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Taking Submissions: Archive of the Odd Volume 2

June 15, 2022

Submission Window: April 15th to June 15th, 2022
Payment: $0.01/word for short stories chosen for the zine, and an even split of 50% of the royalties after the fact
Theme: Monsters

Archive of the Odd, the magazine of analog and found-document horror, returns for a second issue with the theme of “monsters”! We’ll be open April 15-June 15 for submissions, with the intent to publish August 15. If you submit to us last window (thank you!), you’ll probably be good just looking at the bolded pieces, as those have changed.

First of all, all submissions must relate to the theme of monsters and also be non-traditional prose. Not sure what we’re talking about? The best way will be to look at the stories on our website, or get the first issue to see the full zine treatment (in fact, if you email us or DM us on Twitter we’ll give you a coupon code for being a savvy author… just saying). Alternately, think about all the things you read on a daily basis that aren’t fiction. Newspapers? Emails? Product support guides? …Submissions calls?

A couple of brief clarifications:

  • I read the zine—do I have to set up my submission like that?
    • No, it’s not required! Visual elements are generally from the editorial side. As long as we can follow what’s going on, plain text is fine. By all means, though, if you want to, you can set up your story however you want.
      • We do not consciously give pre-formatted pieces an edge, but if you have what it takes to design your own forum, mimic online article formats, or provide the world’s most disconcerting children’s product design, we do delight in seeing them.
  • I submitted last time and you said you’d like to receive it again. Is that true?
    • Yep! If we suggested that you resubmit, we meant it. Be aware that if it doesn’t match the theme, it can only be considered for Between the Shelves and not the main zine, though.
    • If we received it last time and did NOT request a reread, please do not send it again. Feel free to send something else, though!
  • I submitted last time and never got a response.
    • Oh. Oh no. We are so sorry, it almost certainly got lost in our system somewhere. For current submitters, please know you may query about your submission at any time if you think something may have gone wrong on our end (no receipt letter within three days, no final response a week after submissions close, etc.)
  • Okay, so what do you guys consider a monster?
    • Something non-human (previously human or with the potential to become human are alright) that has a distinct physical form. That’s it! We like cosmic monstrosities beyond our mortal ken, we like forms that haunt the woods, we like werewolves, we like vampires. Ghosts, demons, and other things without physical form will not be considered. Human “monsters” (serial killers, etc) will not be considered. Things that look human are cool, but you’ll need to emphasize what makes them inhuman.

Alright, let’s dive in!

Main Zine Fiction:

  • We read blind. While there are no penalties for having identifying information on your document, we will ask you to remove it before we read. This is to prevent any subconscious biases- we’re people, after all, we don’t read in a vacuum.
    • This also means that your publication history, background, etc., do not affect our decisions!
  • Stories can be in any format except traditional prose. Stories told in forum messages? Great! Police blotters? Excellent! Receipts? If you can swing that, we want to see it!
    • Please read below for non-fiction
  • More weight will be given to new and unusual formats. Part of that is the sake of novelty, part of that is just because we don’t want five epistolary stories in one issue.
  • Submissions do not have to rely entirely on text! If you would like to submit something in the form of a webpage that has considerable html/CSS going on, just make sure it’s in pdf form when you submit it. We still pay by word, but mixed media pieces are welcome.
    • If there is attached artwork, we will also pay for art
  • All work must be speculative, horror being preferred.
  • Story lengths from 500-8000 are easiest for us to place, but we are by no means beholden to those numbers. (However, if you have a story you want to serialize, please query at [email protected].)
  • Payments have changed! We will pay $0.01/word for short stories chosen for the zine, and an even split of 50% of the royalties after the fact. We hope to bump up the advance, but as a micropress, our payments scale with sales.
  • We’re not fussy about formatting. Shunn formatting is nice, provided you do not list any contact information or your name. If something needs a particular format, or you want to pre-format things, we’re not going to insist. As long as the font is readable, it should be fine.
  • Please use common sense when submitting. Any story whose moral is “and that’s when I learned the power of hate :)” is getting rejected. Glorification of murder is getting rejected. Sexuality is okay, adult content is not. If you are uncertain about whether something is “too far”, please query, or just submit and let us decide.
  • Simultaneous submissions are perfectly fine, as are reprints. We don’t discriminate in pay between reprints and original fiction.
  • Multiple submissions are accepted, up to three pieces per author. Only one will be published per author, but each story will be regarded as separate and will not have bearing on the judgement of other submissions. If the stories are related and you would like them to be read together, please query, or put them in one document with clear titles to differentiate individual stories.
  • We do not look to obtain exclusivity. Our contract is for a one-time license for publication and promotion, after which we must ask to include you in anything else.
  • Submit in .pdf, .rtf, or .docx format by email to [email protected]

Bestiary Non/fiction:

  • For this issue, we will also be looking for short pieces that describe folk monsters from all over the world, or even not-yet folk monsters from your own imagination! Do let us know where the monster comes from in your cover letter—this won’t affect our decision, but will be good to know if you get chosen.
  • While we favor pieces with greater historical context and analysis, we also like pieces that just explain some lesser-known critter.
  • The more unusual your creature, the better shot you have, as you will not be competing with other people writing about the same monster.
    • In other words, a werewolf piece will be judged against not only all submissions, but then judged again against other werewolf submissions. A slide-rock bolter piece will probably only be judged against the other submissions (unless a new subgenre of paranormal romance has suddenly spiked their popularity, I suppose).
  • We prefer pieces between 500-1500 words, but haggling either end is alright.
  • Payment is the same as fiction ($0.01/word + royalties), as are rights.
  • If you’re looking for inspiration, check out the Lumberwoods Library for some fearsome critters! These are all historical North American, but should give you an idea of the format we’re going for.
  • We hope to make at least a couple of these illuminated manuscript pages, because that is a power we have and delight in.

Between the Shelves

  • Between the Shelves is where we share free-to-read stories between issues.
  • Any story may be considered for Between the Shelves, but if you have a story that doesn’t match the theme that you want published there, mention in your cover letter that you’re looking to be published for Between the Shelves and not the main zine.
    • We don’t want to reject you for not meeting a theme that you weren’t required to meet!
  • Payment for Between the Shelves is a flat $20, as well as any royalties from the contributor tip jar on the website.
  • Other requirements are the same as the main zine, as are rights.


  • Art requirements have changed!
  • There are two methods for submitting artwork- individual pieces and applications to be paired
  • Individual pieces
    • Does not need to be in an unusual format, but does need to meet the theme
    • Is also judged blind- please remove any identifying watermarks
      • Small signatures are fine, especially if they’re initials or abstract
      • Larger signatures can be added if the pieces are accepted
    • Submit in .png or .pdf form.
  • Paired
    • Submit a portfolio.
    • Once authors are chosen, we will give you the spread of stories and you can choose one to your liking.
    • We will get you in contact with the author, and then the process can begin.
  • Payment is $20 per page.
  • The final zine is 8.5” x 11”, bleed error will be added after.
  • In our first issue, all of the art ended up being paired, and in general we prefer paired art.

When it comes to formats, think of any of the millions of ways humans communicate information. Heck, we’ll take non-human communication means. Here’s a non-exhaustive list:

  • Academic papers
  • Technical writing
  • Medication warning sheets
  • Junk mail
  • Sales papers
  • Newspaper articles
  • Recipes
  • Knitting/crochet/weaving/what-have-you guides
  • Social media
  • Book blurbs
  • Encyclopedia entries
  • Care guides (plant, animal, rock garden, etc)
  • Reviews

Via: Archive of the Odd.


June 15, 2022