Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday musings and market news

When I run across market info that might be of interest to sci-fi/fantasy writers, I try to pass it along. I think we fall into that category, so here's something that might fit you!

Clarksworld Magazine—PO Box 172, Stirling NJ 07980. Editor: Neil Clarke. "Clarkesworld Magazine is an online venue and chapbook series for short works of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Each month, Clarkesworld will publish two pieces of fiction, one solicited from an author with one or more books published, and one chosen from the rolling open call for submissions below."
"There have been some changes in our submissions process, so please read our guidelines carefully before submitting something a story to us."
"Clarkesworld is also accepting queries for nonfiction and art."
Fiction Guidelines: 1000–4000 words; pays 10¢/word. "We have a firm word limit of 4000 words. Please do not query about word lengths. We will not consider stories longer than 4000 words or shorter than 1000 words. We claim first world electronic rights, first print rights for the production of signed/numbered limited edition chapbooks (author must be willing to sign 100+ chapbooks), and non-exclusive anthology rights."
"Stories must be:"
1. "Well-written. Language is important. If your story is only a story because you didn't have the funds to produce and direct a short film or a sufficiently large live audience for the telling of a fanciful anecdote, then I don't want to see it. There is no distinction between ‘style’ and ‘substance’ or ‘story’ and ‘writing’—stories are made out of words. If your story isn't worth reading as a collection of words, sentences, and paragraphs, it isn't worth experiencing in story form."
2. "Convenient for on-screen reading. Very long paragraphs or typographical trickery may work against you."
"Science fiction need not be ‘hard’ SF, but rigor is appreciated. Fantasy can be folkloric, medieval, contemporary, surreal, etc. Horror can be supernatural or psychological, so long as it is frightening. There are no barriers as to levels of profanity, gore, or sexuality allowed, but high amounts of profanity, gore, and sexuality are generally used poorly. Be sure to use them well if you do use them."
"Though no particular setting, theme, or plot is anathema to us, the following are likely hard sells:"
a. "stories in which a milquetoast civilian government is depicted as the sole obstacle to either catching some depraved criminal or to an uncomplicated military victory"
b. "stories in which the words ‘thou’ or ‘thine’ appear"
c. "talking cats"
d. "talking swords"
e. "stories where the climax is dependent on the spilling of intestines"
f. "stories where FTL travel is as easy as is it on television shows or movies"
g. "time travel too"
h. "stories that depend on some vestigial belief in Judeo-Christian mythology in order to be frightening (i.e., Cain and Abel are vampires, the End Times are a' comin', Communion wine turns to Christ's literal blood and it's HIV positive, Satan's gonna getcha, etc.)"
i. "stories about rapist-murderer-cannibals"
j. "stories about young kids playing in some field and discovering ANYTHING. (a body, an alien craft, Excalibur, ANYTHING)."
k. "stories about the stuff we all read in Scientific American three months ago"
l. "stories where the Republicans, or Democrats, or Libertarians, or the Spartacist League, etc. take over the world and either save or ruin it"
m. "your AD&D game"
n. "‘funny’ stories that depend on, or even include, puns"
o. "sexy vampires, wanton werewolves, or lusty pirates"
p. "stories where the protagonist is either widely despised or widely admired simply because he or she is just so smart and/or strange"
q. "stories that take place within an artsy-fartsy bohemia as written by an author who has clearly never experienced one"
r. "your trunk stories"
Fiction Submissions Process Guidelines - NEW: "Clarkesworld has adopted an online submissions system to help streamline our process and improve communication with authors. As a result, we will no longer accept E-mail submissions. Go [to the Web site] to submit your stories."
"Our online submissions form is designed to be simple. All fields (author, E-mail, title, cover letter, and story) are mandatory. Your cover letter should contain your publishing history and any other relevant information (e.g., if you send us a lusty pirate story and happen to BE a lusty pirate, mention that). Stories must be in standard manuscript format and can be submitted in either .RTF or .DOC format. No simultaneous submissions. If you have questions, concerns or technical issues, please contact Neil Clarke [at E-mail address below]."
"After completing the online submission form, you will receive an E-mail confirmation with a tracking number. This number can be used at any time to check the status of your submission. If you do not receive this E-mail, please contact Neil."
"Our goal is to respond to submissions within two weeks. We do ask that you:"
a. "Please do not send queries until after a three-week period has passed. Please check our forum or Neil's blog or our forum for any important announcements first."
b. "Do not send revisions to a submission at any time."
c. "Writers may not submit another story for a period of seven days after receiving a rejection."
d. "Please do not re-submit stories that have been rejected. Do not query for permission."
e. "Writers whose work is accepted may not submit again until six months after their story is published."
f. "Please do not argue with rejection slips."
"If you are uncertain about anything above, we recommend following the most conservative interpretation."
[E-mail: Questions:;].

The Edge of Propinquity—See Web site. Editor: Jennifer Brozek. "NOTE: These stories are intended for a mature audience."
"The Edge of Propinquity is a series of short stories exploring the world around us that lurks just beneath the surface. It is the world of the unexplained, supernatural, magic, horror, duty, responsibility, black humor, conspiracy, unknown heritage, and power."
Theme for 2009: "The theme for the 2009 year of TEoP is ‘Compromise.’ The theme for the first year of The Edge of Propinquity was ‘Revelations.’ The theme for the second year was ‘Consequences.’ The theme for the third year was ‘Retaliation.’ Your story may encompass and expand on the previous themes."
"In order to be accepted for publication, stories must fit the Webzine's theme and setting. The setting is a modern day story focusing on a character deep within the hidden world that surrounds mundane society. All guest author stories must include an active compromise from one character to another (i.e., The giving up of one thing to get something else). This can be mundane to supernatural (i.e., man allows monster to live in return for treasure), supernatural to mundane (i.e., werewolf allows kid to live after promised secrecy), supernatural to supernatural (i.e., mage versus mage compromising over a stolen artifact) or mundane versus mundane via supernatural means (i.e., murder covered up if allowed on the cheerleading squad)."
"The hidden world does not have to be supernatural. It could be conspiracy based. No far future, medieval, Heaven/Hell, or alternate dimension stories, please."
2000–6000 words; pays $50/story. "This flat rate fee is payable through PayPal within seven days of the story's publication."
Submission Guidelines:
1. "Your story must be an original, unpublished, stand-alone short story not based in any of the other Edge of Propinquity story worlds."
2. "Send submissions to [E-mail address below] with the subject line ‘TEoP SUBMISSION: [Title Name].’"
3. "All submissions must be sent in plain text in the body of the E-mail. E-mails with attachments will be deleted without being read. If your story requires specific formatting, use standard plain text formatting techniques."
4. "If your story is selected, you will need to provide a 100x100 pixel black and white headshot as well as a 100–150 word biography to be published with your story. Please see the Guest Quarters section of the site for examples."
5. "No simultaneous submissions."
6. "Note: You should recent a confirmation of receipt of your story within 48 hours of submission. If you do not receive acknowledgment, please query. After that, you should receive an answer within eight weeks of submission. If you do not receive an answer as to whether or not The Edge of Propinquity will retain your story after eight weeks, please query."
Usage & Terms: "By submitting your short fiction to The Edge of Propinquity, you are agreeing to the following usage and terms for your story."
1. "Exclusive first digital publication rights for a period of one month, and non-exclusive digital publication rights through the end of 2010. The story will be linked from The Edge of Propinquity front page for one month. After that month, you may submit your story to any other market so long as you inform the editor/publisher of the story's prior publication in The Edge of Propinquity."
a. "During and after the month your story appears on the front page, it will be located in the Guest Quarters section of The Edge of Propinquity Web site until January 1, 2010."
b. "After January 1, 2010, all guest author stories will be archived in The Edge of Propinquity: Compromise archive for one year (2009)."
2. "Non-exclusive print publication rights. Our goal is to publish a hard copy anthology of The Edge of Propinquity. As such, authors must agree to give non-exclusive print publication rights to The Edge of Propinquity. If, on submitting your story to another publisher you enter into an agreement that requires exclusive print publication rights, it is your responsibility to contact the editor of The Edge of Propinquity immediately. If The Edge of Propinquity becomes a hard-copy anthology, all guest author stories will be included and the author will receive one complimentary contributor copy of the anthology."
3. "You retain copyright to the work."


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