Contributing to Oregon Humanities

Oregon Humanities publishes essays, photographs, films, audio recordings, data visualizations and infographics, and other media that explore the thoughts, perspectives, and experiences of Oregonians, especially those who have been ignored, generalized, or oppressed. Work is published on our website or in print in Oregon Humanities magazine.

We exclusively publish work by Oregon-based creators. Before you submit your pitch, proposal, or draft to us, please get familiar with what we publish in our magazine and online. You may request a physical sample copy of the magazine by emailing or by calling the Oregon Humanities office at (503) 241-0543.

We prefer to consider completed drafts, but we also accept queries and proposals that concisely articulate the focus, argument, and content of the proposed article, as well as the resources you will use and any particular experience you have with the subject matter. Share with us why you are the one who should create this piece. We only accept completed drafts of Posts and personal essays.

We pay on acceptance, after the satisfactory completion of required revisions. Payment ranges from $200 to $300 for shorter online pieces and $500 to $1000 for personal essays and features; payment varies depending on the length and complexity of the piece, and whether it is an original, commissioned work or a reprint or adaptation of an existing piece. We will consider and offer a modest honorarium for previously published work, as well as book and other excerpts. We do not pay for Posts, but thank writers who are published with a $25 gift card.

We prefer to receive submissions and queries electronically. If your query is longer than one page, please attach it as a Word document and make sure that your name and contact information are included on the attachment. We will also consider submissions by postal mail.

Please note that at this time, we do not accept unsolicited submissions of poetry and fiction.

We respond to submissions within six weeks of the deadline for each call for submissions. We only accept submissions when there is an open call. We distribute our call for submissions through media, literary, and academic organizations, as well as through social media and our enewsletter mailing list. Please sign up for the Oregon Humanities enewsletter to guarantee that you receive calls for submissions for Oregon Humanities.


About Our Publications 


Oregon Humanities magazine

Oregon Humanities magazine is an award-winning triannual general interest publication (spring, summer, and fall/winter). In the magazine, Oregon writers, artists, and readers explore diverse perspectives and challenging questions and ideas that are relevant to residents around the state. The magazine is delivered free to more than 12,000 subscribers and is available online. Each issue of Oregon Humanities centers around a theme, and all submissions should loosely relate to the theme. Please look to the call for submissions for more guidelines around theme.

Upcoming Themes

  • Fall/Winter 2021: Beyond (mid-December 2021)
  • Spring 2022: Care (mid-April 2022)
  • Summer 2022: Memory (mid-August 2022)
  • Fall/Winter 2022: Underground (mid-December 2022)
  • Spring 2023: Joy and Pain (mid-April 2023)

Magazine submission categories

Personal essays should not be merely anecdotal or narrative, but should also offer an argument, reflection, and revelation that illuminate each issue’s theme. Personal essays are usually no longer than 2,000 words. We only accept completed drafts of personal essays.

Features tend to be either articles that use the various techniques of magazine journalism (i.e., reportage, interviewing, character development, narrative) or scholarly essays (i.e., well-researched deep dives into a particular topic) that are written for a general audience. Features in Oregon Humanities employ the methodologies of the humanities—including critical inquiry, analysis, and reflection—to connect Oregonians to ideas that engage and challenge them to work for more just communities. All features, no matter how subtly, should make an argument and offer a theory and supporting evidence that help our readers consider the theme in new and surprising ways. Features are generally between 2,500 and 4,000 words long and must consider a particular issue’s theme. We do accept pitches for features.

Posts is the “readers write” section of the magazine that encourages readers to reflect on each issue’s theme. Writers who don’t have clips or prior publishing experience will have the best chance of being published in this section of the magazine. Posts submissions should be no longer than 400 words. Published Posts writers will receive complimentary copies of their issue of the magazine as well as a $25 gift card.

Excerpts are standalone pieces from a published or forthcoming nonfiction book. Excerpts are generally around 2,000 and 3,000 words long (or around three magazine pages), and must explore a larger idea, argument, or reflection that can connect to the issue’s theme. Graphic memoirs and essays are considered, with length and adaptability to the magazine’s format as a primary concern. Please send review copies of books you would like considered for excerpts to Oregon Humanities magazine, 921 SW Washington St. Ste. 150, Portland, OR 97205. Feel free to send a PDF for review to


Online publications

Beyond the Margins is a twice-monthly online and email publication that draws both from magazine submissions and calls for submissions. We publish essays, reporting, audio and written interviews, excerpts, videos, photo essays, and other media that tell timely and evergreen community-based and under-told stories that engage, connect, and challenge Oregonians. Read through recent stories on our website to get familiar with the type of content we publish. Beyond the Margins is not thematic. Written submissions have ranged in length from 800 to 2,500 words, but length is not strictly enforced. For editorial audio, video, and multimedia projects with larger scopes, payment and process vary from the details above—please email with your proposal or query. Submissions are only accepted when there is an open call.

This Land is an online multimedia project that collects and connects stories about land, home, belonging, and identity by Oregon’s communities of color. The project uses film, words, maps, photos, sounds, and graphics by creators of color to build a broader understanding of how policies and laws shape systems of power and land ownership in Oregon’s past and present. This Land stories are circulated in Beyond the Margins—please indicate that you would like your story to be considered for This Land in your Beyond the Margins proposal, pitch, or draft.

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