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Taking Submissions: Welcome To A Town Called Hell

October 31, 2016

Deadline: October 31st, 2016
Payment: Equal percentage of royalties and contributor’s copy



The residents of Hell are trapped after a plane crash takes out their only bridge into town, add to that a mystery surrounding the destruction of local phone lines and a no fly zone being enforced over the town and the outside World suddenly becomes a distant memory. The residents, safe in the knowledge that they are being looked after by the authorities continue with their lives and await their bridge to be rebuilt, but Hell has other plans.


The town has since dried up its golden fortune and has become home for some 5000 people who live out their lives as a moderate tourist town plus a small industrial estate to maintain a decent workforce.


Town History


Hell is an American town in Colorado seeped in the dark history of the gold rush. The town was initially founded during the rush allowing settlers to pan in the local river and mine into the surrounding mountains.

However, the rivers proofed fruitful yet treacherous resulting in many lives being swept away in their pursuit for fortune

The local mine became known as the ‘Mouth of Hell’ (hence the towns name) due to the amount of miners who entered its winding tunnels, never to return.

Over the years, through fear and lack of gold, the mine now lies abandoned.


The town has since dried up its golden fortune and has become home for some 5000 people who live out their lives as a moderate tourist town plus a small industrial estate to maintain a decent workforce.



Where you come in

The town of Hell is in its final 7 days of existence and I need your help to help plot its demise. Along the way there will be certain plot devices that you will need to be aware of and you can use to push your story forward or simply avoid. What is key is that you write a story that involves ‘subtle’ destruction, we can’t have 100ft demons terrorising the streets on day one. We need to keep the townspeople sedate; we need to take our time before Hell opens its doors fully.


Join forces with writers such as Dion Winton-Polak, Matt Cash, Christopher Law, Ryan J. Fleming and James Jobling as we step into Hell.


Each author will be asked to produce a short story about one person’s final days in Hell.

The reason we have opted for hell is that it allows you the chance to have some fun, create something that is completely new or stick with something tried and tested through time. There is no limit, you could be looking at a lonely fisherman on a lake being hunted by the creature from the black lagoon, a family trapped in their home with a demonic possessed Grandmother, fiery hell bats tearing through the high street, Ed Gein stalking our hero as he tries to save his fiancée from a zombie horde. The story is up to you, kind of.



The story must take place over 7 days (Monday to Sunday), your story could only last a few days before the character dies but ultimately everyone will lose. On the 7th day the World will end.

(Christopher Law has written a fantastic piece explaining how a corrosive green goo has seeped up through the sewers and on the final day destroys the town. Feel free to utilise this or work with it, however this will be the final demise of all inhabitants of the town).

The chaos starts gradually for pace, so day one there are a couple of instances of possession, serial killers etc. and as we reach the end we could be battling 100ft sky demons (for example). Just bare this in mind if you were thinking that King Kong could flatten the town on the first day.


But, there is a catch and this is where it is going to get complicated.


The town is going to be laid out so that certain storylines can be messed with or that certain plot points can be introduced.

For example; the shooting range is next to a petrol station. To stop someone locking themselves in a gun shop and to limit the amount of guns available to the public the petrol station will blow up on day two wiping out all near it.

What we have to remember is that if you are near the explosion you will have to comment on it, ‘The searing heat incinerated my family’ a bit further this could be a brief comment ‘shit! What was that explosion’ and then those on the outskirts of town can say nothing.

Ultimately you will have to work your story around these plot points. If one exists and it is not relevant to anyone’s story it can of course be removed.



Just remember;

  • No military
  • No outside help
  • No escape
  • Don’t ‘own’ the town



Ok, just to give everyone some idea of the town we will be living in here are a few key points;



Monday – Light snow

Tuesday – Medium snow

Wednesday – Heavy snow

Thursday/Friday/Saturday/Sunday – Light snow


What is currently in this town


  • Petrol Station
  • Gun Range
  • Abandoned Mine
  • Elementary/Middle/High School
  • Lake surrounded by tourist cabins
  • Church (but there is of course room for more if needed)
  • Hospital (there will be limited survivors from the plane crash but this hospital will still remain busy)


An idea of what could be found in a town this size


  • Cinema
  • Bowling Alley
  • Supermarket
  • Mall
  • Fire Station
  • Police
  • Police cells
  • Town Hall
  • Churches
  • Residential areas
  • Museum
  • RV Park
  • Walled off Mansion
  • Stables
  • Sports Centre/Swimming Pool
  • Pharmacy
  • Doctors Surgery
  • Hotel
  • Library
  • Vets
  • Park/Playground
  • Restaurants
  • Fast food strip
  • High Street


The list is theoretically endless but whatever is used has to be found in a town populating 5000 people, so no military sites/nuclear silos etc. Also remember the town is surrounded by mountains and a river so the chances of a farm are pretty much zero.


Plot points:


Tuesday Morning: An airbus A380 heads over the mountains, before crashing through the clouds. Its wing clips the canyon spewing fuel as it hurtles nose first into the bridge killing everything in its path.

The remains crumble into the raging river below (River Styx) and trap a drifter in the sewer as he runs to flee the debris.


Along the road the nearby petrol station is destroyed killing everyone inside.


The crash triggers a series of events that take down the phone lines immediately.


Wednesday Morning: Cerberus is leading wolves in the local woods (currently part of another story)


Wednesday Evening: Another petrol station in the centre of town is blown up by the owner the resulting crater falling into the sewer. The damage to the local residential area is minimal yet people will be evacuated. The nearby (and only) gun shop/range is flattened.


Friday Evening: The mines entrance is used in a current story and the lake by its opening has Charon (Hells ferryman) on its waters.


What we are looking for


As this is an Anthology we are looking to have short stories ranging 4000 – 10000 words. Obviously someone who dies on day one will be unlikely to hit the 10000 mark, that’s more for those that make it to the end. But that doesn’t mean we don’t want strong stories of high word counts and short timeframes.


Number of submissions? I’m open to multiple, just remember that the more you do the more work you will have fitting them in.


Also, I am open to poems, flash fiction and micro pieces. Send them over. Let’s see what we can get together.


Finally, no rape, child sex or necrophilia.

This is a book with no real limits in regards to what you view as ‘hell’ but certain things are just not going to make the cut. We are having fun with this, creating demons and monsters and living up to the horror genre.


Payment will be discussed once we have an idea of the number of contributors, however it will be an equal percentage of the royalties. Plus each author will receive a free copy of the book.


Submissions must be received by 31st October 2016 no later than midnight. Please submit to [email protected] with your name and story title as the email header.


If you wish to discuss your story or any elements within the anthology please drop me an email or track me down on Facebook and I will do my best to help.


October 31, 2016