Thanks so much for your interest, and we look forward to reading your work. Please be familiar with the magazine and our mission before you submit.

For 2024, there will be no submission fees thanks to our generous donors.

In your cover letter, we encourage you to include information that you would like us to know, such as whether, if we choose to publish it, this submission will be your first publication.

If a department is not listed below, that means it is not currently accepting submissions. 

Just a few additional things:

  • Upon publication, contributors will be paid a $25–$100 fee, depending on department and number/length of works published.
  • All pieces should be original, and previously unpublished in any format in English.
  • We acquire first serial rights worldwide in English and non-exclusive anthology rights. 
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted; please be sure to withdraw your piece promptly if it’s accepted elsewhere.
  • Please don't send more than one submission per department; wait until your work is accepted or declined before submitting again.
  • Please direct all inquiries and comments to
  • Our Fiction department is happy to consider excerpts from novels and short story collections, especially from small presses. If you have something you would like considered, email excerpts as a Word .doc to Please note that we currently don't have a budget to pay for excerpts, but we do want to help bring readers to books that might otherwise get overlooked.
  • We'll do our utmost to respond within six months, but due to the volume of submissions we receive, and the careful & collaborative nature of our review process, that may not always be possible. Thank you for your patience.

We would like to be up front about a contributor's rights in the event that they are published at The Offing. Here is the relevant portion of the contract:

"In consideration of the above-described Work, the Contributor identified above grants to The Offing (“Publisher”) the following rights to the Work: (a) for the website,, and as a part of the archives of The Offing and (b) the non-exclusive right for use and re-use of the Contributor’s name, image, and biographical data in advertising and promotion of all Publisher’s publications in all media. Except as above, Contributor retains all other rights.

Contributor represents and warrants that (a) the Work is the Author’s original work; (b) the Work is accurate and factually correct, (c) he/she has full power to make this grant of rights, (d) that the Work contains no matter which infringes copyright, trademark or other rights, is defamatory or otherwise unlawful, invades the right of privacy or publicity, or which infringes any other proprietary right of any third parties; (e) the Work has not been previously published in English by Contributor or any third parties, except in such cases as are previously agreed to in writing by Publisher and Contributor; and (f) if the consent and permission of any third parties are required for the use of the Work described above, including persons depicted in the Work, Contributor has obtained such consent and permission in writing and will submit copies to Publisher on delivery of the Work. Contributor agrees to cite The Offing as the source of original publication if Contributor licenses the use of the Work to other publishers or publications in any media."

Back of the Envelope seeks writing of any length and genre which relates to, or draws on, science and the natural world. Sharing its wonder or its horrors, relating the untold stories of discovery, or toying with everyday curiosities, we're interested in hearing from those inside and outside the scientific community.

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