MEA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, volunteer-run organization whose primary mission is to work with veterans and their families to publish creative prose, poetry, and artwork. Our volunteers are based all over, including college professors, professional authors, veterans’ advocates, and clinicians. As such, most of our services are done through email and in online writing workshops. All editing, consultations, and workshops are free of charge.

You have a couple of options when submitting a piece to us, either of which will allow you to be considered for publication in one of our volumes:  

If you are willing to revise your work, one of our staff will provide you with one-on-one consultation as you work through several drafts. The editors assigned to you are professional writers, educators, and published authors who have volunteered to help veterans learn the craft of writing. MEA’s primary mission is to help veterans and family members build their skills in creative expression, and we strongly encourage you to take us up on our offer.

We also understand that not everyone is willing to revise their work for one reason or another, and would just like to have their piece considered for publication. We give you the option of having our editors consider your submission for publication on the basis of simple acceptance or rejection.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email the Editor-in-Chief at president@militaryexperience.org  



MEA invites artwork from military veterans, veteran family members, and members of military communities (DOD civilians, contractors, correspondence) for publication in its annual and quarterly anthologies. We invite all artwork of all types and mediums, especially experimental works. 

In addition to publication in an anthology your work will be considered for publication in the MEA online art gallery.

To be considered, artists must submit high resolution image files (please submit the highest resolution that you can and ensure that it is free from glare) of each work of art. In addition, a .doc or .docx file should be submitted alongside these images with the following information as it pertains to each work:

1. Title of the work(s)
2. Name of the artist(s)
3. Size of the work(s)
4. Medium of the work(s)
5. Two to four sentences about the inspiration behind the piece or its meaning. Your words about the piece you are submitting are important.

In your .doc or .docx file please pair the above information with the images themselves, but also include high res images as separate files.

By submitting your work here you are agreeing to MEA's Copyright and Privacy stipulations located online at http://militaryexperience.org/copyright-and-privacy/



Welcome to The Veterans’ PTSD Project (VPP). Congratulations on taking the first step in becoming a contributor to our signature publication, Blue Nostalgia. Here at VPP, we believe in the perseverance of the mind and the courage of the human spirit, and we want you to share your stories with the world. We are specifically looking for stories that show a measure of success in your reintegration into civilian life. Have you become a mother or father? Have you entered into college or trade school? Have you started your own business, mentored local youth, or completed your degree? If so, we want to hear how it happened for you and how your journey through post-traumatic stress influenced your experiences.

If you haven’t already, take some time to familiarize yourself with Blue Nostalgia by visiting this link. If you think it’s the right place to publish your work, follow this link to learn more about what you can expect throughout the writing and editing process. Trust us when we say that we fully believe your story needs to be told; however, you shouldn’t be surprised if your writing requires editing and revision. Every great writer, including veteran writers like Ernest Hemingway, Kurt Vonnegut, and Joseph Heller, needed a great editor to make their works come to life. That’s where we come in; we are here to help you tell your story in the best possible way so that it not only impacts the reader, but also shows your polish as a writer.

There are many of us who have experienced the trauma that comes with armed conflict, but there are many more who have not and never will. The VPP’s primary mission, in turn, is to help to enlighten those without such experiences and to change the narrative surrounding our veterans from one of down-on-our-luck mental head cases or hapless victims, to one of productive citizens who exhibit both strength of spirit and personal growth. We veterans hold in our minds and bodies the history of our wars, and if the non-veteran community is to grasp who we are, what we have experienced, and what we are capable of as productive citizens, we must tell our stories. In addition to experiencing war trauma, some of us have experienced military sexual trauma or trauma outside of a deployment. The stories of such trauma and the growth that follows need to be told. We are here to help tell them.

The media traffics in tragedy and often fails to report on instances of post-traumatic growth, a concept few are familiar with. Here at VPP, we aim to change that. Put simply, post-traumatic growth is not the absence of suffering and struggle, rather it is the suffering and struggle that you consciously and subconsciously use as a catalyst for self-improvement. Do you have greater passion for life? Are you more aware of the world around you? Are you capable of things that you weren’t before? Do you have a deeper appreciation for things? Has your spirituality grown? These are all examples of post-traumatic growth.

Writing about trauma and the growth that follows is not easy. We understand that. You may sit down to write and be bombarded by unpleasant memories. Writing about your trauma may temporarily exacerbate your PTSD symptoms. Know this: You are not alone! Anyone who writes about such experiences goes through this unsettling and sometimes scary process of reliving trauma. Sharing your struggles, however, is yet another sign of your growth! That is why writing about your experience is an integral part of the gold standard for PTSD treatment: Cognitive Processing Therapy.

If you are up to the task, please join us here at VPP to help change the national conversation about PTSD. After all, if we don’t tell our stories, who will?

(By submitting your work here you are agreeing to MEA's Copyright and Privacy stipulations located online at http://militaryexperience.org/copyright-and-privacy/)


Military Experience & the Arts seeks talented, motivated individuals interested in providing veterans and their families with opportunities to express themselves in a growing network of online and in-person communities.

A federally recognized, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, MEA began in college classrooms, helping student veterans figure out where they're going by articulating where they'd been. A small, campus publication of veteran stories, poems, and artwork quickly expanded its reach to veterans from throughout the United States, including veterans of all generations. In 2012, the first ever Military Experience & the Arts Symposium, funded by a grant from the KY Dept. of Veterans Affairs, provided more than 130 veterans and their spouses with three, all-expenses paid days of workshops in creative expression and arts therapies. The community forged in that event has since grown, publishing more than six volumes of veterans' creative works, leading a number of free, online writing workshops, mentoring dozens of up and coming veteran writers, and moving towards its second national event in Lawton, OK in May 2015.
We invite applications and inquiries from individuals interested in any and all positions. Qualified, altruistically minded individuals who submit their applications along with innovative, realistic proposals intended to take MEA to the next level of veteran service will be reviewed by the MEA Executive Board and invited to informal, online interviews.

All positions are volunteer at this time. Positions currently open to applications:

MEA Executive Board 

Secretary

Staff Positions:


Editors of 
Poetry
Art

Or, after reviewing our website, accomplishments, and current direction, you have an idea for a position not mentioned above, feel free to suggest your own.

The application that follows should be filled out in its entirety, and all required documents must be included in order to be considered. Complete applications can expect a response within one to two business weeks

Informal Inquiries can be directed to David Ervin, MEA President, at president@militaryexperience.org

Thank you for considering becoming a part of the Military Experience & the Arts team. Hopefully, soon, you will be able to help us help them.




Creative nonfiction incorporates tools of fiction–narrative, scene building, dialogue, character development—to describe events. MEA strives to maintain a strict genre boundary between nonfiction and fiction, so that readers will know that a story is relaying actual happenings, as near as the writer can recollect and convey, and is not based on interpretations and substantive adjustments or imagined scenes and dialogue.

 Remembered events are of course fallible and very specific to the person, influenced by an individual’s past experiences, perspective on the moment, follow on events and so many other things. But there is real value in trying to convey events as they’re remembered, being true to events as the writer understands them to be. These recollections can always be rounded out or complimented by talking to others who were there and including their perspectives.

There may be at times be a need to change a name or detail to protect someone’s identity or not to violate OPSEC, but that’s a narrow band. Writers are asked to be forthright when working with editors about any alternations made.

You have a couple of options when submitting a piece to us, either of which will allow you to be considered for publication:  

If you are willing to revise your work, one of our staff will provide you with one-on-one consultation as you work through drafts. The editors assigned to you are professional writers, educators, and published authors who have volunteered to help veterans learn the craft of writing. MEA’s primary mission is to help veterans and family members build their skills in creative expression, and we strongly encourage you to take us up on our offer.

We also understand that not everyone is willing to revise their work for one reason or another, and would just like to have their piece considered for publication. We give you the option of having our editors consider your submission on the basis of simple acceptance or rejection.

***Please note the following***

 -One submission per writer

-Maximum 5000 words.

-Submitting and/or working with an editor does not guarantee publication. Though all work will be considered, and every writer given an opportunity to learn and revise, we simply can't publish everything submitted to us.

-We will not, under any circumstances, consider work that has been previously published elsewhere.

-By submitting your work here you are agreeing to MEA's Copyright and Privacy stipulations located online at http://militaryexperience.org/copyright-and-privacy/

-Here are some specific guidelines from our editors for your reference: http://militaryexperience.org/how-to-write-a-story-that-mea-will-publish/ 

 If you have any questions about the submissions process, please feel free to email the Editor-in-Chief at president@militaryexperience.org