Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Submissions Update & Upcoming Deadlines

Hey Everybody,

Upcoming submission windows are listed (and clickable!) at the bottom of this post.

I'll start with an update on my own submissions. I believe I made 12 submissions in June, two of them new stories finished in June, and the other submissions including six stories written previously and revised a bit before sending back out.

First, the Writers of the Future entry for the 3rd Quarter deadline is done and submitted. I have high hopes for this one. I won't say it's my favorite (that's still reserved for my second entry to WotF, first HM-winner, kick-ass Atena Maverick versus Signboard City, who will get more attention this summer as I return to some noveling on the side of my non-stop short story and flash production--it's time), but this story I submitted is the first one that received full feedback from a pro writer, Wulf Moon, the pack leader of the Super Secrets Challenge group on the Writers of the Future forum. He provided a ton of excellent feedback. The only other pro feedback I can think of is Eric Witchey's wonderful advice on my novel pitch in 2017 and some story feedback from Eugene Writers Anonymous somewhere in 2014-2017.

This piece was a joy to watch progress since it first started on a little napkin in the summer of 2014, upon which I decided to draw a little fantasy map just like I always used to do in journals in elementary school. That started the world which was soon built into a novel, "What We Must Give," in the Fall/Winter of 2014, a novel that went through many revisions 2014-2017. And then, after the darkness that tore into my life in 2018, I returned in 2019 and joined Wulf's Super Secret Challenge group on the Writers of the Future forum. In January 2020, when I read one of the prompts for the flash challenge, I knew it was time to dive back into that world. I wrote out this beautiful flash story that I may still try and publish separate from the other pieces.

After submitting that flash to a couple publications, I ended up expanding it into a short story in May. My writing partner and I exchanged multiple drafts as we prepared to submit our stories to Moon. It was tough for me as I had to cut out links to the novel and characters and scenes and even a full on plot line that may be moved to the follow-up short story. This story went through a complete re-write after my writing partner pointed out a way to get closer to the Heart's Desire of my MC. After all that, it went into the hands of Moon and, following his comments, I took the story to the revision board again, worked through many revisions with my writing partner for a few more weeks, up into the last day of the deadline, and by the end I feel like the emotion was raw and the world was laid bare. More to come with this world: a follow-up short story with the same characters and a few new ones, and then I'll take both stories and using them as guides in revising the novel itself.

As for the four stories I submitted by June 30th:
- for Cast of Wonders for their Banned Book Weeks theme of Lifelines, a 2000-word piece about an estranged father tanuki with an odd power he uses to reach his daughter
- for The Binge-Watching Cure III, a 1000-word piece about an inventor who creates devices for super villains but must refuse a delivery to handle some family trouble
- for F&SF, a 6900-word dark fantasy story about siblings who try to save a childhood friend from the cult their parents now lead (this has seen so many revisions since it grew from Eugene Writers Anonymous prompt to WotF HM-winner; one day it shall be published) 
- for Podcastle, a doppleganger tries takes over the identity of a Duchess to create world peace but runs into magic hat problems

I also made another 7 submissions in June:
- for Fireside, a new SF 2100-word short story written in June in which a human colony delegate tries to defend his alien-obsessed friend from the dangerous experiment the aliens executed on him
- submitted to four different publications after a rejection in May, this is a new 1000-word horror story written in May in which the fragility of life and relationships plague the MC when the cult leader asks if he's ready for the monthly barrel roll
- submitted to Augur and Dark Matter, a 5000-word SF time travel piece with a prison escape and family reunion (was an HM-winner with WotF)

Now for July. Bigger goals with less clear deadlines. I want to return to working on my novels. I think I'll go back to the Atena Maverick versus Signboard City one first (tentatively named "Hum"). So I'll start by looking at two very different versions, polish up the pitches for both versions, then ask my writing partner to help me decide which path to take. After that, start the revision process for that novel again.

Besides the noveling, I will continue the short story production and submission process. I'm still with Wulf Moon's Super Secrets Challenge group, so I'll be keeping up with that and preparing my Q4 submission for Writers of the Future. I'll also be taking a workshop with Wulf Moon later in July through Fyrecon's day of masterclass workshops, Fyrelite. Thankfully, it's online this year, so I can join them from Japan on July 18th. I'll also be taking some of the free workshops with Clarion West. I'm signed up for Arkady Martine's workshop, "Moving from the Novel to the Short Story--and Back Again". I also took one of the writing sprints with Tegan Moore, and it was great, so I will take more.

I'm super excited to hear the Lightspeed's sister magazine Fantasy Magazine is coming back! It just opened for submission and the first return issue is coming in November. Looking forward to that read. They just opened for submissions and I have an excellent 6900-word dark fantasy story to send their way. With that, the list we've all been waiting for. I'm just collecting these from what I've noticed on FB, Twitter, or wherever. I'm sure you can find this on your own, but I've found it helpful whenever people mention their publication and submission finds, so here you are. Ton more listed in this update. Will collect even more next time.

Submission Deadlines in July

DUE SOON: Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, 7/1-7/2 (1st and 2nd of every month), Words 1000-40,000 (shorter better). Pay 6 cents/word. Genre: SF and Fantasy (no horror),

DUE SOON: Fantasy Magazine, 7/1-7/7 (monthly window), Words ~7500, Pay 8 cents/word, Genre: Fantasy/Dark Fantasy

DUE SOON: Dreamforge, 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.

DUE SOON: Augur, 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.

Third Flatiron, 7/1-8/1, Words 1500-3000, Pay 8 cents/word, Theme: Brain Games: Stories to Astonish, Genre: SF/F/H/steampunk/cyberpunk/myth/satire

Mysterion, 7/1-7/31, Words ~9000, 8 cents/word, Genre: speculative that engages with Christianity

Submission Deadlines and Windows in August and Beyond

No Police = Know Future, 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.

Upon a Once Time, 7/1/2020-2/28/2021, Words 1000-3000, Pay 8 cents/word, Theme: Mashup of two fairytales, Genre: SF/Fantasy/Grimdark/New Weird/Dying Earth/genre-bending

The Wild Hunt: Stories of the Chase, 7/1-2/28/2021, Words 1000-3000, Pay 8 cents/word, Theme: The Wild Hunt (folklore, myths, drama), Genre: SF/Fantasy/Grimdark/New Weird/Dying Earth/genre-bending

Publications Open for Submission (No Specified Deadline)

Asimov's, 1000-20,000, 8 cents/word, Genre: SF/F

Beneath Ceaseless Skies, ~15,000, 8 cents/word, Genre: literary adventure fantasy (no urban fantasy and nothing modern)

Clarkesworld Magazine, 1000-22,000, 10 cents/word, Genre: SF/F

Daily Science Fiction, 100-1500, 8 cents/word, Genre: SF/F/slipstream, will consider flash series

The Dark, 2000-6000, 6 cents/word, Genre: Horror/Dark Fantasy/Experimental

Dark Matter, Words: 1000-5000. Pay: 8 cents/word. Genre: science-fiction

Focus on the Family Clubhouse, 500-2000, 15 cents/word, Genre: SF/Fantasy/Humor/General, Age/Theme: 8-12 year old and Christian values

Hybrid Fiction, 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.)

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