Hello Offbeaters. We need to talk about something. Something serious. An epidemic, if you will.

Here at The Offbeat, we read a lot. There are dozens of submissions that we weed through every week to find (you know it) “the zany, the thought-provoking, the humorous, and the quirky.” Most days, we adore doing this and find endless streams of dreamy offbeat stories. However, lately we’ve noticed a trend. Our lovely submitters seem to be confusing quirky with kinky.

Guys, they are not the same thing. We love unique points of view. But we do not enjoy reading your dark, twisted 50 Shades Darker-esque sexcapades. The amount of penis references we get would shock a tenth grader, and the number of sexual abuse stories would make you want to crawl under the covers and never come out.

We don’t want to have to attend counseling because of this journal, okay? Though it seems some of our submitters might benefit from a little psychiatric care after reading what they’ve produced…

So, next time you’re considering sending in something to Submittable, please take a second to evaluate:
Is my entire story about a penis?
Is my story centered around sexual abuse?
Does my story sound like Christian Grey fan fiction?
Would I be mortified if my mother read this story?

If you answered “yes” to any of the above, you might want to reconsider. Don’t get us wrong, sometimes the penis stories are great and the recounts of abuse that are written in a way that’s less trigger-y and more thought-provoking are wonderful. We are college students after all, sex isn’t something that’s totally out of the question.

All we’re trying to say is, if it’s more kinky than quirky, there are other venues for your piece. It’s just not for us. But keep sending in the good stuff people, because we couldn’t be more excited about the pieces we’re going to be publishing in the upcoming edition. The Offbeat brand is alive and well, so don’t panic. We just don’t want to ignore the problem and create a bigger issue for ourselves or you, our fantastic writers.

Also, for the record, just because our journal is based out of a college campus does not mean that we are twinning with The Odyssey. Open letters are old hat, everyone. They are not offbeat, or quirky. Please, send them elsewhere.

Despite our grievances, we do love you all. Keep up the offbeat work, and think of us poor readers and The Offbeat‘s brand a little before sending everything our way.

Stay thoughtful, write brilliantly, and stay weird.

(This post is accredited to our lovely design team member, Katie Dudlets)

Quirky Does NOT Equal Kinky

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