So you say you’ve got a story to tell?

Well, we’d love to hear it. Blue Lines is always looking for submissions that capture the things we love most about fly fishing and the great outdoors. We believe that engaging with the natural world is a vital and awe-inspiring task and our writing, and other’s writing that we love, reflects that. Aldo Leopold, Norman MacLean, Annie Dillard, Edward Abbey, John Gierach, Thomas MacGuane, John McPhee, and Nick Lyons are the authors that inspire us.

You are best served by reading through previous posts to find out what we are into and what kind of material best suits Blue Lines. We are also happy to answer questions about content, formatting, and so on.

Read on to see what we are looking for and how best to improve your chances at getting published.

What We Want

Our bread and butter. Essays, trip reports, creative non-fiction, and so on. We tend to focus on the transformative or personal aspects of what engaging with the natural world can do for us. We are deeply uninterested in grip-and-grins, breathless tallies of the number of fish you caught, etc. Tell us something you learned. Tell us something that changed you. Tell us about a time when being outside in your favorite river was all that mattered.

This is a new area for us. We are open to your ideas but ask that rivers, outdoor experiences, fly fishing, camping, or something similar occupy a central position in the narrative. Tell us a story and make it interesting, dammit. Please no graphic violence, explicit sex, debauchery, etc. To paraphrase the Supreme Court, in regards to objectionable material we know it when we see it. Let’s stay classy, folks.

Gear Reviews
The technical side of gear reviews are, in a word, boring. The number of pockets, the zipper quality, etc., are not what make gear reviews interesting. We want to know how the gear worked. What does it do that makes it a superior choice for gear? How will it make my time outside better?

Fly Recipes
No ingredient lists, please. Why do you like this fly? Where did you learn about it? Who taught you how to tie it? Did you use it on a memorable day? Fly patterns are about much more than catching fish. Tell us the story behind your favorite pattern.



General Guidelines
We strive to keep the posts between 600 and 1,000 words. More than that and they tend to get overwhelming. We are able to serialize longer form submissions, but it needs to be really exceptional for us to consider that. Please submit your completed manuscript in a Microsoft Word document as an attachment to the email listed at the bottom of our About page.

Style and Grammar
We would refer you to The Elements of Style by Strunk and White. Also the Purdue OWL for issues of grammar. If we need to substantially edit your work then the chances of it getting published are slim. If there’s serious quality beneath the lack of commas then we may reach out to you for further edits but again, the odds are slim. Please make sure your work is properly edited and formatted.

Please submit 1-3 pictures with your written work. We can format and edit the images to fit our needs so please provide the largest, highest-resolution images you can.


We look forward to seeing your submissions.

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