3-5 awards of US$200 each upon selection of your story pitch

We are looking for original and non-published submissions from typically underrepresented groups for an upcoming print issue. We are looking for a wide-range of content, from short non-fiction, to autobiographical story, to photography, sketches, and design fiction articles for our publication Journey With Purpose

We are looking for a 300-600 word original piece on the topic of the New York Subway and/or orienteering for our October issue. We will use a quick pitch and approve process (details below) to choose contributors and compensate you $200 for your work. You keep your copyright. 

Our aim for this call is to be a small part of lifting up voices which often are not heard, by creating tiny megaphones.

We believe in compensating people for their labor.


Orienting and the underground are essential parts of living in a big city. But orienting in unfamiliar places and moments of our lives are universal. 

We would love your thoughts on either two topics:

  1. The New York Subway, which turns 118 on October 27, 2022 
  2. Orienting and orientation. The act of trying to move about an unfamiliar place, location, or moment in your life.

Here’s some topics and ideas we would love to hear from your perspective. These aren’t exhaustive, so please submit a pitch:

  • How you use the NYC Subways to get around and make your life more meaningful
  • How you’ve helped your community build resources or a thing
  • How choices in zoning, land use, mobility, etc has affected you and your neighborhood
  • Ideas or examples of community engagement
  • How you built capacity or capability in your community

Journey With Purpose is an independent zine/pamphlet by Expedition Works, focusing on our shared expeditions. Journey With Purpose is a physical product, with a somewhat shallow digital footprint.  We focus on urban issues – from suburban scale to the megacity – exploring topics such as mobility, housing, equity, engagement, governance, and making our way with purpose.

Key dates

Call for contentAugust 17, 2022
First contributions chosenNo earlier than September 1
Work submitted byNo later than October 10, 2022
Issue sent for printingNo later than October 17, 2022
First issues in mailboxesNo later than October 27, 2022

Voices to elevate

If you self identify as a woman, as African American, Black, an indigenous person, person of color, identify as LGBTQIA+, or any intersection we’d love to get your submission and work with you in creating work for publication. 

If you don’t identify along the above lines, but you think you have a compelling story to tell, please submit anyway for review. 

We hope this is easy and quick. 

Pitch us: A three-part process

The Pitch

This is a short, slightly longer than tweet-length story pitch you will provide based on upcoming issue themes. Give us up to 150 words. No more please. 

This is a moment to have a think, and pitch an idea that you might have been thinking about. 

The submission is your name, contact info, some biographical/demographic info, your pitch, and then any examples of your work. 

We aim to respond to every person who submits a pitch. Not every pitch will be selected, and we reserve the right to close applications at any time. We will not use or publish your submitted information or pitch if we don’t use them. We will try to respond to everyone who pitches us.

Here’s the pitch link:

Please note: submitting a pitch by filing out the above link does not entitle you to the fee. We will select and award submissions at our discretion.

Judging criteria

We will use the following guides in judging the pitch:

  1. Quality of the pitch – both what you want to talk about it, what interesting angle you bring to the topic, how “fresh and new” (subjective) your take is, and how clear your pitch is.
  2. How you bring together the issue topic and your lived experience together in a compelling manner.
  3. Your past work

We aren’t judging on who you are, where you’ve been, where you live, etc. Yes, this will be pretty subjective, and through this prototype we will iterate the judging criteria.


On a rolling basis, we will select respondents to develop their pitch into an article. We expect to develop 1-3 articles for each theme, but we reserve the right to increase or decrease this number. This is a prototype. Only once we have selected your work to go into development are you entitled to the award fee.

Once we select your pitch and go into development, there’s some forms we need you to fill out (more on that below) and we send you a retainer for a portion of the overall fee, and you get started. 

We will set up a calendar, editorial reviews, and editing sessions for you to develop, edit, and improve the work. 

Generally we’ll work over Google Doc and Zoom. 

Our goal is to help you tell your story in the most compelling way, and to make sure that it fits within the larger editorial theme. 


If the work clears editorial approval, we publish your article in an issue of Journey With Purpose. We get worldwide first-publish rights, you are credited as author, you retain full copyright, and you are free to republish the work 6 months after our first publication.


We are committed to compensating all of our accepted contributors with fair market compensation for their labor through a combination of fees, copies of issues, and credit. At this time, we can only accept applications from those people who are authorized to work in the United States. This is a bummer, and we are looking for ways to broaden our reach.


We use the W.A.G.E. standards as a guiding metric for those contributions we select for publication.

We will compensate you for your 300-600 word original piece at US$200. We will compensate you similarly for art, photography, etc.

If contributors cannot accept payment for the work, because they are a public servant or have an ethics arrangement, we can either donate that fee to a mutually-agreed upon charity, or can use that fee to fund future work from local folks who usually don’t get a seat at the table (we’ll work with you on this too). Think of this as paying it forward as a set of scholarships.

All contributors who receive fees for work will be issued 1099’s if they reach an annual minimum set forth by the IRS, which as of this writing is $600 per year. We issue payment via physical check or ACH based on received invoices (a copy of the preferred invoice style will be provided).

Payment Terms

Upon selection we will issue 25% of the fee up front when we select your work to develop into an article, and then the remaining balance upon publishing. 

Our terms are Net-30, but where possible we will issue payment ASAP. 

You need to issue us an invoice using a provided template. 

Yes, we need your legal/government name, social security number, and someplace to send the check. We will have you fill out a W-9. We issue payment electronically via ACH. 

Upon Selection & Invoice25%US$50
Final Balance upon Acceptance75%US$125

Issue copies

Each contributor will receive at least 2 copies of the pamphlet their work is featured in, in addition to payment. Upon negotiation, at our discretion and while supplies last, we could offer additional copies.

Credit & Copyright

Contributors will retain copyright of their work, and we will provide a mutually-agreed way to connect readers to contributors, such as web links, shortcodes to your website, etc.  See Copyright & Agreement Overview (below).

Journey with Purpose is a pamphlet and zine by Expedition Works, exploring how we move about the city on our journey.


Vol 1; Issue 3.

This issue is about Homecoming: what happens when we come home, design for us and those around us.


Vol 1; Issue 2.

This issue is about Scorching, when things get hot and out of hand.


Vol 1; Issue 1.

This issue is about Founding: the beginning of new things, work, and art.


Upon selection, you will receive an agreement which outlines the following terms. Note, the final contract which will be sent to you will supersede anything listed below:

  1. Contributor is an independent contractor and not an employee of Expedition Works, LLC. We shall not withhold any sums for income tax, social security, unemployment insurance, disability insurance, workers compensation insurance or any other withholding applicable to employees, nor shall Freelancer be eligible for any employee benefits. Freelancer is solely responsible for all taxes, insurance or other costs and agrees to hold Expedition Works, LLC harmless from any liability with respect thereto.
  2. This is not a call or request for full-time employment at Expedition Works, LLC.
  3. The payment terms will be issued via ACH.
  4. Contributor retains copyright in the work provided.
  5. Contributor grants Expedition Works, LLC a perpetual, royalty-free, worldwide license to publish, reproduce, distribute, display, transcribe, perform, edit, transmit or disseminate the Works in all formats, media or platforms whether now known or hereafter invented, and to use the works or any portions thereof for all purposes, including but not limited to editorial uses, compilations, retrospectives, merchandise and promotional materials.
  6. We receive the exclusive world-wide English language first publish rights, across any medium, and retain those rights until the date of publication.
  7. After the Work is published, we retain exclusivity to the Work for 90 days, and thereafter, all rights shall be non-exclusive. We’d love for you to mention this was first published in Journey With Purpose, but that’s up to you.
  8. We get to use your name, likeness and biography for all editorial, publicity and promotional purposes in connection with the Works, or in general, in any manner or media whether now known or hereafter developed. Basically, we want to credit your work, always and need your approval to do so.
  9. Freelancer warrants that the information she/he provides is accurate and complete.
  10. Once Expedition Works, LLC accepts a Work (or a package of Works), Freelancer shall submit an invoice stating (1) the Freelancer’s name and/or the name of the entity that should be paid, (2) the address to which payment should be sent, (3) the Work(s) accepted, and (4) the agreed upon rate. Expedition Works, LLC shall pay Freelancer the fee due within 30 days following receipt of the invoice.


All of this is a prototype, and our goal is to create a sandbox for the most people to play in for the longest time, and be fairly compensated for their labor. We will mess up, learn, and iterate. So this document and our approach will change.

Please fill out this form and a representative will get back to you!