Friday, October 30, 2009

Distant Worlds

Library of Science Fiction & Fantasy Press is pleased to announce Distant Worlds, an anthology of novella length Science Fiction.

The novella is often neglected in modern genre fiction. Too short to print as a novel and too long for most short story markets, a novella has room for a lot of richness and growth, for fully realized characters, settings, and societies, and for concepts and ideas that just won’t fit into a short story but may not be big enough or complex enough for a novel. The Novella has the potential to deliver incredible stories.

We believe very strongly in that potential and invite you to help us find it.

The details:

While definitions may vary depending on where you look, for the purpose of this anthology, a novella will have a length of somewhere between 20,000 and 30,000 words.

Your submission must be in standard manuscript format and attached to your e-mail as an rtf file. For a good reference on what standard manuscript format entails, please see William Shunn’s web page<>on the subject.

Payment for inclusion in this anthology will be $100, two contributor’s copies of the book, and the everlasting knowledge of being involved in something special.

Submissions are now open and will close on 15 Jan 2010. This is a fairly large window, but we recognize the size and scope of a novella can require a great deal more time than a short story. If you don’t have one ready to go, we’d like to give you a chance to write one from scratch.

Submissions and Queries should be sent to with ‘Submission – Distant Worlds’ or ‘Query – Distant Worlds’ in the subject line, as applicable.


There are a lot of themes that have been overdone in SF. Strange Horizons provides a wonderfully detailed (yet certainly incomplete) list of overused themes and plots<>. We’re not saying don’t do it, but if you’ve picked something from this list as your main focus, try to stand it on its head.

Because there is only room for 4 or 5 stories in Distant Worlds, submissions will be taken in two stages, building a shortlist of possible inclusions. Rejections will happen, but final decisions on acceptances won’t be made until ALL submissions have been read.

The speculative elements you choose, whatever they are, must be integral to the story. If you can write the same story without them, then it’s not a genre story. That said, we subscribe to the Damon Knight theory of Science Fiction: Science Fiction is what we point to when we say it. Every story will be read. If you believe in yours, please send it.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Blade Red Dark Pages – Volume 1

The first Blade Red Press anthology of dark speculative fiction is now open to submissions. The anthology will be available in print and ebook format through online retailers in early 2010 (assuming sufficient submissions are received). Only submissions received between September 17th 2009 and November 30th 2009 will be considered. Any submissions received outside this timeframe will be deleted unread.

We are accepting short speculative fiction up to 7,500 words. Submissions must have some element of a speculative nature (scifi, fantasy, horror, alternate universe, steampunk, etc.) that is integral to the plot. Stories must also have a dark and gritty edge. We’re not a Young Adult or Kids publisher – we’re looking for tales that disturb, dismay and unsettle, yarns that stay in the mind long after they’re read. We like our dark tales to be clever and interesting rather than blatant. Dark doesn’t mean tortureporn or slash and slay. We are interested in all aspects of speculative fiction, so surprise us with your imagination.

We are not interested in supernatural erotica or romance. Obviously strong language and blood and gore are bound to be involved to some degree, but make them a part of the story, not the reason for the story. We will not publish stories that are racist or hate fuelled diatribes. We don’t mind some sex that’s relevant to the story, but we’re not interested in pornography. Try to avoid the overused cliches like senseless revenge, cookie cutter serial killers and predictable monsters. And if you want to write a story with vampires it better be mind-blowingly original and fantastically well written. Seriously, isn’t everyone sick and tired of vampires right now?

Blade Red Press is not a straight horror publisher, so we’re looking for a variety of speculative fiction with a dark edge. Surprise us!

Electronic submissions only accepted. Submit stories attached to an email in .rtf format only. Any other file type or stories in the body of the email will be deleted unread. Please follow standard manuscript format – search the web if you don’t know what that means. HOWEVER, regardless of the format guidelines you read, ignore the bit about leaving two spaces after every full stop. This is the 21st century, not the wild west. Two spaces after a full stop is an old typesetting standard and just annoying in the digital age.

The subject line of your email must read: “SUBMISSION: Story Title”

The body of the email must include:

Story Title
Author’s name (please indicate here if you want to use a pen name for publication)
Contact email
Word count of your submission

Feel free to include a short cover letter, but don’t bore us. We’re going to have enough to read as it is. Don’t bother with a bio – if we like your story we don’t care whether you’re Stephen King, Dan Brown or Joe Schmo. We’ll ask for a bio if we offer to buy the story.

Payment is a flat rate of AUD$25 per story, payable upon publication, plus one contributors copy of the finished anthology. We pay via PayPal only. (We would love to pay more but Blade Red is a relatively new publisher and we are trying to establish ourselves in a diffcult marketplace. We will hopefully be in a position to pay more as time goes by.) We are buying Exclusive First Worldwide Print and Electronic rights for 6 months from the date of publication. Publication will be during 2010 (hopefully before June). Once that 6 month period is past all rights revert to the author.

No simultaneous submissions, so only send us your very best work. No reprints – all submissions must not have been published anywhere else. We aim to respond within 6 – 8 weeks. Query after 8 weeks if you haven’t heard back from us.

Send submissions to

All submissions will be read by a team of slush readers who will receive stories stripped of all identifying details. This blind read will result in an editorial scoring process by which we will select the successful submissions. If you have any questions about the anthology, please email us.