You can submit your poetry and prose to New Contrast magazine here. Submissions need to be made through the submissions manager – Submittable. We prefer not to receive material via email – there are too many occasions for material to be lost.

Submissions for New Contrast Issue 206 are NOW OPEN from

15th May to 1st July 2024 


  • Submit no more than 3 poems per submission or one short story or prose extract
  • Poems: maximum of 65 lines for each poem
  • Prose pieces: maximum of 4,000 words
  • Only online submissions will be considered.
  • If you are submitting the same material to another publication at the same time, please say so in your covering email or letter. Inform us if your work is accepted elsewhere before you hear from us.
  • Please note it can take up to three months to receive a reply.
  • Once a writer is published that writer must wait 18 months before making another submission.

Also remember that if you would like to submit material, it would be to your advantage to read a couple of issues of New Contrast to get some idea of what we have published in terms of length, style and quality. In particular, we refer you to the following extracts from the Notes of New Contrast № 157 (March 2012).

We would like to see  the conscious indication of the craft of poetry, the use of poetics to give a particular quality to the material presented. This should be more than just stream of consciousness writing, with strong lines being used to drive home the ideas or insights which the work presents. Above all, the poems must say something which applies to more than just the writer, something which speaks to the wider band of readers who will read the work. As far as the short story, or short fiction goes, the writing must be clear and vigorous; it must engage the reader and through the building of tension create a satisfying or challenging resolution of tension by the end of the piece.  We concentrate on publishing primary material and not secondary criticism or theoretical or philosophical arguments. We favour material which addresses the South African context, or our Africanness, but ‘quality’ remains the first tickbox for whatever the context or location of the narrative or reflection might be.

Response times

As we only come out quarterly, understand that anything from three to six months might elapse before a decision is made on the work you have submitted.

Our readership is primarily English, Afrikaans or isiXhosa speaking, so we accept submissions in English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa. We will consider submissions in other languages if they are accompanied by a translation.


Short stories must contain not more than 4000 words and individual poems not more than 65 lines.