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Taking Submissions: All the Petty Myths

October 31, 2015


Deadline: October 31st, 2015
Payment: 5% Net Profit

Urban legends are unavoidable. From college campus to unlit road, they cling to our lives.

Did you hear about the librarian who died, right here, and now haunts the halls at night?

            Satanists haunt these woods. Never stop for anyone. Not on this highway.

            If you’re very quiet here, and listen to the wind, you’ll hear her scream “MY BABY”

Running though these small-town myths are a shot of the horrible: ghouls, ghosts, cryptids, revenants, secret societies, and occult knowledge. But are such cases true, or the work of humans looking to disguise their own murders?

Your task, should you choose to accept it, is to combine urban legends and murder mysteries.

All The Petty Myths is a mystery anthology edited by crime writer M.H. Norris. Consider it a revival of Golden Age Detection, where the emphasis is placed on clues and the mastery of the mind (“little grey cells” as Poirot would remind us), rather than the bones and gristle of the victim. The eight relevant “Commandments” of Golden Age Detection have been amended to the back of this document as inspiration and guidance.

The urban legends used must have a real world counterpart, though you’re free to mix and match similar legends to form the backbone of your tale. Virtually anything loosely termed an urban legend is open for your exploitation, be it crypids (Bigfoot, Mothman), killers and killer ghosts (Bunny Man, Teke Teke), classic urban legends (Bloody Mary, the Vanishing Hitchhiker), modern folklore (One Man Hide and Seek), public domain fauxlore (Slenderman), locations (Tayopa, Theorosa’s Bridge), fiction which mutated into a form of urban legend (the monkey’s paw), or the simply weird (Spring-Heeled Jack, Polybius).

Urban legends can, over the course of your story, be shown to have a basis in reality or be utter poppycock. On a similar note regarding unreality: We are very open to occult detectives, particularly those who base their investigations and theories on a thick layer of science (or science fiction). Think William Hope Hodgson’s Carnacki, Algernon Blackwood’s John Silence, or Joshua Reynolds’ The Royal Occultist. In addition to these, of course, the standard mystery figures of police detectives, private eyes, lawyers, judges, medical examiners, catholic priests, nosy old ladies, psychics, and the mentally unbalanced are free and open for your use.

However, we are not open to any of these in any capacity:

  • Vampires
  • Werewolves
  • Zombies
  • Post-apocalyptic worlds
  • Fanfiction (exception: public domain characters may be used)

To sum up, what I want is:

  • Engaging, character-centric stories
  • Well thought-out plots
  • Fun and engaging myths
  • Evidence of research (feel free to mention what websites and books you consulted in selecting your urban legend)

Curated by M.H. Norris.

Deadline is October 31st,  2015.

Seeking stories from 3,000 to 25,000 thousand words.

Payment is 5% Net Profit.

Via: 18th Wall.


October 31, 2015