Call for pitches: Geez 54 Climate Crisis
Deadline May 10, 2019
“Adults keep saying ‘We owe it to the young people to give them hope.’ But I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel everyday. And then I want you to act…I want you to act as if your house is on fire. Because it is.”
~Greta Thunberg, 16 year-old Swedish climate activist
“Mother Nature — militarized, fenced-in, poisoned — demands that we take action.”
~Berta Cáceres, Indigenous Honduran activist, assassinated in March 2016
This isn’t an issue about the science. This isn’t an issue that debates just how many years human beings have left on the planet. We know the science is out there and that it is dire. This is an issue about how we live in its midst.
We ground this issue in the understanding that climate change is inextricably intertwined with systems of colonialism, exploitation, and genocide. If we are to truly move towards a (re)generative way of living, we know that a full transformation will be necessary. As the tides continue to rise, what will we do? Will we radically change the way we relate to each other and the earth? Or will we drown with our hands gripping our iPhones, using our discarded water bottles to stay afloat?
The Big Questions
- How do intersectional analyses inform our work for climate justice? What does it look like to center Indigenous knowledge and experience?
- Drawing on the framework of Just Transition, how can we work towards a societal transformation that is “just and equitable; redressing past harms and creating new relationships of power for the future through reparations”?
- How do we make the struggle less human-centric? (Perhaps other creatures and plants would delight in human extinction?)
- Will technology save us? Or destroy us?
We need to be encouraged by stories of folks and communities taking tremendous risk that move us beyond recycling and composting into transformation.
- How do the Principles of Environmental Justice impact (y)our work?
- What climate change actions have you participated in or been moved by?
In Our Own Places, In Our Own Lives
- What evidence of climate change do you see in the place you are rooted? In your watershed? In your region?
- What experiments in transformation are you/your community involved in?
Emotional and Spiritual Health
As we hear dire predictions of human extinction, it can become a struggle to keep breathing and moving.
- How do we care for our beings amidst such fear, terror, and despair?
- What does it look and feel like to ground ourselves in community? In joy? In pleasure?
- How can 12-step programmes around addiction help us as we wrestle with our addictions to money, stuff, and convenience?
- How do we grieve? What are the rituals and spiritual practices we can bring to this work?
- Write an obituary for human beings.
Notes about submissions
We want long-form journalism, personal stories of transformation, short bursts of feelings, nuggets of insight, and inspiration. Pick your aspect of the topic and expand with personal experience, researched wisdom, or spiritual insight.
In a great pitch, you describe the story, explain how it’s a perfect fit for Geez, list the sources you’ll consult, and state why you’re the best person to write it. Please include a brief bio and where you live.
1. Longer non-fiction pieces, length: 650 or 1300 words:
We’re looking for creative non-fiction essays, investigative articles or research-based pieces on the topic above. While a reference to your personal experience is welcome, readers need wisdom from other sources as well (interviews, books, articles, theologians, social-justice activists, academics, and moms and dads). Pitches should be one page, touch on the wider context of your topic and name at least one other source you will be consulting. Here’s a request: Please think of yourself as a Geez contributing editor. Ask yourself: what would readers who are social-justice oriented and at the fringes of faith want to read on this topic? If your pitch is accepted you’ll usually have three to four weeks to complete the piece.
2. Flash non-fiction, length: 50-350 words
These are short, personal experiences or insights. Your piece should capture a moment that illuminates a larger issue or convey a feeling familiar to us all. This is a chance to bring hope, insight, emotion, and connection to readers. Think of it as a snapshot with words.
Consider the topic above and send original photographs (i.e. you took the photo) or illustrations that provoke or pacify, animate or incite. Or, if you know of a photographer or illustrator who can deliver an awesome photo essay or series of drawings and is willing to get big play in a premium little magazine for a modest honorarium, please pass this pitch along.
Tips for pitches:
The Geez project is a discussion among people of faith seeking social justice. Our readers and writers express this through art, activism (a creative critique of those in power and the structures that keep them there, the promotion of alternative practices that subvert such powers), contemplation, and a more-grounded, interconnected approach to living.
Before pitching, please read our guidelines for writers. Ideally we would like to respond personally to every piece of correspondence we receive. But given the number of submissions we receive – and having tried to respond to all – we realize it is just not possible. If you do not hear back from us within six weeks assume that we were unable to use your submission.
Deadline for pitches: May 10, 2019
We look forward to seeing what you send!
Lydia Wylie-Kellermann, managing editor
Kateri Boucher, associate editor
Lucia Wylie-Eggert, art director
Send pitches, manuscripts and images to
email: stories [at] geezmagazine [dot] org
mail: Geez magazine, 1950 Trumbull, Detroit, MI 48216 USA
To join our Writers List, click HERE.