Submit 📣

⭐ PTK is Opening for Submissions on March 1st! ⭐

Poetry Trapper Keeper will be opening up for poetry submissions from March 1st - March 31st, 2024 (or, until we hit our reading cap). More details to follow, but for now, here are the guidelines so you can start to brush up your best work, hot poets!!!

✅ How Can I Submit?

✅ What Can I Submit?

  • One poem

  • In English

  • That is less than 3 pages long

  • Aside from that, there is no specific formatting criteria

  • Collaborative work is cool, just let us know if it's from more than one person

  • Submissions can be simultaneous or previously published (just let us know if we need to credit the original publisher)

✅ What Else Do I Need to Know?

  • If you get selected for publication on PTK, we won't "own" the first rights to your work (like most publications do). We don't believe in owning anyone's creative work for any amount of time. This means if your same piece gets republished elsewhere in the future, we don’t require you to credit us as the original publisher. You can if you want to, but you do you

  • Either way, all copy and publication rights of the work will remain yours

Submissions that don't follow these guidelines won't be read or responded to (sorry not sorry).

We’ll Also Be Looking for our Next PTK Squatter! 🏡

As part of the open call starting on March 1st, we’ll also have an option in Submittable for you to apply to be our next PTK resident (aka “squatter”).

How does it work? At least twice a year, we invite one of our besties to take over PTK for a month. PTK squatting is an opportunity for more experienced writers (who may feel constrained by the parameters of the traditional publishing world) to flex their creative freedom with a broad audience of hot people who read poetry. 

Typically, the squatter sends out 2-4 pieces over the duration of their month-long residency (including an interview) that Kelly and Larissa also respond to. You also have the option to run workshops or events via the PTK platform. But don’t forget - we’re cool poets, not regular poets - so there are no rules here. Tell us how YOU envision your ultimate PTK takeover.

We’re looking for squatters who can take over for a month sometime in the Fall of 2024, and also in 2025 (dates flexible).

✅ How Can I Apply?

  • Same deal here, we’ll open up for squatter applications on March 1st via Submittable

  • You’ll hear about it first on the PTK newsletter (so subscribe, bestie!!)

  • For this, we’ll ask you to submit 10 pieces of your best work

  • We’ll also ask you to submit an elevator pitch telling us why you want to be a PTK squatter and how you envision your residency with us

  • In English

  • In any format/length

  • Optionally, we’ll also ask you to share any relevant links or files to your work, website, socials, or resume that would help us get a feel for your work!

Okay, may the poetry odds ever be in your favor!!! We can’t wait to read your incredible work. You can scroll below to get a feel for the work previously published on PTK for our Zines and Squatter program. ⭐⭐


So you want to be featured on Poetry Trapper Keeper?!? That’s hot!!!🔥

No matter if you’re a poetry baby (who’s never been published before) or a poetry mommy (with a big upcoming book deal), there are 3 main ways you can get “published” on Poetry Trapper Keeper:

  1. 💞 Share with PTK: Become a PFF (Poetry Friend Forever)

  2. 📖 Get Published on PTK: Open Calls & Zines

  3. 🏠 Take Over PTK: Squatters

Keep scrolling for more info…

1. Share with PTK: Become a PFF (Poetry Friend 4Ever) 💞

Anyone can become a PFF, all you have to do is pass us a note from your metaphorical Trapper Keeper! 

If this is the first time you’re hearing the word “poetry” OR if you’ve been secretly jotting lines into your notes app for years, this could be your chance to push past your stage fright and become the hot poet you were always meant to be! 🤩

So go ahead, drop that poem to your ex, your boss, your dad, etc. into our collective Poetry Trapper Keeper!! You can do so by:

  • Commenting on our Substack posts (using your real name or anonymously, no judgment here!)

  • Interacting with our instagram: where we often share prompts, questions, & repost your work (only with your consent ofc)  

  • Emailing us. Don’t want your ex to know you’re writing about them? We love gossip! Send it to poetrytrapperkeeper@gmail.com. This way, your work remains private, but you’re not screaming into the void alone (we will read it with care, and probably respond with enthusiasm… or tears)

2. Get Published on PTK: Open Calls & Zines 📣 📖

Earn the right to add “published poet” to your tinder bio.

At PTK, we don’t care if you’ve been published five million times or if you’ve only ever written one piece - we want to see your work!  

About Our Zines 📖

In 2023, we opened up our poetry ping pong match to our first-ever open call for submissions!

This allowed us to publish four zines featuring the work from a pack of hot poets from different backgrounds, identities, and career trajectories. For some, this was their first-ever published piece, for others, this was yet another feather in a long and fabulous cap!

You can check out their amazing contributions here:

About Our Open Calls 📣

To get featured in our zines, you will have to submit your work to one of our open calls. Here’s what to expect in our submissions process…

  • 🗓️ Before you Submit: Clear announcements on open call timelines, so you can pencil it into your planner well in advance!  

  • 📝 During the Open Call: Transparency and reliable communication on the status of your piece (i.e. your poem will not be gobbled up by the open call black hole!)

  • ☎️ If accepted: Open lines of communication and collaboration with the PTK team (i.e. you are actively involved in how we portray your work). Plus, your work will be promoted on our growing Substack newsletter and our instagram page!

  • 🌟 Once published: Invitations to read at future PTK events and an official “Published Hot Poet” certificate (with all the bragging rights it entails).

If you get selected for publication on PTK, we won't "own" the first rights to your work (like most publications do). We don't believe in owning anyone's creative work for any amount of time. This means, if you get your same work republished elsewhere in the future, we don’t require you to credit us as the original publisher. You can if you want to, but you do you. Either way, all copyright and publication rights of the work will remain yours. 

Currently, we cannot offer compensation for publication. We are hoping, as we grow, that we will be able to do so in the future! (First hot people read poetry co-op, anyone?)

When is the next open call? 🔔

Poetry Trapper Keeper is currently CLOSED for submissions.

BUT we should be opening again for submissions in 2024! You should subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on instagram to get notified about our next open call.

3. Take Over PTK: Squatters 🏠

Make our home into your Barbie Dream House.

At least twice a year, we invite one of our besties to take over PTK for a month.

PTK squatting is an opportunity for more experienced writers and artists (who may feel constrained by the parameters of the traditional publishing world) to flex their creative freedom with a broad audience of hot people who read poetry. And don’t forget - we’re cool poets, not regular poets - so there are no rules here.

Graduates of our Squatter Program 🎓

How to Become a Squatter 🏠

If you or someone you know would be a good fit for this program, you sould:

  • Email us your elevator pitch to poetrytrapperkeeper@gmail.com 💌

  • Or apply via Submittable during our open call on March 1st, 2024!

Pssst! It also helps to drop some responses to our prompts in the comments of our Substack or our instagram DM’s, so we can see if our poetry ping-pong match is vibey!

Anyway, we can’t wait to see your work!! 💖💚