The Horror Tree Recent Markets, Articles, Interviews, and Fiction!

Taking Submissions: Paper Butterfly

Deadline: November 5th, 2020
Payment: $15 canadian
Theme: science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, humour, western, mystery, literary…and any variation or combination thereof.


Flash fiction stories only.  Word count: 1,000 or less.

English language only.

Original work only.

Genre: science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, humour, western, mystery, literary…and any variation or combination thereof.  If in doubt, send it along – you never know.

Multiple submissions:  feel free to send as many submissions as you wish to during the reading period.  Please send each submission in separate emails.

Simultaneous submissions: all good. If your story is selected for publication elsewhere, please contact me right away to withdraw it from my consideration.


Word count over the limit.

Poetry, non-fiction, essays, children’s stories, anything other than flash fiction.

Erotica, excessive gore, abuse, or ‘isms such as racism, sexism, etc..

Overly saucy language.  I don’t mind swear words, I just would prefer to keep the content on the site closer to the PG side of things.


Stories sent outside of the reading period.


Queries. They’re not necessary.  Send me your work if you think there’s a chance I might like it.  Please don’t ask me about your submission after you’ve sent it. I will get back to you by December 15, 2020.


I’m not picky about fonts or font sizes or margins or paragraph indentations or anything of the sort.  I will format your work to fit the site if it is accepted for publication.  If your story has an experimental form and I accept it, we’ll work together to ensure it is posted properly.

Cover letters are not required.

Your contact information (name, email address) MUST be included somewhere in your submission.

Please watch your spelling and grammar – if your story is littered with errors, I am likely to give it less of a chance.  Don’t worry about American/Canadian/British spelling; I’ll sort it all out.

Submissions may be an attachment (.rtf, .docx., .doc) or pasted into the body of your email – it’s up to you.

If edits are required, I will make them and send you the proof for confirmation before publication on the website.

If your work is accepted, I will ask for a short bio.  This will be an opportunity to add a link to your author’s website or blog.


If your story is accepted for publication, you will be paid $15.00 (Canadian funds).  Please note that if you live in countries outside of Canada, the exchange rate may mean you don’t quite make fifteen bucks from your story.  I’m sorry about that, but if it’s a problem, please don’t send me your work.  Payment will be issued via PayPal.  In order to receive payment, your PayPal email address must be provided to me.

  • If your story is selected for publication during the October/November reading period, payment will be issued on or before January 15, 2021.


Authors retain all rights to their work.

Bear in mind that if your story is posted on Paper Butterfly Flash Fiction (or anywhere else on the Internet, for that matter), you may not be able to submit it to another publisher as it will be considered a “reprint.”

If, for some reason, you wish to withdraw your story from Paper Butterfly Flash Fiction’s website, please send me a message and I’ll remove it as quickly as I can.  Again, it will still count as a “reprint” in the view of a future publisher, even if it has only been posted for a short time.

If your story is accepted, I will let you know when I plan to post it on the website.  It will be posted on the first day of that month.


I will send you a confirmation of receipt of your story within 72 hours of your submission.

I must apologize, but I cannot offer more than a form rejection letter at this time.

SEND SUBMISSIONS to shrob17(at)hotmail(dot)ca. I will not consider submissions sent outside of the reading period, so double check that it is open before sending me your work.

Via: Paper Butterfly.

Guest Post: The NaNoWriMo Problem By Marc Watson

The NaNoWriMo Problem

By Marc Watson


I’d like to offer an opinion that likely flies in the face of a lot of the things you’ve read about the craft of writing: writing prompts and word goals can be harmful, and run the risk of being creatively abusive.

Writing goals and prompts can absolutely be an effective method of motivating a lapsed author back into a proper habit-formed writing routine. Check almost any social media group regarding writing and you’ll find an individual declaring their 3000-word a day goal was passed! Or maybe it wasn’t reached and the rest of the community heralds the accomplishment or consoles the failed attempt with upbeat sentiment and praise. Don’t get me wrong, sentiment and praise are incredibly useful and inspiring, but the machine of the writing goal itself can absolutely be harmful.

Writing is like parenting; if there was just one way to do it there would only be one book on how and we’d all walk away with a copy. However, just as a story or poem can be as individual as a snowflake, so to can the person who wrote it. One needs to find the method that works for them and roll with that. One needs to accept that a great story, one really worth telling, may take personal sacrifice and struggle that could very easily be uncomfortable for the author. It may take an ungodly amount of patience. This fact, particularly in new authors, seems to be lost at times.

But why do I say it can be harmful, or creatively abusive (which seems like shock-writing but hear me out)? Through my own experience, I’ve let a story simmer if I didn’t like where it was going. Maybe it meant I had to come back to it later. Once or twice I’ve abandoned perfect acceptable stories because at some point I realized I didn’t have the time or talent to really tell the story I wanted to tell. Could I have rushed it and put out something perfectly acceptable? Absolutely, but how happy would I have been?

A rushed story runs a very high risk of being undercooked. Maybe it will work! An undercooked steak can still be tasty, and some people like that meat bloody! I like to say that there’s an audience for every word ever written, but maybe you have an audience that wished for medium or well-done. Or maybe you’re making chicken, and now surprise! Everyone has salmonella.

If you want to put out the best work you possibly can, a creative endeavor you can be really proud of, what will rushing it, or pushing your creativity, or forcing your hand bring you? I’m certain it will bring you a story you can sell and print, but will it absolutely be the story you wanted to tell? You may get steak, but you run a much higher risk of chicken.

I’d like to address NaNoWriMo specifically, an internet-born writing prompt contest that runs through our circles every November. There are variations throughout the year, but let’s focus on this one.

The goal is 50,000 words in a month. Daunting, but absolutely possible. That’s only 1,667 words a day! Get to those keyboards and write that dream novel or book of poetry you’ve yearned to put out into the world!

…Unless you work full time, or are a single parent. Maybe you’re a member of a perfectly nuclear family, but the kids have soccer and your spouse goes away and you’re on your own for a day or two. Maybe you just don’t write well in the evenings, or mornings, or lunch breaks. Your rhythm may be interrupted by life. Suddenly the words from days you’ve missed pile into the ones you have available. But this is your dream and this is how you’ll do it!

…But now it’s the 15th of November and you’re only at 18,000 words. Do you celebrate this amazing accomplishment, or lament the fact that you’re so far behind? 18,000 words of anything is a joyous event, but will you appreciate it? 

I’ve created this perfectly reasonable scenario and ended up with an author who runs the risk of being disappointed or depressed or, worst of all, stifled with what many would consider success. How motivated is that author now? How likely are they to rush and push themselves to get to the finish line? I’m not saying they can’t or shouldn’t. It is absolutely possible to get there, to shake off the anchors and sprint. There are those that live for that pressure, and come out stronger for living through it. The creative fire cooks their food exactly how they like it, and how their audience likes it as well.

And yet, there are those that run the risk of getting run over by the expectation machine. Those that see the success of others and measure it against themselves regardless of how healthy or realistic that is. Never fool yourself into thinking that art doesn’t have its own culture of keeping up with the Joneses. Sure, maybe that author you like reached their goal, but do they live your life? Do they live in your brain and struggle with your struggles? No, and it can absolutely be harmful to put yourself up against them. Some do even if they fight it. And that’s where the harm comes in. That’s where creativity gets abused. That’s where the fire that cooked the previous author’s steak to perfection ended up burning your house down with you in it.

It is absolutely alright to not have a writing goal. Maybe you wrote 5000 words in a day. Astonishing! Maybe it was 500. Great! Maybe it was 50, or 5. Maybe it was none because the world doesn’t stop just because you want to write something. If you really have a story worth telling, do not be afraid to write it in your own time. It may take years. Or it may take weeks. Poll a room full of one hundred authors on how they make time to write and you’ll likely get one hundred different answers. It’s also just as likely that not one of them would work perfectly for you, because you are not them, and you shouldn’t try to be.

I’m not saying avoid writing prompts and challenges and NiNoWriMo. Try them if you like. Tweak them. See what sticks and what you can throw back. They are the loud and the easily celebrated. There is no contest for the author who took twenty years to finish their first novel, but their accomplishment is just as strong and valid as the one who took twenty days in a feat of finger flying fury. Neither of them is right, and that’s a truth lost on so many. Although I’d say I see it a lot more in new writers and young, fresh faces, I can’t say the veterans are totally immune either. As I said, each story is unique, and maybe the one you’re writing can’t be told by adhering to the styles that have previously brought you success. Maybe this one needs to simmer. Is it not somewhat foolhardy to assume every adventure into our creative selves will come out the same?

We all want success, regardless of what we see that success as. No one’s success is any more valid than another’s. The writing collective, the group hive-mind, is an inexhaustible resource for us all, but the sexy ideas aren’t always the right ones for you. Opening your mind to every possibility, even if it’s an uncomfortable one, is the surest way to get a story you can be proud of.


In the world of Ryuujin, heroes rise and fall, but there are always stories that slip through the cracks. The tales of the people who shape the years to come. Heroism and betrayal. Conversations between friends and enemies that will change the course of the world.

These are nine stories from a world that is historic, modern, and terrifyingly futuristic. A world where science and magic intertwine, and give birth to the unknown souls who become heroes, and the legends who fade away into history.

From the author of the renowned dark comedy Death Dresses Poorly, and from the world of his hit science-fantasy duology Catching Hell comes a collection of adventure, drama, joy, and terror as we look into the lives of the powerful, the meek, and the people who make the world turn over the course of centuries.

Marc Watson


Marc Watson is an author of genre fiction of all lengths and styles. His works include the novels Death Dresses Poorly, Catching Hell: Journey, and Catching Hell: Destination, as well as having short stories in the collections Enigma Front 5: The Stories we Hide, and A Land Without Mirrors. His newest release, a collection of science-fantasy short stories Between Conversations: Tales From the World of Ryuujin, is available now! He began writing at the age of 15 and continues to be a part-time writing student at Athabasca University. He has been published on flash fiction site (find his stories here) as well as comedy site


Marc lives in Calgary, Alberta. He is a husband and proud father of two. He is an avid outdoors-man, martial artist, baseball player, and lover of all Mexican foods.  He can be found at online, as well as on Facebook at, and on twitter at @writewatson.

Ongoing Submissions: Poetry London

Payment: £30 for one poem and £20 for each subsequent poem
Theme: All forms of poetry, including translations

Poetry London is a leading international magazine, where new names share pages with acclaimed contemporary poets. We also publish a wide range of poetry in translation.

The magazine is published in February, May and September. We receive a vast amount of submissions, so reading can take up to three months, and if your work is shortlisted, maybe even longer. You might find it helpful to read the magazine first, to see if your work is suitable.

We appreciate subscriptions, as we depend on these to survive, though if you don’t subscribe it won’t affect your chances!

Please ensure that you pay the correct postage when submitting poems and books for review. As a small charitable organisation, we don’t have the resources to pay for any additional costs incurred and won’t be able to collect any post where incorrect postage has been paid. Thank you!

We pay poets £30 for one poem and £20 for each subsequent poem. Appropriate adjustments may be made for very long poems. Review and interview fees are agreed in advance with the Reviews Editor and benchmarked at £45 per 1,000 words.


Poetry London aims to publish the best, most exciting poetry being written now, and we are always interested in work by unpublished poets, as well as celebrated ones.

Submissions are read by Martha Sprackland, Poetry Editor.

At the moment, we are especially interested in poetry in translation. For submissions of translations, or discussions of translation projects, please contact us directly on [email protected] All other submissions should follow the process below.

Both postal and electronic submissions are welcome and all are carefully read.

For postal submissions, please send a maximum of six poems to:

Martha Sprackland
Poetry London
Goldsmiths, University of London
New Cross
SE14 6NW

Always include a stamped addressed envelope for our reply.

We will reply by email if you are sending your work from abroad. In these circumstances you may submit your poems by post and request an email response in your cover letter. Unfortunately we cannot return manuscripts from outside the UK.

For online submissions, please click the button below and follow the instructions.

Simultaneous submissions are acceptable if you are submitting online through Submittable. Please withdraw your poems if they are accepted elsewhere.


Via: Poetry London.

Taking Submissions: Alternative Deathiness

Deadline: March 1st, 2021
Payment: $.02 a word and royalties
Theme: A fun filled romp into the concept and nature of Death.

B Cubed Press is pleased to announce an open call for Alternative Deathiness.  A fun filled romp into the concept and nature of Death.

Seriously what the hell is death, big guy with bones and a sickle? An ominous Tarot Card?  Or is it simply the passing of one thing for another.  A change in phase. Or, it is the ending of you, and just you, a personal FU from the universe that say oopsie, you’re out of here?

So be prepared to look hard at this topic, its rituals, its layers.  Have fun.  May as well,  considering the end comes for us all.

This book will be edited by Bob Brown and Irene Radford, the team that brought you the best selling Alternative Truths.

If you wonder what perspective the editors bring just remember, we’re old.  Our friends are old, our families are old.  Death is beginning to feel more like a roommate than a concept.  So?  Let the stories rip, show no deference to religion, ritual, or sensitivities.  For god’s sake, we’re talking death here!

And don’t try sneaking zombies and ghosts and vampires in to get around death.  Oh we might buy one or two REALLY GOOD Ones, but that isn’t the focus.

Does this mean we will not accept sensitive looks at this from a more popular perspective?  No, but it means that it will be tested against the criteria that the writing be good, and carry an explanation of the nature of death. In terms of what we are looking for, think openly about the concept of death and life, can’t have one without the other.  The setting is open anywhere in time and space.

This book will be part of the best-selling Alternatives series.  We will be accepting stories, poetry, and essays from now through March 1, 2021.

Story length for our books average about 2200 words but have ranged from 100 to 7500 words. However, we only use one or two stories over 5,000 words and our advice is to keep it under 5K, unless we communicate in advance.  Reprints are accepted, but we hold them to a higher standard and limit them in number.

Pays $.02 a word upon publication, plus a share of the profits. As always a share will go to charity, usually ACLU, but that can be changed to something else by agreement with all the contributors. Collaborations will earn 1 share to be split between contributors.

Submissions should adhere to SFWA formatting guidelines It’s always good to make an editor happy.

For the first time we are using Moksha, submissions are accepted at

Should you have any questions, please contact Bob at [email protected].

Via: B Cubed Press’s Moksha.

Taking Submissions: Constellation Magazine #1

Deadline: November 1st, 2020
Payment: 4 cents per word
Theme: The Bonds That Unite Us / Los lazos que nos unen

The Themes for Year 1 are:

#1: The Bonds That Unite Us / Los lazos que nos unen

#2. Myths and Monsters / Mitos y monstruos

#3: Beyond the Stars / Más allá de las estrellas

#4: Love Needs No Translation / El amor no necesita traducción

The Bonds that Unite Us

Constellations are the product of human imagination, giving meaning to the patterns we see in the sky. From these scintillating dots lighting up the night, we’ve created stories about heroes, legends, and mythological creatures. We created those bonds, and we give them meaning.

Each culture that has looked up at the sky with wonder has its own interpretation of these connections, and now we want to hear yours.

What are the bonds that unite our cultures and languages around the world? How are these bonds formed, and what upholds them? How can they be broken and forged again? What unites an alien civilization to humankind? What ties the dragon to the unicorn and prevents it from making a meal out of her?

Sometimes these bonds are ones of blood. (Vampire tastes may vary.) Sometimes they’re shaped by shows of courage and strength, and the common struggles we face. These bonds can topple walls and bring down civilizations, and sometimes they’re the foundation for something new.

The theme is open to interpretation, as long as the stories fit under the speculative fiction umbrella.

Myths and Monsters

Since the dawn of time, humans have stared into the abyss and wondered what hid in the darkness. Tell us about the myths and monsters that have shaped your perception of the unknown.

Do your monsters hide in broad daylight or lurk in the shadows? Are they under the bed or are they ancient demons you can invoke when the moon is full? Have you heard a beating heart beneath the floorboards or the deathly song of a mermaid? Did the alien-like creature speak, or did you just imagine it?

Sometimes monsters wear suits and ties, sometimes they can’t be seen, only felt. When they told you the witch would come to eat you if you didn’t sleep during siesta, was it true? What is your version of the chupacabra, the Kraken, or la Llorona? Take us to the darkest corners of your mind and tell us a story meant to be read by candlelight.

The theme is open to interpretation, as long as the stories fit under the speculative fiction umbrella.

Guidelines for Submitting Stories

Stories can be submitted in English or Spanish.

Please remember that each language has its own punctuation rules.

—Presta atención al uso correcto de las rayas o guiones largos —dijo la editora.

“I will,” said the writer.

If you submit your story in Spanish, it will be translated and also published in English.

If you submit your story in English, it will be translated and also published in Spanish.

All stories in the magazine will be published in both languages.

Simultaneous submissions and multiple submissions are not allowed.

We pay 8 cents per word, up to 6400 words. We ask for six month world first exclusive rights and translation rights for all original stories accepted.

If your story is accepted, you are agreeing to be contacted by the person doing the translation for your work in case they have any questions. Translating is a collaborative process, and we want to make sure we get all the nuances correct.

What We’re Looking For

The theme of each edition will vary, but the general consensus for all stories is as follows:

– Well-written original stories that fall under the speculative fiction umbrella, up to 6,400 words long. No exceptions.

– Authors are free to interpret the themes creatively, and we encourage you to twist and bend the themes to your will, as long as they fit into any of the speculative fiction genres. However, if you have to explain to us how your story fits in with the theme, it probably isn’t a good fit for us.

What We Don’t Want

– Racism, homophobia, bigotry, discrimination, or misogyny.

– Stories that include gratuitous violence against humans, robots, animals, or any sentient beings, whether it’s rape, torture, or murder.

– Stories that glorify any cultures above others.

Submissions will be open from October 15, 2020 until November 1, 2020 for the first issue:

#1: The Bonds That Unite Us / Los lazos que nos unen

Please make sure to send your submission to the correct category and language.


We’re looking for people who can do literary translations from Spanish to English and English to Spanish. Please contact us at [email protected].  We pay $0.04 per word.


We commission art months in advance based on the issue’s theme. You can send us a link to your portfolio to [email protected] with the subject as follows: ART PORTFOLIO and your name.

As of now, we’re only looking for art by BIPOC creators from anywhere in the world.

We will pay $1000 and ask for rights to use the art as our cover for the digital and print versions of the magazine and online promotional material. We may ask for other rights, and they will be clearly stipulated in the contract beforehand.


If you have any questions please message us via our Contact Page or email us at [email protected] 

Special Notice

If you are an author or artist from the Caribbean, Latin America, or their diaspora and you have a project coming out soon please contact us. We’d love to feature and promote your work in Constelación Magazine. 

Via: Conetallation Magazine.

Taking Submissions: Don’t Touch That: An Anthology of Parenthood in SFF

Deadline: December 1st, 2020
Payment: $0.06/word
Theme: Parenthood in SFF
Note: Only 2 stories available

An anthology exploring the theme of parenthood from science fiction and fantasy authors who are parents themselves!

Thank you SO MUCH for your support for this anthology. Now that we’ve reached our funding goals, behind the scenes we’re organizing our timelines and getting started with writing. And thanks to your help in reaching our stretch goals, we’ll be open to TWO SLUSH STORIES!

The theme is, not surprisingly, parenting in SFF. You can interpret that any way you like, and take it in any direction you like. We’d love to see what you come up with! Stories should be no more than 5,000 words, and when they’re all edited and ready to go, can be submitted in a .doc or .docx file to [email protected] no later than 11:15pm EST on December 1, 2020. Please remember to include your name, pen name if you use one, and contact info on your submission (not part of your word count).

Thank you again, and stay tuned to our Kickstarter page for monthly updates and we move forward writing these fantastic stories of parents and kids in SFF!

– Mike, Kai, and Keena

Via: Don’t Touch That’s Kickstarter.

Taking Submissions: Electric Spec February Issue 2021

Deadline: January 15th, 2021
Payment: $20 per story
Theme: Electric Spec prefers science fiction, fantasy, and the macabre, but we’re willing to push the limits of traditional forms of these genres.

Please don’t query us about your story submission. We don’t have the manpower to answer such queries. An editor will email you back as soon as possible with the decision about your story. This can take a few days, or, up to three months. We make every effort to get back to authors in a timely manner but we get a lot of submissions so sometimes it’s not possible.

A note on our editorial policy: before publication we may edit the story for length or readability. However, we always remain true to the spirit of the story.

Issues are published at the end of February, May, August, and November. We reserve the right to shift publication date slightly, as necessary.

We have reading periods for each issue, though we never close to submissions.

February closes January 15

May closes April 15

August closes July 15

November closes October 15

Please do not submit the same story more than once, and please submit only one story at a time.

We consider any story between 250 and 7000 words with speculative fiction elements. We prefer science fiction, fantasy, and the macabre, but we’re willing to push the limits of traditional forms of these genres. (more…)

Trembling With Fear 10/18/20

Oh, the ups and downs of a writer’s life. The week started off with an acceptance for a poem, saw the Silver Shamrock anthology Midnight in the Pentagram launch (including my story, Family Reunion) and then rounded off with a rejection from Apex Magazine. I’d managed to get through a reading round, like before – and like before didn’t get any further. One day – perhaps! I’ll keep trying.

If you like poetry by the way, I’d really recommend Alessandro Manzetti’s Whitechapel Rhapsody: Dark Poems. Steeped in the atmosphere of the Ripper’s Whitechapel, it’s a wonderful read.

The first story in Trembling With Fear is The Wake by Steven Holding. A dark tale many of us can relate to. The time after a funeral is the time when old secrets come tumbling out, when grievances are aired and home truths are spoken. In this instance, there is an even darker undercurrent of ‘truth’ waiting to reveal itself. A few hints, crafted with a light touch, a creaking floorboard. You know what’s coming.

Ignorance is Bliss by Connor Long-Johnson attributes something horrific to something quite normal. With a main character lacking the imagination to see beyond the everyday, his blinkered view allows real evil to roam.

Passing on the Genes by Ryan Benson distorts the view of parenthood. You don’t have to feel fatherly just to humans!

Under the Corset by Alyson Faye is a wonderful gothic poem clearly showing the horror of the female lot during this era – of childbearing, of hunger and of repression (evidenced by the restrictive corset from which she escapes only at night).

Enjoy the stories and send us yours!


Take care



Stephanie Ellis

Editor, Trembling With Fear

We have had a LOT of support come into the site this month, and I’d like to thank everyone involved. This is the sole message I want to share today as your support is vital to helping Horror Tree grow!

First off, we have *2* site sponsors helping us out. So, if you’re looking to pick up a new book might I suggest checking out both ‘SLAY: Stories of the Vampire Noire‘ which was edited by the extremely talented Nicole Givens Kurtz (follow her on Amazon!) and ‘It Calls From the Sky‘ from Eerie River Publishing. This one was edited by A. Robertson-Webb and M. River. The sales of both indirectly help fund the site as both of these are really helping us out in October. Be sure to order a copy of each of these anthologies today! 

Secondly, our ALWAYS AMAZING Patreons! Two of our Patreons increased their donations and a third chipped in which JUST put us to one of our goals where we can do token payments to our writing staff throughout the month. THANK YOU! This is huge. It has been a goal I’ve been pushing toward for months and hopefully one we can sustain and grow past. 

SQUEE. I can’t stress enough what your support means to us. 

Stuart Conover

Editor, Horror Tree