Vol. 9: FAMILY

It’s January 1st, and we’re finally coming to the end of the holiday season. This is a time that many of us—whether happily or reluctantly—spend with family (or spend it missing family, or spend it avoiding family at any cost). No matter your particular relationship with your own family, it’s fairly likely that they’ve been on your mind to some degree these past few weeks.

With that in mind, for our ninth Volume we want to mine your brains while these feelings and thoughts are still fresh and at the top of your minds. We want to read your CNF stories and poems about family—not just holiday stories and poems, but all family tales. Tell us about a family vacation you loved or hated. Tell us about your strained relationship with your siblings. Tell us about how you found common-ground with that one cranky grandparent and got them to open up. The options are wide open here!

Whether you come from a tight-knit group of weirdos, or are estranged from the people who share your bloodline, or even if you have a different idea of what family means in your life (they do say the blood of the covenant is thicker than that of the womb), we want to hear what you have to say. And as always, we encourage you to take this prompt and run with it—surprise us with your takes on family!

For Volume Nine we’re keeping it in the family.

Submission Requirements:

-DEADLINE FOR VOL.9 SUBMISSIONS: March 31, 2019, 11:59 PM (PST)


Memoir Mixtapes only accepts creative non-fiction essays and poetry for publication in our Volumes. Any fiction pieces we receive will be automatically rejected. We’re looking for your personal, creative non-fiction prose and poetry inspired by the music that makes you feel feelings.

-Please use this structure for your subject lineif you fail to do so your submission will not be logged:

-Attach your submission as a .doc or .docx file (do not send PDFs or enclose your submission as text in the body of your emailyour submission will not be logged)

-Please include a third-person bio with your submission
(photos aren’t necessary, but if you want to send us pictures of your beautiful faces we won’t protest)

-One submission, based on one song, per writer. For prose submissions, 3500 words maximum (12 point font, single spaced). For poetry submissions we will only read one poem—please do not send multiple poems, as we will only read your first and make our decision based on that.

Submission Guidelines:

-Please, be polite and write something in the body of your email. Don’t just stick a couple files on a blank email and leave it at that. It’s rude. Chances are good we won’t read your submission if it’s stuck on a blank email.

-The sweet spot for prose submissions is between 2–6 pages, single spaced. (If your submission runs a little shorter or longer, it’s not the end of the world.)

-Poetry submissions can be any length, but please bear in mind that over 5 pages is going to be a tougher sell.

-Proofreading is the best friend you have. We both have other responsibilities / cats / dogs / spouses that eat up a lot of our time and we can’t dedicate as much effort as we’d like to on extensive edits to your work. Please, make sure your piece has that extra polish and shine before you send it in.

-We try to retain original formatting where applicable (particularly where poems are concerned), but your piece may be formatted/edited to fit our desired A E S T H E T I C.

Other Items:

As much as we’d love to pay contributors (or even ourselves), we’re broke as hell and can’t do any of that; as such, Memoir Mixtapes is free. This project is a labor of love and volunteer work, and will likely remain that way until we find ourselves a rich-ass patron who wants to throw cash at us to do what we love. (We’re still crossing our fingers for sponsorship from Taco Bell, so if anyone has the connect, hook us up.)

We’re not picky about whether your work has been previously published elsewhere, but we’d like to ensure that we’re not going to get sued to hell over copyright infringement, so make sure you’re okay to do so before sending it our way. In the same vein, we don’t mind if you want to submit your pieces to other publications after they have showed up in Memoir Mixtapes first—the work is yours, after all. Just please ensure that you credit us for being the first to publish it.

We make our decisions for inclusion once we’ve closed submissions for the current call; however, we will always respond to you to let you know we received your submission. These response times can vary from a day to a week, depending on our inbox / available time, so please be patient with your editors. That said, our spam folder has been known to eat potential contributor submissions, so PLEASE check in with us if you haven’t received a confirmation email within a week of sending your submission, preferably from a different email account (because Google is likely to throw you in spam again if you use the same address) or by Twitter/Instagram/Facebook message.

FOR TEACHERS WANTING TO GET STUDENTS INVOLVED: We’ve had it happen a few times now where teachers want to use our prompts as a basis for their classroom assignments. We think this is an excellent idea—we love the idea of helping to inspire burgeoning writing talent! And if your students want to submit to us, that’s even cooler! We’d be happy to read and consider their submissions for publication.

HOWEVER. We want all of our submissions to come from a place of passion and enthusiasm, not dread or annoyance. As such, we would ask that you please refrain from making submitting their work to us mandatory in order to pass your assignment. Nothing breaks our hearts quite like seeing “I’m sending you this story because I have to if I want a good grade for my English class” in a cover letter. It makes the students unhappy, and it makes us unhappy. If they want to submit, please encourage them, just don’t turn us into a chore for the students that don’t want to. Cool?

Are you a former contributor with exciting news to share? Email us at to keep us in the loop re: your new publications, projects, and awards!