Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Dark Regions Press - Novella Anthology Call

Dark Regions Press has opened submissions for a new anthology consisting of ten novelettes/novellas call "I Am the Abyss".  They want adventure stories in the realm of horror and/or dark fantasy set in an underworld created by your character after their death.  Yeah, you really need to read the complete guidelines.  The deadline is October 1 for stories of 10,000 to 18,000 words.  Payment is 5cents a word plus a copy plus royalties.  You can find all the details here.

Please note that if your story is selected you will be required to participate in their KickStarter campaign.

Hat tip to Horror Tree!

Green Gecko Publishing - Anthology Calls

Green Gecko Publishing has several anthology calls listed in their series "Passion for...".  The current call is "Passion for Dogs" which opened today and closes on February 8 (short reading period).  They are looking for fiction and non-fiction of 500 to 3000 words.  Be sure to read the general submission guidelines before submitting.  There's a slight catch here.  They're paying 1cent a word for fiction and 2cents for non-fiction, BUT depending on how many hours they have to spend editing the price is cut to 1/4cent a word.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Circlet Press - Erotica Anthology Calls

Erotica Publisher Circlet Press has posted a few anthology calls this month.  Only the top four calls are current, the others are from last year.  Of interest here is "Like a Haunted Trail:  Erotic Tales of the Weird Wild West.  They're looking for stories of 3000 to 6000 words.  The deadline is March 15.  You can find the details for this call here.

Rymfire Books - Anthology Call

Rymfire Books is in the process of relaunching their State of Horror anthology series.  The first call is for stories of 2500 to 7500 words set in Illinois.  The deadline is April 1 and payment is a 50% royalty split divided between thirteen authors.  You can find all the details here.

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Alchemy Press - Anthology Call

UK publisher The Alchemy Press has posted a call for submissions for an anthology titled Urban Mythic 2.  They are looking for short stories of 3000 to 8000 that "blend modern life with the traditions of folklore from around the world".  Payment 10pounds for the first 5000 words and .2p a word after that.  You can find the press details hereAnd more details from the editor's call here.  The deadline is April 30.

Bastion - New Market

Bastion is a new market that plans to publish their first issue on April 1st then continue on as a month.  Submissions are open for this first issue until February 28.  They are looking for short stories of 1000 to 5000 words that use science fiction as a backdrop, meaning your stories can be in any genre so long as there is a sci-fi aspect to the story.  Payment is $20 for the first 2000 words and 1cent a word after that with a max of $50.  You can find all the details here.

Hat tip to

Chuffed Buff Books - Anthology Call

UK publisher Chuffed Buff Books has posted a call for submissions for an anthology titled "Tales of Mystery, Suspense, and Terror".  What they're looking for is short stories of 2000 to 3000 words that are inspired by 19th Century ghost stories.  The reading period begins February 1 and ends May 31.  Payment is 5pounds and submissions are through Submittable.  You can find the details here.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

What Makes You Stop Reading a Particular Author?

Have you ever read a short story or novel by an author and been turned off so much that you never read or wanted to read anything else that this author had written?  For me, it's Joe Haldeman.  I read his short story "More Than the Sum of His Parts" and was revolted by one part of the story.  A part where a man whose body has been repaired with mechanical limbs has torn a woman in half to see how strong his new body is.

I felt, and still feel, that there were better ways of doing this than splitting a woman in half during sex.  I wondered if this section was added just to show that women were disposable.  Even after a year this story still sticks me.  The man can write, but I'm also afraid that I will find more of this disrespect for women in his work.

Thinking back on the story I realize that he's showing how the repairs are turning the man's mind, but the lack of remorse for what he's done...that just didn't set well with me.   

Thursday, January 23, 2014


There's an interesting discussion about endings over at io9.  Loads of good stuff in the comments that follow the essay by Charlie Jane Anders.

Shroud - Open for Submissions

Shroud has opened for submissions to their quarterly (now) ebook magazine.  Submissions are now through Submittable and you have the option of paying for a critique of your work when submitting.  Payment helps support the magazine but it is optional.  This is a paying market with pay varying according to length of the story.  You can check them out here.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Comet Press - New Erotica Imprint

Comet Press has opened a new imprint of ebooks called SexFiles.  They're looking for erotica of 7500 to 40,000 words in any genre except Romance.  Payment is 40% of net royalties.  You can find all the details here.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Reality Check of $$$

I had to chuckle this morning when I stopped by Michael Bracken's blog and read his post about the "riches" of being a writer.  He'd just received a payment of 43cents for a story he'd had published in an anthology.  I laughed because a week or so ago I received a royalty check for 17cents.  Yep it cost the publisher more to mail the check than I received.  Of course this is the sixth or seventh check for that story so the total for the past two years comes up to a bit over $25 for the story.  But I have to say that it's a tad embarrassing to walk into the bank and cash that seventeen cent check.  On the other hand I do have the consolation of knowing that at least I got paid for my work.

And those are the realities of writing that the business world tends to skip over.  If you read Writer's Digest or Publisher's Weekly, you read about the three book deals, the six and seven figure advances, the millions that Stephen King makes.  They make it sound like everyone who writes is going to get rich and it's simply not true.  According to an article in Media Bistro/Galley Cat most authors only make a thousand dollars a year.

Chuck Wendig has a post up today about how long it takes to be an overnight success.  For him it was twenty years and millions of words.  And he's still counting his pennies and not his millions.  He's doing work he loves and making a living, and that's the best most writers can hope for.

The romance of writing and being rich beyond our wildest dreams is what drives many writers.  The truth lies in those small checks.  If you're in this to make tons of money, you might want to reconsider your writing career, because the truth is not as wonderful as it's painted in the publishing industry's articles.  Those are just carrots being dangled in front of your nose.

I'm not saying that you won't be one of the lucky ones, but write with the realities in mind, not your day dreams.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Chamberton Publishing - No Fee Flash Contest

Chamberton Publishing has posted their first contest of 2014.  The theme is "Moments in Time: 1942".  They have posted a picture of a woman and you need to use her as part of the story (or vignette).  Since this is a flash contest you have to use less than 1000 words.  The deadline is February 25 and winners will receive $25 and possible publication in an anthology.  You can find all the details here.

Tiny Owl Workshop - Anthology Call

"Unfettered" is a very different kind of anthology call.  Tiny Owl Workshop has asked artist Terry Whidmore to create a world in pictures, all you have to do is select one of the ten drawings and write a story of 1500 to 2500 words to build on the world Mr. Whidmore has created in his art work.  The deadline is April 14.  Payment is $300 AUD plus a royalty split.  You can find the submission details here.

Hat tip to the Literarium blog!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Angie's Desk - Anthology Calls

And Angie has posted her monthly anthology markets list.  Thanks, Angie!!

Bold Stroke Books - Anthology Call

Bold Stroke Books has issued a call for submissions for "Myth and Magic Queer Fairy Tales".  They're looking for short stories up to 5000 words in any genre and any heat level (yes, this is an erotica press).  The theme is LGBTQ adult and YA retelling of classic fairy tales.  Payment is $50 plus two copies.  The submissions details are a pdf copy at which you can find here. I found the call posted here at Writing Career.  Almost forgot, the deadline is March 1.

Mnemosyne Anthology - Call for Submissions

The Mnemosyne Anthology has issued a call for submissions of short stories up to 6000 words in the genres of Fantasy, Sci-fi, and Horror using the theme Myths and Foundations.  The deadline is February 23.  Payment is an e-copy of the anthology and a print copy with free shipping in the UK and discounted shipping outside the UK.  If the anthology sells out they will "tip" the writers.  You can find the details here.  I've linked to the home page because the information is scattered between the home page, the FAQ's page, and the submission page.  Yes, these folks seem to be new at this. :)

Friday, January 17, 2014

One Eye Press - Call for Novella Queries and Western Shorts

Editor Ron Earl Phillips has posted on his blog that Western online zine The Big Adios will be closing its online doors in February.  But the good news is that it will become a quarterly e-magazine and they are currently open for submissions until April 14.

While checking out the guidelines I discovered that One Eye Press is also open for queries of novella length fiction of 20,000 to 35,000 words in genres of Crime Fiction, Horror, and Westerns to be published as singles in e format and print.  The deadline for Singles is March 1.

One Eye Press will also be open for submissions in other areas.  You can check out all the details here.  There is no mention of payment.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

PULP Literature - Open for Submissions

PULP Literature magazine has reopened for submissions.  They're looking for short stories in any genre and up to novella length.  Payment is up to 7cents a word.  You can check out the details here.

Level Best Books - New England Crime Writers Anthology Call

Level Best Books has opened submissions for their annual crime anthology.  The anthology is only open for New England writers.  This year's title is "Rogue Wave" and the deadline is April 30.  Stories should be no longer than 5000 words.  Payment is $25 plus a copy of the anthology.  You can check out all the details here.

The 2014 Edgar Award Nominees

And the Edgar nominees have been announced.  Congrats to all the nominees!!

The Cyborgs That Saved Christmas - Charity Anthology Call

Editor Monique Snyman has issued a call for submissions for a charity anthology titled "The Cyborgs That Saved Christmas".  She's looking for stories of 2500 to 7500 words that combine Christmas and cyborgs.  The anthology will be published through Rainstorm Press and profits will go to Hugs Foster Family Agency.  The deadline is March 1, there's no payment.  You can find all the details here.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dark Trails - Weird Western Anthology Kickstarter

I don't generally post Kickstarter projects but this anthology from editor Michael Knost sounds like a winner.  He's raising money for "Dark Trails" an anthology of weird westerns.  He already has authors like Joe  R. Lansdale, Elizabeth Bear, and Tom Piccirilli on board and there will be an open call for submissions.  You can check it out here.

Horrified Press - Charity Anthology Call

Horrified Press has issued a call for submissions to "Fractured Realms" a charity anthology to benefit the Autism Trust.  The deadline is July 31 or until filled.  They need flash fiction and short stories of 3000 to 6000 words.  They will also consider poetry and reprints.  You can find all the details here.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Cairn Press - Anthology Call

Cairn Press has an interesting anthology call posted.  They're looking for essays, short stories, and poems that "address being rejected as a writer".  The deadline is March 31, and payment is $10 per poem and $10 to $100 for fiction and non-fiction depending on word count.  You can find all the details here.

The Anthology Club - A Caution

Out and about on my market searching I've been running across submission calls that come from members of a site call Anthology Club.  It's basically a writers collective that publishes their own anthologies.  It's free to join and joining is the only way you can submit to the anthologies.  It's my understanding that writers whose stories are accepted for an anthology share the profits, but I don't know who is paying the upfront front costs.  You  can check it out here.  Tread lightly out there, my friends.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Inscription - New YA Market

During my morning market search I came across this new YA magazine called "Inscription: A Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction for Teens".  They've issued a call for submissions of short stories of 500 to 9000 words aimed at 11 to 19 year olds.  Payment is 5cents a word.  You can find all the details here.

Tis the Season for Awards Nominations

Tis the season for all you publishers, writers, and editors to be getting your awards nominations into all the various organizations.  Here's a short list and links.

Private Eye Writers of America - Shamus Awards
Short Mystery Fiction Society - Derringer Awards
Western Fictioneers - Peacemaker Awards

These are open to all short stories in the proper genres, of course.

Six Questions For... - Editor Interview

Jim Harrington over at Six Questions For... has an interview up with the Editor in Chief of Blank Fiction, Benjamin Russell Perry.  Blank Fiction is currently looking for submissions to their Noir issue with the deadline of January 15 fast approaching.  The next issue has them looking for Science Fiction.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Iron Gall Press - New Literary Market

For those of you seeking out literary markets you might be interested in a new journal called Iron Gall Press.  They are open for submissions until May 31 for short fiction, flash, poetry, non-fiction, comic, artwork, and photography.  Submissions are through Submittable.  This is a non-paying market.

Hat tip to Katherine Tomlinson for the link.

Literary Mama - Market Resource

Literary Mama is a site that caters to the maternally inclined writer but their monthly submission calls is a great resource for any writer.  They list fiction, non-fiction, and contests.  January's calls are here, but take the time to click around this most helpful site.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Big Click - New Issue

The January/February issue of The Big Click is now available.

Drag Noir - Anthology Call Reminder

Editor Kate Laity asked me to post up a call for submissions for "Drag Noir".  They're looking for short stories of 3000 to 8000 words where "glamour meets girl and where everyone is wearing a disguise".  UK publisher Fox Spirit will be publishing this anthology.  Payment is 10pounds plus a copy and the deadline is March 20.  You can find all the details here.  You do have to agree to have "cookies" in order to read the guidelines unless you're a fast reader :)  Kate also has the guidelines posted here on her website if you prefer.

Borderline Press - Call for Comics Anthology

I sometimes get hits here from folks looking for comic submission calls and since I know that some of you crime writers out there love and work in this field I thought I'd post this call for comic submissions.

Borderline Press has a call for pitches posted for two comic anthologies.  The first is for the theme "clowns" and the deadline for your accepted pitch is May 1.  The second is for "Christmas Ghosts" with a deadline of August 1.  If you don't have an artist be sure to get your work in early.  You can check out Borderline Press here.  I didn't see a mention of payment so you'll have to check that out.

All Due Respect - Deadline for Issue #2 Announced

Editor Chris Rhatigan has posted the submission deadline of January 15 for issue #2 of All Due Respect.  If you've got a crime story ready to go head on over to get the details for submitting.  Payment is $25.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

There is a Magic Portal Under My Sink - Anthology Call

Okay, this one only pays a token payment of $5 but the concept tickled my funny bone.  The anthology is titled "There is a Magic Portal Under My Sink" and they're looking for fantasy travel stories of 1000 to 7500 words.  The stories must be PG 13.  You can find the details here.  This is their second anthology, the first has already been published.

Betwixt - Open for Submissions

Spec-fiction magazine Betwixt is open for submissions for its next issue due out in the Spring.  The deadline is February 28 and payment is 2cents a word.  You can find the details here.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Siren's Call - Women in Horror Submission Call

Siren's Call ezine has posted a call for horror short stories written by women for their second annual "Women in Horror" issue.  The deadline is January 31.  This is a non-paying market.  You can find the details here.

Dimension6 - New Market

Coeur DeLion Publishing out of Australia has issued a call for speculative fiction shorts of 4500 to 40,000 words for their new magazine Dimension6.  The first issue will be published in April and the reading period is January 12 to February 22.  The zine will publish three times a year and the reading period for future issues is posted.  Payment is AUD $100.  You can find all the details here.

Hat tip to the Literarium blog!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Murder at the Beach - 2014 Bouchercon Anthology Submission Call

The Bouchercon officials have posted a call for short story submissions to the 2014 Bouchercon anthology, "Murder at the Beach".  They're looking for crime/mystery stories of 3500 to 5500 words.  The editor is Dana Cameron and the deadline is March 31, 2014.  There's no mention of payment.  You can find all the details here.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

ThugLit - New Issue

Issue #9 of ThugLit has hit the Amazon store.  Check it out here.

Plots With Guns - New Issue

Not sure how I missed this but the Winter issue of Plots with Guns went live just before Christmas.  Check it out here.

Lightspeed - Special Call for Female Writers

Guest editor Christie Yant has opened submissions to a special edition of Lightspeed Magazine.  She's calling all women authors of science fiction for the "Women Destroy Science Fiction!" issue.  They are seeking short stories up to 7500 words and the deadline is February 14, 2014.  Payment is 8cents a word.  You can find all the details here.

Ellen Datlow - Editor Interview

The PaperCuts website has an excellent interview with anthology editor Ellen Datlow.  She has some wonderful advice for short stories writers in the interview.

The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction - Call for Submissions

For the first time ever The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction will be accepting digital submissions.  Guest editor C.C. Finlay has issued a call for short stories up to 10,000 for the July/August issue.  There is no theme, he's just looking for great stories.  Payment is 7 to 12cents a word.  You can find the details here.

Hat tip to the Literarium blog!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

My Top Ten Short Story Picks for 2013

Looking back on my reading this past year was a bit of a surprise.  I barely read any novels!?!  I did reread a great number of my Georgette Heyer novels.  I love how she tells a story and brings her characters to life.  They're also full of humor, not the belly laughs kind, but humor that pokes fun at human nature.  I love that.  The book that I most enjoyed this year was Brandon Sanderson's "The Alloy of Law", which I passed on to my grandson.  If you want to learn how to build a fantasy world, this is a great example.

What I did read a lot of this year was short stories.  And that reading was all over the genres.  I discovered Terry Pratchett's "Turntables of the Night" and Robert Bloch's "That Hell-Bound Train", dipped into both Sherwood Anderson and Richard Matheson's work and discovered the greatness of Ambrose Bierce.

A very rich source of my reading came from the online zines.  There is so much great work out there in the ether.  Of course I didn't read everything and I didn't stick to any one particular genre, but the noir/crime short stories seemed to have stuck with me the most.  As always, I've composed my list of ten stories that have really resonated with me as both a reader and a writer.  In no particular order, here are my top online picks for the year 2013.

1.  SALVAGES by Gabrielle Hovendon

2.  CASSOULET by Maggie Wolff Peterson

3.  LATE NIGHT ON ROUTE 17 by Libby Cudmore

4.  WAITING ON THE 6:15 by Kieran Shea


6.  EYE SPY by Charles Gramlich

7.  LOVE AND OTHER WOUNDS by Jordan Harper

8.  STRINGTOWN ROAD by Richard Prosch


10.  CONFEDERATES by Charles Dodd White

And just because I love the title and it was such a wild and weird story


Well, those are some of my favorites, there were so many more that I wish I could add, but then the list would go on forever and you'd all get bored.  What are some of your favorite short stories from 2013?  Feel free to share them in the comments.  Everyone loves a good short story!



Happy New Year, Everyone!!

I quit making resolutions long ago, yeah, if you can't keep them why bother?  What I do now is set goals for myself.  Not giant goals like let's make a million dollars this year, but small goals.  I'll pick several markets I'd like to crack and then submit to them during the year.  Maybe I'll set of goal of writing a story a week, or a month (which is what usually happens).  I also pull out old stories that never found homes but still tug at me then make the effort to rework them into something marketable during the year.  Small steps that keep me going and the words flowing.

This past year I spent a great deal of time rethinking why I write.  I write because I enjoy telling stories.  I like the process of rewriting and making a story better.  I also stepped up from writing a ton of flash fiction to taking my time and writing longer stories.  I've found that very satisfying, even if the markets are scarce.

I've also taken a look back at my successes and failures.  I realize that I'll probably never write a novel, not because I won't find a story that intrigues me enough to go the distance, but because circumstances make it impossible for me to promote such a project.  It wouldn't be fair to the book or the publisher.

It's okay to dream big but there also comes a point in your writing career where you have to step back and decide what is best for you.  For me, it's the short work and that's okay because I love the form.  I know that it will never make me rich or famous but it gives me pleasure and hopefully those stories will bring enjoyment to the folks who read them.