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"

Submissions are open for our next literary mixtape, to be held on August 2, 2021. This will be a *virtual* event – you do not need to commit to being in the SF Bay Area in order to send in work.

We're accepting writing of all kinds to be performed one night only and published in sPARKLE & bLINK 111, featuring cover art by an artist TBA soon! Curated by Rhea Dhanbhoora and Mahdis Marzooghian, all selected authors will be paid.

Submissions are open through end of day Friday, July 9, 2021.

About the curators
Rhea Dhanbhoora worked for close to a decade as editor and writer in print and digital content for a variety of clients, before quitting her job and moving to New York to get her master’s degree, and finally writing the stories everyone told her no one would ever read. Her work has appeared in or is forthcoming in publications such as The HinduQuintThe Apeiron ReviewsPARKLE & bLINKAwakened VoicesFive on the FifthCapsule StoriesFly on the Wall PressHrStry, and JMWW. In her first year as a member of Quiet Lightning’s board of directors, she’s currently working on a linked collection about women based in the underrepresented Parsi Zoroastrian diaspora.

Mahdis Marzooghian is cofounder and co-Editor-in-Chief of Five on the Fifth. She is also Editor-in-Chief of Screen Fervor. She has a master’s degree in Professional Writing from Towson University and is currently a financial news editor at Money Map Press, based in Baltimore. Her fiction and nonfiction have been published in Heartwood Literary Magazine, Welter Literary Journal, Mud Season Review, Adirondack Review, BULL Fiction Magazine, and Lunch Ticket. Additionally, her short essay, “Collection Connection,” was published in the 2012 series anthology, Miso for Life: A Melting Pot of Thoughts. Mahdis recently finished her debut novel, for which she is currently seeking representation.

  Shown above: "Outlet" by Felicita Norris, cover artist of sPARKLE & bLINK 109.



  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 (virtually) present for the date: Monday August 2, 2021.
  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 proper attribution.
  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
Starting its 12th 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. Our 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. We’ve now produced 139 shows, featuring 1,684 readings by 888 different authors in 91 venues and 116 books, curated by 72 people. Quiet Lightning also maintains Litseen.com, a daily calendar of literary events. 

Quiet Lightning