The COVID-19 pandemic has hollowed out nearly all communal spaces. Most of us spend our waking 

hours at home, deprived of intimacy and companionship. The few times we venture outside are now governed by rules of social interaction and calculated navigation that, if violated, could lead to more dangerous consequences than at almost any other time. So, we retreat into isolation and, at the same time, brave bouts of dread and despair over woes that relentlessly fray our nerves and collective bonds. 

The pandemic has indeed exacted a toll, both personal and political, with far-reaching repercussions which the Philippine Collegian continues to take stock of in our coronavirus coverage. Still, there remains so much unsaid about the situation that we wish to capture and acknowledge in a way that is not strictly reportorial. We believe that a literary anthology would, to some small measure, contribute to making sense of the one thing everyone has been struggling with amid lockdowns and roiling crises—distance. 

This literary anthology hopes to be an examination as it is a challenge. We are interested in works that rethink distance from various perspectives. Distance, in this case, may reference proximity, geography, time, emotion, or the gaps we bridge and the spaces we map out to open up new trajectories. 

Possibilities abound for what the future has in store. But it is yet hard to find a patch of firm ground at this moment of crisis, when, by our lonesome, we cannot act together with others and mobilize to the degree that we could have before the pandemic. Our distance from one another provides a fertile ground for inaction. Such is precisely the crack that we can see has been exploited to railroad policies, like the Anti-Terrorism Law, that are bound to shrink our spaces for dissent and fracture our communities even more rapidly than has so far been done already. 

Now may not be a good time as any to problematize our circumstances as a literary project. But such is the task that writers and artists, in our rather privileged positions, must inevitably confront. We thus very much welcome contributions that do not shy away from rhetoric and polemics, the summons of ideology, the defiance of formal structures. We are on the lookout for pieces that provoke and unsettle. 

Guidelines for submission

  1. The call for contributions is open to all Filipino writers and artists with works, in either Filipino or English, under any of the four categories: (a) short fiction, (b) poetry, (c) essay, and (d) graphic literature. Collaborative works are welcome, and so are pieces that blend together or experiment with genres, transgressing their normative boundaries. 
  2. All original and unpublished contributions to the literary anthology of the Collegian must be sent to [email protected], cc: [email protected] and [email protected]. The deadline is 20 September 2020, 11:59 p.m.; late entries will not be considered. 
  3. Only one submission per category will be accepted. But one may submit an entry in at most two categories. Simultaneous submissions are also allowed, but the Collegian must be notified immediately if the piece is slated for publication elsewhere. 
  4. For the subject heading of the email and the filename of the submission, kindly follow this format: <Kule Lit Antho 2020 surname_genre>, e.g., Kule Lit Antho 2020 Perez_Poetry. Email your submission as an attachment of the .docx file. Should one wish to keep typography or page design intact, as with some poetry or graphic literature pieces, a PNG and/or PDF file of the work must be submitted instead. 
  5. Entries for the prose categories must be single-spaced, typeface Segoe UI or Roboto, font size 11. Each submission must follow a 1,000-5,000-word count limit. 
  6. Entries for the poetry category may either be a standalone poem or a suite consisting of at most five (5) poems, in which case a collective title must be provided.
  7. For graphic literature:
    1. Entries for comics must be in portrait, and within a 6” x 8” size. It must be at least one (1) but not more than four (4) pages long.
    2. Entries for photo essays may be up to 15 photos. There will be no limit imposed for aspect ratio, but the file size for each photo must not be beyond 5 mb, and the text must follow a 1,000-word count limit. The raw and edited file must be uploaded in a Google Drive folder. Collaboration of up to three people is allowed. 
    3. Entries for illustrations may either be in landscape or portrait, and should not be more than 6” x 8” in size. Important elements should be away from the 0.125-inch bleed.
  8. Please do not include any author’s name or metadata within the pages of the file attachment. Instead, as an in-line text in the email, include a brief bionote of not more than 250 words, indicating institutional affiliation and professional email address. 
  9. In submitting an entry, one shall retain ownership of copyright of their work. But the Collegian shall have the right, upon consultation with the author, to edit portions of the work to suit the demands of publication.
  10. An acknowledgement of receipt will be sent within a week of the submission. Please give the issue editors a response time of at least three months before inquiring about the status of one’s submission. The final table of contents of the anthology will have been released by the next couple of weeks. 

If you have any questions, you may contact us through our email address [email protected], or message us through our social media accounts @phkule.