Ongoing Submissions: The No Sleep Podcast

Payment: $40 for flash fiction , $100 for short fiction

Short Submissions

We’ve decided to open submissions for multiple tiers! So now we have flash fiction (stories of up to 1200 words)short fiction (stories between 1200 and 2500 words) and regular fiction (stories of 2500 words and upwards). If your regular fiction story’s long enough it might count as a novella too! We’re not currently accepting novels and epics though, so chill on those for now.


Here’s what we’re looking for: Stories of up to 1200 words. No minimum. However, they have to be really scary. Like super scary. The scariest, creepiest or most unsettling thing you can come up with. Any perspective or tense is fine for these. Single character stories are fine.

We pay $40 for flash fiction stories and payment can be made via Paypal or Amazon gift card as usual.

Email your flash fic in .doc form or similar editable file (NO PDFS PLEASE) to [email protected] – Please send them to this address and not the general submissions one.


Here’s what we’re looking for: Stories between 1200 and 2500 words. Again, they have to be really scary. Any perspective or tense is fine for these. Single character stories are fine. Prose or script format is fine. For the most part, these stories will be appearing on the regular show, so cool soundscapes and attention to how they’ll sound in production is helpful.

We pay $100 for short fiction stories and payment can be made via Paypal or Amazon gift card as usual.

Email your short fic in .doc form or similar editable file (NO PDFS PLEASE) to [email protected] – Ideally send them to this address and not the general submissions one. If you happen to make a mistake and send it to the wrong address, don’t worry about chasing it up to correct it as we’ll still see it, just if possible try and send it here.

Beyond that, I’d strongly recommend still reading through our submissions guidelines, and this advice post, as there’s a lot of helpful info regarding tone and style.


Regular Submissions

Here at The NoSleep Podcast, we love nothing more than hearing from up-and-coming or seasoned horror writers who’d like to work with us. We want you to frighten us and mess with our heads, so we in turn can terrify our listeners. As such, we’ve prepared a handy list of submissions guidelines to get your relationship with our show started. We welcome and encourage a broad, diverse range of submissions from all across the horror genre, and can’t wait to read the spine-tingling tales you send us.

Submissions are primarily handled by editor Gabrielle Loux and editorial assistant Olivia White, who upon your story being selected will work with you to ensure your story is primed for audio adaptation.


Please send submissions to [email protected]

In the body of your email please include the title and word count of the story.

Please send submissions as an editable attachment. Microsoft Word documents are preferable. Please do not submit your story or script as a .PDF file as we cannot edit or annotate it easily. Anything submitted as a .PDF file will be automatically rejected.

Please do not submit your story by pasting the text into the body of your submission email. This breaks the formatting of your story and makes it exceptionally hard to read, requiring us to reformat your story ourselves just to be able to assess it. Any submissions received in this manner without an attachment will be automatically rejected.

Note: Submissions must be carefully proofread and formatted. Stories that lack appropriate paragraph breaks, punctuation, or proper spelling and grammar will not be considered.

This email is for story submissions only. Submissions or inquiries about art, voice acting, or contributing to the podcast in some other form should not be sent here. The editors don’t handle that side of the podcast and won’t be able to answer your questions. Additionally, please only submit your own stories. Please do not suggest or submit stories from other authors.

Please double check that your story is actually attached to your email. Almost every day we receive at least one submission without a story included. The more time we have to spend on chasing up these submissions, the less time we can spend on appraising your stories.

Note: Current response times can vary wildly. Even if you haven’t heard back from us within a few months, it doesn’t mean your story’s been rejected. We have thousands of submissions between a tiny team, and sometimes it may take a while to get back to you. We intend to respond to everyone whose work meets our guidelines, but occasionally human error may occur. 

Due to the high volume of submissions we receive, any submissions that don’t follow our requirements will be automatically rejected. Please familiarize yourself with the guidelines carefully before submitting in order to receive a response from our team.

Update (13/12/17): Due to an extremely high volume of submissions, we are unable to respond to emails chasing up submissions unless an error has occurred. Your submission hasn’t been lost; if you haven’t heard back in a while, it’s because we haven’t read it yet. Particularly, please don’t resubmit stories because you haven’t heard back about them yet as it complicates our filing system and adds an unnecessary workload by cluttering our inbox, which in turn leads to a longer wait for other authors. Thank you for your patience! – Gabrielle & Olivia



Stories should be a minimum of 2500 words, with 3000+ being preferable. Please include a word count with your story. If possible, include a spoiler-free list of characters with speaking roles, including the narrator.


We’d love to see more script submissions, as these have proven to work very well on the show. Scripts should ideally last between 20 and 40 minutes, and star 2 or more characters, with more being preferable. Please include a word count with your script, and a spoiler-free list of characters with speaking roles. If you’re new to scriptwriting and you’d like an example of how to structure and format an audio-only script, you can download an example hereWriterDuetCeltx or Fade In are handy, free scriptwriting programs that will help you to format your script correctly.

Please make sure your script is written as an audio drama. We can’t adapt scripts written as a screenplay, or scripts that heavily feature visual cues. Anything not written in an audio drama format will not be accepted.



  • We pay to use your work! The current rate for stories and scripts is $125. Payments will be sent via PayPal unless other methods are required.
  • If your story is selected, you may be asked to work with the story editor on edits or tweaks to ensure your story is as perfect for the show as it can be.
  • Feel free to introduce yourself and say hello, but things like cover letters or CV’s aren’t required.
  • Please be considerate of other authors waiting for a response. Choose one or two of your best works and submit those via an attachment in a single email. Please don’t send link-dumps, or refer us to an entire anthology of your work. Similarly, please don’t send rapid-fire submissions. Ideally wait a few weeks between submissions. This is a polite request and not a rule however, and if you have a burning desire to send another story over in the meantime, go for it.
  • Please do not email us chasing up submissions until four months have passed. Our workload varies hugely, and while you may have gotten a response within a few days one week, it may take a lot longer the next. We try to contact everyone, and your story won’t be overlooked even if it’s taking a while. Similarly, please do not chase up submissions via the NoSleep Podcast twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc. Gabrielle and Olivia do not run those accounts, so you won’t be able to receive a helpful answer there regardless.
  • Stories can appear elsewhere. Previously published or performed stories are fine, as long as you hold the rights to grant usage to The NoSleep Podcast. However, stories which have not already previously appeared in audio form will have priority.
  • Please do not re-submit stories that have already been passed on. If we think a story could work with certain changes or rewrites, we’ll reach out to you and let you know.
  • Only submit your own work. We can’t adapt stories without the permission of the author.
  • We cannot provide a personalized response to every author individually. Similarly, requests for writing advice or critiques will probably go unanswered. However, even if a story is rejected you will hear from us saying so as long as the submission falls within our guidelines.


Be familiar with the podcast and know about the kinds of stories we do on the show. Here are some details for what works best for the podcast:

  • Must be horror. Horror is a diverse genre, and this is open to interpretation, but the main focus of a story should be to scare or unsettle.
  • Stories should be written in the first-person perspective. While there are occasional exceptions to this rule, first-person tends to work by far the best for the show.
  • We don’t want narratives which rely solely on graphic gore (snuff, torture porn, etc.) or graphic sexual violence. Implied instances will usually be okay but as with any good horror, thoughtful is the most effective.
  • Provide good audio cues. This is an audio podcast – the better your story can sound the better it will be for the show. Scenarios that involve interesting or creative audio will always catch our eye.
  • Make good use of dialogue. Stories with only one narrator can work but we prefer 2+ characters interacting.

Here at The NoSleep Podcast, we pride ourselves on featuring seasoned horror authors alongside fresh, up and coming talent. We love working with newcomers, but if you’re just starting out in the field we ask you not to take it personally if we choose not to use your story on the show. It takes a lot of practise to write a story that is suitable for audio adaptation, and we would always welcome you to try again with a new submission if a previous one isn’t right for us. Rejection doesn’t mean you’ve missed your chance. Feel free to submit new stories even if previous ones have been rejected.


Authors retain full rights to any story or script performed on The NoSleep Podcast. All we would ask is that starting from the date of selection of your story, we receive a 3 month audio exclusivity period during which time your story will not be performed on any other horror podcast or in any audio narrative medium without written permission from Creative Reason Media. Stories may be published in text form by the author at any time.

Creative Reason Media does not retain the rights to publish or distribute your story outside of the audio performance without written permission from the author.

Audio production of your story remains the property of Creative Reason Media and may not be altered, sold or distributed outside of The NoSleep Podcast without prior written permission.


Please send stories and scripts to [email protected]. We look forward to hearing from you, and working with even more exciting and talented authors in the future.

Via: The No Sleep Podcast.

Stuart Conover

Stuart Conover is a father, husband, published author, blogger, geek, entrepreneur, horror fanatic, and runs a few websites including Horror Tree!

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