General Guidelines

Please do not submit more than 3 pieces of work per issue. The combination is up to you, but we will accept only one short fiction submission and/or one non-fiction submission per writer. (For example, you could submit a short story, a non-fiction article and a poem.)

Please also send us a short author bio (try to keep it to 100 words or less). Note: this may appear on the HCE website if your work is published in the magazine. We’re happy to include a link to your creative website, shop or social media.

Please be aware that each issue has a THEME, which authors are encouraged to tackle from a distinct and personal angle. Authors must show awareness of the theme in all their submissions.

Work accepted by HCE will be published as edited – i.e. we don’t send out a ‘final proof” for approval before the magazine goes to print, as this causes serious delays. We therefore won’t make any major edits to your work, and we generally don’t enter into dialogue regarding corrections (but we notify writers of editorial decisions that could impact on the voice of their piece; and if we think non-standard grammar is intentional, we’ll likely check this with you).

You can send submitted pieces elsewhere after being published with us, but we ask that authors acknowledge their appearance in HCE where possible. And, vice-versa, feel free to send us submissions that have already been published. If we love the work, we’ll consider printing it. However, like all magazines, we’re aiming to offer original content to our readers – so we ask that you let us know in your cover letter/submission if a piece has been previously published elsewhere.

We do not accept unsolicited submissions sent to us after the deadline.

To get an idea of the writing quality we’re looking for, please check out previous issues of the magazine.


We will endeavour to respond to you within three months of submission – it may take longer – and, where possible, we provide limited feedback.

If your work is shortlisted but we run out of page space in the magazine, we’ll contact you with the option of publishing it on the HCE website. If you would prefer not to do this, just let us know. We won’t take offence.

If we do decline your work, don’t take it as a personal attack upon your good self. Submissions may be rejected for a number of reasons and, if this is the case, we encourage you to keep trying elsewhere.

Occasionally, special editions of HCE will have unique and niche audiences, or audiences with special requirements. This will be clearly stated in the theme brief. Editors will reject/defer any work deemed inappropriate for the stated audience.

Please note: All rights reserved, inclusion in HCE grants Silhouette Press full rights to feature submitted work in future physical and electronic publications within SP’s published submission guidelines. All work accepted remains the intellectual property of the author.

Formatting Your Files

The file name of your submission should be the title of the actual piece, to avoid confusion. Ideally, avoid making your title the same word/phrase as the issue’s theme (we get a lot of these).

We accept submissions of Poetry, Fiction, Articles and Artwork.

Please visit our SUBMIT page to check our theme for the upcoming issue.

Creative and bold submissions that have a strong or unique style will be favoured over those that do not. We encourage submissions that tackle the respective issue’s theme in an innovative way.

Short Fiction (max. 2,000 words – one piece only)

  • We welcome flash fiction pieces (up to 1,000 words).
  • Please include a brief note/synopsis (around 50 words) of your story for our editors, to help us understand how it links to the theme.

Poetry (max. 35 lines each – up to three poems)

  • All forms welcome – experimental, traditional, free verse, prose etc.
  • Anything over 50 lines will be rejected outright. 35-50 lines will be considered for the website only.

Non-Fiction (max. 1,500 words – one piece only)

  • Brevity: keep submitted articles and essays brief and concise.
  • Clarity: non-fiction submissions should have clear aims and direction. Extended articles and essays dealing with general subjects will be cut at the editors’ discretion.
  • Sensitivity: all submissions should be written with an awareness of IPSO ethics guidelines. Opinion, news and discussion pieces will be expected to be able to produce reliable evidence for claims made, if requested.
  • Ambition: authors should aim to provide an unusual perspective or style when preparing submissions. The editors will show bias toward creative choices.
  • We’re interested in interviews and reviews – but recommend that you pitch us the idea first, to reduce the risk of wasting your time. This type of non-fiction is more likely to be featured on the website than in the magazine, unless it strongly appeals and fits well with the rest of the issue’s content.

Artwork (up to three pieces)

Please bear in mind: we are looking for works related to/inspired by the respective issue’s theme.

Technical specifications:

  • We require hi-res images at 300 dpi. Any works submitted below this quality will not be used.
  • Image size needs to be a minimum of 640 x 640 resolution, up to and including A4.
  • Some works we will feature as full page pieces, while some images may complement a written piece well. We may need to crop or scale your image during the design stage to fit this purpose.


We do not accept ‘fan fiction’ i.e. Fiction, Poetry or Artwork based on or in a popular fictional universe. These will face immediate rejection. We also recommend you avoid using brand names or real-world businesses or products as these can be subject to copyright laws, and we may choose to decline your piece to reduce risk of copyright infringement.