Writer's Guidelines

Sparkle is an exciting magazine designed for girls in grades 1-3. This publication is produced by GEMS Girls’ Clubs—an international, club-based ministry for girls. The mission of GEMS is to help bring girls into a living, dynamic relationship with Jesus Christ.

Sparkle Mission

Sparkle’s Mission is is to help girls discover who God is and how He works in His world and their lives. We strive to give girls the building blocks to create a living and dynamic faith in Jesus Christ. The tagline is ‘Sparkling Jesus’ light into the world’.

Looking for the SHINE brightly guidelines?



Included in Sparkle

We are looking for stories, articles, quizzes, games, puzzles, and crafts that are fresh, that present a realistic look at Christian life, and that cause young readers to see how God’s Word—His Truth—applies to their daily lives.

 Sparkle fills up quickly, so get your manuscripts in early. We read manuscripts each week. You can expect to hear from us within eight weeks.




Fiction: Our readers like stories with adventure, fantasy, and mystery—stories about animals or situations they can relate to in their daily interaction with family and friends. Stories should be realistic and need not always have a happily-ever-after ending. We do not publish stories with religious clichés. Length: 200-500 words

Nonfiction: Nonfiction articles about topics that interest our readers include: animals, activities, games, sports, music, famous people, interaction with family/friends/siblings, cross-cultural experiences, exciting service projects, and dealing with school work. Length: 100-400 words

Poetry: Sparkle publishes a limited number of poems per year. We prefer rhyming poems since they are convenient for early readers. Length: 5-15 lines









Monthly Themes

Each month we will be focusing on a topic this age group loves. Submissions are not limited to these ideas—each issue will highlight a variety of fun, engaging truths and hard topics girls this age face—but we will be looking for articles that can touch on these ideas in subtle ways. We look forward to your creativity!

October 2018

Deadline: May 7, 2018

Theme: Friends

It’s at this age that girls are starting to develop strong. This issue will be filled with lots of fun activities and games girls can play with their friends as well as touch on some of the tougher issues friend groups face.


November 2018

Deadline: June 8, 2019

Theme: Cooking

Girls this age are starting to get curious about the kitchen. This issue can be filled with information about the food we eat in addition to giving girls fun recipes to make with their family and friends!


December 2018

Deadline: July 9, 2018

Theme: Arts and Crafts

Sparkle readers love crafts! Let’s help them explore their creativity by showing them how they can have fun by using the gifts God has given them.


January 2019

Deadline: August 16, 2018

Theme: Animals

From pets to wild animals, this age group is curious about it all! We will use this issue to explore lots of God’s amazing creatures.


February 2019

Deadline: September 6, 2018

Theme: Health and Self Care

From putting together outfits to how to take care for your body, this issue will help girls learn how to have fun with style as well as talking about ways to keep moving and stay healthy!


March 2019

Deadline: October 6, 2018

Theme: God’s Big World

From stars and galaxies to teeny tiny honeycombs, God created a beautiful world. We’ll take a look at lots of different aspects of God’s big creation in this issue.





Criteria for Selection of Manuscripts:

Submissions to Sparkle are selected based upon the following criteria:

  • The manuscript must fit within the Sparkle
  • The submission applies Scripture to everyday life.
  • The ability to incorporate cultural issues while still holding to Biblical truths.
  • The ability to relate to the reader and encourage her to apply concepts, life lessons, skills, and experiences to her own life.
Preparing Your Manuscript
  • On the first page put your name, address, phone number, word count, the issue and topic you are submitting, as well as the rights offered.
  • Indicate fiction or nonfiction.
  • Include desired byline.
  • Give sources for all statistical information or quoted material.
Basis for Rejection of Material
  1. Does not show girls how God is at work in their lives and the world around them.
  2. Too young or too old for readers in grades 1-3.
  3. Simplistic, unrealistic, too predictable, or the theological perspective differs too greatly from our own.
  4. Does not fit our themes.
  5. Duplication of material already published or submitted.
  6. Editorial needs filled.
  7. Limited need for poetry.
  8. Inept writing—poor opening, transitions, grammar. Lacks the drama or crisis that appeals to our readers.
Submitting Your Manuscript

To honor God by being responsible stewards of His creation, we are no longer accepting mailed submissions. Thank you for helping us reduce unnecessary paper waste. Together we can make a difference!

Please place your manuscript within the body of an email. Do not send attachments. Email: sparkle@gemsgc.org

Query: We do not accept queries. Please submit a completed manuscript for consideration.

Compensation: Compensation for all pieces published in Sparkle is made upon publication. Fiction and nonfiction writers receive 3-5¢ per word up to $35.00 depending on length, quality, and rights. (See below for the list of rights.) Poetry receives $5.00 to $15.00 depending on length, quality, and rights. Games and puzzles are paid from $5.00 to $15.00. All published writers receive two copies of the issue in which their piece is published.

Editing Privileges: The editorial staff of Sparkle reserves the right to edit any accepted manuscript. This is done with a conscious effort to preserve both the writer’s style and the intent of material. If editing is extensive, the edited manuscript will be submitted to the author prior to publication.

Rights: We purchase the following rights:

  • First North American Rights—The author retains copyright, and may submit the manuscript for publication elsewhere after it appears in Sparkle. Sparkle has first time printing rights.
  • Second Rights—Rates are for a previously published article. Author must own copyright, or submit proof of permission to resell from the copyright owner.
  • Simultaneous Rights—The author must notify publisher that the submitted article is being offered in another market that should not overlap our readership.



For a Sample Copy of Sparkle

You may view a sample copy of Sparkle here.