WordsFestZine 2023

Welcome to the WordsFest Zine!

Crisis & Creativity & Care: the Wordsfest 2023 Zine

2023 Call for Submissions!

Send submissions to: wordsfestzine@gmail.com

Words will host our tenth anniversary festival in November 2023, featuring a hybrid program of onsite and online activities to build resilience as we confront the crises of our moment with creativity and care.

We have all used the word “unprecedented” to describe the overlapping crises of our moment, including the experience of global pandemic, protests for racial justice, the outbreak of war in Europe and now the Middle East, and the ongoing disasters associated with climate change. And yet, the word “unprecedented” feels entirely insufficient. We need the help of our artists, authors, and creative thinkers to translate the experience of the "unprecedented" into words and images. How to do we begin to address the crises of our moment with creativity and care?

During a time of crisis and change, our creative communities are leading conversations on the lessons we have learned from recent social movements for racial and climate justice (e.g., Idle No More, Black Lives Matter, Extinction Rebellion). We invite all London writers and artists – particularly those who are Black, Indigenous, persons of colour, or LGBTQ2S – to submit works for a community-based zine documenting how creators are activating principles of decoloniality, anti-racism, and sustainability in their work, whether its poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, a one-page zine, a one-page comic, graphic or visual art, or whatever you choose!

Museum London, the location of the festival, offers a gathering place at the forks of Deshkan Ziibi, or “Antler River,” a site of regional identity and Indigenous history that symbolizes divergence and convergence. The festival takes place on the traditional lands of the Anishinaabek, Haudenosaunee, Lūnaapéewak, and Chonnonton (Neutral) peoples, not far from where some of Upper Canada’s earliest Black refugees arrived after fleeing slavery in the United States. The Huron-Wendat peoples also have a history of living in this territory. In the London area, there were Treaty 6 London Township, Treaty 7 Sombra Township, and Treaty 21 Longwoods. The river’s forks are a traditional meeting place where tributaries converge, a place to gather and reflect on forces that divide our communities, to listen to the land and water, while forming a future vision that bridges divisions between different ways of knowing and navigating our world.

Join us at Museum London for multiple workshop events on writing poetry, making zines and comics, adapting stories for the stage, and more! We also have two open mic events on the opening weekend to try out your submission for the WordsFestZine!

Due to the high volume of submissions we have received in recent years, we can only select one item for each potential contributor, and we may not be able to accept all submissions. You can submit more than one item for our editors to evaluate. Submissions should be 500 words or two pages of graphic art.

With the help of Western University, Fanshawe College, and Antler River Poetry, we produce the WordsFestZine, a student-edited instant magazine that gives all festivalgoers an opportunity to publish. You can become a published author, instantly, at the Words Festival!

We are grateful for the many sponsors of Words, notably the Ontario Arts Council and the London Arts Council who make the festival and our zine possible.

The submission deadline will be 10 December 2023.

You can find digital copies of all previous zines below!

Crisis, Creativity & Care: The Wordsfest 2023 Zine


Bridging Divides: The Wordsfest 2022 Zine


Issue 1


Issue 2


Issue 3


Issue 4: FrankenZine


Issue 5: CuiZine


Issue 6: Possible Utopias: the Wordsfest Eco-Zine


Issue 6 Supplement: Im-Possible Utopias: The Wordsfest Eco-Zine


Issue 7: "Resilience & Recovery: The WordsFest QuaranZine"