“It is really wonderful how much resilience there is in human nature. Let any obstructing cause, no matter what, be removed in any way—even by death—and we fly back to first principles of hope and enjoyment.” - Dr. Seward’s diary; Bram Stoker’s Dracula
For our May issue, we’re looking for essays that engage in some way with the theme of resilience! Naturally, this means we’ll be seeking pieces on films in which characters overcome great obstacles—stories of addiction and mental illness, of personal grief and national tragedy, of the loss of jobs and romances.
But films dealing with resilience aren’t always stories of hope and uplift. What about movies where the characters fail in their efforts at resilience? Or movies where they succeed in overcoming an obstacle only to realize they were better off before?
What about movies that ask the viewer to be resilient by making it to the end of a story that tests their own limits and boundaries? Or the ones that set seemingly impossible storytelling tasks for themselves and then overcome them—or fail to?
And of course there are those movies whose very existence is an act of resilience, the ones that seemed doomed by behind-the-scenes setbacks only to triumph by willing their way into existence (if you were waiting for the right issue to write about Terry Gilliam, your moment has arrived).
As always, we’re looking for thoughtful analysis and wholehearted engagement, as opposed to standard reviews, clickbait, or hot takes. We publish interviews, profiles, formal analysis, cultural criticism, personal essays, and humor pieces. We're looking for writing that is savvy and insightful about filmmaking, but that also grapples in some way with the business of being alive.
We tend to publish critical essays between 1800-3000 words, though we’ve certainly been known to publish pieces in other, longer formats. Creative approaches are always encouraged.
We pay $50 per essay upon publication.
In order to be considered for the issue we’ll need to receive a first draft of your essay by March 31, 2019.
If you haven’t written for us before and want to know more about the submission process, or if you have a few different ideas and aren’t sure which one to pursue, please feel free to email the editorial team (firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to the submission deadline with any pitches or questions. Also, before submitting, please check our archives to make sure we haven't covered the film you hope to write about within the last calendar year (we even have an alphabetized database of every film we've covered under the "Films" tab for extra convenience).
For additional information, visit our Submissions page: http://brightwalldarkroom.com/submissions/.