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Posts Tagged ‘writing’

Or, more accurately, did you even notice I was gone?

Photo by Jasmina Rojko on Unsplash

No, this isn’t one of those feel sorry for me deals. Those are so cliché and overdone, aren’t they?

I’m more of a realist than that. With the world going a little more down that dark twisted path of an angst horror story each day, its contradictive every person for their self strongly political egotistical self-righteous “only I’m right” political grandstanding and apocalyptic “nature is trying to kill us” story plots at times clashing like a badly written narrative, I half expect each one of you and everyone else to be swallowed up in that darkness, along with me.

The weirdness is even more striking with that overall story thread of mundane normalcy casting its deceptive veil over reality. Or is the mundane the reality and the rest the waking nightmare our narrator is playing us with?

Life goes on.

March 12th, 2020 Manitoba officially reported it’s first cases of Covid-19 as a stunned populace watched the progressing news story in stunned disbelief.

The stories coming out of places like Italy were staggering. Heart wrenching. Hidiously unreal. People singing to each other from their imprisonment in their homes creating a surreal uplifting moment in a lockdown where people stole food to survive with their world in a complete lockdown, and stories of care homes with the elderly and infirm left abandoned by the hundreds, dead and dying in filth, stink, and overrun with insects, rodents, excrement, and rotting waste, a plotline straight out of a fictional apocalypse story.

March 20th, 2020 Manitoba declared a state of emergency, and the lockdown began April 1st with the ordered closure of all non-essential businesses, as if there truly is such a thing when that income feeds and homes people reliant on it.

People cried out that it’s all fake. It’s not real. It’s made up to control us. (Have you read Orson Welles 1984?)

With a sinking feeling of what was as yet unknown to come, it all feeling utterly unreal and entirely fabricated, two days before the announcement, our office was shut down at the end of the day and everyone sent to work from home. March 19th, 2020 I began the odd journey of mostly self-isolation.

Ill prepared schools, teachers, and students scrambled with schools being shuttered to move thousands of kids practically overnight to online learning from home.

Businesses shuttered, mass numbers of people suddenly became unemployed with no job prospects, people were forbidden seeing or touching friends, family, and other loved ones. There was an eventual run on animal shelters by people seeking companionship. Unscrupulous people bought up mass quantities of basic staples: cleaning and sanitizing products, and toilet paper of all things, leaving none for others, those jerks!

Masses of people voraciously embraced new home projects and hobbies with the audacity of assuming everyone had the endless time and financial resources to do the same. By the way, this is also just one of the things that happened during the 1918 “Spanish” flu pandemic (called the “Spanish flu” then much in the same vein as some call Covid-19 the “China virus” now, only there was zero evidence of any Spanish origins to the 1918 flu.) that is being mimicked during Covid-19 today. People then also embraced anything to push away the boredom of quarantine, weird and self-destructive cures, false political wins became more important than protecting people, and people embraced conspiracy theories.

And with all this, for many, life felt relatively untouched. All the horror was distant, someone else’s story.

Interspersed with this has been a nonstop eclectic list of political farces, dramas, and atrocities. The never-ending inhumanities of war in countries that long ago forgot how to exist without war. And the planet seems bent on annihilating us all like a bad case of lice, throwing nonstop global destruction at is in the form of storms, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, pandemics and other too common and weirdly new illnesses, and unprecedented fires, heatwaves, flooding, and droughts with the apparently requisite grasshopper pestilence to decimate what little will grow. And don’t forget the Murder Hornets. We will never forget the Murder Hornets.

Seriously, who is writing this stuff? Is it any wonder it all feels like a far away unreal story to so many? Is it any wonder anyone in your world may have seemed to have just checked out?

And yet our mundane lives go on. Strangely normal and untouched for many while billions suffer just beyond the reach of our little enclosed lives.

We have to eat, sleep, work, volunteer, deal with the dramas of family and friends, raise our children, and pick burs out of our dogs’ ears. We have birthdays and anniversaries, teenagers being teenagers, kids being kids, and partners who we love to be around but sometimes need a break from. We get lonely for the friends we wish we had, miss the ones we do, and watch in sick fascination the train-wreck relationships among us.

And our life goes on, mundane and unchanged for many of us.

The surreal ugly of the world can be a depressing place. If it doesn’t depress you, it can still envelope you in the morose sense of the pain endured by others. Shocking headline after headline. Social media filled with sympathies for others’ suffering and castigations of failures to offer sympathies for that author’s righteous cause. It is impossible to offer sympathies to every pain and loss, and offering daily generic all-encompassing sympathies lacks the merit of sincerity.

And finally, you have been asking where is this going? Nowhere. Like everything else it is going nowhere. Our mundane round and round of daily life, for many sheltered from the reality of others. From the reality of their neighbors.

All during this world and local news unravels in a daily horror story that leaves many screaming to be felt and heard in the most ingloriously strange ways, embracing things they never would have before, some becoming increasingly hostile to anyone not sharing their voices. Many embracing what feels ludicrous in the face of what is happening locally and globally.

As much as I’d like to pinpoint for each week why is has been almost a month since my last post, more than a month since posting something that involved actual writing, the truth of it is that mundane round and round life. The daily commitments of work, volunteering, and family. Teenagers being teenagers, the partner you love to be around but sometimes need a break from, being lonely for the friends we wish we had and missing the ones we do. Picking burs out of Roxy, the #BigDumbBunny’s, ears and between her toes. Watching with that dulled dissociation and disappointment the train-wrecks that some among us have become. The fact that there just is not enough time to fit it all in and so sometimes something must give.

Unfortunately reality holds that by necessity the job that pays the bill takes priority over all else in your life. After that comes the needs of family, pets, and others you care about in your life. Home and house. And finally at the end of the day, behind everything else is you. Writing is for me. It’s my passion. It does not benefit anyone in my immediate world, and so that puts it last after all else.

Over the past five weeks, among other things, we had our first training session with an experienced and qualified dog trainer to try to fix Roxy (and us, because dog training is as much about fixing you as it is the dog). The air conditioner quit during the heat wave. We discovered a nice walking trail close by, an hour round trip walk where we can go partially woodsy deer trail or all grassy field, whichever strikes our interest.

And today we celebrate my nephew and his wife, married in 2019, but she finally now managed to immigrate to Canada.

My attempt to write a simple blog post weekly, large or small, helpful or not, in depth or mediocre ramble, has proven to be an incredible challenge. As in it is very challenging. To find the moments to write even in bits and spurts of a few minutes at a time. To edit it. To be creative.

I went into this knowing I would fail at times to pull it off every week. Heck, I barely managed to edit this at all, so bear with any mistakes and let’s just call this a “rough draft” published publicly.

And today’s random rambling lesson is this:

Don’t let those times when your desires, your driven passion that is what you want to do, gets pushed to the back and, frankly, shoved right off that backburner (cliché, yeah, bring it!) onto the floor behind the stove get you down.

Our world has fallen down a dark abyss of strangeness that belongs in an episode of The Twighlight Zone. Expect to be derailed.

Just because you couldn’t do it for a while, days, weeks, months, or even years, that does not mean you have to call it quit or abandoned. It’s not even a setback, really. It’s just life.

It is way too easy to let yourself slip into that daily drudgery and not make yourself get back at it. Not let yourself get back at it.

Don’t let those times quit you from what you love. Get back to it. Embrace it. Yes, you may feel morose, neglected, rejected, defeated, given up, and a whole of of other negative feelings at times while you quietly yearn to be able to do what you have a passion for, like writing. Life doesn’t care about what you want. It moves on around you, oblivious to you.

It’s up to you to embrace the good. The people you care about and the things that give you joy.

My writing has suffered since March 2019, but it is not forgotten. The passion and drive wanes and flutters back to life, but it will not die. Don’t let yours die either. It is never too late to reclaim your passion.

Be good to yourself and keep writing my friends.

P.s. This was not intended to be a Covid life rant, but the fingers will go on the keyboard as they will sometimes.

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Sharpen your writing pencils. Here are a few markets whose deadlines are looming over us.

Photo by BSD on Unsplash

Darkness is Closing In. These Crime & Horror Submission Deadlines Are Imminent:

     
 





CRIME, MYSTERY, TRUE CRIME, & DARK FICTION CRIME MARKETS:

Jump to Horror Markets

Aug 2021

Crimeucopia

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Apr 23/21)

Crime Fiction. Payment: Reprints – To a Maximum of – £7.00 at present – but negotiable. New Material – 1,000 – 5,000 – up to £10 .00 at present. New Material – 6.000 – 10,000 – up to £20.00 at present.

https://www.murderousinkpress.co.uk/submissions.html

The Astronaut Only Rings Twice

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Payment: $50.00 (CAD) per story. Theme: Hard boiled detectives, in space.

We are looking for stories that have the themes, characters and plot twists of noir crime fiction crossed with all the elements of science fiction. Let your inner Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Jonathan Lethem, Michael Chabon or Adam Christopher out and file your story with us.

https://tychebooks.com/astronaut-rings-twice

Sep – Nov 2021

Crimeucopia

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Crime Fiction. Payment: Reprints – To a Maximum of – £7.00 at present – but negotiable. New Material – 1,000 – 5,000 – up to £10 .00 at present. New Material – 6.000 – 10,000 – up to £20.00 at present.

https://www.murderousinkpress.co.uk/submissions.html

Death of a Bad Neighbor Anthology

Deadline: October 31, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Crime and mystery fiction. Payment: Payment: 10 cents/word and royalties. 2,000 to 5,000 words.

https://www.jackcalverley.com/cozy-crime-mystery-anthology-submission.html

(I Just) Died In Your Arms: Crime Fiction Inspired By One-Hit Wonders

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Crime stories based on songs. Throughout the decades, so many musical artists have had just the one hit, and that’s a crime. So is murder. So what better way to celebrate both than by combining them into an anthology? Here’s your chance to be inspired by your favorite One-Hit Wonder and give a chance to breathe some new life into the greatest hits of our lives.Payment: Royalties.

https://www.untreedreads.com/i-just-died-in-your-arms-crime-fiction-inspired-by-one-hit-wonders/

The Zodiac Killers Series

Deadline: October 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Thriller. Length: 500-6,000 words, excluding title. Payment: Royalties.

https://www.blackinkfiction.com/situationalhorror

The Best New True Crime Stories: Unsolved Crimes & Mysteries

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Nonfiction, true crime accounts of unsolved criminal cases and mysteries that can take place anywhere in the world and be from any time period. Payment: $130.

https://mitziszereto.com/call-for-submissions/

HORROR MARKETS:

Aug 2021

Bloody Good Horror (HellBound Books)

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

No particular theme, no particular sub-genres, no specific word length – as the title suggests, all we want is some bloody good horror for this anthology!

So, send us along your very best horror stories, and see if you can scare our jaded team of readers! 2.5K-4K word count (although we are incredibly flexible for awesome stories!) Payment: $5.

http://www.hellboundbookspublishing.com/subs-anthologies.html

Chlorophobia: An Eco-Horror Anthology

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Theme of eco-horror. We’re looking for punchy, eye-catching flash fiction and poetry that tackles the subject of eco-horror. Plants, animals, weather phenomena… It’s time for Mother Nature to fight back.Payment: $5

https://horrortree.com/taking-submissions-chlorophobia-an-eco-horror-anthology/#more-584532

Chromophobia: A Strangehouse Anthology By Women In Horror

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Horror written by women on theme of color. Payment:1 cent/word. 1500-6000 words.

I’m looking for stories that use color in creative, unconventional ways. Terrify me with pastels. Use watercolors to invoke dread. Take a classic trope and redye it into something unique. I also welcome stories of chromophobia, stories with characters who have never seen color or who are color blind, or who deal with visual disabilities.

https://roosterrepublicpress.com/chromophobia-guidelines-submission-window-and-timeline/

Creature Publishing

Deadline: August 31, 2021; Opens March 6, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Length: 20,000-60,000 words. Payment: Royalties

We accept both agented and un-agented submissions of fiction, nonfiction, or genre-defying prose.

Creature publishes up to four book-length works of feminist horror a year. We are looking for books that celebrate fluidity—the ability to cross boundaries and inhabit more than one category at once. While we acknowledge that categories have a certain utility, we refuse to separate horror, thriller, sci-fi, and fantasy from each other or the literary from the mainstream. Our definition of feminist horror is broad and inclusive, and we welcome writing that pushes boundaries.

We are interested in: unreliable narrators, unlikeable female characters, the monstrous, sharp critical essays and social commentary, swamp witches, your nightmares, dystopias, psychological suspense, unraveling minds, unraveling social constructs, possession, intersectionality, hybrid genres, metafiction, dark nights, and writing on sexuality/the body, gender, race, class, disability, technology, religion, and anything and everything that makes our spines tingle.

https://creaturehorror.com/submit

Nightlight

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 23/21)

Restrictions: Open to Black writers. Genre: Horror. 10,000 words max. Audio format. Payment: $75 – $200 depending on length. $50 for reprints.

https://nightlightpod.com/submissions/

The Prairie Soul

Deadline: August 31, 2021, Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 22/21)

The vision for this anthology is to create a collection of scary and supernatural horror stories featuring witches living in the Canadian Prairies. But we do not want to read stereotypical witches. This anthology will be restricted to female authors, women or people who identify as women, and must be Canadian residents of the Canadian Prairies (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba). 2,000-6,000 words. Payment $100.

https://www.theprairiesoul.com/submissions

Dose of Dread

Deadline: August 15, 2021; opens August 1, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

(checked Jul 26/21)

Submissions open monthly: 1st – 15th. Un-themed, general horror flash fiction. Preference to dread-inducing stories. Length: 500 – 1,000 words. Payment: $10.

https://dreadstonepress.com/submissions/

The Vanishing Point

Deadline: August 13, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Horror, Sci-fi, Dark Fantasy. The Vanishing Point is a literary magazine for works that bend reality.  Horror, Sci-fi, Dark Fantasy, and all things speculative are welcome here. Fiction: 1500-6000 words. Non-Fiction: query first.  Payment: $25.

https://vanishingpointmagazine.com/index.php/submissions/

Found: An Anthology of Found Footage Horror Stories 

Deadline: August 8, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

Horror based on found footage. “We’re looking for your best, original, found footage tales. Stories can be written in first person, third person, as a transcript, journal, radio play, poetry, as a script. Play with the format. Do something you haven’t read before.” Length: 2,000 to 4,000 words. Payment: $0.03 per word. Questions / submissions: whatwasfound@gmail.com

https://twitter.com/andrewcull/status/1383737217953112074

The Dead Inside (Dark Dispatch)

Deadline: August 2, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Poetry, fiction, nonfiction. Identity horror. “Explorations of what happens when our core identities are stripped, altered, suppressed, or denied to us, whether by choice or not.” Payment: Poetry: $25 per poem. Flash Fiction: $25 per story. Short Stories: $50 per story. NonFiction: $50 per piece for print and ebook rights.

https://darkdispatch.com/submissions/identity-horror-submission-guidelines/

Demonic Vacations: Go Home Already! (4 Horsemen Publications)

Deadline: August 1st, 2021

(checked Jul 25/21)

Payment Details: 2 contributor’s copies

Theme: Demonic Vacations – Humorous horror, thriller.

Our collection continues with dark humor, bizarre, and creepy vibes. We often need a vacation. Heck, sometimes you feel like you need a vacation from your vacation. We invite authors to submit 2,500-5,000 words of vacations from the cabin getaway, to Auntie’s house down south, to even that free cruise you won tickets from…. huh, I don’t remember entering anything? Make us laugh, make us do double takes, and make us regret spending our time on a “dream” vacation from hell.

https://4horsemenpublications.com/demonic-vacations/

The Ghastling

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Biannual magazine publishing literary fiction and illustration devoted to psychological horror, folk horror, ghost stories and the macabre. Payment: £15 per story plus copy of magazine. 3500 words max., no minimum.

https://theghastling.com/submit/

2022 to Sep 2021

The Cellar Door: Dark Highways

Deadline: July 15, 2022; opens July 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror/suspense stories that take place on a highway, road, or inside a vehicle. Payment: $25. 2,000 – 7,500 words.

https://www.darkpeninsulapress.com/the-cellar-door-issue-3—dark-highways.html

Dragon Soul Press: Beautiful Darkness 1 (R)

Deadline: June 30, 2022

(checked Jul 21/21)

Genre: Horror. “In a world where so many dark things go bump in the night, terror awaits around every corner as these authors take horror stories to the next level.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties. Note: This series replaces All Dark Places.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Dragon Soul Press: Haunt (R)

Deadline: May 31, 2022

(checked Jul 21/21)

Genre: Horror. “In a world where so many dark things go bump in the night, terror awaits around every corner as these authors take horror stories to the next level.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: February 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Metamorphosis. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

The Cellar Door: Forbidden Magic

Deadline: January 15, 2022; opens January 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror/dark fantasy stories featuring forbidden or taboo magic. Must include some form of spell casting or alchemy. Payment: $25. 2,000 – 7,500 words.

https://www.darkpeninsulapress.com/the-cellar-door-issue-2—forbidden-magic.html

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: January 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Victorian England. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

Dec 2021

Diet Riot: A Fatterpunk Anthology

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror. Haunted houses, ghost stories, creature features, splatterpunk, serial killers, witches, monsters, you name it. Just make sure your story features at least one fat protagonist. Payment: $25.

https://nicole-jarrell.squarespace.com/diet-riot-a-fatterpunk-anthology-submission-info

Dose of Dread

Deadline: December 15, 2021; opens December 1, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

(checked Jul 26/21)

Submissions open monthly: 1st – 15th. Un-themed, general horror flash fiction. Preference to dread-inducing stories.. Length: 500 – 1,000 words. Payment: $10.

https://dreadstonepress.com/submissions/

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: December 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Superheroes. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

Scary Dairy Press: Bloody Rock Anthology

Deadline: December 1, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror. “Does the rock of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s take you back to the nightmares of yore? If you can brew a scary tale that Alice Cooper and the Dead would love, we just might love it too!” Payment: $.03 per word.

http://scarydairypress.com/

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: December 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Surgery. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

Nov 2021

Red Cape Anthologies: M is for Medical

Deadline: November 30, 2021; Opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jan 24/21)

Genre: Horror. 4,000-8,000 words. “Think surgery gone wrong, sadistic nurses, organ trafficking, creepy doctors etc.” Payment:  £10.  

https://redcapepublishing.com/submissions/

Dose of Dread

Deadline: November 15, 2021; opens November 1, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

(checked Jul 26/21)

Submissions open monthly: 1st – 15th. Un-themed, general horror flash fiction. Preference to dread-inducing stories.. Length: 500 – 1,000 words. Payment: $10.

https://dreadstonepress.com/submissions/

Lamplight

Deadline: November 15, 2021; opens September 15, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Dark fiction, both short stories and flash fiction. No specific sub-genres or themes, just good stories. For inspiration, we suggest “The Twilight Zone”, “The Outer Limits”, and LampLight, Vol1 Issue 1 which is free. We go for stories that are dark, literary; we are looking for the creepy, the weird and the unsettling. We do not accept stories with the following: vampires, zombies, werewolves, serial killers, hitmen, excessive gore or sex, excessive abuse against women, revenge fantasies, cannibals, high fantasy.Payment: Unpublished Fiction: 3¢ per word, $150.00 max. Reprints: 1¢ per word up to 7,000 words.

There are two submission periods for LampLight:

15 March – 15 May for the September and December Issues

15 September – 15 November for March and June Issues

Submissions sent outside of these periods will not be considered.

https://lamplightmagazine.com/submissions/

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: November 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Cults. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

Haunted MTL

Deadline: November 12, 2021. (Or until filled)

(checked Jul 27/21)

We want you to scare us. We want you to grip us. We want you to make us check under the bed, desk, and/or lawnmower. Swearing? OK. Killing? Sure, why not? Rape? Not our sponsor. Sex? You bet! Horror. Payment: Not specified. Micro-fiction all the way up to 4500 words.

https://hauntedmtl.com/current-submission-calls-and-guidelines/

The Other Stories (Audio)

Deadline: November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horror on theme of Video Games. Payment: 15 GBT. 2,000 words.

Guidelines are here.

https://theotherstories.net/submissions

Oct 2021

Dead Stars and Stone Arches: A Collection of Utah Horror

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Cosmic Horror. Payment: Poetry – $10 USD, Flash – $15 USD, Short Fiction – $35 USD, Novelette – $75 USD.

https://www.timberghostpress.com/dead-stars.html

Eerie River Publishing: It Calls from the the Veil

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

“Give me your nightmares. These stories should take place in our reality with a supernatural twist. Think evil entities.” May have elements of Dark Fantasy, Dark Fiction and Cosmic horror. But must have the intention to scare the readers. Word count: 2000 – 8000. Payment: Up to 3000 words $10.00; Up to 5000 words $15.00; Above 5001 words $20.00.

https://www.eerieriverpublishing.com/open-submission

The Toilet Zone (Hellbound Books)

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Payment: $5. HellBound’s third outing to the smallest room…

And no, don’t panic, we’re still not looking for lavatory-themed tales of terror – although should your short story involve the smallest room in the house, we’d be more than delighted to read it!

The theme for this anthology is short horror stories that will make an ideal sit-down read, just long enough for those extended stays at the convenience, and terrifying enough that they really are best read whilst over water….

http://www.hellboundbookspublishing.com/subs-anthologies.html

Dose of Dread

Deadline: October 15, 2021; opens October 1, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

(checked Jul 26/21)

Submissions open monthly: 1st – 15th. Un-themed, general horror flash fiction. Preference to dread-inducing stories.. Length: 500 – 1,000 words. Payment: $10.

https://dreadstonepress.com/submissions/

Negative Space 2: A Return to Survival Horror (Dark Peninsula Press)

Deadline: October 1, 2021; opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Survival Horror. It is a sub-genre of horror video games in which the protagonist(s) must face dire situations in locations far off the beaten path by using the environment, or items found in the environment, to survive. While it’s safe to assume that “survival” is a common element in most horror stories, there is an extra emphasis in a survival horror story. It could mean finding escape, or fortifying a position and awaiting rescue, or fighting the threat head on with the use of traps and/or under-powered weaponry. Think of Neil Marshall’s film The Descent, or the last thirty minutes of Predator; that’s what we’re looking for.Payment: $50. 2,000 – 7,500 words.

https://www.darkpeninsulapress.com/negative-space-2-opening-soon.html

Slash – Her

Deadline: October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Horror written by women. We would like to see varied interpretations of this genre. Of course, we (Janine!) are hoping to see some splatterpunk submissions but this anthology will be filled to the brim with nuance. Wow us with your quiet horror, surprise us with your humour. You want an axe wielding soccer mom who has had enough of the other yummy mummies with their lattes, do your worst! Show us what you believe women can bring to the slasher sub-genre. Payment: Royalties. 3000-5000 Words

https://kandishapress.com/submissions/

The Nightmurr Before Yiffmas

Deadline: October 1, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Payment: $10 and a contributor’s copy Theme: Holiday monsters with a furry twist. The editor of 12 Days of Yiffmas is back with another holiday erotic anthology for furries, but this time, it’s horrific, too! Stories must be furry in nature. That means anthropomorphic animals that walk on two legs and can talk. Stories must be erotic in nature. Stories must be horror as well. And of course, stories must focus on Christmas, Yule, etc. The winter holiday!

https://weaselpress.submittable.com/submit

Sep 2021

Club Plum

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Please send your dark, surreal, horrific, and strange flash fiction, prose poetry, hybrid forms, and art to Club Plum for the October 2021 issue.  Send your unsettling. Send your beautifully morbid. flash fiction of no more than 800 words. See www.clubplumliteraryjournal.com for guidelines.

https://clubplumliteraryjournal.com/submit/

Red Cape Anthologies: L is for Lycanthropes

Deadline: September 30, 2021; Opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Genre: Horror. 4,000-8,000 words. “Where werewolves turn on a full moon, lycanthropes are not as restricted. This opens up to more possibilities as they may turn at the most awkward moment, leading to terrifying carnage.” Payment:  £10.  

https://redcapepublishing.com/submissions/

From the Yonder

Deadline: September 19, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

“The stories must be based upon a regional/cultural legend or tall-tale from any location or culture in the World. “Regional” can be a specific place (Loch Ness) or a larger region (Bigfoot in the Pacific Northwest).” Payment: $5.

https://warmonkeypublications.com/submissions

Dose of Dread

Deadline: September 15, 2021; opens September 1, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

(checked Jul 26/21)

Submissions open monthly: 1st – 15th. Un-themed, general horror flash fiction. Preference to dread-inducing stories.. Length: 500 – 1,000 words. Payment: $10.

https://dreadstonepress.com/submissions/

SFWG and Cloaked Press: YA & NA Horror

Deadline: September 15, 2021; opens June 10, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Speculative fiction for young adults and new adults. Genres accepted: Mystery, Paranormal, Scifi, Fantasy, Horror; and anything in those sub-genres. Word Count Range: 2500-7000 words. Payment: $10. 

https://www.cloakedpress.com/sfwgs-nightmare-fuel/

Parhelion Literary Magazine

Deadline: September 9, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Parhelion is accepting short story and flash submissions for our annual Halloween Issue. We’re looking for wonderfully creepy, give-me-the-shivers, keep-me-up-at-night stories—bonus if the setting is Halloween/fall. Think James’ TheTurn of the Screw or Jackson’s The Lottery. Or, the way ghosts haunt the living in Jesmyn Ward’s Sing Unburied Sing. Send us your best work! https://parhelionliterary.submittable.com/submit

Sinister Smile Press: Screaming in the Night: Sinister Supernatural Stories Volume 1

Deadline: September 8, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Horror. Payment: $40. Beware of the night, for it shows no mercy.

The Sinister Supernatural Stories series brings you delicious horror that focuses on elements of the supernatural. Pull up a chair and dig in, but never after dark—everyone knows bad things always happen after dark.

https://www.sinistersmilepress.com/sitn-submission-guidelines

A Woman Built by Man

Deadline: September 5, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Open to women and femme-identifying individuals. Genre: Short stories that explore the ways in which women are shaped by the men around them. “There is no restriction on sub-genre or subject matter, but the story must incorporate how a feminine figure is shaped by male hands through a horror lens. From supernatural creature features to the farthest reaches of space, down to the darkest depths of the sea, what does a woman built by man look like to you?” Payment: $.05 USD per word. 2000-5000 words.

https://cemeterygatesmedia.com/submissions/

Madame Gray’s Vault of Gore (Hellbound Books)

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Horror. Payment: $5. Madame Gray is back and looking for blood-drenched tales of terror to add to her Vault of Gore. The weird, the gruesome, and the downright shocking are welcome. A happy ending is not required, but a twist ending is a big plus. 2.5K – 8K word count.

http://www.hellboundbookspublishing.com/subs-anthologies.html

Slice of Paradise

Deadline: September 1st, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Theme of Beach Vacation Horror. What we are looking for:

Horrifying short stories that occur on a tropical beach paradise. We also encourage writers to have good representation of POC, LGBTQ+, and strong female characters. Submissions must be between 5,000 and 8,000 words.

Complimentary flash fiction submissions must be between 1,000 and 2,000 words. Payment: $0.01 per word for new stories and/or $25 for reprints PLUS $5 for complimentary flash fiction.

https://horroroasis.com/slice-of-paradise/

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Sharpen your writing pencils. Here are a few markets whose deadlines are looming over us.

Dust the writing cogs, these submission deadlines are coming up – nonfiction markets:

     
 

2022

Brick

Deadline: April 30, 2022; opens March 1, 2022

(checked Jul 29/21)

Literary nonfiction. Payment: $55–660, depending on the length of accepted work, plus two copies of the issue the work appears in and a one-year subscription to the magazine.

https://brickmag.com/about/#submissions

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Cats

Deadline: March 15, 2022

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We want your true funny stories, your heartwarming stories, and your mindboggling stories about all the simply amazing things that your cat does. What have you learned from your cat? How does your cat improve your life? What crazy things does your cat do? Has your cat ever done anything heroic? How does your cat warm your heart and make you smile? We want to hear all about the absurd antics, funny habits and insightful behavior of your cat.” Payment: $200. 

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Dogs

Deadline: March 15, 2022

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We want your true funny stories, your heartwarming stories, and your mindboggling stories about all the simply amazing things that your dog does. What have you learned from your dog? How does your dog improve your life? What crazy things does your dog do? Has your dog ever done anything heroic? How does your dog warm your heart and make you smile? We want to hear all about the absurd antics, funny habits and insightful behavior of your dog. Stories can be serious or humorous.” Payment: $200. 

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Counting Your Blessings

Deadline: January 15, 2022

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “Please share your stories about handling challenges in your life, finding the silver linings, and counting your blessings, whether the challenges you are facing are COVID-19 related or other kinds. Stories can be serious or funny, but definitely should be inspirational and heartwarming. Attitude adjustments, finding contentment and gratitude, a new way of handling your daily life, and other great ideas to inspire readers to find their own paths to happiness and to remember to count their blessings every day are what we are looking for.” Payment: $200.

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Oct 2021

Brick

Deadline: October 31, 2021; opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Literary nonfiction. Payment: $55–660, depending on the length of accepted work, plus two copies of the issue the work appears in and a one-year subscription to the magazine.

https://brickmag.com/about/#submissions

Sep 2021

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Crazy Family

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We all have that certain someone in our own family who, while lovable, sweet, and caring, is also nutty or weird. We love that person but, at the same time, that family member makes us crazy! A parent or grandparent, an in-law, a brother or sister, an aunt, uncle or cousin. We all have them and you know who they are! We are looking for true stories and poems about those family members. We would like your stories to be silly, outrageous, hilarious, and make us laugh, but they should also show the kindness and caring of your family member too.” Payment: $200.

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grieving, Loss and Healing

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “This collection of emotional and inspirational stories will provide comfort, support, and peace to those who have lost someone close to them. What helped you the most when you were grieving? Who were the people who helped you and what did they do? When did you know that you had finally “turned the corner” and were on the road to recovery? When and how did you realize there was light at the end of the tunnel? What are you doing to support others?” Payment: $200. 

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Humorous Stories

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “Share your funny stories about something that happened to you in your life – in your relationship with a partner or spouse, a parent or child, a family member or friend, at work or at home – that made you and the people around you laugh out loud. Did you mean for it to be funny? Did the other person mean to make you laugh? Did a situation just get out of control? Did a misunderstanding turn into a comedy of errors?” See list of possible topics. Payment: $200.

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Kindness

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “Has someone performed an act of kindness for you? How did it feel? Did you pay it forward and do something kind for someone else? Did that person know it was you doing that kind thing? Did you do something kind for a stranger knowing you would not be paid back? How did that feel?” Payment: $200.

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Angels

Deadline: September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We are looking for true personal stories about how an angel has touched your life – stories of true wonder and awe from people who have directly encountered or received help from angels. We’re looking for amazing stories that will make people say “wow” or give our readers chills. Have you experienced something otherworldly or celestial? Or had a personal experience with an angel or divine being? How did your angel manifest himself or herself to you? Were you the only person who saw your angel? How did your angel protect or guide you?” Payment: $200. 

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Messages from Heaven

Deadline: September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We want to hear from you if you have experienced communication from the other side or received a sign or signal from a loved one who has passed. Has someone who has died come to you in a dream? Given you counsel or comfort? Have you gone beyond, but returned to life with new knowledge, insight, or awareness? Have you intuitively known the moment someone died?” Payment: $200.

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Miracles

Deadline: September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

True stories and poems. “We want your true stories, both religious and non-religious, that will awe us with examples of amazing events. Inspirational stories to remind us that each day stunning miracles do happen and that a miracle can happen at any time.” Payment: $200. 

https://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics

Aug 2021

Academia Lunare

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Speculative non-fiction in theme of “Not the Fellowship. Dragons Welcome.” Writers are invited to engage with a fictional character of choice from any of Tolkien’s works who is not part of The Lord of the Rings’ Fellowship. Though they can be characters of LOTR. Payment: £30. 

https://www.lunapresspublishing.com/academialunare

Broken Sleep Books

Deadline: August 31, 2021; Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Non-fiction pamphlets (up to 70 pages). We have no definitive preference for what are looking for, we enjoy a variety of genres and styles and consider anything. Payment: Royalties.

https://www.brokensleepbooks.com/submissions

Hindsight: The Untold Stories of 2020

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 29/21)

Hindsight: The Untold Stories of 2020 is the only book about 2020 written by people just like you. We’re seeking personal essays that get up close with the desperation, division, and devotion of 2020. Not the headlines in the papers, but the headlines of our lives. Add your chapter to the story of last year—whether that means navigating emergencies as a first responder, marching for justice, or tying the knot over Zoom. Stories selected for publication will be compiled into a print anthology, which will be published in 2021. Free to submit. Length: Maximum 2,000 words. Previously unpublished work only. View full guidelines at www.hindsightbook2020.com.

www.hindsightbook2020.com

Birth Stories 2021 Writing Contest (Doula Support Org.)

Deadline: August 1, 2021; Opens June 1, 2021

(checked May 28/21)

What we are looking for:

We are welcoming many different voices and perspectives which are representative of the population of Canada. We wish to be able to share all kinds of births, in different settings with different health care providers and support teams in different eras. We welcome stories written by partners too (with permission of the birther).

Up to 2000 words.

Who can participate? All those residing in Canada (irrespective of visa status), novice or experienced writers, who want to share a birth story.

The 15 English and 10 French honorable mention stories will be published on the DSF website.

The intention is to publish a book with the winning stories in English and in French of the 2021 winners of the contest. We will translate the stories, so we can publish one book in French and one in English with all the stories.

https://www.doulasupport.org/birth-story-contest-2021

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Sharpen your writing pencils. Here are a few markets whose deadlines are looming over us.

Photo by Aryan Dhiman on Unsplash

Warm up the keyboard, these submission deadlines are closing fast – mixed/multi genre markets:

Nov 2021

Apparition Lit

Deadline: November 30th, 2021; opens November 15, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Quarterly speculative fiction magazine that features original short stories, poetry, and artwork. Theme of Justice. Speculative fiction is weird, almost unclassifiable. It’s fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and literary. Send us your strange, misshapen stories with enough emotional heft to break a heart, with prose that’s as clear and delicious as broth. Payment: $30. 

https://apparitionlit.com/submissions/

Hiraeth Books: parABnormal Magazine

Deadline: November 30, 2021, opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Stories, poetry, nonfiction about the paranormal. Payment: $25 for fiction, $20 for articles, $7 for reviews, $6 per poem. Submissions are accepted Feb 1 – Mar 31, Jun 1 – Jul 31, Oct 1 – Nov 30.

https://www.hiraethsffh.com/parabnormal-magazine-guidelines

Kaleidotrope

Deadline: November 30th, 2021; opens November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Speculative fiction and poetry—science fiction, fantasy, and horror, but also compelling work that blurs the lines between these and falls outside of neat genre categories.   Payment: For fiction, $0.01/word (1 cent a word) USD. For poetry, a flat rate of $5 USD per accepted piece. For artwork, a flat rat of $60 for cover art.

https://kaleidotrope.net/guidelines/

Nimrod

Deadline: November 30, 2021. Fee to submit online; no fee for postal submissions.

(checked Jul 28/21)

Genre: Poetry, short fiction, and creative nonfiction. Payment: $10 per page, with a $200 maximum. 

https://artsandsciences.utulsa.edu/nimrod/submissions/

Parhelion Literary Magazine

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Parhelion is a young but established literary magazine based in Richmond, Virginia. We are now open to fiction, flash, poetry, and creative nonfiction submissions for our Winter 2022 issue. We remain open to pitches, articles, and content for features all year round. To see what kind of work we publish, and to get more detailed information on submitting, visit us online. As always, writers of all backgrounds and identities are welcome. 

https://parhelionliterary.com/submission-guidelines/

Split Lip Magazine

Deadline: November 30, 2021. Note: Submit early in the month.

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction (flash and short stories), memoirs, and poetry. with a pop-culture twist. Payment: $50 per author (via PayPal) for our web issues. Payment for print is $5 per page, minimum of $20, plus 2 contributor copies and a 1-year subscription. FREE SUBMISSIONS: January, March, May, August, September, November.

https://splitlipthemag.com/submit

The Fiddlehead

Deadline: November 30th, 2021; opens September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction, including excerpts from novels, creative nonfiction, art, and poetry. Payment: $60 CAD per published page.

https://thefiddlehead.ca/submit

The Fuckening

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Funny, speculative fiction short stories and poetry that embody The Fuckening. All stories must be science fiction, fantasy, horror, or a combination of the three. “These stories can be witty, goofy, dark, sarcastic…whatever, we don’t care, as long as they are speculative fiction and contain a reference to The Fuckening and maintain a general theme of fuckery (we mean this in the non-pornographic sense).” Payment: $10.

http://scifilampoon.com/the-fuckening/

The New Southern Fugitives

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Previously unpublished writing and art. Payment: $40 per book review, $40 per poem, $40 per photograph or piece of visual art, $15 per page for prose (min $45 and max $105).

https://newsouthernfugitives.com/submit/

Night Shift Radio

Deadline: November 28, 2021; opens November 21, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Do you have a story you’d like us to feature on The Storyteller Series? Fiction, non-fiction, memoir – 7,000-10,000 words. Payment: $50 or $25.

https://nightshiftradio.com/submissions

Parabola

Deadline: November 15, 2021. See themes

(checked Jul 28/21)

Theme of Wonder. Parabola is a quarterly journal devoted to the exploration of the quest for meaning as it is expressed in the world’s myths, symbols, and religious traditions, with particular emphasis on the relationship between this store of wisdom and our modern life. Original essays and translations, poetry, reviews. Payment: Not specified. 

https://parabola.org/submissions/

Speculative City

Deadline: November 15, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Restrictions: Open to writers who specifically identify as queer and BIPOC. Fiction, poetry, and essays that are centered within the cityscape. Payment: $20-$55.

http://www.speculativecity.com/submissions/

Fantasy Magazine

Deadline: November 7, 2021; opens November 1, 2021 (1st week every month)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fantasy and dark fantasy. Short Story 1500-7500 words. (Stories of 5000 words or less are preferred.) Flash Fiction: Up to 1500 words. Poetry: prefers shorter poems. Payment: 8 cents per word for original short stories and flash fiction. $40 per poem.

https://adamant.moksha.io/publication/fantasy/guidelines

Scum

Deadline: November 7, 2021; opens to submissions on November 1, 2021 (poetry submissions currently closed)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Feminist-friendly work of any variety, but as a general rule your piece should be under 2000 words (50 lines for poetry, max. 3 poems) and able to be classified as “fiction”, “culture”, “memoir”, “column”, “poetry”, and/or “review”. Payment: $60 AUD.

Submissions to Scum are open the first week (from the 1st to the 7th) of every month. The rest of the month, submissions are closed.

https://www.scum-mag.com/submit-to-scum/

Enchanted Conversation: A Fairy Tale Magazine

Deadline: November 3, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fairy tales, and essays on theme of “Healers, Midwives and Cunning Folk.” Payment: $100. US dollars only. Essays: $50.

https://enchantedconversationmag.blogspot.com/p/submissions.html

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: November 2, 2021 (Submissions window: 1st and second day each month)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work, 2 cents/word for reprints, 2-6 cents/word for new fact-based work, 1-4 cents/word for reprinted fact articles, $1/line for new poetry, 50 cents/line for poetry reprints (poetry up to 40 lines). *Allows reprints

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

ellipsis… literature & art

Deadline: November 1, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Poetry, short fiction, drama, and creative non-fiction. Payment: $3 per page (Only pays American writers.).

https://ellipsis.submittable.com/submit

Foglifter (Spring Edition)

Deadline: November 1, 2021; Opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jun 28/21)

Genres: Poetry, prose, cross-genre work. “Foglifter welcomes daring and thoughtful work by queer and trans writers in all forms, and we are especially interested in cross-genre, intersectional, marginal, and transgressive work.” Payment: $25. 

https://foglifter.submittable.com/submit

The First Line

Deadline: November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Genres: Fiction, poetry, nonfiction using the first line provided. (See site.)    Payment: $25.00 – $50.00 for fiction, $5.00 – $10.00 for poetry, and $25.00 for nonfiction.

http://www.thefirstline.com/submission.htm

Thema: Get It Over With!

Deadline: November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Theme of Get It Over With! Fiction, poetry, and art on theme: Get It Over With!  Payment:  $10-$25 for short fiction and artwork, $10 for poetry.  Accepts reprints.

http://themaliterarysociety.com/submissions.html

Oct 2021

Dream Pop Press

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Chapbook manuscripts in the genres of poetry, speculative diary, and hybrid work that confounds definition 20-50 pages in length. “We lean heavily toward more experimental, non-narrative work in general.” Payment: $200 & 10 complimentary copies.

https://duotrope.com/duosuma/submit/dream-pop-press-YicB3

khōréō

Deadline: October 31, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Restrictions: Open to writers who identify as an immigrant or member of a diaspora in the broadest definitions of the terms. “This includes, but is not limited to, first- and second-generation immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, undocumented migrants, persons who identify with one or more diaspora communities, persons who have been displaced or whose heritage has been erased due to colonialism/imperialism, transnational/transracial adoptees, and anyone whose heritage and history includes ‘here and elsewhere’. We especially encourage BIPOC creators who identify as the above to submit their work.” 

Stories, essays, and art: fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and any genre in between or around it, as long as there’s a speculative element. Payment: 0.08/word for fiction, $100 for nonfiction, and  $40-300 for art.

https://www.khoreomag.com/submissions/

Consequence Forum

Deadline: October 15, 2021; opens July 15, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction, poetry, nonfiction, reviews, visual art, and translations focused on the human consequences and realities of war and geopolitical violence. Payment: $40 – $80.

https://www.consequenceforum.org/submissions

Fat Coyote

Deadline: October 15, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Restrictions: Writers must be neurodivergent. Poetry, fiction up to 6000 words, CNF up to 6000 words, Art, Photography, Comics. Payment: 3 cents/word for prose. $1 line for poetry. $30 – $40 for art. 

https://thefatcoyote.com/blog/submission-guidelines/

Fantasy Magazine

Deadline: October 7, 2021; opens October 1, 2021 (1st week every month)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fantasy and dark fantasy. Short Story 1500-7500 words. (Stories of 5000 words or less are preferred.) Flash Fiction: Up to 1500 words. Poetry: prefers shorter poems. Payment: 8 cents per word for original short stories and flash fiction. $40 per poem.

https://adamant.moksha.io/publication/fantasy/guidelines

Scum

Deadline: October 7, 2021; opens to submissions on October 1, 2021 (poetry submissions currently closed)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Feminist-friendly work of any variety, but as a general rule your piece should be under 2000 words (50 lines for poetry, max. 3 poems) and able to be classified as “fiction”, “culture”, “memoir”, “column”, “poetry”, and/or “review”. Payment: $60 AUD.

Submissions to Scum are open the first week (from the 1st to the 7th) of every month. The rest of the month, submissions are closed.

https://www.scum-mag.com/submit-to-scum/

Honeyguide Magazine

Deadline: October 4, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Stories, art and poetry that examine the connection between animals and humans, and the ways we and our lives are more similar than people assume. Payment: $25 for featured writers, $50 for art.

https://www.honeyguidemag.com/submit

Enchanted Conversation: A Fairy Tale Magazine

Deadline: October 3, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fairy tales, and essays on theme of “Healers, Midwives and Cunning Folk.” Payment: $100. US dollars only. Essays: $50.

https://enchantedconversationmag.blogspot.com/p/submissions.html

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: October 2, 2021 (Submissions window: 1st and second day each month)

(checked Jul 28/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 8 cents/word for original work, 2 cents/word for reprints, 2-8 cents/word for new fact-based work, 1-4 cents/word for reprinted fact articles, $1/line for new poetry, 50 cents/line for poetry reprints (poetry up to 40 lines). Allows reprints

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Cicada’s Lament

Deadline: October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Restrictions: Open to marginalized creators, particularly work by disabled and/or LGBTQIA+ folx. Fiction or poetry with elements of Southern Gothic or horror. Theme: (re) birth. Births, baptisms, beginnings. “Cicada’s Lament wants your hanging moss and blue porch ceilings. We want your deer skulls and old ghosts, your ancient and decrepit houses.” Payment: $5.

https://www.cicadalament.com/submissions.html

Sep 2021

Qwerty

Deadline: September 30th, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction, CNF, Poetry, Art & Photography. Query first for Reviews & Interviews. Payment: $10 CAD. Though Qwerty has primarily published literary fiction and fine art, we have no qualms with publishing genre fiction that subverts convention, experimental work that inverts tradition in pursuit of innovative storytelling, or images that play on the senses in unusual ways.

https://qwertymagazine.submittable.com/submit

Split Lip Magazine

Deadline: September 30, 2021. Note: Submit early in the month.

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction (flash and short stories), memoirs, and poetry. with a pop-culture twist. Payment: $50 per author (via PayPal) for our web issues. Payment for print is $5 per page, minimum of $20, plus 2 contributor copies and a 1-year subscription. FREE SUBMISSIONS: January, March, May, August, September, November. TIP JAR SUBMISSIONS ONLY: February, April, June, October, December. We don’t accept submissions in July.

https://splitlipthemag.com/submit

Wild Atlantic Writing Awards (WAWA)

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Genres: flash fiction, creative nonfiction. 500 word limit. Buoyed by a sense of freedom and renewal here in northwestern Ireland with Covid restrictions being lifted, we’ve decided the next edition of our ‘Wild Atlantic Writing Awards’ (WAWA) should be completely open, meaning you can choose whatever theme you wish. And to add a little spice to the mix and help focus your mind, one teeny-weeny challenge is that the title of your story MUST be 3 (three) words only, no more, no less.

1,000 euro in prize money.

https://www.irelandwritingretreat.com/wawa

The Puritan: Fall Issue

Deadline: Sep 25, 2021; Opens June 26, 2021

(checked Jul 28/21)

Fiction, nonfiction, poetry. Payment: $100 per nonfiction piece, $50 fiction, $15 per poem. 

The Puritan seeks submissions all year round, from anywhere in the world.

Submissions received between Dec. 26 and Mar. 25 are considered for the spring issue, published in early May. Those received between Mar. 26 and June 25 are considered for the summer issue, published in late early Aug. Those received between June 26 and Sept. 25 are considered for the fall issue, published in Nov. Those received between Sept. 26 and Dec. 25 are considered for the winter issue, published in Feb.

http://puritan-magazine.com/submissions/

Reckoning

Deadline: September 22, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Creative writing and art about environmental justice. Payment: 8 cents a word for prose, $30 per page for poetry, art negotiable, minimum $25 per piece.

https://reckoning.moksha.io/publication/reckoning

Fantasy Magazine

Deadline: September 7, 2021.  Opens to submissions on September 1

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fantasy short stories, flash fiction, poetry. Payment: 8 cents per word for original short stories and flash fiction. $40 per poem. 

https://adamant.moksha.io/publication/fantasy/guidelines

Into the Void

Deadline: September 7,  2021; opens August 1, 2021. Submit early in the month to avoid submission fees. **Due to a recent development, we will not be open to submissions this month. More details to follow shortly.**

(checked Jul 28/21)

Poetry, fiction, & visual art. Payment: $10 per poem, flash fiction or visual art piece, and $20 per long-form prose piece. Free submissions until Submittable-allotted monthly free submissions limit is reached.

https://intothevoidmagazine.com/submissions/

Scum

Deadline: September 7, 2021; opens to submissions on September 1, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Feminist-friendly work of any variety, but as a general rule your piece should be under 2000 words (50 lines for poetry, max. 3 poems) and able to be classified as “fiction”, “culture”, “memoir”, “column”, “poetry”, and/or “review”. Payment: $60 AUD.

Submissions to Scum are open the first week (from the 1st to the 7th) of every month. The rest of the month, submissions are closed.

https://www.scum-mag.com/submit-to-scum/

Please See Me

Deadline: September 6, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Poetry, creative nonfiction/essays, fiction/short stories/flash fiction, scripts and digital media (photography, drawings, podcasts, and short films). “We are especially looking for content from vulnerable populations and those who care for them; content that connects us with every community, makes us feel something, helps us see illness, wellness, health, or the healthcare environment differently, and inspires equality in healthcare and the world.” Payment: Not specified.

https://pleaseseeme.com/submissions/

midnight & indigo

Deadline: September 5, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Restrictions: Open to Black women writers. Genre: Short fiction, narrative, personal essays. Payment: $50 – $75. Our digital platform, midnightandindigo.com features a diverse array of voices that connect readers to content featuring strong female lead characters or a Black female POV; across the spectrum of experience.

https://midnightindigo.submittable.com/submit

Enchanted Conversation: A Fairy Tale Magazine

Deadline: September 3, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fairy tales, and essays on theme of “Healers, Midwives and Cunning Folk.” Payment: $100. US dollars only. Essays: $50.

https://enchantedconversationmag.blogspot.com/p/submissions.html

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: September 2, 2021 (Submissions window: 1st and second day each month)

(checked Jun 26/21)

*Allows reprints

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work, 2 cents/word for reprints, 2-6 cents/word for new fact-based work, 1-4 cents/word for reprinted fact articles, $1/line for new poetry, 50 cents/line for poetry reprints (poetry up to 40 lines).

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Interim: The Poetics of Space- 2021 Print Anthology

Deadline: September 2, 2021

(checked Jun 21/21)

Interim is looking for women’s writing that explores the meaning and ethics of place in the broadest sense of the word, writing that seeks location as dwelling and indwelling simultaneously so as better to know what it means to belong somewhere. Speaking of the house, in The Poetics of Space Bachelard claims “all really inhabited space bears the essence of the notion of home.”   Send poems, essays, flash fiction, and/or hybrid forms that play with notions of place for our fourth all women’s print anthology, forthcoming in December, 2021. Because we believe the truth is experimental, we’ll especially appreciate work with innovative approaches.

https://www.interimpoetics.org/

Bethlehem Writers Roundtable

Deadline: September 1, 2021 Theme: Falling Into Place – now closed for submissions

(checked Jul 27/21)

Genre: Short stories and poetry. See themes. Payment: 20.00 USD for featured authors, or $10.00 USD for stories published on their &More page and $5.00 USD for poems.

https://bwgwritersroundtable.com/submissions-contacts/

Moonflake Press Print Issue

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Short stories, creative nonfiction, and poems on theme of Escapism. Payment: £25 for each story/poem.

https://www.moonflakepress.com/submit

The Antihumanist

Deadline: September 1, 2021; opens July 2, 2021

(checked Jun 27/21)

Fiction, nonfiction, art – all genres. “We seek to publish the most challenging and thought provoking flash fiction and essays. We believe only by confronting the bare bones of reality we understand our place in the world.” Payment: 5 cents/word.

https://theantihumanists.com/

Superpresent

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

The theme for the Fall Issue is “An Archive.” Superpresent is a quarterly magazine of the arts. Superpresent is available free online and a limited run of print copies for each issue. Superpresent publishes poems, short stories, essays, visual art pieces, experimental art, video art, and sound art. Poetry 1 page, other written forms 500-2000 words.

Deadlines:

Spring – March 1

Summer – June 1

Fall – September 1

Winter – December 1

https://superpresent.wordpress.com/call/

The Southampton Review

Deadline: September 1, 2021. Submit early in the month to avoid fees

(checked Jun 26/21)

Genre: Poetry, prose, art. Payment: Prose: $100+, Poetry: $75 per poem. Illustration: $100 per page. Art Portfolios: $200 for up to 12 images 

https://www.thesouthamptonreview.com/submit/

The Wire’s Dream Magazine (Winter Issue)

Deadline: September 1, 2021; Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Genre: Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Poetry, Art, Photography, Combined Work from underprivileged individuals. Payment: $5. 

https://thewiresdreammagazine.wordpress.com/submit/

Vautrin

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Gritty urban fiction, Crime/Mystery Fiction, Ghosts, The Supernatural, Literary Essays. “We’re interested in essays that talk about contemporary crime fiction, or essays that walk the path between, say, 19th century fiction and fiction in the here and now.” Payment: $130.00 and two contributor’s copies for fiction over 2,000 words. $65.00 and two contributor’s copies for fiction under 2,000 words. $50.00 and two contributor’s copies for literary essays.

https://vautrin.pub/submissions/

Aug 2021

Apparition Lit

Deadline: August 31, 2021. Opens August 15, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Genre: Speculative fiction and poetry on theme of Wonder. Payment: $30. 

We publish poems and stories between 1k-5k words in January, April, July, and October. We also hold monthly flash fiction contests between the 1st and 15th of each month. Flash stories must be under a 1000 words and be inspired or based on the chosen theme. Full details for submission guidelines are below.

https://apparitionlit.com/submissions/

Black Coffee & Vinyl Presents

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art, music. The theme is “The City.” We are seeking art, words, and sounds that explore, critique, celebrate and interrogate the urban landscape, culture and environment. The city, a place, should play a central role in the work and should be a central character or focus. We are seeking a diverse range of city representation from large cities to small, from real to imagined. Payment: $50.

https://www.blackcoffeevinyl.com/submit

Griffith Review 75: Learning Curves

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Essays and creative non-fiction, reportage, fiction, poetry,  memoir and picture stories. “This edition of Griffith Review explores the breadth of our educational experiences – from preschool to postgrad, from private to public, and from sandstone to the school of life.” Payment: Negotiated.

https://www.griffithreview.com/submit-to-griffith-review/

HWP Seeks Fiction/Poetry/Flash for Paid Print Publication/Awards

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked May 29/21)

Haunted Waters Press seeking submissions for consideration in the 2nd edition of our fiction anthology Tin Can Literary Review—$250 per published story. Also seeking works of fiction, poetry, flash, and Penny Fiction for paid print publication in the 19th issue of our literary journal From the Depths. Works appearing online in SPLASH! are eligible for future offers of paid publication. All submissions considered for 2021 HWP Awards. Your words and endeavors are important to us! Custom artwork, author interviews, and the HWP Contributor Showcase are just a few of the ways we show our appreciation. Visit us today! www.hauntedwaterspress.com

https://www.hauntedwaterspress.com/?utm_source=newpages&utm_medium=classified&utm_campaign=2021_cfs&utm_content=haunted_waters_press

Kaleidotrope

Deadline: August 31st, 2021, opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Speculative fiction and poetry—science fiction, fantasy, and horror, but also compelling work that blurs the lines between these and falls outside of neat genre categories.    Payment: For fiction, $0.01/word (1 cent a word) USD. For poetry, a flat rate of $5 USD per accepted piece. For artwork, a flat rat of $60 for cover art.

https://kaleidotrope.net/guidelines/

Lackington’s: Botanicals

Deadline: August 31, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Speculative fiction 1500-5000 words and art on theme of Botanicals. Fantasy, SF, slipstream, post-apocalyptic, magic realism, mythopoeia, folktale, grimdark, weird, or any flavour of ‘punk, it’s all good, BUT WAIT! Read this before submitting — we prefer stories with experimental prose and structures. Payment: 1 cent/word (CAD).

https://lackingtons.com/submissions/

Prospectus

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Restrictions: To qualify to be published in Prospectus, you must NOT have done EITHER of the following, no matter what category you are submitting to: Have had a collection of poems published that is longer than 48 pages; Have had a collection of short stories, a novella, or a novel published longer than 150 pages. Genre: Poetry, fiction, reviews, art. Payment: $25.

http://www.prospectusliterary.com/submissions2020.php

Split Lip Magazine

Deadline: August 31, 2021. Note: Submit early in the month.

(checked May 30/21)

Fiction (flash and short stories), memoirs, and poetry. with a pop-culture twist. Payment: $50 per author (via PayPal) for our web issues. Payment for print is $5 per page, minimum of $20, plus 2 contributor copies and a 1-year subscription. FREE SUBMISSIONS: January, March, May, August, September, November.

https://splitlipthemag.com/submit

Too Well Away Literary Journal

Deadline: August 31, 2021 or when 50 submissions received; opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Too Well Away Literary Journal offers a new model for publication. We believe it is more valuable to give writers careful, constructive editing leading up to publication than it is to reject their work without feedback. Only work that goes against community guidelines will be rejected. All submissions subject to collaborative editing. Emerging writers are especially encouraged to submit.

https://toowellaway.com/submit/

Night Shift Radio

Deadline: August 28, 2021; opens August 21, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Fiction, non-fiction, memoir – 7,000-10,000 words. Payment: $50 or $25. 

https://nightshiftradio.com/submissions

Typehouse

Deadline: August 22, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

We are looking for submissions of poetry, short fiction, creative non-fiction and visual art. Writing that grabs us conveys a unique perspective and honest insight into our world. We are especially interested in underrepresented voices of all kinds, and we want to see submissions from writers and artists of all races, sexualities, nationalities, religions, and genders, as well as disabled and neurodivergent creators. Payment: $21. Fiction/nonfiction 500-5,000 words preferred.

http://typehousemagazine.com/submissions/

Hungry Zine

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Open to writers located in Canada. Genre: Fiction, nonfiction, art, poetry about food. Theme of Preserve. Payment: $50. August submission deadline is for complete work, skipping the pitching process.

http://www.hungryzine.com/issue-01-preserve-call-for-submissions-pitches/

Parabola

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Theme of The Golden Rule. Original essays and translations, poetry, reviews. Payment: Not specified. See themes for each quarterly journal.

https://parabola.org/submissions/

Book of Matches

Deadline: August 10, 2021; opens May 8, 2021

(checked Jul 27/21)

Poetry, Fiction, Nonfiction, Translation.

Book of Matches is always interested in protest—interested in protest against the unknowing alive in human existence, in protest against the knowing, too. In essence, Book of Matches both celebrates what burns against the dark, and the assurance of how little it illuminates before going out. Send us your most meaningful lies, your real lives, and the poetry of both that we may see a bit more clearly the stormy seas around us all. Book of Matches desires neither COVID, nor overtly political work. Please begin submissions here: www.bookofmatcheslitmag.com/submit

Abyss and Apex

Deadline: August 7, 2021, opens August 1, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Speculative fiction and poetry. No horror. Payment: USD $.06/word (six cents a word) up to 1,250 words, and a flat payment of $75.00 for longer stories. 

https://www.abyssapexzine.com/submissions/

Fantasy Magazine

Deadline: August 7, 2021; Opens August 1, 2021.

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fantasy short stories, flash fiction, poetry. Payment: 8 cents per word for original short stories and flash fiction. $40 per poem. 

https://adamant.moksha.io/publication/fantasy/guidelines

Perennial Press: Arthropoda

Deadline: August 7, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction and poetry about insects, crustaceans, arachnids, or myriapods. Payment: $20. Accepts reprints.

https://perennialpress.submittable.com/submit

Scum

Deadline: August 7, 2021; opens to submissions on August 1, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Feminist-friendly work of any variety, but as a general rule your piece should be under 2000 words (50 lines for poetry, max. 3 poems) and able to be classified as “fiction”, “culture”, “memoir”, “column”, “poetry”, and/or “review”. Payment: $60 AUD.

Submissions to Scum are open the first week (from the 1st to the 7th) of every month. The rest of the month, submissions are closed.

https://www.scum-mag.com/submit-to-scum/

Enchanted Conversation: A Fairy Tale Magazine

Deadline: August 3, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Fairy tales, and essays on theme of “Healers, Midwives and Cunning Folk.” Payment: $100. US dollars only. Essays: $50.

https://enchantedconversationmag.blogspot.com/p/submissions.html

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: August 2, 2021 (Submissions window: 1st and second day each month) *closed to Sept for move.

(checked May 30/21)

*Allows reprints

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work, 2 cents/word for reprints, 2-6 cents/word for new fact-based work, 1-4 cents/word for reprinted fact articles, $1/line for new poetry, 50 cents/line for poetry reprints (poetry up to 40 lines).

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Mudroom

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Poetry, fiction, essays, and essays in translation. Payment: $15.

https://www.mudroommag.com/submissions-1

The First Line

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Genres: Fiction, poetry, nonfiction using the first line provided. (See site.)   Payment: $25.00 – $50.00 for fiction, $5.00 – $10.00 for poetry, and $25.00 for nonfiction. 

http://www.thefirstline.com/submission.htm

Moonflake Press Online Issue

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Short stories, creative nonfiction, and poems on theme of Lush. Payment: £25 for each story/poem.

https://www.moonflakepress.com/submit

Volney Road Review

Deadline: August 1, 2021; Opens May 1, 2021 

(checked Jun 26/21)

Genres: Fiction, poetry, CNF, art. Payment: $10. 

http://volneyroadreview.com/submit/

We’Moon Lunar Calendar

Deadline: August 1, 202

(checked May 27/21)

Restrictions: Open to women only. Genre: Art, poetry and prose, 350 words maximum. Payment: Small honorarium.

https://wemoon.ws/pages/copy-of-submitting-art-writing#write

Jul 2021

FIYAH

Deadline: July 31, 2021. See themes

(checked May 27/21)

Genre: Speculative fiction, art, and poetry about African Diaspora. Length: Short fiction 2,000 – 7,000 words and novelettes up to 15,000 words. Payment: $150 per story. $50 per poem. $300 per novelette. 

http://www.fiyahlitmag.com/submissions/

Hiraeth Books: parABnormal Magazine

Deadline: July 31, 2021, opens June 1, 2021

(checked May 27/21)

Stories, poetry, nonfiction about the paranormal. Payment: $25 for fiction, $20 for articles, $7 for reviews, $6 per poem. Submissions are accepted Feb 1 – Mar 31, Jun 1 – Jul 31, Oct 1 – Nov 30.

https://www.hiraethsffh.com/parabnormal-magazine-guidelines

New Myths

Deadline: July 31st, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Science fiction and fantasy. Payment: 1.5 cents/word with a minimum payment of $30 for all submissions, fiction, flash fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Book reviews – $30. Art – $60.

https://sites.google.com/a/newmyths.com/nmwebsite/submissions/sub-2

Nonbinary Review

Deadline: July 31, 2021

(checked May 27/21)

Poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and flash, up to 3000 words on theme of Prohibition. Payment: For prose, 1¢ US per word, and $10 US per poem.

https://www.zoeticpress.com/new-page

Room Magazine: Ancestors Issue

Deadline: July 31, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Restrictions: Room publishes fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, and art by folks of marginalized genders, including but not limited to women (cisgender and transgender), transgender men, Two-Spirit and nonbinary people. Genre: Original short stories, poems, creative non-fiction, or art on theme of Ancestors. Payment: $50 (CAD).

https://roommagazine.com/submit/

Sleet Magazine

Deadline: July 31, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Themed Submissions: Infrastructure

We welcome all fine writing and are especially hunting for pieces which celebrate infrastructure, both external and internal. How do you define infrastructure? What supports you, and where do you turn for strength and comfort? Sleet’s Winter Infrastructure edition will debut in November 2021. See submissions page for guidelines, 

www.sleetmagazine.com

the other side of hope

Deadline: July 31, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fiction and poetry by refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrants only. They accept non-fiction, reviews, and interview submissions by anyone as long as the subject matter sheds light on the refugee and immigrant life. Payment: £100 per published author in the print issue, and £50 per published author in the online issue.

https://othersideofhope.com/submissions.html

The Rumpus

Deadline: July 31, 2021, opens July 1, 2021

(checked May 27/21)

Fiction, poetry. reviews. “We strive to be a platform for marginalized voices and writing that might not find a home elsewhere, and to lift up new voices alongside those of more established writers we love. We work to shine a light on stories that build bridges, tear down walls, and speak truth to power.” Payment: $300 divided among all contributors.

https://therumpus.submittable.com/submit

Volney Road Review

Deadline: July 31, 2021; $2 submission fee per submission

(checked Jun 21/21)

Volney Road Review is paying $10 per accepted piece. Send us your best prose, poetry, art, photography, and comics for issue 4.1.

http://volneyroadreview.com/submit/

khōréō

Deadline: July 30, 2021

(checked May 27/21)

Restrictions: Open to writers who identify as an immigrant or member of a diaspora in the broadest definitions of the terms. “This includes, but is not limited to, first- and second-generation immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, undocumented migrants, persons who identify with one or more diaspora communities, persons who have been displaced or whose heritage has been erased due to colonialism/imperialism, transnational/transracial adoptees, and anyone whose heritage and history includes ‘here and elsewhere’. We especially encourage BIPOC creators who identify as the above to submit their work.” Genre: stories, essays, and art: fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and any genre in between or around it, as long as there’s a speculative element. Payment: 0.08/word for fiction, $100 for nonfiction, and  $40-300 for art.

https://www.khoreomag.com/submissions/


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Grins and giggles. Here are a few markets sneaking up on us.

Photo by Carl Jorgensen on Unsplash

Loose the fuzzy creatures, these submission deadlines are ready to play – children’s markets:

     
 

2022

Crow Toes Quarterly

Deadline: March 31, 2022

(checked Jun 26/21)

Art & literature for children who don’t scare easily. We are looking for “playfully dark”, intelligent, humorous, descriptive literature written for children ages 8 – 13. Reads general submissions all year round. See themes. Payment: $20 – $50.

MAGAZINE THEMES: YEAR 1

Each issue is themed, but these themes are open to interpretation.

  • FALL 2021 (Issue 3, OCT – DEC) – Broken 
  • WINTER 2022 (Issue 4, JAN – MAR) – Cold
  • SPRING 2022 (Issue 5, APR – JUN) – Wild
  • SUMMER 2022 (Issue 6, JUL – SEP) – Curious

https://www.crowtoesquarterly.org/submit

2021

Auroras & Blossoms PoArtMo Anthology: 13-16 Year-Old Artists Edition 

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Apr 28/21)

A Winnipeg publication.

Topics / Themes: Anything that is positive, uplifting and inspirational in nature, with the exception of erotica and politics. Also, coronavirus-related pieces that do not contain strongly positive / uplifting / inspirational elements will be automatically rejected.

What we are looking for:

Positive art. Positive as in stimulating, optimistic, confident, uplifting, inspirational.

No matter what topic you choose to tackle (e.g., death, disease, mental illness, suicide, depression…), the pieces you send us should answer three basic questions:

– “How do they help others?”

– “How do they open their minds?”

– “Do they bring a better understanding of the situations or stories I am describing?”

https://abpoetryjournal.com/13-16-year-old-artists/

Crow Toes Quarterly

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Art & literature for children who don’t scare easily. We are looking for “playfully dark”, intelligent, humorous, descriptive literature written for children ages 8 – 13. Reads general submissions all year round. See themes. Payment: $20 – $50.

MAGAZINE THEMES: YEAR 1

Each issue is themed, but these themes are open to interpretation.

  • FALL 2021 (Issue 3, OCT – DEC) – Broken 
  • WINTER 2022 (Issue 4, JAN – MAR) – Cold
  • SPRING 2022 (Issue 5, APR – JUN) – Wild
  • SUMMER 2022 (Issue 6, JUL – SEP) – Curious

https://www.crowtoesquarterly.org/submit

Cast of Wonders – General Submissions

General Submissions for 2021 publication:

Opens: November 1, 2021 [tentative]; Deadline: November 30, 2021 [tentative]

(checked Jul 26/21)

Cast of Wonders is a young adult short fiction market, open to stories up to 6,000 words in length.

Stories that evoke a sense of wonder, have deep emotional resonance, and have something unreal about them. We aim for a 12-17 age range: that means sophisticated, non-condescending stories with wide appeal, and without gratuitous or explicit sex, violence or pervasive obscene language. Think Harry Potter or The Hunger Games.

https://www.castofwonders.org/submissions/

Crow Toes Quarterly

Deadline: September 30th, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Art & literature for children who don’t scare easily. We are looking for “playfully dark”, intelligent, humorous, descriptive literature written for children ages 8 – 13. Reads general submissions all year round. See themes. Payment: $20 – $50.

MAGAZINE THEMES: YEAR 1

Each issue is themed, but these themes are open to interpretation.

  • FALL 2021 (Issue 3, OCT – DEC) – Broken 
  • WINTER 2022 (Issue 4, JAN – MAR) – Cold
  • SPRING 2022 (Issue 5, APR – JUN) – Wild
  • SUMMER 2022 (Issue 6, JUL – SEP) – Curious

https://www.crowtoesquarterly.org/submit

When Night Falls (TBC)

Deadline: August 31, 2021; Open June 1, 2021

(checked May 25/21)

Genre: Dark Fantasy. Age Range: YA – 14 to 18 years. Word Count: 4k – 8k 10% wiggle room over.

Info: I will be looking for stories that fall into that fantasy realm of elves, faeries, orcs, goblins, wizards and the like. Battles for kingdoms and the exploration of lost worlds.

I am NOT looking for tales of vampires, werewolves etc. for this one.

Inspirations: Lord of the Rings, The Dark Crystal, Game of Thrones, Legend etc. Payment: £10 per story selected plus digital copy and discounted author copies.

https://www.ravenanddrakepublishing.co.uk/royaltycalls

Cricket Media: Babybug: Fantastic Fall (for babies and toddlers)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Poetry, action rhymes, finger plays, and very short stories that celebrate autumn. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17819/babybug-magazine-for-ages-6-months3-years

Cricket Media: Babybug: Let’s Play (for babies and toddlers)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Poems, stories, finger plays, and action rhymes about little ones’ favorite games. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17819/babybug-magazine-for-ages-6-months3-years

Cricket Media: Ancient Worlds (ages 9–14)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Historical fiction, nonfiction, myths and legends, and poetry about ancient cultures, including ancient Greece,  Rome, Egypt, India, China, Africa, the Americas, Pacific Islands, and more. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17789/cricket-magazine-for-ages-914

Cricket Media: Game On! (ages 9–14)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry featuring a competition, game, rivalry, or challenge. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17789/cricket-magazine-for-ages-914

Cricket Media: Ladybug: Exploring Our World (ages 3 – 6)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Compelling explorations of our world written for young  children. “We’re looking for narrative nonfiction (to 800 words), nonfiction and nature writing (to 400 words), and poetry (to 20 lines).” Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17818/ladybug-magazine-for-ages-36

Cricket Media: Ladybug: I Can Help (ages 3 – 6)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Short stories, rebus stories, poems, action rhymes, riddles, and songs about young children learning how to think through problems and help themselves and others. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17818/ladybug-magazine-for-ages-36

Cricket Media: Spider Magazine: Legendary Kids (ages 6 – 9)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Fresh retellings of  folktales, fairytales, tall tales, and myths that cast a child—not an  adult—as the clever problem-solver. Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17817/spider-magazine-for-ages-69

Cricket Media: Spider Magazine: Outside of the Box (ages 6 – 9)

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

“We love  contemporary stories and poems, but we are excited to read more material  that falls outside these popular categories. This might be plays,  science fiction, or historical fiction and nonfiction. It might be  simple, but inventive, activities like recipes, games, crafts, magic  tricks, science experiments, or silly quizzes.” Payment: Stories and articles: up to 25¢ per word. General submissions are always open.

https://cricketmag.submittable.com/submit/17817/spider-magazine-for-ages-69

Cast of WondersLimited Demographic: Young Author submissions

General Submissions for 2021 publication:

Opens: July 15, 2021 [tentative]; Deadline: August 15, 2021 [tentative]

(checked Jun 26/21)

Cast of Wonders is a young adult short fiction market, open to stories up to 6,000 words in length.

Stories that evoke a sense of wonder, have deep emotional resonance, and have something unreal about them. We aim for a 12-17 age range: that means sophisticated, non-condescending stories with wide appeal, and without gratuitous or explicit sex, violence or pervasive obscene language. Think Harry Potter or The Hunger Games.

https://www.castofwonders.org/submissions/


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Sharpen your writing pencils. Here are a few markets whose deadlines are looming over us.

Here are a few fast approaching submission deadlines for you – general fiction:

    

Feb 2022

Dragon Soul Press: Chance on Love

Deadline: February 28, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

“Everyone deserves a chance at love. Whether it lasts forever or ends up being temporary, these characters will fight for the chance at happily ever after.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: February 21, 2022; opens February 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Fantasy Magazine

Deadline: February 7, 2022; opens February 1, 2022 (1st week every month)

(checked Jul 26/21)

All types of fantasy and dark fantasy are welcome. No subject should be considered off-limits, and we encourage writers to take chances with their fiction and push the envelope. If you’re not sure whether your story is fantasy (vs. horror or science fiction) go ahead and submit and let the editors decide.. Payment: 8 cents per word for original short stories and flash fiction. $40 per poem. Short Story: 1500-7500 words. (Stories of 5000 words or less are preferred.) Flash Fiction: Up to 1500 words.

https://adamant.moksha.io/publication/fantasy/guidelines

Dragon Soul Press: Beyond Atlantis

Deadline: January 31, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

“Unique retellings of Atlantis-like civilizations. Preferably with mermaids, selkies, krakens, or other mythological sea creatures included.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Mythic

Deadline: January 31, 2022; Opens December 1, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Sci-fi and fantasy fiction. Payment: 4 cents/word.

Reading Periods:

  • June 1 through July 31
  • December 1 through January 31

https://www.mythicmag.com/p/submissions.html

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: January 21, 2022; opens January 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Dec 2021

Allegory

Deadline: December 31, 2021; opens November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror. Payment: $15. There is no minimum or maximum length for fiction. Short-shorts (less than 500 words) and flash fiction (less than 100 words) are usually hard sells for us, as are stories longer than 5000 words. We’ll consider them, but they will have to be exceptional.

https://www.allegoryezine.com/submissions

Dancing Star Press

Deadline: December 31, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction novellas 17,500 to 40,000 words. Space operas, solar punk, dark fantasy, and urban fantasy. Hard science fiction with an emphasis on biology or chemistry rather than physics. Fantasy based on non-Western cultures. Optimistic futurism. Polar Tesla pop and soft science fiction. Payment: Royalties. 

https://www.dancingstarpress.com/submissions/

Dragon Soul Press: Surge

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Cyberpunk. 5,000-15,000 words. “These characters are trying to survive in a dystopia of advanced technologies. Living alongside Artificial Intelligence has its perks, but also many deadly downfalls.” Payment: Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

We’re Here: The Best Queer Speculative Fiction 2021

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Queer speculative short fiction reprints from 2021. Payment: 1 cent/word.

https://www.neonhemlock.com/submissions

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: December 21, 2021; opens December 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: December 2, 2021 – submissions closed while the publisher moves – to approx Sept 1st?

(checked Jul 25/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work. 2 cents/word for reprints. 

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Nov 2021

Cast of Wonders

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

YA Speculative fiction. Podcast. Payment: $.08/word for original fiction of any length (yes, including flash!). For reprints, a $100 flat rate for Short Fiction, and a $20 flat rate for Flash Fiction.

https://www.castofwonders.org/submissions/

Dragon Soul Press: Everlast

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Romance. “Romance can be difficult on its own, even before adding the complications of time travel to the equation. These couples find themselves from separate timelines in history, but cross paths due to unforeseen circumstances.” Word Count – 5,000-20,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Dragon Soul Press: Rogue Tales

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Fairytale. “Fairytales will never be the same in this reverse harem anthology. All versions of bedtime stories, folklore, etc are welcome.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties. 

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Pirating Pups

Deadline: November 30th, 2021, opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Stories with adventure-loving dogs, puns, water and fun. “I’m looking for sailors, submariners, explorers, Vikings and more. Fun stories filled with excitement, drama, treasure-seeking, sword fights, discovering new worlds and dogs, dogs, dogs.” Payment: $50 CAD. 

http://tychebooks.com/pirating-pups

Podcastle

Deadline: November 30, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Fantasy podcast. Length: Up to 6,000 words. Payment: $0.06/word for original; $100 for reprints, $20 for flash fiction reprints. We’re open to all the sub-genres of fantasy, from magical realism to urban fantasy to slipstream to high fantasy, and everything in between. Fantastical or non-real content should be meaningful to the story.

http://podcastle.org/guidelines/

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: November 21, 2021; opens November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Luna Station Quarterly

Deadline: November 15, 2021; Opens September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Genre: Speculative fiction by woman-identified writers. Payment: $5. Accepts reprints.

Luna Station Quarterly publishes speculative fiction written by women-identified authors. We think women write awesome characters and really cool stories and we want to show it to the world. We will consider stories submitted by any woman writer, regardless of experience or writing resume. If you consider yourself on the woman end of the gender spectrum in any significant capacity, you’re welcome here!

Publication Date Submission Dates

March 1st September 15th – November 15th

June 1st December 15th – February 15th

September 1st March 15th – May 15th

December 1st June 15th – August 15th

http://lunastationquarterly.com/submissions/

Timber Ghost Press: Out of Time: True Paranormal Encounters

Deadline: November 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

True ghost stories, unexplained occurrences, and weird encounters with the paranormal or supernatural. Payment: $20.

https://www.timberghostpress.com/out-of-time.html

One Story

Deadline: November 14, 2021; Opens September 7, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Genre: Short story. Payment: $500. 

One Story is seeking literary fiction. Because of our format, we can only accept stories between 3,000 and 8,000 words. They can be any style and on any subject as long as they are good. We are looking for stories that leave readers feeling satisfied and are strong enough to stand alone.

Submission Periods: January 15th – May 31st | September 7th – November 14th

https://www.one-story.com/index.php?page=submit&pubcode=os

Space Opera Digest 2021: Have Ship, Will Travel

Deadline: November 14, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Short space opera stories. 2,000 to 7,500 words. Payment: Royalties. Space Opera heroes and heroines explore the stars and discover cool new places in ships which range from beat-up rust-buckets to sleek technologically advance craft that are the envy of the galaxy. Space ships are quintessential for the adventures and challenges our favourite characters face.

https://storiesrulepress.com/space-opera-digest-2022-call-for-submissions/

Shoreline of Infinity

Deadline: November 13, 2021; Opens November 11, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

Science fiction, fantasy. Payment: £10/1000 words. We are looking for an engaging science fiction or fantasy story, something that gives reality a tweak on the nose – an idea that makes us stop and think.

https://www.shorelineofinfinity.com/submissions/

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: November 2, 2021 – submissions closed while the publisher moves – to approx Sept 1st?

(checked Jul 24/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work. 2 cents/word for reprints. 

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Lethe Press

Deadline: November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction, especially queer speculative fiction, historical fiction. Full-length manuscripts. Payment: Royalties.

https://www.lethepressbooks.com/call-for-submissions.html#/

Oct 2021

Black Hare Press: War Anthology

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Short stories. THEME : War/conflict. Must be dark, any genre. 5,000 words minimum. Payment: $50.

https://www.blackharepress.com/submissions/

Mythaxis

Deadline: October 31st, 2021; Opens October 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction. Payment: $20. 1,000-7,500 words.

https://mythaxis.co.uk/submissions.html

Titanic Terastructures

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Speculative fiction set in or about megastructures, gigastructures, TERASTRUCTURES! Payment: $5 per thousand words. Reprints accepted.

http://www.jayhenge.com/callforstories.html

Trees Anthology

Deadline: October 31, 2021. (Or until filled.)

(checked Jun 25/21)

Dark speculative fiction involving trees. Payment: $10. 

We want a 2,500 word or less dark speculative fiction story involving trees in some way. By speculative fiction we mean horror, fantasy and soft sf. Stories can be no longer than 2,500 words. Flash and micro fiction is acceptable.

No graphic violence, rape scenes or abuse to children.

https://www.jerseypinesink.com/

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: October 21, 2021; opens October 1, 2021 (each month)

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500 to 1000 word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Howlers series: Devilish Deals

Deadline: October 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Payment: $10 usd. Theme: Deals involving the devil. Word count: 2,500-8,000; a little above and a little below will be acceptable. This anthology challenges you to come up with stories where people make unique deals with the Dark Lord. Horrific. Erotic. Comedic. As long as it’s unique and has that Satanic deal!

https://weaselpress.submittable.com/submit

Translunar Travelers Lounge

Deadline: October 15, 2021; opens September 21, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction. Your story must contain speculative elements: that means science fiction or fantasy. Swashbuckling adventure, deadly intrigue, and gleeful romance are some of the most obvious examples of what we’re looking for, but we won’t say no to more subtle or complicated topics, as long as they fit under the wider “fun” umbrella.Payment: $0.03 per word with a minimum of $20. Maximum 5,000 words.

https://translunartravelerslounge.com/submissions/

Shoreline of Infinity

Deadline: October 13, 2021; Opens October 11, 2021 (3-day submission windows)

(checked Jul 24/21)

Science fiction, fantasy. Payment: £10/1000 words. We are looking for an engaging science fiction or fantasy story, something that gives reality a tweak on the nose – an idea that makes us stop and think.

https://www.shorelineofinfinity.com/submissions/

Luna Press

Deadline: October 10, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative fiction novellas by writers who identify as “Other than White.”    Payment: Royalties. For our purposes, speculative fiction deals with elements that are nonexistent in reality, covering various themes in the context of science fiction, fantasy, horror, alternate history, utopian and dystopian fiction, and supernatural fiction, as well as combinations thereof (e.g. science fantasy).

https://www.lunapresspublishing.com/submissions

Havok: Innocent/Sage Theme

Deadline: October 3, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Flash fiction 300 – 1,000 words on theme of innocent / sage. Payment: Pays for anthologies only.  See accepted genres.

https://gohavok.com/submission-guidelines/upcoming-themes/

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: October 2, 2021 – submissions closed while the publisher moves – to approx Sept 1st?

(checked Jul 24/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work. 2 cents/word for reprints. 

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Sep 2021

Dragon Soul Press: Dragons and Heroines

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Genre: “Any stories involving a female Main Character and dragons.” Word Count – 7,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Dragon Soul Press: History

Deadline: September 30, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Historical Fiction. “Any person, location, or time period accepted as long as dragons are included. Note: Dragons need to be part of the storyline. They cannot be mentioned in passing.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Where Giants Fall

Deadline: September 30th, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Fantasy. The theme of this fantasy anthology is light in the darkness. Your story should contain the element of hope shining through the dark, whether this is subtle or a leading theme throughout the story’s fabric. The editors are seeking bold stories with a lot of heart and stories that do not shy away from gritty themes or dark topics. 2000-8000 words. Payment: Royalties.

https://angelarwatts.com/submissions/

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: September 21, 2021; opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Translunar Travelers Lounge

Deadline: September 21, 2021; Opens September 15, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Restrictions: BIPOC writers only. Genre: Speculative fiction. Payment: $0.03 per word with a minimum of $20.

https://translunartravelerslounge.com/submissions/

Zombie Works Publications: Natural Instincts Tales of Witches and Warlocks

Deadline: September 19, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Short-stories that involve Witches and Warlocks. 2000 to 3000 words in length and content must be between a Rated “PG-13” to Rated “R”. Please no NC-17 stories, they will be rejected as our contract with the printer does not allow us to produce that sort of content.Payment: 10 cents per book (per each book sold on Amazon, I assume. So, if they sell 100 books, each author will get $10)

http://zombieworks.us/

Shoreline of Infinity

Deadline: September 13, 2021; Opens September 11, 2021 (3-day submission window)

(checked Jul 26/21)

Science fiction, fantasy. Payment: £10/1000 words. We are looking for an engaging science fiction or fantasy story, something that gives reality a tweak on the nose – an idea that makes us stop and think.

https://www.shorelineofinfinity.com/submissions/

Havok: Caregiver/Lover Theme

Deadline: September 5, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Flash fiction 300 – 1,000 words on theme of caregiver / lover. Payment: Pays for anthologies only.  See accepted genres.

https://gohavok.com/submission-guidelines/upcoming-themes/

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: September 2, 2021 – submissions closed while the publisher moves.

(checked Jul 24/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work. 2 cents/word for reprints. 

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Books and Bikes in Space

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Stories about bicycling and books, from a feminist perspective. Stories can be in any speculative or fantastical genre—hard science fiction, space opera, epic fantasy, alternative history, paranormal romance, hope punk, modern fairy tales and anything around or in between. Payment: $50 minimum.

https://takingthelane.com/2021/04/04/call-for-submissions-books-and-bikes-in-space/

Young Dragons

Deadline: September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Middle Grade and Young Adult full-length manuscripts. Payment: Royalties. 

https://youngdragonspress.com/submission-guidelines-writers/

Aug 2021

Camden Park Press: Holiday Hijinks!

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Short stories centered around holidays. Three anthologies:. For Whimsical Winter Wonderland, we’re looking for stories with a healthy scoop of whimsy and a sprinkling of magic. Happy Holiday Historicals will be stories that take us back to days gone by – set prior to 1970. The unbreakable rule for Crazy Christmas Capers is “Nobody gets hurt (in any meaningful way).” Beyond that, feel free to let your larcenous characters run wild. Payment: Royalties. 

http://www.camdenparkpress.com/holidayhijinks/

Dragon Soul Press: Timeless 2

Deadline: August 31, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Fairytale. “Anything involving a twist on old fairy tales, whether it be the classics or lesser known ones.Note: As long as you keep to the theme and use a fairytale, originality is fully appreciated. Cliff-hangers are more than welcome.” Word Count – 5,000-15,000. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

Grindstone Short Story Prize

Deadline: Final closing August 31, 2021; Regular Submission: £10.00

Deadline: Early bird closing May 1, 2021; Early Bird: £8.00

(checked Jul 26/21)

The Grindstone Short Story Prize returns this year, seeking out the best short fiction writers from around the world. Writers are asked to submit a piece of short fiction between 1,000 and 3,000 words, of any genre, aimed at adult readers. Grand Prize – £500. Runner Up – £200. Four Shortlisters – £50. The top 20 entries will be curated into our yearly anthology and published in print.

https://www.grindstoneliterary.com/short-story-prize

Madness Heart Press: Nafallen University – College Catalog

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

This is a call for a new anthology chapbook from John Baltisberger and Matthew Henshaw. The conceit is that the chapbook is a course catalog for a strange and horrible university in North Texas, (think Miskatonic of the south). Submissions should follow the example on the site, with a department heading followed by course descriptions. Each description can be anywhere from 1-200 words long. They may be written to be funny, bizarre, or horrifying. They will take as many courses from submissions as we feel are a good fit. Payment: $0.01/word. 

https://madnessheart.press/submissions/nafallen-university-college-catalog-submissions-call/?v=7516fd43adaa

Spartan

Deadline: August 31, 2021; Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Genre: Literary prose, 1500 words max. Payment: $20.

We have four submission windows each year. Any pieces submitted outside of the submission windows will be deleted unread. The submission windows are:

     Fall: October through November

     Winter: January through February

     Spring: April through May

     Summer: July through August

https://spartanlit.com/submissions

The New Gothic Review

Deadline: August 31, 2021, opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Gothic fiction. Eerie atmosphere is key, but they are not a horror magazine. “We’re looking for previously unpublished short stories that reimagine Gothic fiction for the 21st century. We want stories that are beautifully written, heavily atmospheric, and psychologically chilling.” Payment: $50. 1500-5000 words.

Shoreline of Infinity

Deadline: August 30, 2021; Opens June 14, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

Flash fiction competition (theme to be decided). Science fiction, fantasy. Payment: £10/1000 words. We are looking for an engaging science fiction or fantasy story, something that gives reality a tweak on the nose – an idea that makes us stop and think.

https://www.shorelineofinfinity.com/submissions/

Flash Fiction Online

Deadline: August 21, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Speculative (science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, and horror) and literary fiction. Payment: $80. We are looking for complete 500- to 1000-word stories with crisp prose, well-developed characters, compelling plots, and satisfying resolutions. We want stories that engage our minds and emotions. 

Beginning in January 2021, our submission portal for original stories will be open from the 1st to 21st of each month. Reprint submissions will remain CLOSED until April 1, 2021.

https://ffo.submittable.com/submit

Life Beyond Us

Deadline: August 20, 2021; Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Science fiction short stories exploring the unknown: life forms we’re not familiar with on Earth (from extreme environments, to those right beneath our noses) and beyond our planet; strange life’s discovery, peculiarities, and the ethical questions arising from these. Payment: 8 cents/word. 

https://laksamedia.com/life-beyond-us-submission-guidelines/

Cast of Wonders

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

YA Speculative fiction by young adults. Podcast. Payment: $.08/word for original fiction of any length (yes, including flash!). For reprints, a $100 flat rate for Short Fiction, and a $20 flat rate for Flash Fiction.

https://www.castofwonders.org/submissions/

Luna Station Quarterly

Deadline: August 15, 2021; Opens June 15, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Genre: Speculative fiction by woman-identified writers. Payment: $5. Accepts reprints.

Luna Station Quarterly publishes speculative fiction written by women-identified authors. We think women write awesome characters and really cool stories and we want to show it to the world. We will consider stories submitted by any woman writer, regardless of experience or writing resume. If you consider yourself on the woman end of the gender spectrum in any significant capacity, you’re welcome here!

Publication Date Submission Dates

March 1st September 15th – November 15th

June 1st December 15th – February 15th

September 1st March 15th – May 15th

December 1st June 15th – August 15th

http://lunastationquarterly.com/submissions/

Planet Scumm

Deadline: August 15, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Hard sci-fi, soft sci-fi, horror, speculative fiction, weird fiction, slipstream on theme of Winter Horror. Payment: 3 cents/word. Stories, or collections of flash fiction, should be 2000 – 6000 words.

https://www.planetscumm.space/submit

Ruminate

Deadline: August 15, 2021. Note: Ruminate also accepts short fiction on a rolling basis.

(checked May 31/21)

We welcome submissions from both emerging and established writers and are looking for fiction that engages the contemplative spirit of our journal and embraces curiosity and discovery rather than resolution. Fiction under 5,500 words. Payment: $20 per 400 words. 

https://ruminatemagazine.submittable.com/submit/8428/2021-nonfiction-general-submissions

Lucent Dreaming

Deadline: August 8, 2021; opens June 1 , 2021

(checked May 31/21)

New/emerging writers (someone who has been published in 10 or fewer publications in the past 5 years, and has not published a book or full collection). You must be a Lucent Dreaming subscriber, or have read a recent issue to submit work to the magazine. Genre: Speculative and surreal fiction. Word Limit: 1500-3,999 words. Payment: £100 and a free contributor copy.

https://lucentdreaming.com/submit/

Xenocultivars: Stories of Queer Growth

Deadline: August 7, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

Queer speculative fiction on the theme of plants and growth. Prefers stories that have an uplifting and affirming feel. Payment: 8 cents/word. Up to 7,000 words. Will accept up to 10,000 words.

https://speculativelyqueer.moksha.io/publication/3/guidelines

Kate Bush Anthology

Deadline: August 3, 2021; Opens July  13, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Short stories with elements of weird or dark fiction (horror, bizarro, and magical realism, etc). Original ideas must be drawn from the work of Kate Bush, though the end product need not closely resemble its inspiration. Payment: $15.

https://headsdance.press/kate-bush-anthology/

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

Deadline: August 2, 2021 – Jun/Jul/Aug submissions closed while the publisher moves.

(checked Jul 24/21)

Speculative stories. Payment: 6 cents/word for original work. 2 cents/word for reprints.

https://cosmicrootsandeldritchshores.com/submissions/

Third Flatiron

Deadline: August 2, 2021

(checked Jul 24/21)

SF/Fantasy/Horror short stories on theme Things with Feathers: Stories of Hope. Stories need not be exclusively positive. For example, after the long pandemic, you might recall the old proverb, “Hope deferred maketh the heart sick.” Sharpen your Sharpies and tell us where you think hope will get us. (The title is based on an Emily Dickinson poem.) Payment: 8 cents per word. Stories should be between 1,500 and 3,000 words. Inquire if longer. For each anthology, we will also accept  a few very short humor pieces (600 words or so).

https://thirdflatiron.com/

Best Indie Speculative Fiction

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Previously published speculative fiction, between January 1 2019 and December 31st 2020. This project only considers previous-published stories that are either self-published or published with a small press. Length: Up to 20,000 words. Payment: $25.

https://www.bardsandsages.com/contact_us/fiction_submission_guidelines

Havok: Everyman/Jester Theme

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked Apr 23/21)

Flash fiction 300 – 1,000 words on theme of everyman / jester. Payment: Pays for anthologies only.  See accepted genres.

https://gohavok.com/submission-guidelines/upcoming-themes/

Jul 2021

Aurealis

Deadline: July 31st, 2021; Opens July 1, 2021

(checked Jan 24/21)

Genre: Science fiction, fantasy or horror short stories between 2000 and 8000 words. Payment: A$20 and A$60 per 1000 words. 

All types of science fiction, fantasy and horror that are of a “speculative” nature will be considered, but we do not want stories that are derivative in nature, particularly those based on TV series. We do not publish horror without a supernatural element.

https://aurealis.com.au/submissions/

Beneath the Yellow Lights (Oddity Prodigy Productions)

Deadline: July 31, 2021

(checked May 30/21)

Payment: $10 and a contributor’s copy Theme: A modern world overrun by fantasy, details below! Imagine your favorite coffee shop is run by elves, or the band playing speed metal at the club is made up entirely of orcs. That graffiti on the side of the building that seems too high for humans to have reached? Maybe it was painted by wizards? Beneath the Yellow Lights is the place to explore the urban fantasy landscape! Finding the places where magic and modern day meet is our goal. We are looking for urban fantasy stories that feature fantasy elements such as magic and mythical creatures in urban environments.

https://www.oddityprodigy.com/beneath-the-yellow-lights

Mythaxis

Deadline: July 31st, 2021; Opens July 15, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

Speculative fiction. Payment: $20. 1,000-7,500 words.

https://mythaxis.co.uk/submissions.html

Mythic

Deadline: July 31, 2021; Opens June 1, 2021

(checked Jun 25/21)

Sci-fi and fantasy fiction. 2,000-6,000 words. Payment: 4 cents/word.

Reading Periods:

  • June 1 through July 31
  • December 1 through January 31

https://www.mythicmag.com/p/submissions.html

Oddity Prodigy Productions: Beneath the Yellow Lights Anthology

Deadline: July 31st, 2021

(checked Mar 30/21)

Theme: A modern world overrun by fantasy. A collection of stories featuring urban magic and fantasy. Payment: $10 and a contributor’s copy.

https://horrortree.com/taking-submissions-beneath-the-yellow-lights/

Spirit Machine

Deadline: July 31, 2021, Opens: June 1, 2021

(checked May 25/21)

1500 and 3500 words. Payment: $0.08/word

Theme: Seance Fiction – A mashup of Spiritualism (seances, ouiji/spirit boards, kirlian auras, discarnated entities, ghost talking) and Science Fiction and/or Steampunk genres.

Be wild, take chances, submit stories that are left of center. Show us your fireworks!

Stories must combine elements of both Spiritualism and Science Fiction/Steampunk SF. No fantasy stories, no standalone ghost stories, no SF without aspects of Spiritualism.. To be published in the Winter of 2021 by the Air and Nothingness Press.

http://aanpress.com/submissions.html

Timeworn

Deadline: July 31st, 2021 – SUBMISSIONS CLOSED

(checked May 26/21)

Historical fiction. Payment: $25. 2000 to 5000 words. 

https://www.timewornlit.com/submit

Eerie River Publishing: Of Fire and Stars

Deadline: July 30, 2021; Opens June 1, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

LGBTQ+ Dark Fantasy anthology. Theme: Encounters with the fae world and its creatures. Payment: Up to 3000 words $10.00; Up to 5000 words $15.00; Above 5001 words $20.00. 

https://www.eerieriverpublishing.com/open-submission

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Sharpen your writing pencils. Here are a few markets whose deadlines are looming over us.

Photo by Laura Chouette on Unsplash

Time to wax poetic. These Poetry Submission Deadlines Are Coming Upon Us:

    


Otoroshi Journal

Deadline: April 30, 2022; opens April 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horrorku, horror tanka, and horror haibun, art. Payment: Poetry, $1. Art, $10. Submission periods are one month long:

· January for the Spring Issue

· April for the Summer Issue

· July for the Fall Issue

· October for the Winter Issue

https://otoroshijournal.wixsite.com/home/guidelines

Feb 2022

Dragon Soul Press: Organic Ink: Volume 5

Deadline: February 28, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry. “All poetry pieces are welcome. There is no theme.” Word Count – 1000 words minimum. Payment:  Royalties.

https://dragonsoulpress.com/anthologies/

The Southampton Review

Deadline: February 1, 2022; opens January 1, 2022. Submit early in the month to avoid fees

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry, prose, art. Payment: Prose: $100+, Poetry: $75 per poem. Illustration: $100 per page. Art Portfolios: $200 for up to 12 images.

https://www.thesouthamptonreview.com/submit/

Otoroshi Journal

Deadline: January 31st, 2022; opens January 1, 2022

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horrorku, horror tanka, and horror haibun, art. Payment: Poetry, $1. Art, $10. Submission periods are one month long:

· January for the Spring Issue

· April for the Summer Issue

· July for the Fall Issue

· October for the Winter Issue

https://otoroshijournal.wixsite.com/home/guidelines

Dec 2021

Arc Poetry Magazine

Deadline: December 31, 2021, Opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Genre: Poetry. Payment: $50 per page. 

Arc has two reading periods:

  • submissions received from April 1 to July 31 will be read for the Winter issue
  • submissions received from September 1 to December 31 will be read for the Summer issue

https://arcpoetry.ca/submit/

Cincinnati Review

Deadline: December 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Prose, poetry, art. Payment: $25/page for prose in journal. $30/page for poetry in journal.

https://www.cincinnatireview.com/submission_guidelines-2/

Ninth Letter

Deadline: December 31, 2021; opens December 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Prose and poetry. Payment: $25 per printed page, with a maximum payment of $150, as well as two complimentary copies of the issue in which the work appears.

http://www.ninthletter.com/journal/submit

Nov 2021

Broken Sleep Books

Deadline: November 30, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry pamphlets (up to 40 pages). Payment: Royalties.

https://www.brokensleepbooks.com/submissions

Ninth Letter

Deadline: November 30, 2021; opens November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Prose and poetry. Payment: $25 per printed page, with a maximum payment of $150, as well as two complimentary copies of the issue in which the work appears.

http://www.ninthletter.com/journal/submit

Spartan

Deadline: November 30th, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Literary prose, 1500 words max. Payment: none.

https://spartanlit.com/submissions

Songs of Eretz

Deadline: November 15, 2021; opens November 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry, cover art on theme of Place. Payment: $5.

Songs of Eretz Poetry Review Themes & Submission Schedules for 2021:

Month Theme Submission Period Lead Editor

March Circles February 1 – 15 Cummings

June Love May 1 – 15 Gordon

September Religion August 1 – 15 Cummings

December Place November 1 – 15 Gordon

http://www.songsoferetz.com/p/guidelines.html

Foglifter

Deadline: November 1, 2021; opens September 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry, prose, cross-genre work. “Foglifter welcomes daring and thoughtful work by queer and trans writers in all forms, and we are especially interested in cross-genre, intersectional, marginal, and transgressive work.” Payment: $25.

https://foglifter.submittable.com/submit

Gordon Square Review

Deadline: October 31, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry and prose. Payment: $25 per prose piece and $10 per poem.   

http://www.gordonsquarereview.org/submit.html

Harbor Review

Deadline: October 31, 2021; Opens August 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Genre: Poetry. Payment: $10.

Harbor Review publishes two issues a year. We accept original, previously unpublished submissions of poetry and visual art. We place poems in conversation with visual art.

https://www.harbor-review.com/submit

Otoroshi Journal

Deadline: October 31, 2021; opens October 1, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Horrorku, horror tanka, and horror haibun, art. Payment: Poetry, $1. Art, $10. Submission periods are one month long:

· January for the Spring Issue

· April for the Summer Issue

· July for the Fall Issue

· October for the Winter Issue

https://otoroshijournal.wixsite.com/home/guidelines

Sep 2021

Savor: Poems for the Tongue

Deadline: September 30th, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Poetry about food. Payment: Small honorarium.

https://www.friendlycitybooks.com/savor

Working Titles

Deadline: September 30th, 2021; opens May 1, 2021. USPS submissions only.

(checked Jan 24/21)

Genre: Prose written for the digital page, which may incorporate unique visual, aural, or interactive elements. Payment: $250. 

*Electronic submissions outside this period: $3.00 fee to submit electronically per reading period. Make sure you are submitting on the Working Title page.

https://www.massreview.org/submission-guidelines/working-titles-guidelines

Eye to the Telescope

Deadline: September 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Speculative poetry. Theme: The Sea. Payment: US 3¢/word rounded up to nearest dollar; minimum US $3, maximum $25. Speculative poetry is poetry which falls within the genres of science fiction, fantasy, and supernatural horror, plus some related genres such as magic realism, metafiction, and fabulation. It is not easy to give precise definitions, partly because many of these genres are framed in term of fiction rather than poetry.

http://www.eyetothetelescope.com/submit.html

The Southampton Review

Deadline: September 1, 2021, opens August 1, 2021. Submit early in the month to avoid fees

(checked Jul 26/21)

Poetry, prose, art. Payment: Prose: $100+, Poetry: $75 per poem. Illustration: $100 per page. Art Portfolios: $200 for up to 12 images.

https://www.thesouthamptonreview.com/submit/

Aug 2021

Reliquiae (Corbel Stone Press)

Deadline: August 31st, 2021; opens June 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Poetry and Prose. “Reliquiae is a journal of landscape, nature and mythology. Your work must engage with these themes.” Payment: “small payment”.

https://www.corbelstonepress.com/reliquiae

Spartan

Deadline: August 31st, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Literary prose, 1500 words max. Payment: none. 

https://spartanlit.com/submissions

Claw & Blossom Equinox Issue

Deadline: August 22, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Prose and poems that touch upon the natural world. Theme is Strange. Payment: $25.

https://clawandblossom.com/submissions/

Kaleidoscoped

Deadline: August 15, 2021; Opens June 15, 2021

(checked Jun 26/21)

Poetry, prose, media. “We are particularly interested in experimental and hybrid work across all mediums: send us your fragments, your experiments, your photographs, your drawn, your multi, your undefinable, your sound, your memory, your written, your stuff of resistance.” Payment: “Small sum.”

https://www.kaleidoscopedmag.com/

Songs of Eretz

Deadline: August 15, 2021; opens August 1, 2021

(checked May 31/21)

Poetry, cover art on theme of Religion. Payment: $5.

Songs of Eretz Poetry Review Themes & Submission Schedules for 2021:

Month Theme Submission Period Lead Editor

March Circles February 1 – 15 Cummings

June Love May 1 – 15 Gordon

September Religion August 1 – 15 Cummings

December Place November 1 – 15 Gordon

http://www.songsoferetz.com/p/guidelines.html

Yellow Arrow

Deadline: August 15, 2021; opens July 15, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Restrictions: Open to writers who identify as women. Genre: Poetry Chapbook.

https://www.yellowarrowpublishing.com/cbsubmissions

Ongoing Space

Deadline: August 10, 2021

(checked Jul 26/21)

Prose in any genre up to 1000 words based on musical prompt. Payment:  30CAD.  

https://www.ongoing.space/submit

MudRoom: Summer Issue

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked Jun 21/21)

We are seeking poetry and prose in all their forms. Submissions are free, and we pay 15 dollars per accepted piece. MudRoom is somewhere between where you’ve come from and where you’re going. We believe in the liminal, the dirty, the messy, and the mundane. We publish four issues of prose and poetry a year, as well as interviews with writers and book reviews. https://www.mudroommag.com/

We’Moon Lunar Calendar

Deadline: August 1, 2021

(checked May 26/21)

Restrictions: Open to women only. Genre: Art, poetry and prose, 350 words maximum. Payment: Small honorarium.

https://wemoon.ws/pages/copy-of-submitting-art-writing#write

Jul 2021

Arc Poetry Magazine

Deadline: July 31, 2021, Opens April 1, 2021

(checked Jan 24/21)

Genre: Poetry. Payment: $50 per page. 

Arc has two reading periods:

  • submissions received from April 1 to July 31 will be read for the Winter issue
  • submissions received from September 1 to December 31 will be read for the Summer issue

https://arcpoetry.ca/submit/

Wizards in Space

Deadline: July 30, 2021. Accepts reprints.

(checked Jun 25/21)

Poetry, prose, art on theme: bridges & barriers. Payment: $40 per original poem or per page of original art; $20 per reprinted poem or per page of reprinted art; $0.04 per word for original prose, based on final published word count; $0.02 per word for reprinted prose, based on final published word count. 

https://wizardsinspacemag.submittable.com/submit

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My attempt to write a blog post about writing techniques, which I’ve been trying to do since Thursday, got hijacked and I’m attempting to jot off something. Of course, trying to write it today, four days after starting the other, is taking hours because family wants to chat or needs attention. My intended writing time became half a day waiting at the vet.

Life just happens sometimes and takes away your planned writing and editing. Life also gets in the way of your characters, but this vet thing has me thinking about the animal aspect of stories.

Roxy the reverse lampshade

Our stories generally revolve around humans or humanoids. Unless you write for children, where your main characters are just as likely to be animals.

Do you ever include animals in your stories? At the very least as part of the world scenery because they are everywhere and naturally will be encountered? As backdrop characters like that angry looking chair that sets the tone?

How about as small bit characters whose purpose is to reveal something about your main character’s personality?

   .

I did that in The McAllister Farm. Some readers will hate me for it. First for Zeke, the dog at the start of the book, and later for the new McAllister dog, Boomer.

Some readers will tell you they will forever hate any author who harms an animal. Some authors will say that sort of thing is off limits. But in some stories brutal things happen and in real life it is often the innocent that get hurt. Even while your stories are fictional and no real animals are harmed, writing is emulating real life to make your reader feel they are inside the story.

William McAllister is a hard no-nonsense man. He doesn’t hesitate to do what must be done and nothing is more important than the safety of his family. So, when the farm dog, Zeke, is bitten protecting his wife, Marjory, from a rabid raccoon trying to attack her, William knew there was only one thing to do.

Keeping with the times and being a rural farming area, farm dogs were not always vaccinated. They also weren’t pets that were coddled. When it came to putting a dog down, it was not out of the ordinary to treat it like any other farm animal on some farms. A lot of this came from the stories of my own family generations before me. Zeke was a working dog who had a specific purpose and that was to keep away from the house anything that might be considered a danger to William’s family. Coyotes, bears, and people.

This opening chapter showed both the ruthlessness of William McAllister, and his softer side. Zeke was bit by the rabid raccoon. He would be infected and suffer a degenerative death. There is no cure for rabies and it is an interspecies disease. Zeke would also be a danger to William’s family. Any animal or person coming in contact with the dog risked being infected with the contagious disease.

The gun would be a quicker kill, but William put his family first even in this. “Best not to use the gun. The kids will hear.” Marjory was distraught and he knew the kids would be without having to see their teary faces to know it.

Inside the dim interior, William stops and turns to Zeke.

Zeke stands staring up at him expectantly.

“Zeke, drop it,” he commands. “Sit.”

Zeke obediently does as ordered, looking up at him with trusting eyes.

“Best not to use the gun. The kids will hear.”

William casually moves to the wall where a shovel hangs. Taking it down, he approaches the dog.

Waiting patiently, Zeke sniffs around at the air, not paying attention to his master.

William walks around the dog, moving behind him and suddenly swinging the shovel in what is intended to be a fatal blow.

The scene gets more traumatizing to the reader before it ends, but even after the brutality of Zeke’s death, one William partially fails at because he’s concerned with upsetting his family more, and perhaps he even held back on that swing out of feelings of remorse for the dog, William showed care in the gentle treatment he gave the dog’s body in burying it.

And again later, in showing just the edge of the harsh reality of their world, the new dog, Boomer, is also injured protecting his family. This time, the little girl Sophie ran into a pack of coyotes. William failed his family in not driving them off or killing them sooner. The den is too close to the farmhouse. That is the remorse he lives with. And on seeing the severity of Boomer’s injuries, William automatically turns to what he knows. The dog should not be made to suffer unnecessarily and he does not think he will survive. It’s that soft spot in William that intervenes again, but this time the only danger Boomer is to his family is to their broken hearts.

The little girl, Sophie, trying to gently hug the dog, still a puppy, their pleading pained eyes as she begged her father not to kill Boomer. How could he not relent?

It’s a tough life for the McAllisters and Boomer will continue to play his occasional part in revealing things about the family members. Sophie’s brother Jason, with his barely repressed anger, self-doubts, and jealousy of his sister. Marjory in her anxious concern over protecting her children from everything, including from her own husband at times. And again near the end of the story where the family is pitted in a standoff against the community, Boomer will take his place as a story tool to bring home the harsh realities of the darker side of humans. Spoiler alert: Boomer will survive this story.

    .

    .

Where do animals place in your stories? Have you considered it? Are they all animal free? How much thought and story do you put into the personalities and impact the narratives have on the animals in them?

After the long stressful day waiting for the vet

I try to put a little humanity and personality into every character. Even a short sentence of that character whose whole existence is three sentences long. The animals are no different. They are confused, trusting, and feeling even if it is only behind the scenes which don’t make it into the story.

   .

Even in our real world we sometimes forget to consider just what is going through the minds of the animals around us. That dog silently watching you walk by its house. The one maniacally barking and lunging at the fence as you pass. Your own pet enthusiastically greeting you or saying goodbye at the door only to rush to the window to watch you go.

   .

Observing these things with the mindset of trying to see it from their point of view like you do with a human character can add a depth of understanding to your writing.

   .

   .

The sympathetic sister

I recently read an article about how a study analyzing stress hormones in dogs showed them to have lower levels of it if the owner leaving simply takes a moment longer to show them some love and say goodbye when they leave versus rushing out the door.

This article was completely forgotten when we ourselves left, being rushed out the door without the chance to do anything more than shout a quick, “Bye and have fun,” as your are being verbally pushed out of the house.

Three-quarters of the human part of our household vanished mysteriously Sunday. We were rushed out so fast we didn’t get the usual moment of goodbyes at the door. Both dogs always come to the door to say bye when you leave, even just stepping out to pull the garbage bins to the curb.

What goes through the minds of pets when some of their people disappear? They don’t know what’s happening. If you aren’t someone who regularly goes away overnight or for days for work or school, they aren’t used to you being gone. And now with Covid forcing so many to work from home or be out of work, pets have had to adjust to losing their quiet time being home alone for hours and become used to some of their people never or rarely leaving the house.

Not feeling good.
Red, raw, and swollen

By Tuesday one of the dogs had an irritated foot without having done anything to actually injure it. When we returned Thursday the foot was worse. She yelped and cried when we tried to look at it, trying to hid the foot, and obsessively licking it despite our best efforts to keep it wrapped. The dog was out of sorts and very cranky. And being Canada Day, the vet offices were closed.

Between the day closure and a large outbreak of kennel cough currently happening in the area, it took two more days to see a vet. Arriving at 9:30 am and sitting for hours in the car outside the vet’s office because they are doing curbside only with Covid, we were camped at the emergency vet.

This is a dog who was absolutely terrified of cars when we got her from the shelter. She’s over that fear, but not the anxiety, so waiting hours in the car was not ideal. And with the current heat wave it was too hot to take her out to walk around, so it was sitting in the air conditioned car with the engine running the whole time.

So out of sorts.

Spending hours in a car is enough time, apparently, for a large dog to abandon alternately huffing against the window like an anxiously bored child and trying to open the door, and learn how to operate the electric window button. She starts rolling down the window and we’re rolling it up before she can get it down enough to jump out. And repeat, repeat, repeat. Fortunately, there was a lock button on the driver’s door to stop children from playing with the window buttons.

The long wait also gave the opportunity to watch others bringing their pets to hand them off at the door and picking them up. There was the fat dog that had to be helped over that flat metal floor piece separating the vet office tile from the outside world at the door. Apparently the dog couldn’t step up over it. And the smartly prancing little dog being taken for a pee walk by a vet tech, its bright pink cast blinding in the sun. The little dog kept staring at the cars with a look that said, “Mom? Mom? Mom?”

They all exhibited a similar behavior, the reluctance to enter and the sulking slinking out the door after. Even Roxy after her turn finally came, went in reluctantly and she smashed her cone-headed face into the door before sulkily slinking out back to us.

The dog also came from the shelter with an abject fear of vets and needles, and very traumatized by the whole shelter experience. So, we knew she would not be happy to see the vet.

But why are vet offices so filled with anxiety? Do they remember the needles? The techs and vets are always so friendly towards them, offering cookies, but most animals seem so scared and anxious. Is it just them feeding off your anxiety, even if it’s only the size of the bill making you unhappy? Are they reacting to sensing and smelling the fear of the other animals? Is it the smell of sickness and injury? Do they smell the deaths of those who came before and were euthanized?

Our reverse-lampshade dog was clearly relieved to meet us at the door and slink out after being held down to be x-rayed and her foot examined. They wanted to sedate her for it, but she wouldn’t let them.

More than $400 Canadian later, three medications, the cone of shame, and the entire day shot, we learned there was nothing actually wrong with her that was not self-inflicted. There was no injury. The vet figured she stress licked her foot raw, which caused a cascading event of more licking because it hurt and more stress licking and more pain and inflammation, which caused more obsessive licking until it was raw, swollen, and infected.

And now she seems to be getting stuck on everything almost intentionally. Almost like giving us the middle finger while unhappily silently seeking attention and feeling sorry for herself. She gets stuck on chairs, tables, people, the other dog, and can’t get through a door. She paces and lies down and paces, unsure what to do with herself with that big cone constantly in the way of everything.

This isn’t the first time we’ve left the dogs, but they were used to all of us leaving the house for up to ten to fourteen hours a day, depending on the person, for work and school. And with kids activities, that was often followed by more hours away. It was rotating constantly with who was out or home at what times of day and night, and rarely everyone home at once. We went on vacations leaving them home alone for a week with a dog-sitter staying with them. A virtual stranger.

We never before had issues with one of the dogs going drama queen and stressing themselves like this over anyone being away an extended time. Not until Covid and three of four of us not leaving the house for months at a time (okay, maybe a year at a time, or at least it feels like it) because of schools and offices being shut down, and stores and businesses being for the most part shut down.

Maybe taking that moment to say goodbye with some extra ear scratches would have helped. Maybe not. But they are more anxious every time anyone leaves the house even before the camping trip that some of us went on. And leaving one of their favorite people home with them wasn’t enough.

What happens when the world opens up and we return to full time school and working in offices and other jobs, and our animals are stressed over our suddenly vanishing for hours every day?

   .

   .

If this were all part of a story, how would I consider the animals’ feelings and how they relate to and affect their human’s reactions? The pining of the dog and its growing anxiety, whether its humans are aware or entirely oblivious to it, both the humans present and away.

In making our stories real for our readers, we want to add as many little touches of reality as the story needs. These details are also valuable tools in revealing things about our characters, both obvious and hidden personality characteristics.

Everywhere you go, everything you do, is an opportunity to observe the world and its interactions. Watching both people and animals gives you an insight into making your stories better.

Take some moments to watch the often neglected characters of our world, animals. Your pets, others’ pets, farm animals in passing, and the wild creatures around you. Observe people and dogs distant interactions when they pass on the sidewalks. Even watching birds interactions is an insight into that hidden and often skipped piece of stories. And consider this, would adding the odd animal as part of your story or world-building enhance your story? They are everywhere and affect every part of our lives even when we don’t own a pet ourselves.

Keep writing my friends, and I have to go rescue my dog who got stuck on the wall. Yes, the wall.

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Let’s take a break this week to just bask in our creativity.

Photo by Yann Jacobsen on Unsplash

What gets your creative juices flowing, spurring on sudden onsets of new ideas?

Are you a visual-leaning creative, your muse awakened by things you see? Scenes, scenery, pictures, and the like?

Or perhaps you are inspired by auditory cues? Music, birds singing, the ugly sounds of traffic and the city, or the beatific auditory dance of nature?

Is it the things you experience that stimulate the writer in you with those ‘Aha!’ moments? A scene in a movie, a real world moment you witnessed, the news, or world or community events? Books, poetry, and other literary works? Submersing yourself in all the stimuli of visiting certain places, art galleries, museums, and parks?

Perhaps it’s your relationships with people and pets that you draw on for inspirations, or the opposite, sweet solitude.

There are a lot of schools of thought on what makes us creatives tick. What it is that makes us… us.

Some think creatives to fall into categories like being risk takers who are happier taking on that big project instead of sticking to the boring mundane. And people who are not afraid to face potential failure. For us, failure is a learning curve and mistakes are just the bumps we learn from. In fact, those setbacks may make you want even more to figure it out.

We are willing to be different. We have to be or we’d probably be hiding in some corner writing when no one is looking and never releasing our creations on the world. Status quo shmatus quo, something here isn’t like all the others and it’s you. What others think of you isn’t as important as writing our hearts out.

Have you seen the movie Divergent? That’s you. Instead of falling into step of being who everyone else thinks you should be, doing what they want you to or what they think is ‘normal’, you challenge the boundaries of what is considered normal thinking and perspectives by others.

Some people out there even think we’re weird. That’s okay, because difference is beautiful.

Take some time this week to explore your creative energy, your muses, and your inspirations. Try out new things, new ways to ignite that creative spark. Find inspirations in new places and different ways.

Challenge yourself to try a new medium; drawing, painting, crafts, sculpting, rearranging your room, experiment with cooking, flower arranging, anything goes if you put the creative spirit into it.

Visit a new genre and explore it through reading and writing it. Have fun with it. Are you typically true to a single genre? Then try a crossover that mixes genres together.

Play with shorts. Not the kind you wear, but the written shorts. Micro poems, micro fiction or nonfiction. A single scene or description. Whatever catches your interest. These also make excellent writing practices.

Just for fun, take the Creative Type personality test by Adobe Create:  https://mycreativetype.com/

Adobe Create lists these personality types:

  • The Artist: “The Seeing beauty, creating beauty.”
  • The Thinker: “The Deep thoughts, big questions.”
  • The Adventurer: “The So much inspiration, so little time.”
  • The Maker: “The Committed to your craft.”
  • The Producer: “The Process is power.”
  • The Dreamer: “The power of imagination unleashed.”
  • The Innovator: “Move, shake, disrupt, repeat.”
  • The Visionary: “Imagining the impossible.”

* I got “You are the Dreamer”

Looking for ideas?

Try going onto a page like Unsplash and using a random search word and pick any photo as a writing prompt. Write anything. An external or internal (their inner person) character description, world build the scene or moment, write the action of what is or is not happening. Get creative, poetic, anything that strikes your fancy.

Do you have a music app like Spotify? Do a random song shuffle and write whatever that song inspires.

Go outside. On your balcony, front steps, anywhere you can safely people watch. Just watch and pick a moment to write about.

Or seek nature. If your yard backs onto a river or bush, that’s perfect. Maybe talk a walk on a trail or to a park. Urban nature trails are filled with wildlife, particularly if they run along a river or stream.

If you have any other suggestions for finding inspirations and waking that muse when it’s sluggish, you are more than welcome to share them.

Keep writing my friends and enjoy this beautiful summer weather.

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The first time I heard the term “story bible” my thoughts went immediately to the most commonly used meaning of the word ‘bible’. But it’s the second, informal, meaning of the word that applies here – “a book regarded as authoritative in a particular sphere.” – Oxford Languages

It felt weird calling something a ‘bible’ which was, in my more limited knowledge at that time, reserved only for a book that holds huge religious significance.

Photo by Debby Hudson on Unsplash

To better define just what a story bible is, consider the synonyms for ‘bible’:  ABC, authoritative book, companion, enchiridion (“a book containing essential information on a subject”), essential book, guide, handbook, manual, primer, vade mecum (“a handbook or guide that is kept constantly at hand for consultation.”).

I had to look two of these up, so I included their definitions, also from Oxford Languages.

You can call it whatever you want, really, but ‘story bible’ is the commonly used industry term.

What actually is a story bible?

Your story bible is the document you use to keep track of the details and worldbuilding in your novel. If you are doing a series, you might have a series bible that spans the larger story in addition to, or instead of, individual story bibles for each book. You may also have more broken down specific character bibles or world bibles if your story has more than one world.

Story bible vs. outline.

Story bibles go by many names—from series bible to novel bible, to the more specific character bible—but they all are the same thing: A document used to keep track of the worldbuilding and details in your novel.

It sounds pretty similar to an outline, and it is, but it’s not quite the same thing.

Both will duplicate certain details like your characters’ names and backgrounds, important worldbuilding points like technologies, languages, and locations, and the little details you need to remember about what you foreshadowed early in your novel.

The difference is in the scope.

The story bible is a quick and short reference guide for editing. Its focus will be narrow and restricted to the basic details. It might even be in point form. This guide makes a handy tool to quickly check when you’re making changes to your story. It’s also helpful for your cowriters if you have any, editors, and proofreaders.

An outline is like a story bible, but more detailed and more in-depth. It’s a guide with more meat for the purpose of plotting and fleshing out your story. It is a not-so-quick reference guide that fills in all the specifics and organizes your plot.

Purpose of the story bible.

Having to go back searching through a 300+ page manuscript to verify what color that car/dress/other item was is not something you or your editors want to have to do.

Your story bible is your reference guide for all your planning for the novel: story concept, setting, cultural references, bits of dialogue and phrases to keep language consistent, potential plot conflicts, character descriptions, and more.

This can be especially helpful if you participate in National Novel Writing Month. Quickly jotting down little details can save a lot of time spent wondering about or searching for the small things you need to be consistent on. Instead, you can move forward and spend that time trying to blast out 1667 words per day.

Maintaining continuity is perhaps the most important job of the story bible. You never know what small detail a reader might latch on and be put off by your lack of consistency with. Especially with the more complex science fiction and fantasy epics. Suddenly changing the name of a place because you didn’t remember correctly which name you went with can be confusing and off-putting for the reader. And, keeping things consistent can be hard when you are revising, rewriting, or, like me, have more stories than you can name on the go.

Creating a story bible.

If you’ve never created a story bible, don’t let that intimidate you. You can do an online search and come up with all kinds of ideas and suggestions of what to include. The lists are abundant and if you compile them yours will become ridiculously long. There are also templates you can download, but they might not seem relevant if they don’t match your genre.

The key is making it yours. Make your story bible what you need it to be. Don’t make up details that are irrelevant and wouldn’t be in your story otherwise just for the sake of filling in a form list.

Start early. If you’re a plotter, you might want to create your bible first and then expand on it to create your outline, or you might find it works better to create it simultaneously with your outline. It you are a pantser, quilter, spastic quilter (me!), the best advice I can give is to create and update your bible and outline as you go from the start. Going back to do them later in the game is time intensive and leaves you open to the mistakes having them would have avoided. Maybe I’ll write a post one day on how to convert that manuscript to an outline if you didn’t do one as you wrote.

Keep the details light. You don’t want to duplicate your outline here. This is meant to be a quick reference guide. If you want deeper darker dirt on the details, refer to the outline for more. In fact, this is where hyperlinks are a beautiful awesomely spectacular wonderful thing.

Using hyperlinks, you can be a click away from more details in your outline. Hyperlinks are not just to bring you to web pages. In fact, if you are formatting an eBook, they are absolutely essential to link your table of contents to jump to the chapters. To make it easier, you might even choose to have your story bible at the beginning of your outline document so the hyperlinks are contained in one document you can share, move, or rename as needed.

It’s trickier if you decide to also use them in your working notes in your WIP to bring you to the relevant places in your outline. Warning: changing file locations and names will break your hyperlinks if they are not linked to a place in the same document.

Your bible, outline, and story are fluid like the writing process. They are likely to change until the finished product.

There is no one size fits all story bible. Each will be a little unique to the writer and the needs of the story.

Let’s start with those most central key points. Title your story bible and list your story bible header information.

  • Story Bible Title
  • Series title and book titles
  • Genre/timeframe
  • Elements/rules of the world
  • Setting notes, ie) time, place, mood, context (create a section for each setting)
  • Story Drive (everyone wants to say their story is “character driven” because that’s the popular story driver. But what drives the character who is driving the story?)

Example:

Where the Bodies Are – Story Bible

Series: The McAllister Series, book 1

Central conflict/plotline: A serial killer must be stopped.

Torn, reality fractured, the killer is desperate to be stopped.

Genre/timeframe:   Crime fiction, antagonist lead, contemporary urban/rural, current period

Main features/rules of the world:   Real world / real life rules

Setting notes:

  • Time:    current day/year not specified
  • Place:    small city formerly a rural town grown in size, rural and urban locations
  • Mood:  dark, urgent, suspense
  • Context:  all real world assumed/not detailed: demographics, political systems, social views, cultural practices
  • Story Driver:  character/antagonist, drive to stop the killer, driven to stop himself killing; underlying story driver: killer’s dead sister, Cassie

For the body of your story bible you will want to categorize your sections to cover pertinent things like:

Characters’ Overview:

  • List of characters/characters’ names:
    • Most important/focal character(s) – what character the story cannot exist without
    • Lead character(s)
    • Secondary character(s)
    • Other character(s)
  • Characters’ relationships to one another – this could be one peoples relationship to another or individual characters’.
  • Key features of characters – again, this could be specific to groups or individuals.
  • Character portraits – key details only.

Worldbuilding:

  • Maps.
  • Locations and settings.
  • Races, cultures, and social norms.
  • Technologies, spells, and magical systems.
  • Conlang words (the language you invented for your fictional world) and their proper usage.

Plot timelines.

Example:

Characters’ Overview:

  • Key features/character portraits of characters:
    • The killer
      • Male, not described, identity secret, torn in a fractured world where reality and insanity blurs, obsessed with finding his dead sister; kidnaps women resembling what she would look like if the grew up, murders them in a fit of blackout rage when they are not his sister.
    • The Killer’s Dead Sister: Cassie
      • Female, died as a child, The Killer blames himself.
    • Beth (Detectives’ office)
      • Female, 30ish, competent, “perfectly painted nails and matching lips”
    • Detective Jim McNelly
      • Male, older/middle-aged, obese, slovenly, gruff, ugly ancient brown rusting Oldsmobile, driven to stop the killer, takes each victim personally, unrevealed mystery behind dead wife.
    • Detective Michael Underwood (McNelly’s partner)
      • Male, younger/not too young, generally considered attractive, likeable guy, seems just as home drinking with the boys or at Aunt Bee’s quilting group, driven to stop the killer for his own (spoiler redacted) reason.
      • Goes undercover as orderly at hospital to watch prime victim 1 “Jane Doe”.
    • Molly, nurse (hospital)
      • Mousy, nervous, thinks she’s a bit clairvoyant, protective ‘mother hen’ to prime victim 1 “Jane Doe” in hospital.
    • Prime Victim 1: “Jane Doe”
      • Female, young woman, left for dead, no memory, killer obsessed with taking her back.
    • Prime Victim 2: “Kathy”, Katherine Kingslow
      • Female, young woman, abusive boyfriend, comes to see kidnapping as rescue from Ronnie (boyfriend), develops Stockholm syndrome relationship with kidnapper/The Killer.
    • Prime Victim 3: Connie Wilson
      • Female, young woman, held prisoner at the farm with prime victims 1 & 2, killed when the Jane Doe and Connie try to escape.
    • Reporter Lawrence Hawkworth
      • Male, tall/skinny, buzzard-like features and mannerisms, reporter with ‘less than moral morals’, colorblind, secret dream of being a cop, is clairvoyant, confidant/friend/associate of Detective Jim McNelly, helps McNelly search for The Killer.

Worldbuilding:

  • Contemporary urban / rural. Real world.
  • Unnamed small city formerly a rural town grown in size, rural and urban locations.
  • **Locations not named because this could be your city/town/rural area. This could be your community.
  • Old hardware store: inspired by a real hardware store in a real small town in Manitoba
  • The farm (Killer’s hideout): long abandoned, rundown.
  • Police precinct: a small-town precinct that never grew up with the growing town turned into a small city. Police on the 2nd floor, municipal offices on the 1st floor.

Plot timelines:

Part One: Jane Doe: Learning about Victim 1 Jane Doe and the people connected to her.

  • Introduce Jane Doe victim left for dead.
  • Introduce characters: Nurse Molly, orderly (det. M. Underwood), Detective McNelly, Beth (civ. Missing Persons), reporter Lawrence Hawkworth.
  • Mystery man (Jason McAllister) tries to see Jane Doe at hospital after visiting hours.
  • Reporter Lawrence Hawkworth starts investigating the story of vic. 1 Jane Doe.

Part Two: Losing Grip: Killer has break from reality, almost kidnaps a little girl.

  • The Killer watches a woman’s house. She resembles his sister, but grown up. He slips into the blackout void of his madness and therein attempts to kidnap the little girl who drew his attention.
  • The Killer is sickened and in shock over almost taking an innocent child, not his intended target.

Part Three: Suffer the Righteous & Pamela Makes Three: The third woman kidnapping victim.

  • Deceased victim (2, 2nd Jane Doe) is found in parking garage, The Killer murders ex-priest/witness.
  • The Killer takes Pamela, victim # 3 / lesser victim character, not prime vic. 3.

This example is shortened for brevity here. Listing every bit character and event is not relevant to the blog post.

You see from my example that I only included the very basic details. If I described something (Jim McNelly’s car) in more specific terms that cannot be changed, I included that information. Otherwise the story bible becomes too long and cumbersome or becomes a detailed outline.

In some cases, particularly for a lengthy list of characters or locations, a checkbox form might be better suited.

This is a very basic example, but if you have your pertinent details filled in with this form repeated down the page for as many characters as you need, you can just click/check-box down with the minimum time spent filling in details and it keeps everything consistently organized:

Characters:

Name:                                         ☐ Female          ☐ Male              ☐ Other                 

                                                          ☐ Infant            ☐ Child               ☐ Teen

                                                        ☐ Y Adult          ☐ Middle aged ☐ Elder

                                                              ☐ Tall                 ☐ Short              ☐ Average

                                                              ☐ Thin               ☐ Obese            ☐ Average

                                                              Species/People:

                                                              ☐ People A        ☐ People B        ☐ People C

                                                              ☐ Town A           ☐Town B           ☐ Town C

If you need more in-depth lengthy details that’s where you want to turn to your character sheets or outline because you are no longer looking to reference a quick list guide.

Keep writing my friends and start journaling your storytelling adventure by plotting your bible and outline.

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