Voices of the River Submissions

We are currently accepting pitches!

Confluence is pleased to announce that we are currently accepting submissions for the first issue of our print journal Voices of the River! The extended deadline to submit is January 2, 2022 for the first issue that will be published in the fall of 2022. Voices of the River is a journal that explores the history, living cultures, and ecology of the Columbia River system through Indigenous voices. It is generously supported by a grant from the National Endowment for Humanities.

Voices from the River is an accessible publication of stories, research papers, poetry and art that elevate Indigenous perspectives in our understanding of our region and our nation. This journal is an extension of the work Confluence does in public gatherings, education programs in schools, and our Digital Library that already features interviews, documentary shorts, photo galleries, and research papers on these subject managers exclusively from an Indigenous perspective. We have previously published authors in our Digital Library.

Our priority is material that advances our mission to connect people with the history, living cultures, and ecology of the Columbia River system through Indigenous voices. These pieces can take the form of academic research, creative non-fiction, fiction, poetry, or personal essays. They should be written with a public audience in mind.

If you are interested in providing a piece for the library, please submit your pitch here.

With any questions, please email Lily Hart, Digital Content Manager, at lily@confluenceproject.org

Deadline: December 21, 2021. Please submit a 200-400 word pitch, a short bio, and if previously published, links to previous work. Thank you!

General Guidelines and Information on our Process

  • We only publish Indigenous authors.
    We will generally reply within a week to your submission, with information on the next steps in the process.
  • We pay $300 per article if published online, $750 for an article printed in the physical journal. Because of a constrained budget, we can only accept a limited number of pieces for print publication (8) and we may need to reject articles that are worthy.
  • The list of pitches that make it through the initial process will be forwarded to our Editorial Committee, who will have the difficult task of narrowing the list down to 8 pieces. Those that do not make it into the physical journal may still be published online. If you are on the shortlist for the Editorial Committee, you will hear a final decision by the end of January.
  • Copyrights and permissions depend upon each case and will be a conversation between you and us. Generally, you retain rights to your article and to publish it in other venues and we also have the right to use it on our website and any printed materials.
  • We understand that submitting an article means a great deal to the author and we endeavor to make this a positive experience, even if an article is rejected. Thank you!

Content Guidelines

  • Some potential themes include (and are not limited to) Sovereignty, First Foods, Lewis and Clark from a Native Perspective, and Traditional Ecological Knowledge.
  • The piece should pertain to the Columbia River system – we define this as the Columbia and its tributaries, including up into British Columbia. Articles could be about a subject that involves a region outside of the Columbia River system, however, there should be some link to this region. For example, an article could focus on orca recovery among Puget Sound tribes, but include information on the connection between orca recovery and Columbia River salmon and Tribes.
  • Pieces should steer away from intertribal politics. Confluence cannot publish an article that explicitly pits one tribe against another. That is more an opinion piece for other publications.
  • Research articles would ideally be useful for both educators and the general public and written in an accessible manner.
  • While the research articles go through a peer-review process (2 editorial volunteers read the article and offer feedback), our audience is not primarily academics. Ideally, your article should be written in a way that is accessible and clear to a broad audience. Meanwhile, and artistic works are reviewed by “first reader” volunteers. This format strives to shift away from a Western model of peer review, and instead, in both research article and artistic review, it’s a way to gain an understanding of what is clear, what isn’t, and what parts of the piece really speak to the reader.

Editorial Advisory Committee

Katrine Barber

Professor of History, Portland State University

Eliza Canty-Jones

Editor, Oregon Historical Quarterly

Steve Fountain

Assistant Professor/Campus Director of Native American Affairs, Washington State University-Vancouver

David Lewis (Grand Ronde)

Professor of Anthropology/Native Studies, University of Oregon

David Osborn

Professor, Portland State University

Patricia (Patsy) Whitefoot (Yakama)

Director, Indian Education/Yakama Wellness Coalition

Elizabeth Woody (Warm Springs/Dine)

Executive Director, Museum at Warm Springs