What do we like?
We like things that are funny. Like, really funny. Think George Saunders and David Sedaris and Woody Allen and Jack Handey and Bill Bryson, not to mention past Kugelmass contributors like Steve Almond, Aimee Bender, Simon Rich, Larry Doyle, Mike Birbiglia, Jenny Allen, Yoni Brenner and Ben Greenman. Most importantly, we like humor that shows us the world in new ways. We're believers that funny can be sad and poignant and gritty and whimsical. We like when funny gets dark or ambiguously inappropriate. We give a damn but that doesn't mean we haven't broken as many hearts as we've mended. We like ugly truths and to be taken somewhere we've never been, somewhere we didn't know existed and for that place to speak to something larger about who we are and why we are. We like our funny to jerk us from a daze and dangle something extraordinary in our faces, something that was there all along, but we couldn't see it.
What do we not like?
Oh yeah, and we like things to be funny. If your piece won't make a hilarious percentage of readers laugh, then we shan't have it.
While we’ll take a look at most anything, we tend to shy away from: Parody, fake news, gags, anything that relies too much on jokes, especially if those jokes make us wince or groan, anything that is merely lite and/or amusing, trick endings, that kind of thing.
One story OR essay at a time. Length: 1 to 4,000 words. FYI: Story submissions outnumber essay submissions by about 3:1. We LOVE essays.
Funny poets should send 1-3 poems (send poems in one document).
Kugelmass is seeking humor that blurs the lines of visual and literary art, poetry and prose, fiction and non. We’re not really sure what any of this means, other than we want to see humor in a form it has never been in. (1) Submit to this category sparingly; (2) Surprise us.
Kugelmass is looking for essays/reviews to publish online that examine and reflect on humor in our culture. We are looking for reviews of intentionally funny things-stories, characters, movies, shows, etc.- not reviews of non-humorous things written to be funny. In fact, don't even try to be funny for once.
Length shall not exceed 1,000 words and the subject need not necessarily be limited to a particular medium, form or time period, just a steady gaze into the things we find funny, for better or worse, and what makes them so.
What we're NOT looking for: Commentary on social phenomenon, funny things you noticed at the grocery store or anything where the humor of your subject is not at the core of your essay.
And, like everything else, engaging, intelligent, surprising, insightful sentences will be valued above all. Feel free to query.
We are looking for comics and illustrations for the cover and inside pages. Art should be submitted in black and white. If we are interested in color we will contact you. Send up to three pieces for consideration.
Photos: Only photos that illicit a comedic punch will be considered. Anything deemed remotely cute and/or charming will not be considered. The guidelines for written submissions apply here: We are looking for smart, funny work that grasps the absurdity and irony of a modern world.
All submissions must be made via our online submission manager.
Previously published work will not be considered at this moment. Or that one. Payment will be none for the foreseeable future.
Simultaneous submissions are accepted but please do your damnedest to let us know if it accepted elsewhere.
Response time is usually 2-4 months but can take slightly longer during certain parts of the year. Inquire if you must.
Either one story, essay or batch of poems/art at a time, please. We know you are just swimming in amazing material, but c'mon.