Deadline: December 15th, 2019
Payment: $10

Book Four will open for submissions in November. Deadline 15th December 2019. Book Four is planned for release in January 2020.

Submission Guidelines

Submission Guidelines for Fantasy Short Stories

Thank you for your interest in submitting your story to Fantasy Short Stories Anthology Series


Submissions for Book Three are now closed. Subscribe to the Fantasy Short Stories enewsletter to be updated when it is released.

Book Four will open for submissions in November. Deadline 15th December 2019. Book Four is planned for release in January 2020.

Read further for what stories I’m now looking for. Lots of detail below so that it saves us both time, and there’s less chance of a rejection!

In summary: 3500-5000 words only. “Set it in a fantastic world with lots of dialogue between multiple characters, preferably written in the third person. Positive ending if possible.”

US$10 flat rate. Fantasy Short Stories will retain the rights to your story for 2 years. 1st year exclusive, 2nd year non-exclusive. After 2 years, the release is removed from sale. Example contract here.

Submission Guidelines

Things to include:

  • 3,500 to 5000 words
  • At least one great idea
  • Preferably written in the third person (or if you prefer first person writing, do a lot of head jumping, and include lots of dialogue)
  • Some kind of fantastic character or creature, usually friendly
  • End on a positive note (aim for it, but if it is impossible, I’ll still consider it if the story is good)
  • PG 13. No sex, swearing, obvious LGBT themes, unless the entire story will fall apart without it
  • Must be original. No using copyright characters or established series. As Fantasy Short Stories will be submitted to Amazon Kindle for approval, if Amazon’s system detects something that’s already been published in a different way, Fantasy Short Stories might get blocked from publication
  • A lot of dialogue between characters that move the story forward. Set in the now. (A short story doesn’t have time for prologues or too much backstory. Save those for your novels!)
  • Short scenes. Change the location or the situation as quickly as possible. Don’t get stuck in one place for more than a few sentences
  • Doc file, not docx, but if you need to include multiple languages, then docx would be better for that.

Things to avoid:

  • Derivative works referring to religious texts. Let’s not be too serious
  • Narration stories where there is no dialogue, and one character just tells a story from beginning to end
  • ‘Journey’ stories. These are better for novels when you have time to create the situations that you encounter on the way. Please keep journeys to a minimum in short stories. Also, please don’t make it an essential part of the plot.
  • Any story that is similar to Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, anything Disney, and anything about children and their pet dragons 😛

Of course, I’m also looking for a high level of grammar, vocabulary, intelligent dialogue and general creative writing ability.

Additional Notes

Fantasy Short Stories is a not-for-profit fantasy publication with a focus on independent authors from around the world, open to submissions from anyone, anywhere from any walk of life, edited by a volunteer. So, you may find a mix of English grammar and spelling from the UK, Australia and the USA, as well as region-specific mother tongue influences on sentence construction and punctuation usage. I don’t/wouldn’t want to destroy some of the subtle flavours / flavors / tastes that someone has/had added to their work so I’ll only change/be changing major/noticeable grammar problems where/if possible. English teachers beware!

I’m always on the lookout for new fantasy stories. Please note that in recent years the lines have become blurred as to what fantasy is and what science fiction is, mainly because marketers are promoting science fiction as fantasy, as fantasy sells more. The definition for Fantasy for Fantasy Short Stories is that it contains no science, and especially no hard science. If you have written a story with science, you may wish to visit our sister book site – Alien Dimensions

If you’ve written a fantasy story that you’ve had rejected, worked on to improve, sent it to someone else, but then been rejected again and given up on, perhaps you could submit that to me? I might reject it too, but I’m looking for great ideas. If the ideas are great and teaches readers something, but the story just needs a little tweaking, I might be able to help you rewrite it to make it work. (You’ll get the credit, of course!)

I’ll consider your story and, if it is suitable, offer you a flat rate of US$10.00 (ten dollars) for it, paid by Paypal. (Example contract here. Previous writers, please note new terms)  Minimum 3500 words, maximum 5000 words. If I suddenly get over 400 sales a month for several months, the rate will be reviewed, so please tell your friends about Fantasy Short Stories!

There are hundreds of publications you can submit to out there. But, if you’re not accepted, most just have time for a short message like ‘I’m sorry but we are unable to accept your story for publication at this time.’ There isn’t much detail about what they want, and they don’t give much detail why they didn’t accept your story. So, to make up for that, please closely follow the list of things I’m looking for, and the list of things I’m not (above). That way, you can save yourself some time! Even so, if your story has some great ideas, I might ignore one or two of the ‘nots’ to let it through.

If you have a story that you think fits the above, and you’re happy for me to use it for US$10, send it to [email protected] as a Word .doc (preferably not docx, unless you are using multiple languages)

If possible, please reformat your story to make it easier for me to read by following William Shunn’s Guide to Proper Manuscript Format (Mainly because I don’t have a submission tracking system yet. And also, well, it means you’re serious. You’ve probably already got that template set up on your computer and use it all the time.)

Of course, I know US$10 isn’t much in some countries, but it is a way to get something back from a story that you might have given up on, and it gets your name out there.

Happy to read your story if you’re a new writer and you think your writing is as good as published fantasy writers. So, if you’ve never submitted before, give it a go!

Looking forward to reading your writing

Neil A. Hogan

Via: Fantasy Short Stories.

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About 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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