Catapult is an innovative publisher that celebrates extraordinary storytelling. We promote American and international fiction and narrative nonfiction that is insightful, stirring, and surprising by way of unique voices—whether emerging or established—that honor the craft of writing. “We must contribute to both contemporary literary culture and the pleasure and knowledge of a diverse and serious readership,” says Editor in Chief Pat Strachan. “As Rebecca Mead wrote in The New Yorker, ‘There are pleasures to be had from books beyond being lightly entertained.’”

Currently, we welcome nonfiction of 500-6000 words for our online magazine. Please submit only one piece at a time, and please include a cover letter along with your piece. Writers will receive compensation for accepted online magazine pieces. We will respond to submissions within six months, hopefully earlier. We accept all file formats.

We also welcome submissions for the Catapult Reportage Grant (magazine only). Please see below for details.

Due to time constraints on our small team of readers, Black Balloon will not be accepting submissions in the month of March. Please be in touch in August for our next open submissions period. 

In the meantime, do check out our Community site where emerging writers can post their work and receive feedback from one another. We hope you'll find this an engaging and safe way to bring your words into the world. 

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Catapult's online magazine is accepting narrative nonfiction submissions. We welcome personal essays, lyric essays, reportage, and unconventional prose which resists categorization. 

Preferred word count for submissions is 500 - 6000 words. Writers will receive compensation for accepted pieces.

Please indicate if this is a resubmission or a revised pitch that Catapult editors have already seen.

We invite writers and reporters to submit to us one paragraph pitching a human interest piece, flexibly defined, and 2 clips. The writer of the winning proposal will receive a $500 grant to do a clearly-defined project intended to yield a reported essay of 2000-6000 words which a) stands on its own as a remarkable piece of writing and b) tells us something about the place where you live. Women and people of color, especially those beginning their careers, are strongly encouraged to apply. Good examples to aspire to, if they are helpful, would be Lucas Peterson's "The Fight to Protect Los Angeles's Endangered Street Vendors," Kathryn Schulz's "Citizen Khan," and Saba Imtiaz's "A Stage Set for Slaughter."

Strong projects will be limited enough that reporting can be completed within about 2 weeks, and a publishable draft of the story will be submitted promptly. The grant will be given in full to the writer to spend at their discretion—we hope that it will fund writer’s time, local travel, and daily expenses.

Our magazine is open to considering projects which incorporate photo, sound, or video, in addition to text. The narrative that comes of this project will be published on our online magazine, Catapult (, and the writer may co-publish with a print magazine or newspaper.

Catapult Community is currently accepting submissions for our Literary Pet of the Month series.

We welcome entries extolling your pet’s virtues as a reading companion, rigorously crafted comparisons to famous literary pets, introspective meditations on the reason you named your pet after a writer or a character in literature, and any other submissions that could engrave your pet’s story into the annals of literary history.

Submissions should be one paragraph in length. We also ask that you provide a photo of your furry (scaly) friend for fact-checking purposes. One winner will be chosen and featured on Community every month.

For inspiration, we invite you to look at Marie-Helene Bertino's 'Fantastic Mr. Fox.'