“Set it in space, in the future, and include some friendly non-humanoid aliens.”
Cheat sheet: Flat Rate US$10.00 for 3500+ words. Accepting 3500-5,000 words only. Paid by Paypal. Doc file format only (not docx or anything else). Original, never before published fiction only. (Kindle ebook and Amazon printed formats – KDP’s automatic software scans for previous publications and rejects duplicates.) No simultaneous submissions. For your US$10.00 I’ll get first print rights, along with the right to include it, if I choose, in one annual anthology due out in October. I’ll also feature excerpts on the site, and perhaps in enewsletters. If it’s utter genius, I might make the story fully available on the site for free. Read below for details. No contracts yet. By submitting you are agreeing to these terms. If you keep submitting brilliance I might be able to hire you to write something specific for a future issue. (And pay more.) If you’ve read Alien Dimensions and just want to try your hand at writing something that I might buy, but aren’t sure where to start, set it in space in the future, and include some friendly non-humanoid aliens. Read the details for the submissions email.
Submissions for each issue close on the 16th of the previous month.
Hi. I’m Neil A. Hogan and I’m the editor of Alien Dimensions. There is just me behind the scenes, so apologies if there is a delay in replying somewhere down the track. I usually do my best to reply within 7 days but, you know, that bottle of wine on the weekend, or that short story I’m working on, may push it to 8.
I recently read online that some decades old publications get between 700 and 1000 submissions a month. These publications tend to ask for more contemporary stories, or contemporary style human drama set in a slightly SF environment. While writing something is always hard, encouraging writers to tap into their experience and focus on the beauty of the word, rather than asking them to come up with a completely alien world that blows your mind, really doesn’t appeal to me that much. Sorry about that. That’s why I created Alien Dimensions. The goal is to release stories with mind-numbing ideas, brain expanding concepts, or just to get a reader to say WTF? There isn’t enough hard core science fiction out there so, that’s what I’m looking for. I doubt I’ll ever receive 700 a month, so expect a fairly fast turn around with your submission.
To give you an idea of the sort of mind-bending stuff I’m talking about, I’m currently writing a simple story where a million-year-old alien has been tasked with moving the Milky Way Galaxy out of the path of the Andromeda Galaxy, and the pseudoscience he needs to utilise to be able to do it. Let’s see if I can convincingly move a galaxy in under 5000 words!
Even so, if you can write a decent story, at least touching on some quantum physics, or any other science for that matter, you’ll get my attention. (I’d rather learn it through reading SF than try to get my head around it in a course!)
I’ve just got around to seeing The Martian. Brilliant stuff. Love most of the science in it, and Matt Damon was great. The Martian is the go-to movie for anyone wanting to get the basics on how to write a contemporary science fiction story.
About Alien Dimensions
Alien Dimensions is a not-for-profit science fiction publication with a focus on independent authors from around the world, open to submissions from anyone, anywhere from any walk of life. (I love humans too!) So, you’ll find a mix of English grammar and spelling from the UK, Australia and the USA, as well as region specific mother tongue influences on sentence construction and punctuation usage. I don’t/wouldn’t want to destroy some of the subtle flavours / flavors / taste that someone has/had added to their work so I’ll only change/be changing major/noticeable grammar problems where/if possible. English teachers beware!
I’m always on the lookout for new hard science fiction stories. Please note that in recent years the lines have become blurred as to what fantasy is and what science fiction is, mainly because marketers are promoting science fiction as fantasy, as fantasy sells more. The definition for Alien Dimensions is that science fiction contains real or extrapolated scientific ideas or concepts, and I need more of those. So, I have many fantasy stories ready to go for the rest of the year, but not enough hard core science fiction stories containing real science.
If you’ve written a science fiction story that you’ve had rejected, worked on to improve, sent it to someone else, but then been rejected again and given up on, perhaps you could submit that to me? I might reject it too, but I’m looking for great ideas. If the ideas are great and teaches readers something, but the story just needs a little tweaking, I might be able to help you rewrite it to make it work. (You’ll get the credit, of course!)
If you write in the style of Ken Liu, Greg Bear, Isaac Asimov, Poul Anderson, Clifford D Simak, Arthur C. Clarke, Larry Niven, Stephen Baxter, Piers Anthony or Paul Cornell, and like to research your subject matter before writing, you might have what I’m looking for.
I’ll consider your story and if it is suitable, offer you a flat rate of US$10.00 (ten dollars) for it. Minimum 3500 words. If I suddenly get over 400 sales a month for several months, that will be reviewed, so tell your friends!
What I’m looking for at this time:
Main character discovers an interesting, futuristic issue and solves it using science (or convincing pseudoscience or extrapolated science based on current science) So, no battle-oriented stories. Think intellectual Doctor Who stories where the character uses his/her mind to solve a problem, but with perhaps a bit more science based in fact.
Always set in the future, at least 100 years hence. Happier with 1000 years hence. Let’s avoid 20th/21st century baggage and just tell an original story.
Always some kind of non-humanoid aliens present, usually friendly.
Stories featuring no humans are even better! The more alien the world is that you set your story in, the more excited I’ll get. (No cheating. ‘No humans’ doesn’t mean humans who no longer look human because of living on some other planet! A non-human story could be intellectual bacteria, plants with tentacles, a conscious galaxy, or some other not even vaguely humanoid creature / energy being.)
Always end on a positive note (even if you destroy the entire human race it’ll still be positive for someone!)
PG 13. No sex, swearing or obvious LGBT themes, unless the entire story will fall apart without it.
Hard science. If your character discovers a way to view the structure of a dimensional portal as a tesseract, and then uses mathematical formula translated into sonic harmonics to control it, give the maths! If your character can confirm that the vibration speed for shifting outside of space/time is 330,000 cycles per second, explain in detail how he/she worked it out. (I didn’t do this in one of my stories. Don’t make that mistake!)
All stories must be original. No using copyright characters or established series. No rewriting someone else’s work. I have to use copyscape, and I’ve been reading SF since the 70s, so I’ll probably recognise a rewrite even if you don’t know you’ve done one! Also, as Alien Dimensions will be submitted to Kindle for approval, if the auto system detects a reprint, it might get blocked from publication.
Common SF terms. Make up some new ones! For example, please avoid using ‘stargate’ (Stargate) or warp drive (Star Trek), or time vortex (Doctor Who), or ‘the force’ (Star Wars) ‘AI’ and ‘hyperspace’ are okay as they’re common terms throughout all SF.
While I’m not averse to dystopian futures, please avoid them if at all possible. Alien Dimensions is a predominantly positive series about the future. If you do have a story with a war in it, it should end in peace.
No ‘time travel to the past’ stories or ‘parallel universe Hitler won the war future Earth’ style stories, unless it’s millions of years in the past or the parallel universe is completely alien. (I’ll be writing those ones!)
Please avoid pop culture references. It is unlikely characters years in the future would know anything about the present. Readers love to become immersed in a story and feel like they are there, watching things unfold. Pop culture references that wouldn’t fit the reality throw them out of their immersion. They also age the story. Best avoided unless the story is set in 2017.
Dialogue between characters that move the story forward. Set in the now. (A short story doesn’t have time for prologues or too much backstory. Save those for your novels!)
Of course, I would expect a high level of grammar, vocabulary, intelligent dialogue and general creative writing ability.
If you have a story that you think fits the above, and you’re happy for me to use it for US$10, send it to [email protected] as a word.doc (not docx)
If possible, please reformat your story to make it easier for me to read by following William Shunn’s Guide to Proper Manuscript Format (Mainly because I don’t have a submission tracking system yet. And also, well, it means you’re serious. You’ve probably already got that template set up on your computer and use it all the time.)
Of course, I know US$10 isn’t much in some countries, but it is a way to get something back from a story that you might have given up on, and it gets your name out there.
I also have a few regular writers. They get paid a bit more than that. If you can consistently meet the level of writing my core writers work hard to strive towards, and write a story based around a scaffold I’ve set for you, then I’ll be able to pay a bit more. But, of course, at the end of the day, I need to sell 400 copies a month to break even, so please mention Alien Dimensions somewhere if you have a chance.
Deadline: March 31st, 2017
Payment: $10 and a contributor’s copy
SONOFAWITCH! Anthologist: Trysh Thompson Open for Submissions: February 1, 2017 to March 31, 2017 Expected Publication: Fall 2017 Story Length: up to 15,000 words Payment: $10 + contributor copy
No one is perfect—not even a witch. Witches have amazing power at their fingertips to do unbelievable things. That magic can come in really handy sometimes too. They can make someone fall in love, poison an apple to enact a sleeping curse, to banish an enemy to an alternate reality, or just to conjure up some Nutella when there is none in the house.
But what happens when those spells go horribly awry?
SONOFAWITCH! seeks humorous stories of spells gone wrong. What spell fell apart and how did the witch get out of it? Give me a contemporary setting (mainly because it lends itself to more humor). The rest is up to your imagination.
Audience: Preference for New Adult/Adult, though a thoroughly compelling YA is fine
Rights and compensation: Payment: $10 and a paperback copy of the anthology from World Weaver Press. We are looking for previously unpublished works in English. Seeking first world rights in English and nonexclusive right to continue to publish for the life of the anthology.
Open submission period: February 1, 2017 – March 31, 2017
Length: Under 15,000 words
Submission method: Send story as an attachment (.doc, .docx, or .rtf only) to thompson[at]worldweaverpress.com.
About the Anthologist:Trysh Thompson has written just about every form of non-fiction you can think of—everything from news, movie reviews, magazine columns, marketing hype, software manuals, and was even an editorial assistant on a gardening book no one has ever read (The 7-Minute Organic Garden—see, you’ve never heard of it, have you?). To keep from being slowly and torturously bored to death by her day job, she turned to fiction as means of escape—reading it, writing it, and editing it.
Imagine a war going so long that every last resource has been used up in the fight for survival, or a world that has taken extreme measures to end warfare and violence. In this anthology we want to explore what the idea “Last Shot Fired” means to you.
This could be about a spouse that has finally reached their breaking point and said that one thing that cascades the relationship into total chaos, or being against the wall against overwhelming odds with almost no resources or backup, what imagery is brought to your mind by this phrase?
We are looking for a wide variety of stories from almost every genre.
Limitations: Keep it PG-13. Not too much gore, nothing sexually explicit, and keep the cursing down.
Word count: 2,000-6,000 words
Due Date: 30 April, 2017
Payment: We will pay $10 for each story that is accepted, send you a free ebook copy, and you will receive a 40% discount code for paperbacks which you can sell at full price. You will also be invited to a private forum just for anthology members.
Contract Details: We are asking for Exclusive (for 6 months from publication) First Anthology Rights.
Formatting: Use a standard font (Times New Roman, Courier new), 12 point, double spaced. Indent the first line of each paragraph WITHOUT using tabs.
You will be expected to work with our editor to polish your story.
About the Author: Please include a short biography (1-2 paragraphs) about the author at the end of your story (after the words THE END). This biography will be used in the anthology if your story is accepted.
How to submit:
Email your story as a .doc or .docx to [email protected]. You WILL receive conformation of receipt within seven days.
Deadline: March 1st, 2017
Payment: $25 or $100 depending on Kickstarter.
We are soliciting short stories by new and established authors in the military-fiction genre, between 3,500 and 7,000 words in length. At least ten entries will be selected for publication* in a short-story anthology, to be funded with a Kickstarter project. At least three entries will be selected from among those received before the Kickstarter goes live.
Payment to the selected authors will depend on the success of the Kickstarter. If it funds, authors will receive a minimum of $100 each (max $1,000). If it fails, authors will receive $25 each, paid out of my pocket. (Sign up here if you want to know when the Kickstarter goes live.)
How to submit: Email your manuscript (acceptable document formats: Word, PDF, Pages, TXT, RTF) to the following address: milfic at orenlitwin dot com. Begin the subject line with “[Submission]”, and make sure to list contact information in the email itself.
SUBMISSION DEADLINE: MARCH 1, 2017.
Genre: Military fiction, broadly defined. So resistance fighters against Nazis in Warsaw or a tyrannical government in Ohio would qualify, as would English longbowmen or samurai. “Near-future” speculative fiction is acceptable if set within the next decade. Supernatural or fantasy elements do not qualify for this anthology—if you are interested in those or other genres, please suggest them for our next project!
Prompt: “The odds are against us.”
(In particular, Mary-Sue or Rambo type characters who crush the opposition without effort are strongly discouraged. The protagonist(s) must face the likelihood of failure.)
Note: actual combat is not necessary. Day-in-the-life stories, or the travails of the humble logistics officer, or other stories not involving violence, are perfectly acceptable as long as they make good reading.
Entries must be your own work, must be previously unpublished, and may not be plagiarized. You must own all copyright to work submitted. No exceptions!
Works must show adequate command of the English language, grammar, and punctuation. Rule-breaking for effect, as with stream-of-consciousness writing or the use of a Flowers-for-Algernon type of narrator, will have to show particular merit. Otherwise, do your editing in advance!
Works with strong thematic elements are encouraged. The martial virtues—honor, courage, sacrifice, as well as less traditional ones like cunning and deception—are encouraged. Nihilism can be part of the setup, but should not be the conclusion—the characters should push through nihilism to the other side, whatever that is.
Religious themes are acceptable, but should be broadly drawn: using a character’s religious beliefs to illustrate the virtue of faith, or commitment, and so on—or conversely, using a character’s religious beliefs to illustrate the dangers of unthinking obedience, or us-versus-them attitudes, or whatever—rather than the specific endorsement or criticism of a particular religion or sect. (There is a difference between opposing barbarity that is motivated by a religion, and opposing a religion in toto.) Works that are overtly proselytizing, or overtly bigoted against a particular religion or against religion in general (or anything else, really), will be rejected out of hand.
Story length between 3,500 and 7,000 words.
PG-13. Swearing should be mild, sex of the fade-to-black variety; gore can be present if justified by the plot and theme, but should not be luridly emphasized.
* Selected authors agree to grant exclusive publication rights to their story in all media to Oren Litwin and/or his agents for a period of 12 months from publication date, or 24 months from the contest ending, whichever comes first. The authors agree to grant an irrevocable nonexclusive license to Oren Litwin and/or his agents to publish their story as part of this specific anthology, and no other, which will persist after publishing rights revert.
By submitting your work to this contest, you assert that you hold copyright to all elements of the work in question, and that your work does not infringe on someone else’s copyright. By submitting your work to this anthology, you grant an irrevocable nonexclusive license to the organizers of this contest to use any plot elements or character elements from your work, and agree not to sue the organizers for plagiarism regarding the use of particular plot or character elements. (Not that I intend to use anything, but I’d rather not be sued for something I write that has a character that is vaguely similar to one in a story submission I received years ago, thank you very much!)
Deadline: March 10th, 2017
Payment: $10 usd
Note: This isn’t open until March 1st, 2017 but with such a limited submission range, we’re posting this early.
Pulp Modern is a fiction journal that publishes crime, fantasy, science fiction, horror, and westerns. Absolutely NO SUBJECT is taboo. Pulp Modern believes in true and absolute freedom of speech. Stories should be between 2000 and 3500 words. That word count isSTRICTLY ENFORCED. At this time, there will be no serializations unless requested by the editor.
The next reading period is:
March 1, 2017 to March 10, 2017
Pulp Modern will compensate writers a flat rate of ten dollars per story (I understand this isn’t a professional rate and I apologize. Right now, this money comes from my pocket and my pocket just isn’t that deep).
Pulp Modern claims the following publication rights: First English-language Rights, English-language Periodical Rights, World Periodical Rights, and Electronic Distribution Rights. All rights will revert back to the writer six months after initial publication. Should Pulp Modern choose to create an anthology of previously published work, new rights will be negotiated.
Pulp Modern will NOT CONSIDER simultaneous submissions.
Pulp Modern will not publish reprints unless they are requested by the editor.
Please write “fiction submission” and the title of the story in the subject line.
Include a cover letter in the body of the email as well as a brief biography.
Pulp Modern is published twice a year.
“Diversity” Statement:Pulp Modern believes the color of your skin, the gender you identify with, the religion you practice, and all other identity markers the powers-that-be use to divide, confuse, and set the masses at war with one another have absolutely nothingto do with the quality of your prose. We do not judge your work based on ANYTHING other than the work itself. If you are a great writer, your work will be recognized.
Reaper has a hobby – gardening. In a garden sowed by the seeds of the damned, Reaper tends to the plant’s every need. These black seeds bloom in the shadows, petals unfolding as the vile, mortifying tale takes root in your mind.
Like Mandrake, you only need touch it and the poison absorbs into your skin, penetrating your soul; and like mandrake, these tales should be locked up – never to be told – but we disagree.
Put on your protective gloves and delve into this garden of prose. Add your own black seed, your tale that would not be shared elsewhere. Dig deep into your darkness and come back with a tale you may be too afraid or ashamed to admit came from you, do your worst.
Just remember… you reap what you sow.
This is a Lycan Valley Press BLACK BOOK series, Volume 1.
It is different from our other anthology titles as we are granting much more leniency to our writers’ imaginations, and taking a much bigger risk due to content.
Gore and cursing are fine. Implied reference to rape, child harm, and bestiality are permitted as long as they are crucial to character or story development.
Reaper is looking for extreme horror stories.
Down to business:
Open until May 1st 2017 (Publication date TBA)
Rights required are First North American Anthology Rights with one year exclusivity.
Payment is $25.00 CAD and a digital copy. A discount code will be available for print copies. (This Series may add print with pay in the future – if we survive.)
Subject line should read: Death’s Garden/StoryTitle/LastName
In your cover letter include the following: contact information, a short bio, and a link to your website or blog.
3000 – 10,000 words max.
The Editor wishes to remain anonymous and will henceforth be referred to, and accredited as “Reaper”.
Book Back Text
Reaper has a hobby – gardening.
In a garden sowed by the seeds of the damned, Reaper tends to the plant’s every need. These black seeds bloom in the shadows, petals unfolding as the vile, mortifying tale takes root in your mind.
These tales are of the most exquisite evil, prone to trigger, offend, and traumatize you.
Don’t say we didn’t warn you…