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Understorey Magazine is an online magazine of literary writing and visual art by and about Canadian women. We feature fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, spoken word and visual art that tell stories of women’s lives.


Our vision is to sustain a relevant, accessible, diverse and aesthetically beautiful venue that supports and empowers women through self-expression. Understorey is different from many literary magazines in that:

  • We actively work to inspire and mentor new writers by providing editorial advice and feedback on submissions. About one third of the writers we have published had no prior publications.
  • At the same time, we support many established writers. We have, for example, published works by three poet laureates, Lorri Neilsen Glenn, El Jones and Rebecca Thomas.
  • We seek underrepresented stories and strive for diversity of voice. For example, we have published special issues on motherhood and disability and on women and justice.
  • We pair literary and visual art to tell a deeper story and bring together two different artistic communities.
  • We believe art is work that should be compensated. We pay our contributors, yet maintain an open-access website.

Understorey Magazine launched in November 2013 as a grant-funded project of the Second Story Women’s Centre in Lunenburg, NS. In April 2016, we established a new partnership with AMI.

To date, we have published eight issues, featuring over 130 writers and artists from across Canada.

Look for news of upcoming themes and events – and announcements of recent publications – on our website and on Facebook and Twitter.

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