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Abaton, is accepting poetry, essays, art and photography submissions for its seventh annual edition.

Beginning in 2010, medical students from all institutions who submit to Abaton an essay or short story of up to 5,000 words will be considered for the $1,000 Richard Selzer Prize, named in honor of the distinguished surgeon, Yale University professor and prolific author. Selzer’s collections of short stories, surgical memoirs, essays, novels and novellas about the sick and diseased have influenced many individuals to become physicians, and many physicians to share their own experiences through writing.

Submissions to Abaton must be sent by July 1, 2013.

Guidelines for submissions

The following types of submissions will be accepted:

1. Forms of literary expression (fiction and non-fiction) such as narrative, prose, poetry and essay.

All literary submissions should be no more than 3,000 words. Abaton is not a publication that serves as an outlet for opinion or advocacy editorials and essays; such entries are discouraged.

It is important to recognize that health care providers have legal and ethical obligations to maintain the confidentiality of information relating to patient interactions. In order to comply with those obligations, a written authorization is necessary for any submission that relates to patient information. As a prerequisite for publication, the author should provide a HIPAA-compliant authorization for the use and disclosure from the medical entity where the patient was seen for the patient interaction.

Additionally, if a submission reasonably identifies an individual, a consent for publication, executed by that individual, must be provided as a prerequisite for publication.

Literary submissions should concern the subject of health care. Topics may include, but are not limited to, medicine, illness, healing, aging and pain. More broadly, writers should reflect on the human condition. 

2. Artwork or photography.

All artwork should be submitted in digital format (preferably JPEG). Images that are scanned should be at a resolution of 300 dpi at 100 percent or greater and no larger than 6 inches by 6 inches.

Any artwork or photography which reasonably identifies and individual should be accompanied by a consent for publication, executed by the individual pictured. 

Art entries should seek to evoke emotion from the viewer. The subject matter should also examine the human condition.

Submission instructions

  • Up to three unpublished works may be submitted by each artist/author per publication.
  • Each submission will be reviewed by an editorial board.
  • The submitter will be notified of acceptance for publication or for editorial suggestions. (note: Not every submission will be published.)