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Taking Submissions: The Trench Coat Chronicles

April 15, 2020

Deadline: April 15th, 2020
Payment: $10
Theme: Murder mysteries where someone has to wear a trench coat
Note: Reprints Welcome

Submission guidelines for The Trench Coat Chronicles

Send us your best murder mystery stories! There is one requirement: your story must include a trench coat.

We want creativity! While we love Dick Tracy and Humphrey Bogart, we really don’t want any story to contain those particular characters. Give us new, unique tales. We want our readers to be immersed in each story and invested in each character. Is the coat worn by the detective? The victim? The reporter? Is it peripheral to the story or the focus of it? In fact, the trench coat itself could be one of your characters!

We want fiction between 500 and 3,500 words in length. We suck at math so if you go over by a bit, we’re not going to slap your wrist. We won’t even know. But just a little bit.

Uninvited are screenplays and nonfiction. Also uninvited are stories that are publicly available on any website, such as a Facebook page or Wattpad. We will not accept stories with graphic adult content (no old-men-enticing-little-girls or flasher stories), and yes, we’ll know bad taste when we see it. We want YA readers to enjoy the published anthology without parental balking.

Submissions will open at 12:00:01 a.m. EST on the Ides of March, March 15, 2020 and will close at 23:59:59 EST on April 15, 2020. The judges will not read submissions as they arrive; they will begin to read submissions on April 16. You will receive a status notification (rejected or accepted) approximately three months after submissions close (sometime in July). Judges will only offer an acceptance or rejection email, without feedback. Along with their thanks for submitting, of course, either way.

There Is No Reading Fee

You may submit as many as three stories, but we will accept a maximum of two stories per author. We will pay $10 USD via PayPal per story accepted. Contributors will receive one copy of the book electronically (even if two stories are accepted). We will plaster your name around the universe as best we can. In other words, wherever we market the book, publicize the book, or mention the book, the contributing authors’ names will be mentioned. We expect to publish The Trench Coat Chronicles in paperback and ebook, both available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and everywhere in the galaxy. For authors local to Southeast Pennsylvania, we will attempt to provide as much face-time as possible, including book signings and readings.

Do not put your name on your submission, on either the manuscript itself or as part of the file name. If your name is on it, we will not favor you even if we know you, or you’re adorable, or you’re a New York Times best-selling author; we will judge the writing only.

Submissions must be made via Moksha. Follow the instructions on the site to ensure your work is attributable to you. Format: Use Word, 12-point font in Georgia, Times New Roman, or equivalent, in black ink, double-spaced (Shunn) format.

Your work should be as perfect as possible prior to submitting. We want to read your best writing. We are editors by trade so grammatical, typographical, and syntactical errors will be glaring to us and will take us out of your story.

We will accept reprints if you have the rights back; please note in your cover letter if your story is a reprint. If you submit your story simultaneously to other markets, you must notify us via email by close of submissions on April 16, 2020 if it has been accepted elsewhere.

We anticipate approximately 90K words in the anthology.

Now the legal jargon: We’re asking for first rights nationally and internationally, but all rights will revert back to you six months after initial publication. After those six months, you can publish it wherever you like so long as you note that it was first published in our anthology. If for some odd reason the book is not published within 24 months from the date of acceptance (as John Lennon said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans,”) we will return first rights to you immediately. Once your story(ies) is/are accepted, you will receive a contract with details of rights and how you get paid. If an accepted author is under the age of 18, a parent must sign the contract.

If you have never been published, and wish to gain publication credit, submit because we’d love to read your submission. If you’ve been published many times and wish to see your name in print in a new venture, submit because we’d love to read your story. Did we say it enough? We want to read your story.

Via: Gemini Word Smiths.


April 15, 2020