Do you lean to the left, and explore cultural or political issues with a journalist’s eye or a poet’s pen? Then read on for a publication opportunity that’s right up your alley…

Cover of current Overland literary journal

Speakeasy spoke with the most erudite Jeff Sparrow, who has given us the skinny on Overland literary journal.

Sp: When did Overland start publishing?

JS: Overland began in 1954, emerging out of the Realist Writers Movement. Its foundation editor was Stephen Murray-Smith.

Sp: What genres does Overland publish, and who is your audience?

JS: Overland publishes fiction, poetry, reviews, essays, memoirs and most other literary genres. Because of that, it’s difficult to define an audience but it’s probably safe to say that Overland readers are generally people looking for an alternative, aesthetically and politically, to mainstream corporate culture.

Sp: What are you looking for in submissions?

JS: Overland is an explicitly political journal, with a generally left-of-centre orientation. That doesn’t mean we necessarily seek didactic submissions. In general, though, we look for writers who have something to say and know how to say it.

Sp: What are your upcoming deadlines for submissions?

JS: Our next deadline is 1 June. We generally don’t run themes so deadlines aren’t that significant – if we can’t fit a quality submission in one edition, we will run it in the next. [See Overland’s submission guidelines here.]

Sp: Do you have any new developments or events to promote, and it came up really

JS: At the moment, we’re promoting a series of events at the Sydney Writers Festival, including a major presentation by Germaine Greer and the launch of Overland’s special symposium on climate change. Check out Overland’s SWF events.

Sp: Any thing else you would like to add?

JS: Overland runs a group blog from its website. The site also makes recent editions freely available online and so is a great way to check out what the journal is about.


Craig Bolland’s article "Practice Makes Perfect: Writing Short Pieces that Sell" is a very useful guide for writers seeking to develop their craft into a freelance profession. It’s available to AWMonline subscribers under the Writing Resources tab, in the section for emerging writers.

Tonight’s Writing Race features special guest Lee McGowan. Lee’s first novel was short listed in the 2007 Queensland Premiers Literary Awards Emerging Author category. Lee reviews for Bookseller + Publisher and has been posting a weekly football fiction blog. Join us at AWMonline forums, 745pm AEST for an 8pm start to write alongside Lee and the Writing Race crew.

One Response to “Lit Mags #2: "an alternative, aesthetically and politically, to mainstream corporate culture"”

  1. Paul Squires,

    Overland, one of the most mainstream old school literary magazines in the country. Alternative to what exactly?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.