….compassion…collaboration… working to develop artists and staff… the importance of kindness to bring out the best….giving feedback that encourages ……..strengths…… Manchester museum video poet… Whitworth Art gallery researcher-poet… ten Manchester Museums bicentenary lead artist… joyously working with other artists …open to influence from all other art forms and artists… Elected Fellow, Royal Society for the Arts (FRSA) 2013. For any queries regarding the above workshops contact: <<a href="mailto:dorothea.inscribe@peepaltreepress.com >dorothea.inscribe@peepaltreepress.com __________________________________

Call for Submissions

for the new INSCRIBE fiction anthology

NEXT! - A Working Title

Inscribe announce the call for short stories for their next anthology of fiction, edited by the internationally renowned and award-winning writer, Leone Ross. The genre for this new anthology is Speculative Fiction. There is no specific subject matter or theme -- anything goes, as long as it’s good – what we are looking for is the weird and the unusual.

We define speculative fiction as an ‘umbrella term’, including multiple genre, where the writer speculates on or imagines what is not presently real or possible. This is fiction in which the laws of the fictive world are different than ours. This invites a whole series of political, social, psychological alternate-historical and personal interpretations of reality. Speculative fiction, especially in the context of culture, race, gender or sexuality, can make important points about our real world, the present, the future, and wide ranging themes - from prejudice to identity, climate change to corruption, from family shenanigans to sexual adventures’. Writers can consider writing in the following genres, and hybrids of those genres: fantasy, science fiction, horror, magic realism, the supernatural, Afro-futurism, dystopia, weird fiction, the carnivalesque.

Example: A story about a woman having a hard time with motherhood is not speculative as this happens in our present, real world, but having her give birth to prickly, twin triangles, a 100-edged hectagon - or a smooth sphere when her marriage is happy - is speculative. Giving birth to shapes becomes a metaphor for marital discord.

Stories must be previously unpublished. The anthology will include work from established Black British writers residing inside and outside the UK, Black writers who have made Britain their home, as well as exciting new and emerging writers around the country.

Suggested reading:

Nalo Hopkinson, Octavia Butler, Irenosen Okojie, Leone Ross, Karen Lord, Anthony Joseph, Marcia Douglas, the Dark Matter series edited by Sheree Thomas, Walter Mosley’s Blue Light

Please share your own suggestions and favourites on our Facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/inscribewriter or tweet @INSCRIBEWriters

The anthology will be published by Peepal Tree Press in Spring 2022, under their ‘Inscribe’ imprint, which focuses on publishing new collections by writers of African and Asian descent, and anthologies of groundbreaking new work from *Black* writers nationally.

Submission Guidelines

  • Maximum two stories can be submitted
  • Length: min 1500 max 5000 (preferred length 3000-3500)
  • Writers of any age or gender can submit work
  • Stories must be new, previously unpublished work.
  • Please include a story synopsis, which summarises plot, themes and outcome– approx. 150 words
  • Presentation: 12 point ; double spaced: serif font ; numbered pages ; title on every page; name on every page; 150 word ???
  • A 50-word biography in third person on a separate page. See the example below: ​

    • Kadija Sesay is the Publications Manager for Peepal Tree’s Inscribe programme. Her first poetry collection, Irki, was published by Peepal Tree. She has produced an app. based on her forthcoming collection, The Modern Pan Africanist’s Journey. She publishes SABLE LitMag and is an AHRC scholarship student researching Black British Publishers.

Please send submissions to SUBMITTABLE only.

  • Deadline for submissions: 1 December 2019
  • Longlist: Announced March 2020
  • Shortlist: Announced June 2020
  • Final selection: Announced Spring 2021
  • Publication: March 2022 (TBC)

N.B. Terminology: In this context we take Black to mean anyone who considers themselves of African and/or Asian descent, including mixed-heritage with at least one parent of African or Asian descent.

Anthology editor

Leone Ross writes magic realism, erotica and literary fiction. She has published two novels, All The Blood Is Red (ARP/Actes Sud) and Orange Laughter ((Anchor/Farrar Straus & Giroux/Picador USA). Orange Laughter was nominated for the UK Orange Prize and named by Wasafiri magazine as one of the most influential British novels of the last 25 years. Her short fiction has been nominated for the V.S Pritchett Prize, Salt Publishing’s Scott Prize and the 2018 Jhalak Prize, Edge Hill Prize, BOCAS prize and was runner-up in the 2018 Saboteur Awards. Ross has judged the Manchester Fiction Prize, the Wimbledon Bookfest Short Story Competition, the London Short Story Prize, and the 2018 VS Pritchett Prize. Her latest work is short story collection, Come Let Us Sing Anyway (Peepal Tree Press, 2017), described on BBC Radio 4 as “incredibly rare, extraordinary.” Ross is an editor and university lecturer in Creative Writing at Roehampton University.

Series Editor

Kadija Sesay is the Publications Manager for Peepal Tree’s Inscribe programme that has produced Red, Closure and Filigree. She has edited several groundbreaking anthologies including, Six Plays by Black and Asian Women Writers, Write Black, Write British: from Post Colonial to Black British Literature and co-edited IC3:The Penguin Book of New Black Writing in Britain, Dreams, Miracles and Jazz: New Adventures in African Fiction and Dance The Guns to Silence: 100 poems for Ken Saro-Wiwa. Her first poetry collection, Irki, was published by Peepal Tree Press and she has produced an app. based on her forthcoming collection, The Modern Pan Africanist’s Journey. She publishes SABLE LitMag and is an AHRC scholarship student researching Black British Publishers. She’s received several awards and fellowships for her work in the creative arts and is currently an AHRC doctoral scholarship student researching Black British Publishers.

For any other queries regarding the anthology contact: inscribewriters@gmail.com.

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