Thursday, June 18, 2020

Recent Learning and Upcoming Submission Deadlines

First, the learning! I am thinking about making an actual website after I took a 1-2 hour webinar with Mary Buckham in which she discussed Primal Branding. That is something I should really work on as I draw closer to a successful publication. Her webinar was well-organized and I'll probably take one from her again.

I also recently took a class with Jonathan Maberry called Writing Fight and Action Scenes. It was fantastic and I may talk about that more in another post. Very inspiring and I would recommend any talks or classes with him. It was about $25 for the Action Scenes class.

I've also attended some talks with Dave Farland and guests as part of his Apex Group, and that has been eye-opening indeed. Pairing that with the group and the classes, it has been worth the entry cost. I got some good inspiration from some Word Sprints there, too.

I have been keeping up with the Super Secrets Challenge Group, meeting the goals of one new flash every month based on Wulf Moon's KYD exercise and two new shorts stories every quarter. We've been going through some discussion and exercises on dialogue recently. You can check them out here:

As for upcoming submissions, Writers of the Future prep first. Since I kept up with my goals, I received some fantastic feedback from Wulf Moon on the story that I'm planning to submit to Writers of the Future for the 3rd Quarter of 2020. It's due to be submitted by the end of June, so now I'm working through Moon's advice to bring the whole story up another level. I would be surprised if this one doesn't at least snag me another Honorable Mention, but I'm going to work hard to push it past even that.

In addition to the usual WotF stories, I'm revising and reviewing a few pieces to submit to several submission windows. I decided to list them below in case any other writers happen to check the blog and need a reminder to get to submitting. I'll add and update here or in future posts.

10 Upcoming Submission Windows and Publications

Fireside Fiction, deadline 6/19 at 6pm EST. Words: ~3000. Pay: 12.5 cents/word. Looking for: any genre; particularly seeking stories that engage with the transformational with body focus, the repurposing of technology, trauma and how it changes connection, and cyberpunk or cyberpunk-adjacent '15-minute into the future' dystopias.

Cast of Wonders, window 6/15-6/30. Words: ~6000. Pay: 8 cents/word. Theme: Lifelines for Banned Books Week (9/27-10/3); books that help us get through isolation. Books can be any one-way communication (box of letters, podcast, skywriting, anything recipient can’t easily reply to). Isolation can be physical or social (astronaut in spaceship alone, person in place where no speaks their language, someone in prison). Don’t have to have happy ending but must end on hopeful note. YA audience. 

Writers of the Future, deadline 6/30. Words 3000-17,000 (personally I recommend under 10k). See website for details. If you are a new writer with no more than three publications or so, definitely submit to this contest every quarter.

The Binge Watching Cure III, deadline 7/1. Words: varies 100-25k. Pay: $100. Theme: sci-fi

Augur, window 6/15-7/15. Words ~5000. Pay 8 cents/word. Submit up to 2 short stories per window, or 4 across genres and poetry of 5 pages or less with 5 poems or 10 pages total per window. Genre/Theme: Multiplicity of Futures (afrofuturism, soft scifi, scifi fabulism, Indigenous futurity, hopepunk, dystopia, utopia, post-apoc, solarpunk, scifi-realism, Canadian scifi, ecofiction, hopeful futures; trauma/oppression beside hope/better futures). Not interested in pandemic fiction or hard scifi, mostly want human/character-driven narratives. Always interested in dreamy realism, slipstream, fabulism, magical realism, literary speculative. Best submission defies categories; something too spec or not spec enough for other magazines.

Dreamforge, window: 7/1-7/15. Words 100-15,000 (under 5000 best). Pay 4-8 cents/word. Genre: SF and Fantasy (no horror). Theme: “Hope of the Big Idea,” meaning stories that call upon powerful new visions of how life could be shaped for the better either through technological or social change, or both. Seeking: More flash fiction between 500 and 1500 words. I’d like to feature more authors, especially talented beginners.

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, window: 7/1-7/2 (1st and 2nd of every month), Words: 1000 and up (shorter better). Pay: 6 cents/word. Genre: SF and Fantasy (no horror).

Dark Matter, window: open since 6/1. Words: 1000-5000. Pay: 8 cents/word. Genre: science-fiction.

Hybrid Fiction, window: on hiatus until July. Words: 500-5000. Pay: 6 cents/word.  Genre: all submissions must be speculative hybrid/cross-genre (any blend of 2+ genres such as dark fantasy, steampunk western, historical fantasy, weird western, crime fantasy, etc.).

Amazing Stories Anthology: No Police = Know Future, deadline: 8/15 (or until filled). Words: ~4000. Pay: 8 cents/word. Theme: SF stories that give potential (and hopefully positive) futures that involve alternatives to modern day policing.

That's all for now. I'll try to share lots more in July.