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Taking Submissions: Survivor

May 1, 2016

Deadline: May 1, 2016,
Payment: 3 cents / word

In this SF/F anthology, we’re looking for stories of everyday trauma survival — from a barmaid on an intergalactic space station who was abandoned by her parents, to a farmer’s son bullied by his peers, who withstands and resists their abuse. We also welcome stories with a war setting, such as stories about veterans and refugees. The key component for all of these stories is how relatively ordinary characters survive and thrive, given the traumatic experiences they’ve had.

Note: we aren’t necessarily looking for happily ever after. Trauma survival rarely ends in happily ever after, though it can, and hopefully will, end in closure and a coming to terms.

We’re soliciting speculative fiction up to 10,000 words, though we prefer 4000 – 8000. Payment is 3 cents / word for print and electronic rights, to be published by Lethe Press. You need not be a trauma survivor yourself to submit. Simultaneous submissions are fine.

Send up to 3 submissions as attached files (.doc, .docx, or .rtf format) to [email protected] with the subject line: SURVIVOR SUB [title]. Questions should also go to JJ Pionke at that address. Submissions close May 1, 2016, but will be considered on a rolling basis.


About the Editors:

JJ Pionke is a librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who focuses his research on disability, including mental health, in the library. He is a long time reader of science fiction and fantasy as it has been a safety net in which to emotionally shelter. He has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder stemming from severe bullying in many forms throughout his life.

Mary Anne Mohanraj is the author of Bodies in Motion and The Stars Change, founder of Strange Horizons and director of The Speculative Literature Foundation. Previous anthologies she’s edited include The Best of Strange Horizons, vol. 1, Aqua Erotica, and WisCon Chronicles, vol. 9: Intersections and Alliances, which was recently long-listed for the BSFA Awards. Mohanraj is Clinical Associate Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and her research and writing interests include Sri Lanka and its civil war, transnationalism and diaspora, domesticity and parenting, chronic illness, science fiction, and sexuality.

[end of formal call]

Whee! I’m editing an anthology again. I posted the call all over, but please do feel free to forward it widely. I’m excited about this one — JJ and I are interested in different aspects of trauma and survivorship, and both avid SF/F readers, and I think we ought to be able to put together a really interesting anthology exploring these issues. I’m hoping to see stories with a lot of emotional heart, stories that offer catharsis, but would also be happy to see stories with characters who are muddled and confused and even despairing. Experimental pieces welcome, as well as more traditional fiction.

I read a fair bit of military SF, but a lot of it leans towards the battle scenario stuff, the details of guns and ships and the like. I’m really interested in the human component, of soldiers and civilians and how their lives change as a result of war. JJ comes from a disability-studies angle, and I think his interests are more domestic — what do families do to vulnerable people? Spouses? Children? What can happen when you’re an outsider in a community? When who you are isn’t accepted, and the nail that sticks out gets hammered down. I’m interested in all of that too.

Give us some good stuff, people! 🙂

Via: Mary Anne Mohanraj.


May 1, 2016