altMuslimah (“altM”) continually seeks fresh and insightful voices, whether Muslim or not, that can add to our growing body of work. We encourage you to submit pieces – videos, podcasts, articles, photography, and blogs – that touch upon Muslim identity formation; gender relations and the construction of sexuality; or current events, in America and abroad, that are related to gender. Consider, for example, the following topics:
- Does a Muslim country’s fashion industry, movie business, and art scene conform or deviate from stereotypical understandings of gender in Islam?
- What does women’s political empowerment mean to Muslim women? Is that perspective defined vis-a-vis men, or independently?
- How early in Islamic education or Sunday School should we be talking about gender?
- How does the reality of poor women having to work affect their religious worldview on gender as compared to middle or upper-class women?
- How does racism impact women’s and men’s self image; how does it impact marriages and in-law relationships?
While submissions may be personal or academic, in the first person or third person, we ask that all submissions, except blog pieces, conform to our style guide. If you are thinking about writing for us, please review this style and submission guide below before submitting your article for consideration. Adherence to these guidelines will increase your chances of publication.
Word Length: Submissions between 700 and 900 words will be considered. If the article does not meet these requirements, but is still worthy of publication, we will suggest changes to make it fit within this length.
Submission Status: All articles are recommended to be original pieces that have not been published anywhere else. However, we will consider reprints on a per-article basis and only if reprinting rights have already been secured.
Authorship: Articles are to be identified by the real name of the writer – no pseudonyms, blog handles, etc. are allowed. Your article will gain much more respect and readership if published under the name “Omar Muhammad” as opposed to “Cwy2ee MuzL3M”.
Subject Matter: We welcome any articles that analyze issues relating to gender or spirituality and Muslims/Islam. We generally avoid single issue news stories unless they can be incorporated into a larger context. We strongly prefer writing that is driven by personal experiences. We do not reprint press releases, promotional items, or official statements from organizations. We reserve the right to refuse to publish articles for any or no reason.
Reading Level: While we respect deep scholarship and academic rigor, we aim for a reading level that is similar to that of the Economist. Please keep obscure references and footnotes to a minimum, define terms that non-Muslims (or Muslims for that matter) may not immediately understand, and eschew academic jargon (e.g. words like “eschew”).
Fact Checking: We require that authors fact check their own work and whenever possible, hyperlink to relevant sources. For example, if you are going to state in your article that 44 percent of Americans favor curtailing civil rights for Muslim-Americans, then you should hyperlink to supporting evidence (as we have done in this sentence).
Unique Perspectives: Everybody wants to comment about the 2008 presidential race or the war in Iraq, but not everyone has something new to say about them. Consider examining issues that are overlooked elsewhere or may be rooted in your own particular area of interest. We prefer our writers to analyse subjects that others ignore.
Imagery: We try to use photographs and artwork to accompany all articles at altM. If you can provide some of your own, please verify that they are suitable for publication (i.e., appropriately licensed) or ensure permission has been granted from the owner. A good source of suitable images where permission is easily obtainable is Flickr.
Writing Style & Tone: altM accepts blog-like pieces for its Readers’ Blog, but is otherwise not a blog. While we greatly respect the work of bloggers, we are trying to strike a tone that is more conventional than a blog entry. This means that articles should be well structured, with a thesis or central point, arguments that support that point, and a conclusion and/or recommendation. No preachy manifestos or polemical rants, please. Our published opinions tend to avoid black-and-white worldviews, preferring instead to keep an open mind about the topic.
Blog submissions: altM recognizes that much of our interaction with gender issues occurs at a profoundly deep and private level. Many of these personal reflections cannot always be expressed in the form of structured articles, and instead need a more free-form space like a blog. As such, altM welcomes your blog-like pieces for its Readers’ Blog. Blog submissions will be vetted and, if accepted, may be edited.
Compensation: As altM is a volunteer effort, we unfortunately do not have the resources to pay most of our contributors (or ourselves, for that matter). However, published contributors can identify themselves as writers for altM for their own promotional purposes.
Ownership: Once a piece has been submitted to altM, altM retains exclusive ownership for 5 business days. During that time period, the author cannot submit the piece to another publication. If altM accepts the submission for publication, the author cannot submit it to another publication except as a reprint, which can be featured as an excerpt with a link back to the original on altM. Furthermore, any edits made by altM editors are owned by altM.
Please note: altM editors will review and refine all submissions that are sent to the magazine. If the staff suggests changes regarding the content and message of a piece, the article will not be published without the express consent of the writer. If however, the corrections are small in nature—largely grammatical or syntax related—the staff will give the writer a deadline by which to approve the edits, but if the writer does not respond within the given time frame, altM reserves the right to move ahead with the publication.