All submissions published in Underground from Issue 17 onwards will be paid a paid at a flat rate of AUD$50 regardless of length, style, or previous publishing experience.

As we are a free, un-funded, not-for-profit, volunteer organisation we rely entirely on our fabulous Patreon supporters to pay our writers. The more money we make through Patreon the more writers we can afford to publish: it’s as simple and as difficult as that. So if you like what we do and want us to keep doing it please consider supporting us on Patreon. There are a number of rewards and all of our regular Patrons receive our original content first: all book reviews, TBR lists, interviews, blog posts, and of course our issue releases, delivered to our supporters before anyone else!


Submissions for Issue 22 Pop are open on Sunday 11th February and will close Sunday 8th April.  Issue 22 will be released to our  Patreon supporters on the 1st May 2018 and released to the general public on 5th May. Our editors have pooled some ideas into the below prompt but you can take the theme in whatever direction want.

“Popular doesn’t cover it: I’m a queen baby, queen of Pop, popping into parties, K-Pop on the speakers, popping pills, champagne and cherries, pop out to pop in that op-shop, pop-up shop, shoppingn ’til we drop then a soda pop and pop goes the weasel!” 

The age of the Beauty Queen
The tragic death of James Dean.
A heightened culture that submerges its victim under icy depths
And flings them across countries in private jets,
Touring them like prized lambs
Destined for slaughter.

Critics can be so mean
Everyone seems to be one
Until they find themselves in a spotlight and all they want to do is
Relieve the pressure.
So they pinch their nose
Close their eyes
And wait for the faint pop
That ends their career.

Submission guidelines

As much as we’d like to say, ‘let your creativity run free!’, we do have some rules and regulations to follow, but they’re pretty straight forward. If you’re unsure of any of the guidelines, feel free to contact us.

Please note:

  • Whilst we do accept submission from writers outside of Australia, priority will always be given to Australian writers
  • As the themes are quite loosely interpretive we will not reject your piece on lack of theme alone, but priority will be given to pieces that are at least obliquely to theme, and highest priority is given to pieces that are a creative interpretation of the theme; we want to see original and interesting works that take an idea and turn it into something wonderful
  • Priority will also be given to work that has not been accepted or published elsewhere – see note below about previously published work
  • Pieces with substantial spelling or grammatical errors will not be accepted. It is up to you to edit your submissions to a publishable standard – we will not copy edit them for you. Feedback provided is predominantly substantive
  • As this zine will be presented to the general public please be aware of the suitability of explicit content such as graphic violence, excessive coarse language, and triggering themes. If a piece is deemed to be offensive, triggering, or unnecessarily and excessively crude it will be rejected

Submission Formatting

  • We have a limit of 40 lines for poems, 2000 words for short stories, flash fiction and reviews.
  • We only accept one long piece (short story, review) or two short pieces (poems, flash fiction) per author per issue. You may submit different or substantially edited work for consideration each new issue.
  • Please format your text in Calibri, Arial or Times News Roman size 10-12, with line spacing of 1.5.
  • Submissions must be written in English
  • Submissions should be in DOC (Microsoft Word) file or compatible format attached to your email. Please do not submit work in a PDF or image format. Do not submit your work in the body of the email.

How to Submit

  • Once you’ve read the above formatting guidelines you can submit your piece by email
  • In the body of your email please include a brief biography about yourself and your work, e.g. your writing career so far (even if this is your first submission anywhere ever!), where you live and where you found out about us (we’re always curious to know).
  • Attach your DOC file to your email. DO NOT submit your work in the body of the email.
  • Send your submission to submissions[at]

What Happens Next?

  • Within a week you will receive confirmation that we have received your submission. If you have not received a confirmation email after a week, check that you have met all the submission criteria above (i.e. you’ve attached your work in the correct format and included the correct information in the body of your email) and resend your submission.
  • Do not expect a reply regarding the state of your submission – included or not – until submissions have closed. This just means that we have not yet decided what works will be included in the zine.
  • Once the submission period closes, our Editor-In-Chief will then remove your name and any identifying information from your submission to be read by our editors. Only after they have read your work will they be given any details about who you are; such as whether your work has been published before or where you are based (as per our note above).
  • Each one of our editors will read every submission. With all our different tastes and styles, we’ll then decide as a group which submissions we think will work best for the issue.
  • We will then send feedback on all submissions, whether we have accepted them for publication or not.
  • If we do accept your submission, you’ll then be guided through the process of publication by our Editor-in-Chief who will help you make any minor amendments that may be required before publication. This is the time when we check for any minor spelling or grammar errors, or when we may have feedback that we think will make your story stronger that you may wish to incorporate.
  • If we do not accept your submission, you are free to substantially edit the piece and submit it next issue, but we retain the right to refuse to include a piece until the editors deem it suitable. Please do not submit the same piece twice – all submissions must be significantly different from each other for consideration.

A few reminders

  • All work sent to us must be the original work of the author or the author must own the rights to have the work published
  • Submitting content to us may mean that your work is not available for publishing in other journals or in competitions. It’s best to do some research about this, and let us know if a piece is accepted somewhere else before we publish it.