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Ongoing Submissions: Costs of Living

May 1

Deadline: May 1st, 2024
Payment: $25
Theme: Horror stories with a focus on the oft-unclear distinction between a scary-enough reality and our less-or-more-frightening imagination, both in personal and social realms

Whisper House Press is pleased to announce its first call for submissions.

We’re looking for carefully constructed Horror stories with a focus on the oft-unclear distinction between a scary-enough reality and our less-or-more-frightening imagination, both in personal and social realms. Our working title is Costs of Living.


These are some possible interpretations of this potentially broad theme:

  • The Neighbors/HOA/City Council Really Are Trying to Kill Us
  • A Bad Element… is Already Here in the Neighborhood
  • Why do I feel like everyone is watching me in my new town’s grocery store?
  • “How can I be sure I am not dreaming?” without the “Oh, it was all a dream” cliché
  • Philosophical quandaries run amok in one’s mind
  • Attic dweller keeps neighborhood watch via security cameras on smart home system starts seeing what they/he/she cannot explain


Until we find our footing, we will offer token payments for short fiction. Authors will be paid $25 per accepted work.


Who We Are & What We Love

Whisper House Press is an independent press based in Salt Lake City, Utah.

We believe in inclusion and equity and in using the privileges we’ve been gifted to boost the voices of those with fewer opportunities. We celebrate submissions from frequently marginalized groups.

We love horror that reminds us of Event Horizon (McDonald then adapted by Eisner, 1997), Knocking (Broström & Theorin, 2021), Master (Diallo, 2022), The Handyman Method (Cutter & Sullivan, 2023), Get Out (Peele, 2017), and of The Last House on Needless Street (Ward, 2021) or Dear Hannah (Stage, 2024).

We’ve got a small web presence on the editor’s website. You can find it here

Who We Are Not & What We Don’t Love

We realize that splatterpunk and other forms of extreme horror are appealing to many, but that’s not us.

We don’t want anything that uses animals as emotional manipulatives, that relishes in abuse and trauma (though much of what we do appreciate is in the aftermath of trauma and in the impact trauma has on the human psyche), or that trades in sexual violence.

How to Submit to Costs of Living

  • Submissions ranging from 500 to 4,000 words
  • We will accept submissions until MAY 1st 2024 OR until we reach approx. 60k-80k words with high-quality storytelling and finely-crafted writing.
  • Anticipated publication: Q2 of 2025 with a pre-sale effort on Kickstarter. Authors will be recruited to help promote this project, so please do not submit if you aren’t willing or able to promote the book to book friends and your own audience.
  • Simultaneous submissions are, of course, fine, but do let us know if your work is accepted elsewhere before you hear back from us.
  • Use the Shunn modern manuscript format.
  • No work developed by or from so-called “artificial intelligence” or generative A.I.s from large-language databases is acceptable, and all artists submitting work to Whisper House Press will be expected to affirm via contractual promise that they’ve not used these tools at any stage of development.
  • No reprints, please. We encourage you to craft for this call.

How to submit

Submit via email [email protected] with the subject line “COSTS OF LIVING SUBMISSION” including in the body of the email the following information:

  • A very brief cover letter
  • A ≤100-word author biography written in the third person
  • Social media information (so that the press can follow you irrespective of your work being accepted to this particular anthology)

Please attach your Shunn-formatted story in a PDF or doc/docx.

You will receive a confirmation of your submission, and expected turnaround is 45 or fewer days.

Via: Costs of Living Submission Form.


Whisper House Press
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Whisper House Press
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