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Taking Submissions: It Was a Dark and Stormy Night

February 28, 2011

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night…

A Horror Cliché Parody

Edited by Shane McKenzie
With Introduction by Jeff Strand (Tentative)

Submission Deadline: 28 Feb 2011

To submit, please use our ONLINE SUBMISSIONS MANAGER. Our standard writer’s guidelines apply.

Clichés. As horror writers, we have all been warned to avoid them at all costs. Whether your character is trapped in a shack in the woods surrounded by zombies while his partner slowly deteriorates from the bite he got on the arm during their struggle out of the military camp where the virus started when a scientist knocked over a vial… Or your character is a vampire that is depressed about being alone for eternity, staring forlornly out of his castle window, sipping a virgin’s blood from a wine glass… Or a serial killer’s story told through first person point of view where we get to see into his sick mind as he hacks his teenage, female, prostitute cheerleader victims into bits, all the while thinking back on his abused childhood and how his druggy parents beat and raped him. You know, the usual. Clichés have been so widely used that even avoiding them has become a cliché of its own. And don’t even get me started on the twist endings. It was all a dream, right?

Well, Pill Hill Press is giving you the chance to stab these clichés in the stomach and twist the blade. We want you to lay into them, really have fun with it. We are looking for comedic, slapstick stories that poke fun at these aphorisms; let out all that aggression you’ve built up as a horror writer working around these clichés. The more ridiculous, the better. Make me laugh. All horror fans have a natural sense of humor, so bring it out and have fun with this. Think Shaun of the Dead, Evil Dead 2, even Scary Movie.

We are not looking for cliché stories here; we are looking for funny-on-purpose parodies of them. That old zombie or vampire or werewolf story you haven’t been able to get published because it had overused themes won’t cut it.

Now…make me laugh, cackle, chuckle, giggle, and snort!


Expected response time is under THREE months (please query if you have not received a response within 90 days). We regret that, due to the volume of submissions, we are unable to give personal criticism.

No reprints, no multiple submissions, no simultaneous submissions

Word count should be approximately 3,000-7,000 words;


5,000 words & under – ¼¢ per word, payable upon publication; no contributor’s copy

5,001 words & above – ¼¢ per word, payable upon publication; one contributor’s copy

[via: Pill Hill Press.]


February 28, 2011
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