We accept poetry, prose/short stories – and art submissions (including creative photography).
Submissions must not have been previously published anywhere elsewhere, however this does not include entirely self-published works for example – works on published on ‘personal’ blogs etc. If you are unsure about this, please contact us and we can advise you.
Student submissions for art, poetry, short stories will open in early 2023 for our 31st edition.
You must be a current student at the University of Cambridge or the University of Oxford – or a current student/member of an approved/recognised educational institution of either university. If you need further clarification on this please email us (see below).
Those putting their original poetry/prose work forward for consideration may submit up to three pieces of work. Unless integral to the work, ‘British English’ spelling should be used. Writing should be submitted as a Microsoft Word document, with a file name that reflects the title of the work. Poetry should be no longer than 60 lines. Prose pieces should be no longer than 2,000 words. Foreign language submissions are fine for publication too, but an English language translation must also be supplied.
Art and photography submissions may be provided as a portfolio of up to five images in the best resolution possible (though do be aware, if accepted for publication you must be able to provide your image(s) at 300dpi resolution) and can accompanied by up to 100 words (sent in a ‘Word’ document) about your artistic practice. You also need to bear in mind the physical size of a full page in The Mays is typically around 210mm height x 148mm width (not allowing for ‘white space’ around the edges), so for submissions containing text, such as 1-3 page “graphic novella” style submissions – any text must remain clear and legible within these limits.
If you wish to send larger file sizes than our email system allows (or indeed wish to make sure your submissions are safely received!), you must use exclusively use WeTransfer – a link to the free version can be found here: https://wetransfer.com/. ‘Dropbox’ or other large file transfer systems are not acceptable and will result in your submission being rejected without notice – WeTransfer best suits the consistent approach needed for the committee processes in place, in order to best consider your submission(s).
For art and photography – each image must be sent as separate ‘PNG’ or ‘JPEG’ files – not for example, as multiple images arranged in a ‘PDF’ or ‘Word’ file. Please avoid sending suggestions/requests for any specific layout of your work – layout is entirely a matter of judgement for the Editor and their team.
Please remember, this is principally a student run/student led endeavour, so please be patient and understanding that once you have made your submission it may take many weeks before you are advised if your submission(s) have been accepted or not. Another reason that we would encourage you to use the WeTransfer system to send your files, is that you do receive confirmation automatically that we have received and downloaded your content. Please note if your submission is rejected, we are unable to provide further individual feedback.
Copies of each book we publish are now also sent each year to many major literary agents, both in the UK and overseas – so we do offer the chance for your work to be seen by the wider publishing industry!
IMPORTANT NOTE: IF YOUR SUBMISSION(S) ARE ACCEPTED YOU MUST BE PREPARED TO SIGN AN EXCLUSIVE LICENCE GRANTING YOUR WORK(S) TO THE MAYS (VARSITY PUBLICATIONS LTD) FOR A PERIOD OF 5 YEARS. IF YOU ARE NOT PREPARED TO DO THIS, THEN PLEASE DO NOT SUBMIT MATERIAL FOR CONSIDERATION.
Finally, you must make sure you confirm your full name, contact email and confirm your Cambridge/Oxford College (or the name of your approved/recognised institution) along with your submission(s) or your submission will be rejected without notice.
For general editorial enquiries please send any questions to: email@example.com
For ordering, copyright, licensing and publishing/eligibilty related questions please email: firstname.lastname@example.org