It’s officially Halloween season, writers!
This spooky, fantastical month is rich in literary inspiration, especially for those of you that love all things horror, sci-fi, fantasy, and magic.
Think of all the authors that have drawn their inspiration from the Halloween spirit to create some of our most beloved and well-known stories: Edgar Allen Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, Shirley Jackson, Ray Bradbury, and of course, Stephen King, to name just a few.
If you’ve been lacking inspiration lately and don’t have anything ready to submit, this post is also for you! I guarantee these submission guidelines will get your pen moving.
We’ve curated a list of 3 publications paying for Halloween-themed stories. Struggling with writer’s block? The submission guidelines include some inspiring writing prompts sure to get your creative juices flowing.
These publications are also new-writer friendly, so don’t be shy!
We’d love to see what you come up with–especially before you submit. We can even give you feedback and edits on your first five pages so you can submit with confidence that your work is in publishing-ready shape. Drop yourself into our calendar to book your spot!
If these aren’t your thing, no worries. We put out a curated list of the latest publishing opportunities each week. Be sure to check back here in 7 days for 3 more opportunities! Or, you can get on our mailing list to have this list delivered straight to your inbox. Never miss a publishing opportunity again. Click below to sign up.
Who they are: Zombies Need Brains is a small press that focuses on producing professional-quality science fiction and fantasy-themed anthologies. Zombies Need Brains’ main goals are to provide a new outlet for themed anthologies, to rescue abandoned and orphaned series that have been dropped by other publishers, and to eventually print original novels and series from established and new writers.
What they publish: They are accepting submissions for their three science fiction anthologies:
The Modern Deity’s Guide to Surviving Humanity:
Urban fantasy stories set in the modern-day world with some type of god or deity as the central focus of the story.
Stories involving abandoned ships, whether it be ships at sea or starships in space. We are attempting to fill half of the anthology with science fiction stories and half with fantasy stories. We are somewhat flexible as to the definition of “ship” for this anthology, but it must still be somehow abandoned in some way.
When Worlds Collide:
Science fiction and fantasy stories, including alternate history stories, where two different cultures “collide” in some way. We expect mostly first contact types of collisions, but the story does NOT need to be a first contact story. The cultures can be human, alien, technological, fae, etc.
Word Count: No more than 7,500 words
Deadline: December 31st, 2020
Pay: $0.08/word, plus advances from Kickstarter, plus 25% royalties of ebook and 10% of paperback.
Who they are: Cemetary Gates Media is a publisher of fantasy and supernatural fiction.
What they publish: Horror flash fiction for a “pocket-sized” anthology. The theme of the anthology is horror subgenre medley. Please choose a theme to write and submit a story for: Cemetery Chillers, Spook Houses, Supernatural Slashers, Witchcraft, Within the Woods. You can submit one story per theme, and up to 5 stories total.
Word Count: 500-1,000 words. Stories over 1,200 words or under 500 words will be deleted.
Deadline: December 26, 2020. However, they have already selected the majority of the stories they will publish, so submit soon:
Stories accepted per theme as of 10/4:
- Cemetery Chillers 7/10
- Spook Houses 8/10
- Supernatural Slashers 7/10
- Witchcraft 7/10
- Within the Woods 6/10
Who they are: WordFire Press is a publishing company owned by two New York Times bestselling authors. They seek to publish quality works of fiction and nonfiction, while pioneering new models of cooperation and profitability among authors, readers, booksellers, and the publisher. They have published dozens of notable authors.
What they publish: Original short stories of unmasking, to include a mix of science fiction, fantasy, horror, alien, magical, witchcraft, AI, and romance elements. Stories that explore the masks we wear, the mysteries they conceal, and the price we pay when they’re stripped away. Unmasking, whether literal or figurative, must be integral to the story. Funny or grim, unsettling or cozy, we expect the unexpected. Pull back the mask and reveal your insights, your character-driven tales, and stories that will make us think.
Word Count: Up to 5,000 words
Deadline: Octboer 31, 2020
Pay: $0.06/word on acceptance
Is your work up to industry standards?
Publishing standards are extremely strict, and also ever-changing. There’s only one way to truly know: ask someone in the industry.
That’s why we meet with agents each week on our writers’ behalves–to get the latest standards and trends. We use that knowledge to coach our writers to get their work up to par and ready for publication.
We’re accepting select writers to join our community of successful, published authors. If you’re serious about publishing, you can speak to a member of our team to learn more about our programs. Book a call here.