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Philadelphia, PA


An nonprofit, independent book publisher and writers' workshop located in Philadelphia that creates innovative relationships between the authors and the work they produce.



The Head & The Hand’s mission is to publish writing that has the power to spark change and entertain, and the socially conscious Shockwire Chapbook Series is our gambit to raise the storytelling stakes.

Shockwire stories are snapshots of a time and place where expressions of curiosity, empathy, and acceptance shine a light on their absence in everyday life. We may not be lawmakers or world leaders, but we are storytellers with the power to contribute to a national conversation. We amplify our contribution by writing toward a deeper understanding of ourselves and one another and sharing that vision in the form of a chapbook. Through our spring and fall 2018 Shockwire series, we have published stories of homelessness, immigration, intersectionality, and civil rights history (see more examples here.) We are excited to see what stories our spring series submissions will tell.

Please send works of literary and speculative short fiction and creative nonfiction between 3,000 and 8,000 words in length, and collections of between 5 and 10 poems. Accepted pieces will be published in our traveling chapbook vending machine and will be available for download on our site. A brief cover letter describing the work should be included in your submission. Contact information including the author's name, email, and telephone number should be included in the cover letter. We accept simultaneous submissions, but please let us know if you have the good fortune of your manuscript being accepted elsewhere. Writers will be compensated for accepted pieces.

Submission deadline is April 16, 2019. Please submit here.


“Awareness of our situation must come before inner changes, which in turn come before changes in society. Nothing happens in the ‘real’ world unless it first happens in the images in our heads.”

—Gloria Anzaldúa

"The purpose of art is to lay bare the questions which have been hidden by the answers."

—James Baldwin


Submissions for our Breadbox Chapbook Series are currently closed.