Unholy Trinity – Let’s Trip

Our church worships at the altar of the Unholy Trinity. Its gospels are delivered as a trio of dark drabbles, linked so that Three become One. All hail the power of the Three.


What happened to the mute girl was unspeakable.

A brother discovered her, sprawled upon the monastery steps.

Sanctuary and time allowed broken bones to heal; her slowly expanding belly speaking volumes regarding what had been endured.

When the time came, she mimed silent screams as she pushed the bastard out into this world.

One. Another. Then one more.

Leaving her to gaze upon the brood, the monks huddled, unsure of such portents.

Until the infants wailing ceased. Concerned, they returned.

To watch the babes suckle upon the bloody trickle that ran from the sockets where their mother had no eyes.



Of the three children, there was no doubting who was leader. First to draw breath, guiding his siblings, choosing what path they walked.

In his eyes, they were alike, both in skin and what lay beneath, and inside this unity lay their strength.

One heart, mind and soul.

So, when two happened upon the third, hands trembling, blue faced beauty lying at his feet, the eldest knew the sin had to be shared.

Crying tears of relief, the youngest took to the shadows, hands clasped to head, drowning out the sound.

As the boys each did one of their own.



Those in the middle can see in both directions, he whispered, taking his seat.

Decades had passed since they had broken bread; each brother’s existence an escape from the shade of the others.

He had heard talk of their sins. The eldest, greedy and ruthless, fortune built upon the cruellest exploitations. The youngest, driven by lust, defined by violence.

Studies taught him of the shark; how their foetuses feast upon one another within the womb.

Savouring his first bite of meat, he gave thanks that he finally could have his family for dinner.

Then promised he’d never mention them again.

Steven Holding

Steven Holding lives with his family in Northamptonshire in the United Kingdom. His work had been published in FRIDAY FLASH FICTION, THEATRE CLOUD, AD HOC FICTION and MASSACRE MAGAZINE. Most recently, his story THREE CHORDS AND THE TRUTH received first place in the INKTEARS 2018 flash fiction competition. He is currently in the process of completing a number of new short pieces of fiction and is also working upon a novel. You can visit his website at www.stevenholding.co.uk

Taking Submissions: LTUE Benefit/Charity Anthology #3 – Twilight Tales

Deadline: August 15th, 2019
Payment: Contributors Copy
Note: Reprints welcome

Since its beginnings in the early 1980s, the Life, the Universe, & Everything Symposium academic symposium has been a staple of the Utah and Intermountain West author and artist community. Many authors, artists, and editors found inspiration for their careers at the feet of scores of symposium guests. Influential professors and others have mentored those planning and running the symposium, but many of these mentors have passed on.

The symposium helps students of all ages by providing greatly discounted student memberships. Hemelein Publications—in conjunction with LTUE Press—created a series of memorial benefit/charity anthologies to help the symposium continue to help these aspiring creators learn about their crafts at a reasonable cost.

The third of these anthologies, Twilight Tales, is a light horror anthology, created in honor of Betty Pope. She was a librarian at the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University for many years. She established the science fiction and fantasy literature Special Collection section. She also hosted a reception at her home each year after LTUE for the guests and committee. This anthology will contain stories Betty would have loved.

In summary:

  • Light horror stories (think Twilight Zone or Goosebumps) any length up to 17,500 words
  • Unpublished or reprint stories
  • Up to two submissions per author
  • This is a benefit/charity anthology, so stories are donated and author receives no monetary compensation
  • Authors receive a print copy of the anthology and an electronic copy
  • Meet the content guidelines described on the Submission Guidelines page
  • Stories are due by August 15, 2019


Taking Submissions: Blood Bath Literary Zine Issue 3 – Hauntings

Deadline: August 1st, 2019
Payment: £20 per 1,000 words for prose, £20 per 15 lines for poetry, and £20 per image for visual art

Where Blood Bath’s first two issues interrogated the corporeal, then the infernal, Blood Bath’s third issue looks to the metaphysical for explorations on terror, dread and the unknown. Submissions are now open for Blood Bath issue 3: HAUNTINGS

Hauntings are some of the most versatile and interesting stories in the horror lexicon. Haunted houses, poltergeists, haunted objects, personal hauntings; all are welcomed, the only criteria for written submissions being that there must be a ghost (or a character’s belief in a ghost) that is linked to an object, place or person. We very much encourage you to get creative on the definitions and implications of these criteria.

For visual art, the same criteria apply, but the restrictions are a little more flexible. Not every submission has to include the image of a ghost or haunted house, though we still want pieces that adhere to and complement the theme. If you’re not sure your art fits the brief, send it anyway.

Ghosts and hauntings have traditionally been used to exorcise our cultural and societal fears, and the ones that have the most lasting impacts are ones that address and challenge those in a deliberate way. Social issues like race, class, gender and mental health all have a place in horror and we want to read stories about them.

As always, we love a generous dose of weird with our horror, so if you can bring us to Hausu levels of madness, it will definitely be appreciated. We try to publish horror that pushes the margins of genre, so any genre defying/genre blending concoctions will also go down well.

There are plenty of excellent traditional Gothic ghost stories, so if you’re set on telling one, make something about it new or unexpected.


The quickest and best way to find out what we love is to buy a copy of our zine. Print and EPUB copies of both issues are available in our shop. Supporting small publishers helps them to continue existing, and we are forever grateful for your support.

As always, we are particularly interested in experimental and subversive forms, as well as contribution from women, people of colour, people living with disabilities and chronic illnesses, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, and people living at the intersection of these identities.

Horror has always been political, and BB is always searching for socially aware genre stories.

Speaking of genre, we are open to any and all; science fiction, fantasy, erotica…but it also must contain an element of horror.

For a more visual representation of what we love, check out our Instagram page @bloodbathzine.


Exploitative or otherwise offensive portrayals of harmful stereotypes or tropes.

Sexual violence just for the sake of it, or to create shock value. There are way more inventive ways to shock us.

Fan fiction; we don’t hate it, it’s just not for us. Any kind of copyrighted material is also not desirable.

If you are a white cis man thinking of submitting a story in which female characters suffer violence, rape or general mistreatment at the hands of male characters, portrayed in a leering or sexualized manner… perhaps consider not doing so. This does not mean you cannot submit if you’re a cis white man.


The issue will be produced in EPUB and print format, so please send high quality A5 sized image files for visual art submissions. JPEG preferred, but please get in touch if you have any questions. Please contribute four image files per submission.

We accept short fiction from 50 to 2,500 words, flash fiction shorter than this as well as poetry (maximum 30 lines) are also encouraged and welcome. Please send a maximum of four poems and two prose pieces at a time. Please also submit all pieces you intend to submit at one time. You are welcome to submit visual art alongside written work.

Submissions must be submitted in .doc or .docx format, size 12 and double spaced via email along with a 50 word bio to Katy at [email protected] We do not accept previously published pieces.

Simultaneous submissions are okay, just let us know if your piece is accepted elsewhere.

We will not consider submissions that do not follow our guidelines.

The deadline is midnight, GMT on August 1st, 2019. We will not under any circumstances accept any late submissions. Please consider time zone differences.


If we publish your work, we buy first print rights. They are returned to you 6 months after publication.

Contributors will be paid at a rate of £20 per 1,000 words for prose, £20 per 15 lines for poetry, and £20 per image for visual art.

Via: Blood Bath Literary Zine.

Taking Submissions: The Marshall

September 15th, 2019
Payment: Contributor’s Copy

A Collection of tales of how he got his man.

Zimbell House is holding open submissions for short stories about the old west and how the U.S. Marshall played a part in establishing the law of the land.

Let your imagination roam and put our readers in the middle of the action. We want complete stories from the POV of the U.S. Marshall. We want to see his struggles to capture the outlaw. How does he do it? Who helps him? Why did he become a lawman? Is there a case that haunts him? Make him a complete character, flaws and all.

  • Please keep foul language to a minimum-it loses its punch if over-used.
  • Dialogue needs to be believable, and please keep dialects/slang to a bare minimum if you must use them.
  • No head-hopping or POV changes. Pick one point of view and stick with it.
  • Please show more of the action than just telling the reader what happens.

Submissions of both short stories and novellas to this anthology are welcome, please keep in mind the minimum word count is 4,000 and the maximum word count is 20,000.

This anthology is a great opportunity to showcase emerging writers and allow them to build their professional platforms.

Submission Deadline: September 15, 2019, with a targeted release date of mid-November 2019.

Submit your best work. Poorly formatted and unedited work will be turned down. Please use Americanized English spellings. We will be doing light editing as necessary to fit the standards we strive to maintain.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Any work under 4,000 words will be automatically disqualified for this anthology.
  • The work must not have appeared in print or online anywhere before.
  • All submissions must be in English.
  • Each author may submit up to three (3) unique works—please submit them separately.
  • Work must be in Microsoft Word or RTF, double-spaced, 12-point font-no headers/footers.

All contributing authors will receive a free copy of the book in softcover.  Authors that are chosen for the anthology will not be paid nor receive royalties for their submission. This is an opportunity to build your platform.

Submission Deadline: September 15, 2019.

Via: Zimebel House Publishing’s Submittable.

Ongoing Submissions: Pretty Cool Poetry Thing

Payment: $10 to $20 and a contributors copy

at this time, we only accept poetry. maybe in the future, we’ll do other things, but the nature of printing on index cards makes space a severe factor. so sorry.


send 3 to 5 poems to [email protected] with a max of 300 words per poem, along with a 2 to 3 sentence bio written in the third person with your pronouns. send as one .doc/.docx file.

cover letter preferred. give us a preamble. give us a joke. write it in swedish. have fun with it!

simultaneous submissions allowed, but please inform us if accepted elsewhere. previously published poems are not accepted at this time. it’s ok if it’s on your blog though!

please follow the length guidelines closely! we’re working with index cards, so space is tight and we’d hate to reject a masterpiece because we can’t fit it.


if we accept your poem, we get one-time print publishing rights, then the rights go back to you.

we pay. depending on sales / number of poets, the amount will fall between $10 to $20. it’s not much, but it’s not zero!

and of course, you get a contributor’s copy. i mean, of course.

Via: Pretty Cool Poetry Thing.

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