1. By submitting, you commit to be present for the date of the show.
2. We generally do not feature any writing that requires more than 8 minutes of reading time. We sometimes make exceptions.
3. Please do not include your name or contact information ANYWHERE on your submission. This includes the documen(s) and the title/subject of your submission. Your cover letter may include your name.
4. We publish the accepted submissions in a book every month. It’s ok to submit previously published writings, but let us know where they were published and any additional accreditation we should know.
5. We accept audio submissions so long as you supply the text, too.

1. We choose 1 artist for each month’s covers (and insert) of sparkle + blink.
2. Resolution must be at least 300 dpi @ at least 6.25" x 9.25"

Kick off 2020 -- and our second decade! -- with us and read/perform with Quiet Lightning on Jan 6 @ The Balboa Theater!

This show will be curated through a blind process by Quiet Lightning Disruptor Sophia Passin and Kathleen Torrez! All selected authors will be paid + published in sPARKLE & bLINK 103, featuring cover art by a local artist and included with admission for the first 100 people!

Submissions are open through end of day Wednesday, December 18, 2019.

After the readings (and a hearty intermission: beer, wine, and snacks are available at the concession stand), we will screen our feature-length film Water Under the Bridge (2016), directed by Katie Wheeler-Dubin and Mila Puccini. 

s&b100 front cover by Zoltron

Admission will be $15, with all funds going toward our 10th anniversary fundraiser and to help make both Quiet Lightning and The Balboa Theater sustainable. Everyone at the show will receive a book featuring all of the selected writing and cover art by a local artist (art by Zoltron, made for s&b 100, pictured above). Authors will read/perform as a literary mixtape, with no introductions or banter.




  1. Send us any kind of writing. Any kind! Make up new kinds and send them to us.
  2. No one gets more than 8 minutes of reading time. This varies of course but don’t send us more than 1,500 words unless you’ve timed the piece(s) multiple times and your speedy performance of the text somehow enhances it. We sometimes make an exception to this rule, but rarely.
  3. You may submit more than one attachment, but the word count of your entire submission should not exceed 1,500.
  4. By submitting, you commit to be present for the date: Monday Jan 6, 2020.
  5. Do not put your name anywhere — neither in the submission itself nor in the subject/title/filename of your submission.
  6. We publish the accepted submissions in sparkle + blink for every mixtape show. It’s OK to submit previously published writings, but please let us know where they were published so we can give props.
  7. You may submit audio, but all submissions must include full text.
  8. We welcome and encourage submissions in any and all languages, but all submissions must also contain an English translation.

        Don't hesitate to contact us for any reason: evan@quietlightning.org.

About Quiet Lightning
Now in its 10th year, Quiet Lightning is a San Francisco-based literary nonprofit with the mission to foster community based on literary expression and to provide a safe and supportive arena for said expression. Its flagship is the literary mixtape, a submission-based series with a completely blind selection process and different curators for every show, for which there are no introductions or banter. The shows are published as books, handed out free to the first 100 people at each show. All participating artists are paid and the shows are free to attend.  We’ve now produced 129 shows, featuring 1,200+ readings by 900+ different authors in 80+ venues and 100+ books. Quiet Lightning also maintains Litseen.com, a daily calendar of literary events. 

About the curators

Sophia Passin can be found swimming in the bay and scribbling in her notebook any chance she gets. Sophia recently graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing at the University of San Francisco. A few pieces of hers can be found nestled in the 2017 edition of Paris Atlantic. She aims to one day make a multi-media literary journal of her own.

Kathleen Torrez is a budding writer and editor originally from a small town in New Mexico. She’s drawn to writing with a rhythmic and slow-paced cadence. Some of her favorite poems include Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson, Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman, The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats, and Kindness by Naomi Shihab Nye. And the poem Kevin reads in The Office finale.

Quiet Lightning