Category: Contributor’s Copy

Taking Submissions: Strange Aeon: 2023

Deadline: April 14th, 2023
Payment: US authors: $20 and a contributors copy, Non-US authors: $35
Theme: Wonder
Note: Reprints Allowed

Strange Aeon: 2023 (Wonder) is a continuation of the Strange Aeon anthology series. As always, I want good, solid stories in a cosmic horror/Lovecraftian vein.  I specifically say Lovecraftian rather than Cthulu because I’d like stories across the entire Mythos, including additions by the original group of Mythos authors like Robert Howard and Clark Ashton Smith. [1]. In fact, I’d like to use more stories that do not have specific Lovecraftian references and that move away from the traditional Lovecraft style and voice. Try to avoid pastiche and tell fresh new stories in your own settings. Style preference applies to gore and sex as well: think early Weird Tales, no excessive language or explicit sexual references. (You do not have to remove all profanity from your submission—I can read around it—but, if your story is accepted, you will be required to remove it from the final version.)

I am especially interested in stories of mad science, monster-based horror, weird western, and stories that “peel the onion.” Indeed, I cannot emphasize strongly enough the need for these categories. Victoriana and Lovecraft era period pieces will have a much harder time finding acceptance.

The theme of this year’s anthology is wonder and I am specifically looking for stories that have a sense of grandeur and discovery. That being said, please send anything you consider a good story. Feel free to query for any questions. If you are planning to write a story especially for this anthology, by all means query the idea first.

Taking Submissions: Terrors from the Toy Box

Deadline: August 1st, 2023
Payment: £20 and a contributors copy
Theme: Evil or demonic toys

Title: Terrors from the Toy Box

Story Length: 2K words – 7K words

Pay: £20 regardless of story length plus a paperback and digital (pdf & Epub.) copy.

Deadline: 1st August 2023

Release Date: 1st October 2023

In a dark corner of the attic lies a wooden box burgeoning with forgotten relics from bygone decades. Evil effigies of plastic claw their way out of their dusty confines into your very nightmares.

Devil dolls and terrifying teddies, abominable action figures and gruesome games all lying in wait for the opportunity to be free to wreak terror once again.

What we want:

For our anthology, ‘Terrors from the Toy Box’, we are looking for original short horror stories, from 2K words to 7K words max, with a toy theme. 

Works slightly under 2K words or slightly over 7K words may still be considered.

We ask for five months exclusive print and digital rights, and non exclusive rights thereafter. You will retain copyright ownership of your work.


Taking Submissions: Steel True, Blade Straight

Deadline: June 30, 2023
Payment: Contributors Copy
Theme: Stories, poems, and scholarship inspired by and about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes.

Steel True, Blade Straight
The Belanger Books Journal of Sherlock Holmes and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Inspired Stories, Poems, and Scholarship
2023 Annual
Description: This anthology will have stories, poems, and scholarship inspired by and about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes. While the anthology will contain new Sherlock Holmes stories, the intent would be for at least 25% of the material to be stories and poems inspired by the life and non-Sherlockian writing of Sir Arthur. Another 25% of material would be scholarship on Holmes and Doyle.
All proceeds from the Anthology will be donated to The Beacon Society, a 501c(3) nonprofit scion society of The Baker Street Irregulars (BSI), that serves as a link to other scion societies, providing teachers, librarians, children museums, and children theaters with local resources to bring the magic of Sherlock Holmes to life.
Stories – 3,000 – 10,000 word submissions that connect to the writing of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. These can be Sherlock Holmes stories, or stories connected to Sir Arthur’s additional writings (far too many to list here).


Taking Submissions: The Haunted Zone

Submission Window: March 16th, 2023 – April 30th, 2023
Payment: 3 cents per word (potentially higher depending on Kickstarter) and a contributors copy
Theme: Hauntings
Note: women military veterans only

A horror anthology written by women military veterans. Submissions will open March 16th for those who identify as a woman and have served in the military. Closing date is April 30, 2023.

Do not send submissions early.

THEME: Hauntings/to be haunted/to haunt. We’re not looking for service-related stories, only that haunting be the central theme. Hauntings of a classic horror nature, as well as other types such as psychological, haunted by trauma, life choices, and similar that take the reader into a dark, horror tale. The goal is to highlight excellent talent from women military veterans who are horror writers, not for stories to be focused on the military, although you may include the military in your story if you wish.


Taking Submissions: Paranormal Incorporated: Office Memo 2

Deadline: May 30th, 2023
Payment: 2 contributors’ copies
Theme: Offices that have Supernatural Beings in them

The Prompt:

Sometimes we think our co-workers could be from another planet or our boss from another dimension, but what if that was true? What if the guy in the cubicle next door gets his work done quickly because he has two heads or four arms? Or maybe your boss can be anywhere in the office because he can walk through walls as a ghostly spirit?

A fun and “horrific” collection of tales from the office where coffee breaks include drinking joe with the vampire accountant or working a weekend with your shape-shifting boss.

Paranormal Incorporated: Office Memo 2 brings horror and humor together as the classic witch, ghost, demon, shifter and other horror stories readers love find themselves in the corporate environment of fax machines, office memos, and that never-ending smell from the fridge. Well, that might be a zombie co-worker in there!

Your story could be part of this variety of paranormal fables, so enter your entry into our anthology contest today, and your story could be the latest offering of spine-tingling and belly-laughing literature from 4 Horsemen Publications!


Taking Submissions: Invoking Destiny: Wands, Wings, and Wardens

Deadline: May 30th, 2023
Payment: 2 contributors copies
Theme: Fantasy stories

The Prompt:

Set in a time and place of magic, these fantastic tales contain wizards, dragons, fairies, and warriors. Want to explore a world of dragons and wizards yearning to break free? Dreaming about a guardian saving the town of creatures and talking animals from lurking evil in the forest? Dreams can come true, but they can also be crushed. Sometimes, winged fiends win the day. Let your imagination run wild amid these stories of magic and mayhem.


May 30th 2023 at Midnight EST


Ongoing Submissions: Chthonic Matter

Payment: 2 Contributors Copies
Theme: Tales from the darkside

Chthonic Matter is a quarterly offering of tales from the darkside. Its contents range in tone from the quiet horror of Shirley Jackson to the bleak stylings of Thomas Ligotti — and everything in between. In order to better understand the type of fiction I am looking for, be sure to review my previous series, Nightscript. All eight volumes are available for “free” via Kindle Unlimited.


Taking Submissions: Alone on the Borderland

Deadline: June 30th, 2023
Payment: Paperback copy, percentage of Kickstarter, percentage of first year of royalties
Theme: Weird and strange fiction set between 1901 and 1919

Tales of Edwardian Dread

SUBMISSION PERIOD: 1 FEBRUARY 2023 – 30 JUNE 2023 inclusive. GMT.

CORE CONCEPT: An anthology of new weird and strange fiction set between 1901 and 1919 – from the death of Queen Victoria to the immediate aftermath of the Great War and the Spanish Influenza epidemic. Weird fiction is a mode of writing which includes the subversion of many standard tropes, or more imaginative interpretations, and has a strong psychological component, so please bear that in mind.

“There are millions and millions and millions… with their lives, their hopes and fears, their suffering and chance of happiness, all intertwined with our lives, and what we think and say and do. We don’t live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if men will not learn that lesson, then they well be taught it in fire and bloody and anguish.”

An Inspector Calls, J B Priestley (set in 1912)