Ends on August 6, 2017

The Transpacific Literary Project is an ambitious online editorial initiative of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop (AAWW) that is poised to foster literary connections between East and Southeast Asia, the Asian diaspora, and a broader American reading public. The project will take the shape of a series of portfolios published on AAWW’s online magazine The Margins. These portfolios will comprise poetry and prose written by East and Southeast Asian writers curated around broad themes, and will seek to traverse geographic and other boundaries.

We are currently seeking submissions for our first two portfolios:


When something or someone is gone, what gets left behind? Anything from the remnants of fallen empires or colonialism, to indelible marks from people, ideas or movements long gone. Many parts of Asia are palimpsests, with layers of history inscribed and re-inscribed upon them. In what surprising or hidden ways do we see these traces of the long departed? We are open to any interpretation of this theme, from photo essays showing how the Boxing Day tsunami permanently altered the landscape, to speculative fiction imagining what might be left of present-day cultures a thousand years hence.


What are the flows of money across the world, and what do they mean? The ways in which we send and receive cash, as well as the movement of people, goods and ideas that this betokens. Again, this theme should be interpreted broadly—we are keen to explore remittance as metaphor alongside more literal applications of the word. Could phenomena such as the American colleges establishing branch campuses in Asia, or the Chinese ritual of burning paper goods for the dead, be regarded as forms of remittance?

Please send in fiction (including graphic fiction), non-fiction or poetry, indicating which theme you are submitting for, and whether submission is by the author or translator. If the latter, please indicate that English-language rights are available. We are unlikely to publish anything over 2,500 words, though we will make exceptions for particularly deserving pieces. Submissions should not have been previously published in English.

Do note that we expect most of the work published in the Transpacific Literary Project will be in translation. That said, we will also consider English-language work by writers from, or with a demonstrable engagement with, East or Southeast Asia.

AAWW will hold exclusive print and online rights to your piece for 90 days, and your story will be archived online. All other rights remain with the writer and translator.

All contributors of original work (including translators) will be paid.

We are also happy to look at ARCs of forthcoming books with a view to publishing extracts.

Please only submit one piece at a time for each portfolio (ie. you may submit two pieces during the same period, if they are for different themes). Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but we ask that you withdraw the piece promptly if it is accepted somewhere else.

If you require more information, please get in touch with jtiang@aaww.org

*One of the aims of The Transpacific Project will be to interrogate the idea of the Transpacific, and where exactly the region might lie. As such, the following list of countries should be regarded as indicative and non-exclusive; broadly, East and South-east Asia consists of : Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, North Korea, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and their diasporas.

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