Mission Statement

The purpose of FORESHADOW: A Serial YA Anthology is to offer a unique new online venue for young adult short stories, with a commitment to showcasing underrepresented voices, boosting emerging writers, and highlighting the beauty and power of YA fiction. Each month, for one full calendar year, we will publish a new issue featuring three stellar YA stories. Among these will be original work from acclaimed writers, plus brand-new voices you haven’t heard from before who have been specially selected by your favorite authors.

As foreshadowing in storytelling is a way of imagining and prefiguring what’s to come, we hope that the new writers you’ll discover in our serial anthology will be authors whose books you’ll covet tomorrow. We are especially committed to finding stories by marginalized voices new to YA and will be actively working on outreach, hoping to contribute to the changing landscape of young adult publishing to become more inclusive and diverse.

To give you a glimpse of what’s to come in future issues of FORESHADOW, we already have a star-studded line-up of authors who will participating in different capacities. Details will be announced at a later date, and more authors are in the works, but for now we are thrilled to announce the following: Becky Albertalli, Laurie Halse Anderson, Roshani Chokshi, Dhonielle Clayton, Brandy Colbert, Stephanie Kuehn, Nina LaCour, Justine Larbalestier, Malinda Lo, Samantha Mabry, Bennett Madison, Jason Reynolds, Adam Silvera, Cynthia Leitich Smith, Courtney Summers, Rita Williams-Garcia, Wendy Xu, and Nicola Yoon.

Our goal is to pay all of our contributors—established and emerging voices alike—and we plan to launch a fundraising campaign in summer 2018 to help us do exactly that. Issue Zero will debut around the same time to offer a taste of what’s to come. Following that, we are working to introduce FORESHADOW: A Serial YA Anthology to the world beginning in January 2019, and we hope you’ll support our efforts!

The editors-in-chief,
Emily X.R. Pan & Nova Ren Suma

About Us

Emily X.R. Pan (editor-in-chief)

Emily is the author of The Astonishing Color of After, coming March 20th, 2018 from Little, Brown. She currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, but was originally born in the Midwestern United States to immigrant parents from Taiwan. She received her MFA in fiction from the NYU Creative Writing Program, where she was a Goldwater Fellow. She is also the founding editor-in-chief of Bodega Magazine, and a 2017 Artist-in-Residence at Djerassi. Visit Emily online at exrpan.com, and find her on Twitter & Instagram: @exrpan.

Nova Ren Suma (editor-in-chief)

Nova is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling The Walls Around Us, a finalist for an Edgar Award, as well as Imaginary Girls and 17 & Gone. Her new novel, A Room Away from the Wolves, is coming September 4, 2018, from Algonquin YR. She has a BA from Antioch College, an MFA in fiction from Columbia University, and was awarded fellowships the New York Foundation for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and Djerassi. She teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts. Visit Nova online at novaren.com and on Twitter & Instagram: @novaren.


Coming soon!


Michael Bourret, VP and literary agent at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret LLC

Now Recruiting!

Thank you so much to all you amazing people who applied to work on FORESHADOW! Your enthusiasm and support has blown us away, and we have many difficult decisions to make. We are now processing applications, and hope to reply to everyone by February.

Please remember that if you join our team of volunteers, you are disqualified from submitting your own work for publication.

We also want to reiterate that this is a two-year commitment. The work will begin in early 2018 as we gear up for our fundraising effort and read submissions. We expect staff members to stay committed through our last issue at the end of 2019.

If you have any questions not already answered on this site, or if you wish to pull your application from consideration, please email: foreshadowYA@gmail.com.

Submission Guidelines

FORESHADOW: A Serial YA Anthology will be published monthly on this site for a single year starting in January 2019 and ending December 2019, and will feature stellar YA stories from established and emerging authors. Each issue will feature three stories, one of which will be from a new voice specially selected by a beloved author. Our debut issue, Issue Zero, will be published in summer 2018 to coincide with our fundraising campaign.

Deadline to be considered for our first issues of 2019: Sept. 1, 2018.


What We’re Seeking:

We are seeking original YA short stories. Please see our FAQ for what we mean by YA or young adult; stories that are not YA will not be passed along to our team of readers for consideration.

Stories should be between 2,000 and 7,000 words.

We especially encourage submissions from underrepresented voices, including people of color and Indigenous writers; LGBTQIA+ and gender diverse writers; writers with disabilities; and religious, ethnic, and cultural minorities.

New Voices:

Every issue of FORESHADOW will feature a short story from a “new voice”—a writer who is very early in their career, and this story will be selected and introduced by a beloved, established author.

New voices guidelines:

  • Writers being considered as a new voice in our serial anthology cannot have a previously published:
    • A young-adult, middle-grade, or adult book-length work of fiction.
    • A full-length poetry collection.
    • More than a few short stories, whether in print or online—we will look closely at the markets where they’ve been published to decide (e.g., someone with three stories in the New Yorker would not count as a “new voice”).
  • Writers also, at the time of submission, cannot have a YA, middle-grade, or adult book of fiction under contract that will be published before January 2020.
  • Writers who have written picture books or poetry chapbooks can be considered a new voice for our serial anthology, so long as they have published only one of such a book by summer 2018.
  • To be considered for a new voice slot, please include “NEW VOICE” next to your name in the subject line of the email and please mention it in your cover note. Directions on how to submit a story can be found below.

Choose (or Foreshadow) Your Clue:

To foreshadow in storytelling is to leave hints and drop clues, so each story in FORESHADOW will be introduced by a single-word title that offers a suggestion of what to expect. To find that title, you might ask yourself this question: If you could distill your story into one word, what would it be? This title will act as a clue to what may be discovered in your story—and the issue. Perhaps the clues in our first issue might be Magic, Invention, and Heartbreak. Or Thrillride, Starstruck, and Canary. It’s your choice—and we’re open to most anything!

When you submit your story, please include your one-word clue. Ideally this will be the title of the story, but if not please still include the clue.

More Details:

Your story cannot be previously published. This also means we won’t consider stories published on your personal blog, website, Patreon, or elsewhere.

Excerpts from longer works are okay, so long as they can stand alone and work effectively as short stories without any context for the reader. And so long as the book the excerpt is from will not be published before your story appears on our site in 2019.

Yes, we do accept simultaneous submissions. If your work is accepted elsewhere, please reach out to us at foreshadowYA@gmail.com to withdraw your submission as soon as possible.


The deadline to be published in our first issues of 2019 will be September 1, 2018, and by that time fundraising will be complete and the amount we pay per story will be public.


It is our goal to pay all short story contributors the same amount, emerging and established alike. To do so, we will be launching a fundraising campaign in summer 2018, and will be showcasing an early debut issue, Issue Zero, to give a taste of what’s to come. Please consider supporting our fundraising effort this summer to help us pay artists for their work!

Contributors to Issue Zero will be paid $250 USD per story, and if more is raised in the fundraising campaign, they will receive the difference after fundraising has closed. Once the fundraising campaign is complete, we will clearly state how much we can pay all contributors and will notify any accepted writers of the amount before publication in Issues #1-12. You are welcome to withdraw your submission if you are not happy with the potential payment (submissions can be withdrawn by emailing foreshadowYA@gmail.com). If you prefer to know exactly how much you would potentially be paid for a story, please wait for our fundraiser to be complete and submit for the September 1 deadline. Payment will be a nominal amount per story—the same amount for all stories we feature—not per word. Please note that we are not a SFWA qualifying market.

Author Rights:

When you agree to let us publish your work in FORESHADOW: A Serial YA Anthology:

  • You grant us first serial rights. Once we have published your piece, the rights immediately revert back to you.
  • Your work will live on our website permanently.
  • You grant us the non-exclusive right to pull quotations from your work to promote the anthology.
  • After your work appears on our site, you’re free to republish it, or to give others permission to republish it. If you do so, please credit it as first appearing in FORESHADOW: A Serial YA Anthology and email us at foreshadowYA@gmail.com to notify us of the publication.
  • You grant us the non-exclusive right to include your work in a future possible print version of the anthology, unless you fill out the opt-out form in the contract or withdraw your story from consideration from us in writing by emailing foreshadowYA@gmail.com. We are not currently planning to collect stories in book form, but may decide to do so at a future date and would work to provide further payment for such a project.
  • If your work is an excerpt from a longer work that will be published in book form, in exact or adapted version, your story must appear exclusively on our site for six (6) months before your book is published. These works are disqualified from appearing in a future printed version of our anthology.

When You’ll Hear from Us:

Stories submitted for the September 1 deadline will be responded to in fall 2018. However, if your work is being held for further consideration, we may contact you to let you know.

How to Submit:

  • Email foreshadowsubmissions@gmail.com with your name in the subject line. Please note this is a dedicated submission-only email address. Submissions sent to the other email address will be returned unread asking you to submit to the correct email.
  • In the body of the email, include the single-word title, genre of your story, word count, and author bio.
  • To be considered for a new voice slot, please include “NEW VOICE” next to your name in the subject line, and mention it again in the body of your email.
  • Attach your story as a .PDF or .DOC file. Please don’t paste your story into the body of the email.
  • Documents must be DOUBLE-SPACED with the writer’s name appearing on all pages. Please use standard manuscript formatting and do not send single-spaced manuscripts.

Staff members are disqualified from submitting their work for publication, so if you have applied for a staff position, please do not submit a story until after you hear from us about the position.


For any submission-related questions, feel free to email the editors at foreshadowYA@gmail.com.


On publishing:

What do you mean by “YA”?

We only publish young adult (YA) fiction. We want short stories about being a teenager, told from in the moment of being a teenager, aimed at teens and YA readers. (Which means, for example, that we’re not interested in nostalgic stories about being a teenager in the 1990s told from the lens of a forty-year-old adult!)

We don’t accept middle-grade short stories or children’s fiction.

Content: Are curse words and sex scenes allowed in submissions, or are you looking for a “clean” story?

This should be a young adult story, and there is plenty of sex and cursing to be found in that publishing category. Please send us the story the way you feel it needs to be written, and if we are interested in accepting and find that something needs to be dialed back we will be in touch to see how you feel about such edits. (Please note: We are not interested in erotica.)

What genres are you considering?

We are open to all genres as long as the story is YA. Genres of interest include contemporary realistic, mystery, fantasy, horror, paranormal, magical realism, slipstream, speculative, historical, science fiction, thriller, romance, etc. To have a sense of our tastes: We are particularly struck by strong voices, inventive storytelling, and beautiful writing. Both literary and commercial stories are welcome.

We accept stories in verse so long as they meet our word count guidelines, but we do not accept poetry or nonfiction.

If you have a self-published book does that mean you are published and disqualified from a “new voice” slot?

Yes, this is a full-length book. However, we are still happy to consider your story! You just wouldn’t qualify to be selected as a “new voice.”

Do you accept multiple submissions?

We prefer submissions of a single story at a time. However, if you want to show us more than one story, you can send up to three in the same email. Please note there is no guarantee we will read past the first one, but if we see promise in the first story and decide it’s not right for us, we may be curious enough to read the next. Even so, please don’t send three separate emails with three separate submissions at the same time.

Are you open to submissions from international writers?

Yes. We are publishing stories in English, but our contributors can come from anywhere in the world. 

Who is selecting the “new voice” writers who will be featured?

We are now open to submissions from “new voices” to be selected and introduced by beloved, established authors. (Please see our guidelines for what we consider a “new voice.”) Our readers, fiction editors, and editors-in-chief will narrow it down and choose some stories we love from our slush submissions and then send a small batch of finalists to the established author to make the selection. From those stories, it is the author’s choice alone which story to select and introduce in one of our issues. Each issue of FORESHADOW will feature a new voice selected by a different beloved author, giving new writers a magical opportunity to be discovered by many new eyes. We will announce who those featured authors are when we can.

Will all contributors be paid? How about contributors to Issue Zero?

Yes! Contributors to Issue Zero will be paid $250 USD per story, and if more is raised in the fundraising campaign, they will receive the difference after fundraising has closed. Once the fundraising campaign is complete, we will clearly state how much we can pay all contributors and will include the amount in any acceptance letters for Issues #1-12. You are welcome to withdraw your submission if you are not happy with the potential payment (submissions can be withdrawn by emailing foreshadowYA@gmail.com). If you prefer to know exactly how much you would potentially be paid for a story, please wait for our fundraiser to be complete and submit for the September 1 deadline. Payment will be a nominal amount per story—the same amount for all stories we feature—not per word.

Are you a SFWA qualifying market?

We are not.

Will there be physical copies available, or is this an exclusively digital market?

This is an online only project. If for some reason we are approached to turn this into an anthology in perdurable print, we will be in touch about it, and we will absolutely work to provide further payment in such a situation. (Please see the “Author Rights” section under the submission guidelines for more.)

Can there be a title separate from the one-word clue/theme?

If you have an existing title you’re attached to, we can include this as a subtitle. In the table of contents, the story will be introduced via the one-word title.

Can you explain a bit more about what you are looking for regarding comic submissions?

We would be looking for an original YA comic of 5-10 pages. Any additional submission guidelines for comics will be added once we have a comics editor.

Is there a reading fee to submit a story?

There is no reading fee. It doesn’t cost anything, and will always be free no matter how we manage submissions in the future, to submit a story to FORESHADOW.

How is this different from a literary magazine?

We are not an ongoing publication, as a magazine would be. Instead, we are curating a finite number of stories, and sharing them with the world in small chunks, spread out over the course of one year. We will officially begin publishing in January of 2019 and the last stories of the anthology will be published in December of 2019.

Why are you open to submissions before you have raised the money to pay contributors? What happens if your fundraiser fails?

As Issue Zero will be published early to boost our fundraising campaign, we are open to submissions now specifically to seek stories for Issue Zero, and those contributors will all be paid a nominal fee as outlined above, no matter how much is raised. The deadline for consideration for Issue Zero is February 1. We will continue to read submissions as we gather new voices and other stories for consideration for our future 2019 issues, but acceptance letters for slush submissions will not be sent out until after the fundraiser is closed and we can state specifically how much we pay and are assured we can publish all twelve issues. The deadline for consideration for our first few issues in 2019 is September 1, 2018, which is after fundraising will be completed and announced. After February 1, writers who would prefer to wait until they know how much they would be potentially paid for appearing in Issues #1-12 should just keep an eye on that September 1 deadline.

If our fundraiser is not as successful as we hope and no money is raised, we will make a public statement here, on Twitter, and to newsletter subscribers as well as notify all writers who have submitted stories. However, we are being positive that we will raise enough to pay each contributor at least a small nominal fee for being a part of this project, and hopefully more if we meet our stretch goals. To make sure FORESHADOW happens, we hope you will support our efforts in summer 2018!

On applying to be staff:

Will you be paying your staff?

This is contingent upon fundraising. This project’s priority is to pay contributors, and following that we will cover the costs of running the site, and if we reach our stretch goals beyond that, we will happily pay our staff and ourselves.

If I apply for staff position, but am not given a role, can I submit a story after?

Yes! If you’re not selected for a volunteer staff position, you are absolutely welcome to submit a story. It’s only people who end up working on staff who are disqualified from submitting stories.

Will staff members be working remotely?

Yes! You can work from anywhere! All that matters is that you are responsive via email, and able to communicate with the rest of the team on Slack.

If you have further questions for us that aren’t covered here, please feel free to contact us. We will continue to make updates as questions come up!