Category Archives: short stories
It can be disconcerting at times when you wait for a response from a publisher or periodical, only to wind up falling just short of the mark. They like the story, but it’s simply not quite what they’re looking for.
Ouch. It’s the kind of phrase that stings despite the good will behind it. The story isn’t bad–an editor will have no qualms in telling you that, I figure–but it either isn’t a good enough fit for the magazine or collection, or there is some indefinable piece of the story that is holding it back.
I don’t know, I suppose it’s nothing really. What one person doesn’t accept, another may very well scoop up. It’s like fishing with a gun, the refraction of the water winds up distorting your aim just enough so that you miss that elusive fish. Just gotta adjust my aim and pull the trigger again when the next fish comes around.
Okay, enough of the clumsy aquatic metaphors.
In some happier news, Fearology 2: Beware All Animals Great and Small, is inching its way toward publication through Library of Horror Press. My story, “Walk ‘Em Up,” will appear inside its pages, and I’m really looking forward to reading what everyone else has written.
Here’s a shot of the cover art:
Pretty cool, if you ask me.
In the meantime, I’ve got over a dozen other short stories submitted to various markets. Fingers crossed. And I’ve got more on the way.
Just noticed that the flash fiction market, Everyday Weirdness, seems to have died. Well, I noticed it back in February, but Duotrope made if official, pretty much. Oh well, I had a story submitted there from back in November. Alas, “King Lloyd” will have to try his luck someplace else.
After collecting a few more rejections this month I finally hit some pay dirt with a short story submission. Fearology 2, an anthology from Library of Horror Press comprised of animal-themed horror stories, accepted my story “Walk ‘Em Up.”
I had originally intended to submit a story that’s been collecting dust this year that I like, which involves a boy and his dog–and a zombie dog–but I was informed that they wanted to steer clear of zombies and dogs, since they’d been receiving plenty of submissions involving both. So, I had to cook up something else. The suggested story of about a rabid fox didn’t pan out as I attempted a rough draft, so I ditched that and created a little tale with a fluffy little bunny as the animal of choice. After I submitted it, I discovered it was up against 140+ other stories, and my hopeful optimism waned … until I got the e-mail letting me know I made the cut.
The table of contents (viewable on the Library of Horror forum here) for the anthology will include:
- Running With The Pack – D. K. Latta
- Cat Food – Joleen Kuyper
- Walk ‘Em Up – Gef Fox
- The Monkey’s Sandwich – Craig Saunders
- Horseman – Renee Carter Hall
- Alien Registration – James Peak
- Revenge On Apex Mountain – Michael Hodges
- What Doesn’t Kill – K. A. Dean
- Roaches – Amanda Northrup Mays
- Goats Do Roam – Christopher King
- Mahishasura – Richard Marsden
- A Murder Of Crows – Henry Snider
- Sons Of Gula – R. M. Ridley
- Canis Finalis – Aaron Legler
- Feeding Oscar – Donald Jacob Uitvlugt
- Night Of The Widow – Alex J. Kane
- Smells Like Neurosis – Kent Alyn
- Peek-A-Boo – Eric Dimbleby
- Beastial – Martin Rose
- Infestation – Tom Harold
- On The Banks Of The Royal Marsh – Daniel Powell
- Doctor Dolittle He Ain’t – Wayne Goodchild
- The Tora Bora Horror – Gregory L. Norris
– I’ve also capped off the month with a couple more submissions. One to Northern Frights Publishing for their anthology, Fallen: An Anthology of Demonic Horror, and another one to Library of Horror Press for their anthology, Malicious Deviance. Fingers crossed on both of those.
– Next up on the short story plate are about a half-dozen open calls for submissions, with deadlines between mid-September and Halloween. There’s a ghost story anthology from Whitlock Publishing, another anthology from FableCroft, and the second volume of Tattered Souls from Cutting Block Press. I’m hoping to have something suitable to submit to each of those, as well as others.
– I found out from Jodi Lee on the Library of the Living Dead forums that the edits for the impending Dead Bells anthology are coming up soon. That’s good news, as I’m not only excited at the prospect of seeing that book published in the coming months, but I am eager to dive into my contributor’s copy to read all of the other stories as well.
– I’ve been pouring through my contributor’s copy of Zero Gravity from Pill Hill Press and have really been entertained by some of the stories I’ve read so far. A couple of real treats to read have been Peter Freeman’s “A Space Romance” and Alethea Kontis’s “The Unicorn Tree.”
“The Stand-Ins,” my latest short story to find its way into publication is now available through Pill Hill Press and the new sci-fi anthology, Zero Gravity: Adventures in Deep Space, edited by Alva J. Roberts. Here’s the write-up straight from their site:
This thrilling collection features thirteen fantastic adventures set in the cold vacuum of space. Read about rogues, scoundrels, aliens, robots, heroes, junkers and priests as you explore the rich and creative diversity of the following stories:
- “Junker’s Fancy” By Rosemary Jones
- “Leech Run” By Scott W. Baker
- “A Space Romance” By Paul A. Freeman
- “Hawking’s Caution” By Mark Rivett
- “Parhelion” By David Schembri
- “To Stand Among Kings” By Kenneth Mark Hoover
- “The Unicorn Tree” By Alethea Kontis
- “The Beacon of Hope” By Gregory L Norris
- “Tangwen’s Last Heist” By C.B. Calsing
- “The Stand-Ins” By Gef Fox
- “Glacier Castle” By Will Morton
- “Rescue” By Margaret Karmazin
- “At One Stride Comes the Dark” By Murray Leeder
I’m pleased to see my first science-fiction story in print, and I’m very much looking forward to reading everyone else’s stories. From what I’ve heard about the other stories, it should prove to be a widely varied colletion of interstellar tales.