Transfiguration Editorial

Welcome to Apparition Literary’s transfiguration edition. We wanted works that transformed characters, questioned social mores, and changed our perception. As a writer, I often wonder what kind of stories a magazine is looking for, the secret to cracking a market, and why my story was rejected. I think we’ve all been there, wasting time looking for clues in Twitter threads. As such, I thought I’d share a look into our selection process.

Not every work included in this issue involves a physical metamorphosis. When we select themes at the beginning of the year, we can never guess how authors will view them (and that’s part of what makes diving into our submissions so exciting). We consider each work by itself—the quality of the writing, the central idea, and how the writer approached the theme. We look for concepts that recur throughout different submissions, but we also seekworks with singular visions of the theme. When it comes time to decide, we often find we’ve put similar works on hold, showing that certain ideas resonated with the Apparition Lit team and with our submitters. This makes it much more difficult to narrow down the four stories and two poems we can afford to publish. Sometimes we have to decide between two similar stories (although it is tempting to publish an entire issue of six witch works), but we like to provide our readers with variety.

Our next theme is Redemption, publishing in July. Considering the times, it’s a promising theme. Hopefully, the self-isolating will have worked and July will be a better month for all of us. But in the meantime, if you’re at home wondering what kind of story we’ll be looking for during the submission window (May 15th through 31st) know that the theme must be central but that sometimes it comes down to us already having seven stories on hold about a dancing beetle.

But without further ado, we are pleased to share the following selections with you this April and hope you are taking the time to be kind to yourself and others.


Possible Human Hearts by Lyndsie Manusos (3,200 words)

The Bear Wife by Leah Bobet (3,800 words)

The Order of Stolen Hearts by Xan van Rooyen (4,200 words)

What the Water Gave Her by Avra Margariti (3,400 words)


Still by Rachel McKinley (45 lines)

All the Better by Jessica J. Horowitz (18 lines)

Please consider supporting us on Patreon and following us on Twitter. Without our barnacled friends, this issue wouldn’t exist.

Thank you,

Tacoma Tomilson
Managing Editor

Apparition Literary Magazine is funded by the editors and by your kind donations. If you’d like to support us, you can follow us on Facebook or Twitter and please consider donating and/or subscribing via our website.  For 2020, we’re pleased to announce that we’ve increased our pay rate for short stories to $0.03 per word and poetry to $30 flat rate.

Thank you for reading,


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