Call for Submissions: How to Pitch a Decoloyarn

Decoloyarning at Fenner is a series of articles about understanding how the disciplines we love thrive when respecting Indigenous peoples, knowledges and thinking sits at the core of everything we do. We are currently open for submissions. This call provides some practical support to help you best prepare a pitch.

Decoloyarning is a series for everyone, that anyone can contribute to; whether you’re Indigenous or non-Indigenous, just started your degree or the School Director. So, if you’ve got a story, a collaboration, an idea for a topic, or you want to share something you’ve learnt from a yarn or research activity, here’s what you can do:

  1. Read a Decoloyarn.
    It’s always a good idea to get a sense of where you’re pitching, based on what’s come before. Decoloyarns can be experimental (we love work that challenges academic conventions), and we welcome yarns that come from acknowledging and working for Indigenous Peoples, Nations, and Territories across this earth.
  1. Make sure you’re referring to Indigenous Peoples, Nations and Territories in respectful ways.
    You can find a helpful set of guidelines here.
  2. Write down your idea.
    It doesn’t have to be long – a paragraph, or a sentence: let yourself be creative, let yourself not have answers to everything, and if you’re feeling nervous just write down the worst version of the idea that you possibly can, (this is a great trick that means you set a low bar and can only pleasantly surprise yourself.)
  3. Send it to us.
    Email: fses.communications @ and title the email 'Decoloyarning Pitch'
    Decoloyarning is a joint project between The Fenner School Communications Team and the Fenner Decolonial Research and Teaching Circle. When you email the Communications Team, your pitch will be enthusiastically received by a group of supporters, including Circle member and PhD Scholar Ruth Mills who convenes much of the work between author, Communications Team and First People. We collectively offer our respective expertise to ideas and pieces, with Indigenous Sovereignty, protocol, and authority at the core of the review and development process.
  4. We’ll get back to you!
    We will always aim to get back to you within a month of your email. When you hear back from us, you can anticipate encouragement, suggestions, and next steps.

Once your pitch is accepted, we will work with you to craft a contribution. That means, unlike traditional publication processes, the drafting and editing if your Decoloyarn is… well… a decoloyarn in itself! The editorial circle for Decoloyarning believe editing is a conversation. Sometimes this means you’ll produce a few versions of your piece in the process of reaching your final story, but every iteration will be met with encouragement and thoughtfulness from First People and non-Indigenous co-conspirators alike. You won’t be alone in this process, and we can’t wait to see what you send us.

Some examples

How do you know if you have an idea for a piece? Here are some examples we made up to help you get a sense of the variety of works we’re open to:

  • I’m doing a research project where my skills are being used by First People. I want to tell the story of how I learnt protocols and how research outcomes were meaningful not as a measure, but as a lesson in how I can be valuable in supporting Indigenous Sovereignty.
  • I just did my Mid-Term Review, my research is with my community, and I think what I presented would make an interesting decoloyarn that I can present back to my family.
  • I want make suggestions of cool readings I found by First Nations scholars that would enrich the course I’m currently doing or that I just finished. Here’s what I learnt from those readings!
  • I’m an academic and I want to reflect on how my practice could be shifted or enriched, in relationship with a specific reading by an Indigenous scholar.
  • I want to do a Decoloyarn but I want to use (culturally appropriate and culturally approved of) drawings/audio/poetry and a short statement rather than lots of text.

The Communications Team would like to thank the Fenner Decolonial Research and Teaching Circle (Fenner Circle) for helping create a space where the Fenner community can enrich our passion for the environment and society by learning with societies built through Country: the original and ongoing entwinement of environment and society.

Updated:  12 August 2022/Responsible Officer:  Director, Fenner School/Page Contact:  Webmaster, Fenner School