Three Years On…

Dear Reader,

If you’ve followed us for long, you will know that this all began in 2019 with three friends getting frustrated. We were looking at the literary world and seeing the same kinds of voices again and again – and many others being left out because their owners were “too pointy”, or they “didn’t fit” the publishing model…

We wanted to create a platform without borders, a space to celebrate the triangles! Finn the Fox, our mascot, is made entirely of triangles. When you put enough stunning, unique voices together, you end up with something truly special. You build bridges. You see the world is bigger than you thought, after all.

We especially welcome first time writers – those who have struggled to have their work published. English isn’t your first language? Wonderful! We’d love to hear from you, or see your translations.

We became accidentally international when our fantastic Prose Editor Natalie Nera moved back to Prague with her family – in the middle of Brexit, and as we were trying to become a CIC. Eek! We’ve embraced the madness though, and love that our international status means we can better connect writers and readers across the globe.

So, thank you.

Thank you for submitting your work to us – to our online magazine, published twice a week between February – May, and September – December! Thank you for being part of the conversation, and for reaching out to look at life from a different perspective.

Thank you for getting involved with our yearly Big Books – collections of poetry and prose which celebrate the wildly different experiences we go through on the face of this here rock.

Want to know something exciting?

Since we began, we’ve had over 45,000 reads of our online magazine. It’s reached over 20,000 different people, and has nearly 3000 pairs of eager eyes on it every month!

Our first Big Book The Language of Salt featured voices from around the world, including Ireland, Europe, Nigeria, the United States, and the UK. We received 1500 poems during our callout, and whittled it down to a mere 50 poets for the final collection!

Our second Big Book Heart/h was a celebration of the short form, and featured writers from the North-East of England, the rest of the UK, Iran, the United States, Germany… Again, we distilled your incredible entries down to only 40 authors, who explored what home was to them in tales of diaspora, of rushing to safety, of loss and longing.

And our third Big Book? Well, that’s this year’s Summer Callout. You’ll have to keep an eye on our social media on Wednesday 1st June!

Spoilers!

Rue

Pushcart Prize Nominations

We are delighted to reveal our chosen nominations for this year’s Pushcart Prize, selected from our magazine and this year’s Big Book, Heart/h . Our deepest thanks to each of our authors and poets for entrusting us with your work – you make this possible!

For Poetry

Holly Magill for Dad Teaches Me to Light Matches7th April 2021

Kayleigh Campbell for Lunar Eclipse28th April 2021

Clive Donovan for Buttons26 May 2021

For Short Stories

Mikki Aronoff for ‘Nature/Nurture‘ in Heart/h

Sean Burke for ‘A Silver Maple‘ in Heart/h

Kelly Kaur for ‘The Kitchen is her Home‘ in Heart/h

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Pushcart Prize?

The Pushcart Prize is a time-honoured literary project in the United States. Founded in 1976, it recognises the best small presses in the world by publishing the winning pieces in a yearly anthology.

Why didn’t you choose my piece?

We are deeply passionate about all our authors’ work – that’s why we published you! We’re only allowed six nominations, though, so we went for those pieces which had especially stuck with us this past year.

Can I nominate my own work?

The Pushcart Prize only accepts nominations from publishers, not from individuals.

How do you take your triangles?

Editors. 

We don’t always get it right. At the end of the day, we are simply people with opinions – lots of them! Take, for example, these infamous rejection letters for books and series which would later become absolute classics.  

“An irresponsible holiday story that will never sell.”

Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

“An absurd and uninteresting fantasy that was rubbish and dull.”

William Golding, Lord of the Flies

“I haven’t the foggiest idea about what the man is trying to say. Apparently the author intends to be funny.”

Joseph Heller, Catch 22

“I’m afraid I thought this one as dire as its title. It’s a kind of Prince of Denmark of the hotel world: a collection of clichés and stock characters I can’t see being anything but a disaster.”

Fawlty Towers

T.S. Elliott rejected George Orwell’s Animal Farm whilst working for Faber & Faber.

F. Scott Fitzgerald was told to de-Gatsby The Great Gatsby. 

Louisa May Alcott (author of Little Women) was encouraged to “stick to teaching.”

One person’s trash is another’s treasure. It’s an undeniable fact that as editors we are gatekeepers – but are we opening the door to new voices, or checking names against a VIP list? 

We started Fragmented Voices because we know all too well the feeling of not fitting in, of not being the right shape. We do want good writing – writing that gets you in the belly, that sticks with you. We just don’t believe it comes from one type of person. 

Meet Finn.

Our mascot. Our totem. Finn the fox is a loner. He is made up of all the pieces that wouldn’t fit – those thought too pointy, too awkward, just… not the right shape. Put ’em together, and you get something special. There is a place for everyone in the publishing world. You just have to make foxes out of them!

So, English isn’t your first language? Submit to us! You haven’t yet been published? Submit to us! You’re just dipping your toe in? Dive in! 

We currently have an open callout for our Big Book project over the summer. Our online magazine opens again from September. 

You may not be accepted. We receive a lot of submissions, and we have a very full publishing roster – but we will aim to help you understand why you weren’t successful this time. Let’s demystify the process! 

We can’t wait to hear from you. 

Rue

* With thanks to good old QI, Season 15, for many of these rejection letters.