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Editorial Fellows

Open Call: The Art of Culinary Writing

July 1, 2024

In connection with the Editorial Fellowship program at A Public Space, we are pleased to announce an open call for a special portfolio in the magazine to be edited by Maurice Rodriguez.

Call for Submissions

Cooking can be an art, but it is not the only art where food is present in the center or memorably in the margins. Consider contemporary still lifes in the works of multimedia artist Lucia Hierro, photographer Arden Surdam, or ceramist Stephanie H. Shih. Films like Kelly Reichardt’s First Cow (2020), Tranh Anh Hung’s The Scent of Green Papaya (1993), and Gabriel Axel’s Babette’s Feast (1987) often use food to symbolize integral ideas and narrative threads. In Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse, a rich boeuf en daube grounds the reader at the dinner table amidst a tapestry of memories. Gabriel García Márquez weaves Fermina Daza’s capricious feelings about eggplant throughout Love in the Time of Cholera as a signifier for the state of her marriage. Littered amidst many of Haruki Murakami’s works are carefully crafted, drool-inducing cooking sequences that you could emulate your own recipe after. The depiction of food in art and literature has the myriad potential to transform and transport us just as much as the sensory experiences of cooking and eating do.

I am interested in reading culinary writing in any genre—fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry—that explores but is not limited to, the following questions: How can food be a source of resistance and an expression of cultural identity? What might our depictions of food, or the ways we cultivate, consume, and interact with it, say about who we are? How are our senses and memories conjured through food writing?

I am especially eager to read works that experiment with style, form, and language, as well as works in translation.

Submission Requirements: Only previously unpublished works of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry are eligible. International and multilingual submissions are welcome, provided that English is the primary language used. Only one submission per person is allowed. Writers whose work is published in the magazine will receive an honorarium.

Timeline: Submittable will be open for submissions from July 1 – July 23 only. Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. (EST) on July 23, 2024.

Please submit the following:

— A cover letter, including a one-paragraph biographical statement, and a paragraph describing an artistic depiction of food (literature, film, music, etc.) that captures what food means to you.

— One previously unpublished piece up to 6,400 words, double spaced, or up to five (5) poems. 

— Only writers who have not yet published a book or been contracted to write a book-length work in English are eligible. 

— Simultaneous submissions are allowed, but please note that if your piece is accepted elsewhere, you will be required to withdraw your entire application; replacement pieces will not be accepted once the deadline has passed. 

Note that we only accept PDF or Word files (.doc and .docx). The cover letter and manuscript should be submitted as separate files. Incomplete submissions or submissions that do not address this call will not be considered and will be returned unread.

Questions? Write Editorial Fellow Maurice Rodriguez at

Examples of stylistic interest from the APS archive:

— Yohanca Delgado's "Our Language," published in APS No. 29. The story remixes a mythical being of Dominican folklore while exploring the malleability of language, as well as cultural imagination and identity.

— Yōko Ogawa's "Backstroke," published in APS No. 01. Here, the decay of a family is captured through the lens of a curiosity about why we do what we do, and why those things are considered acceptable or not.

— Mi Jin Kim's "Pocket Money," published in APS No. 30. The final line encapsulates the everyday tension simmering beneath the surface of our ordinary lives: "It was a body hanging from a rod, or kelp in dark water—that depended on how you saw things, and who you were."

— Selva Almada's "The Monkey in the Whirlpool," published in APS No. 28. This work in translation by Samuel Rutter places us in the production of Lucrecia Martel's Zama (2017) among the Qom of Argentina. Fragmentary in nature, Almada folds and refolds a colonial history upon itself.

— Kimiko Hahn's "To save the cell-phone battery—," published in APS No. 29. A short, observational poem that weighs as much as one can see.

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