Cicada Creative Magazine is an interdisciplinary, all-arts publication. Submissions open twice a year.

Our origins

Cicada was founded in 2018, the brainchild of seven undergraduate students at Colorado State University. We wanted to assemble something new: a creative magazine accessible to all CSU undergraduate students across all disciplines. At the time, our on-campus publications were open only to a sliver of students based on GPA or major, and most literary magazines focus exclusively on writing and/or visual art. We believe these limitations stifle creativity and expression. There is artistry in science, in math, in lines of code — and we wanted to include it all.

We’ve evolved a lot since our first meetings at a coffee shop on the corner of campus, but our core mission has never wavered. Instead, it has expanded. When the COVID-19 pandemic moved the world online in 2020, we adapted and went fully remote, opening our submissions to undergraduates everywhere.

And as of Issue 07, anyone can submit to CCM and apply for staff.

Submissions open twice a year, typically in the spring and fall. At the end of each issue cycle, these submissions are anonymized and reviewed by two editorial teams. Then, we publish a carefully crafted issue of your work.

We acknowledge that art doesn’t always come box-shaped, perfectly ready to fall into a category. Cicada Creative Magazine exists to showcase that artistic exploration and novelty.

We hope to broadcast each and every way you make your mark on our world.

Brain Spread

A spread we made on our third meeting.

A photo of a board with three broad categories stating What We Do, How We Do It, and Why We Do It. Messy notes line the margins. The title is CICADA - Brand foundation Brain Spread.


  • Create an accessible space for creative people anywhere to build community and share art.
  • Eliminate traditional barriers for artists, such as educational and financial requirements.
  • Build a sustainable project that can long outlive its original creators.
  • Craft a unique visual and personal brand for our community.
  • Collaborate with other creative publications and help to build a coalition of welcoming, inclusive mags/zines/etc.


We have formal documentation. It is an ever-evolving catalog of all things Cicada. Although its primary function is for staff reference, we think it makes sense to offer you some insight into our inner workings if you’re interested.