I've got a few stories that employ experimental stylistics. The piece that is giving me the most trouble, though, is split up into five sections-- each section begins on its own page. It's hard to describe exactly, but basically it is a piece about physicality and each section can be/is physically separate from one another.

I want to send it out to some magazines and journals, but I don't know how publishers work with page number/spacing like this (considering page count of the journal, as well as the limitations of the endless scroll-down page of websites.)

Would it be unrealistic to try and get this story published, or are there some good literary outlets that would be open to this kind of work?


2 Answers 2


The difficulty you face is that "magazines and journals" are built around a well-known (and successful) form factor that is incompatible with what you want to do. It is as though you announced that you had designed a new type of aircraft and ask if a ship-builder would be able to help you make it.

If you want to explore "new" forms of publishing, you need to think beyond traditional methods. In the 1960s, I bought a book (sic) that consisted of separately bound chapters (sic) in a cardboard box. The intention was to emphasise that after the opening section (headed Read me first) all the other parts were to be taken in a random order. Some of the components had as few as four leaves.

It sounds as though your project could be published in a similar form. On the other hand, there are several modes of digital publishing that could give the same result. Just don't expect to find your work bound within the covers of a conventional magazine.


Publishers may be willing to work with you to make it look the way you intend, as long as you make it clear why you want to do it that way.

For instance, check out the book The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall, as he does some really wonderful things with typography (such as making an image of a shark from the words of a page!)

I'd say it all depends on the publisher, and you know what they say: if you don't ask you don't get. If you make a pitch you may get lucky, and your chances are certainly going to be better if you reach out to digital publishers, as Fortiter says, because it will be far less effort for them to make it work.

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