Kill Your Darlings publishes commentary, essays, memoir, reviews, interviews and fiction online, with a particular interest in writing on culture, politics and society with a personal, accessible approach.  

We strongly recommend to all who submit that they read KYD to acquaint themselves with the material we publish, and to attain familiarity with our tone and style.

Kill Your Darlings is proud to publish writers at varying stages  of their careers, from new and emerging voices to established and  well-known writers. We encourage writers from diverse backgrounds and at  all levels of experience to pitch and submit to us.

Kill Your Darlings pays all of its contributors. 


Non-fiction (Magazine)

KYD magazine currently only accepts unsolicited non-fiction pitches from KYD Members. This policy will allow us to increase payment to our writers, and to provide timely feedback where possible. To become a KYD Member from just $17.50, visit our Shop.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers are invited to pitch without the need for a KYD Membership.


Fiction (Magazine)

We are not currently accepting general fiction submissions for Kill Your Darlings magazine. Special callouts for themed fiction showcases and other opportunities will be made throughout the year.  

The KYD Regional Victorian Writers Program is open to writers living in regional Victoria. Submissions are now open for commentary, essays, memoir and fiction to be published online in Kill Your Darlings magazine. 

KYD and Writers Victoria define regional Victorian writers as those who live more than 50km from the Melbourne GPO.

Who we're looking for:

  • Kill Your Darlings is proud to publish writers at varying stages of their careers, from new and emerging voices to established and well-known writers. We encourage pitches from writers from diverse backgrounds and at all levels of experience. We're especially keen to hear from Indigenous and CALD writers. 
  • We strongly recommend becoming familiar with Kill Your Darlings' tone and style before pitching or submitting.

What we're looking for:

  • Essay/Commentary (1000–2000 words) that analyses a cultural, political or societal issue, particularly one that readers may not understand the nuances or implications of. Longer, investigative feature essays (2000–3000 words) will also be considered.
  • Memoir or personal essay (1000–1500 words) that reflects or engages with any aspect of life, identity and culture.
  • Cultural criticism (1000–1500 words) that engages or illuminates a piece of culture, particularly one that has wider ramifications for society or reflects broader trends.
  • Fiction (2000-4000 words) of any genre.
  • Work that doesn't quite fit within the above categories but you think would be a good fit for us!

If your piece is essay/commentary, memoir, personal essay or cultural criticism, your pitch should include a relevant biography, a short description of the proposed article, length, and why it makes a good fit for KYD. (Further tips on crafting a strong pitch can be found here.) If your piece is fiction then please send us a completed piece.

Kill Your Darlings pays all of its contributors.

Please note: Unfortunately publication slots are very limited, and we cannot accept all the work we would like to. We endeavour to respond to pitches within 1 month of submission, though can sometimes take longer at certain busy times of the year. If your pitch is relevant to a specific date, please let us know. You are welcome to submit to multiple publications (if you are successful elsewhere, please withdraw your submission from KYD).


  • To enter you must be an Australian resident. 
  • To enter you must have a current Kill Your Darlings Membership at time of submission. To become a member, please click here. (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers are invited to enter without a membership.)
  • You must be 18 years of age or over at time of submission.
  • Submissions close at 11:59pm (AEDT) Sunday 10 November 2019. Entries submitted after the closing date will not be considered. 
  • Entries must be submitted using this Submittable portal. Submitting requires a free Submittable account – this is separate from the account associated with your KYD Membership. Entries submitted by email (unless in exceptional circumstances and with prior permission from Kill Your Darlings) will not be considered.

Entries must comprise the following three sections:

— Section 1: A description of your interest, knowledge and/or involvement within your proposed category, an explanation of how your work as New Critic will further critical understanding of your proposed category, and of how the Award would benefit your career as a writer and critic. (max. 400 words)

— Section 2: Two pitches/short outlines (max. 200 words each) for suggested pieces of criticism that you would write for Kill Your Darlings in your role as New Critic. (Tips on crafting a strong pitch can be found here.) 

— Section 3: A one-page maximum overview of your relevant previous writing experience. This may include links to a maximum of two pieces of published writing you feel represent your tone and voice (these do not necessarily need to be works of criticism, though it is encouraged). If you have had no work published or available online, these links can also be to a PDF file of your work hosted via Dropbox or Google Drive (please ensure access is granted to view these files). 


  • Entries must be submitted as one single PDF, set up as an A4 double-spaced document in 12 pt Times New Roman (or equivalent) font with 3cm margins and page numbers on each page.
  • Only one entry per person will be accepted.
  • The decision of the judges is final. The judges will not enter into any correspondence and no individual feedback will be provided to entrants.
  • By submitting your entry you agree to the Award Terms & Conditions, available here.
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