PDA

View Full Version : Places to shop dark fiction (horror, fantasy, SF, noir)



RichardThomas
06-14-2011, 05:49 PM
As much as I don't need ANY more competition from you guys, I figure most of you are probably already hitting these guys ANYWAY, so why not post up a master list of dark magazines and online journals so we know where to submit? Most of this comes from Duotrope.com as well as my own experience shopping stories. This is in no particular order. There is a wide range of stuff here from professional paying slick magazines to no-paying micro-fiction. Just some ideas. I've submitted to every place on this list. Feel free to post up your suggestions.

Print:
Cemetery Dance
Grave Tales
ChiZine (Chiaroscuro)
BULL SPEC
Apex
Clarkesworld
F&SF
Dark Discoveries
One Buck Horror
Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show
Shock Totem
Shroud
Shimmer
Tor.com
Weird Tales
Aurealis
Black Static
GUD
Camera Obscura
Spinetingler
Hayden's Ferry Review
Criminal Element
Crimefactory
Opium
Nefarious Muse
Dirty Noir
Rotten Leaves
Blink-Ink
Shotgun Honey

What are your favorites? Your white whales? Post them up.

Good luck all!

ozmosis7
06-14-2011, 06:05 PM
Clarkesworld is a very tough market. I think they only have room for a few stories every year, and receive tons. I've tried them, Shock Totem, F&SF a couple of times. I really need to take the time and come up with some new shorts soon and bug them all again. There are a couple more I sent to in there, but don't remember which ones. Could find out on Duotrope for sure though I guess. I know I sent something into Dark Discoveries once and it was there for almost a year. Not sure if that is a good or bad thing.

Draven Ames
06-14-2011, 06:15 PM
Duotrope.

RichardThomas
06-14-2011, 06:32 PM
Good thoughts, oz. I know some of these are VERY tough. I mentioned that these were from Duotrope, Draven, but I wanted to not just list horror rags, but places that I personally like and am chasing. There are a ton of crummy horror, SF, fantasy and crime rags/sites out there, so this is more like a testimonial as well as a place to start shopping for those that haven't done a ton of submitting.

Draven Ames
06-14-2011, 06:53 PM
Good thoughts, oz. I know some of these are VERY tough. I mentioned that these were from Duotrope, Draven, but I wanted to not just list horror rags, but places that I personally like and am chasing. There are a ton of crummy horror, SF, fantasy and crime rags/sites out there, so this is more like a testimonial as well as a place to start shopping for those that haven't done a ton of submitting.

Very good list you made, Richard.

RichardThomas
06-14-2011, 06:55 PM
thanks - there really aren't THAT many professional paying horror magazines, or even professional paying anything magazines

ozmosis7
06-14-2011, 07:08 PM
thanks - there really aren't THAT many professional paying horror magazines, or even professional paying anything magazines

I agree. Far too few indeed. There are, however, millions of For The Love places to send to. Many of those don't even offer a copy of the book in exchange for the story. It is a quick way to get your name out there for sure, but I try to only offer a story in that manner to be people I know well--and usually in anticipation of them paying in future projects.

This is also why getting in the HWA at the professional rates level is so difficult too.

RichardThomas
06-14-2011, 07:41 PM
I agree. Far too few indeed. There are, however, millions of For The Love places to send to. Many of those don't even offer a copy of the book in exchange for the story. It is a quick way to get your name out there for sure, but I try to only offer a story in that manner to be people I know well--and usually in anticipation of them paying in future projects.

This is also why getting in the HWA at the professional rates level is so difficult too.

True, there are a lot of great places that don't pay much, or at all. Heck, MOST of the "literary journals" pay a copy or two and that's it - very tricky

peteOcha
06-14-2011, 07:57 PM
Very nice list, I'll be sure to check some of these places out.

Randy D. Rubin
06-14-2011, 09:29 PM
Thanks guys for the list and the info. I'm submitting stories as fast as I can.

RJK1981
06-14-2011, 10:45 PM
Thanks for that list, will come in handy down the road :)

ozmosis7
06-14-2011, 10:53 PM
It would be interesting to form a list of just the professional markets, and the odds they currently had of getting into them. I would imagine they are inundated with stories over the vast realm between good and poor. Their readers must sometimes feel like stabbing their eyes out with a spoon LOL. But I would expect they are all under a 2% acceptance rate. So you really have to strike a theme they are working on, or a mood, or several chords in order to see print in their magazines/books. I believe that at least three separate professional markets (including the one hosting this competition) were viewing these stories was a great opportunity to showcase your stuff.

I also wonder if there is anywhere that might have interviewed any of the professional markets? That would be interesting to check out.

I'm not saying I would only send to professional markets, but I think that is the end goal. You could even separate them out into categories of different levels. All of that would be very cool. I wish Duotrope had more of this functionality.

Nik Houser
06-14-2011, 11:26 PM
But I would expect they are all under a 2% acceptance rate. So you really have to strike a theme they are working on, or a mood, or several chords in order to see print in their magazines/books.

Yeah, I've been having the most success recently by finding a place with a specific style or theme and writing on assignment, as it were- trying to do a custom story for them, rather than what I'm prone to do, which is to find something I've already written to fit a certain magazine's taste. I submitted several stories to Weird Tales before I sat down and thought "All right, here's what they seem to publish: stories with an off-center view of reality that prompts a sense of wonder or unease in the reader, centered around an idea that seems fresh and new, but not overly complicated. Let's see if I can cook that stew." And that's the story that they took. Of course, I've got the feeling that I could try that same recipe another three dozen times and get rejected. It was just one of those things where everything coalesced and fit with what they were looking for. Same for my story in the contest. I'd had the idea for a while, but never sat down to write it until the contest came up, at which point I tried to set the tone and character of the story to fit this market, and then spent a dizzying couple of days getting in on paper and hacking it to bits to fit the word limit! This is all a very long-winded way of saying "Ditto."

Anybody else here write with specific places in mind, or do you write a story, then hope to find a market for it? Or both?

RJK1981
06-15-2011, 12:11 AM
I believe that at least three separate professional markets (including the one hosting this competition) were viewing these stories was a great opportunity to showcase your stuff.

I know of at least 1 other publisher outside of CD that could be doing that, which I am sure is one you are likely talking about, not sure who else though. I hope that all of these professional markets are maybe even looking for people who they think could write something they want to publish, even if it isn't the story posted here.

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 03:26 AM
Great advice, Nik. That's really what we should all be doing. I wrote one specifically for Hobart, but also thought PANK might take it. PANK took it. It was a neo-noir "choose your own path" story like read as kids. It was called "Splintered" (http://www.pankmagazine.com/splintered/)

As for professional paying horror markets, with pro pay being ".05 cents a word or up" there is a pretty short list via Duotrope:

Market / accetance rate (i rounded up)
BULL SPEC 5%
Apex <1%
Buzzy Mag (new) unknown
ChiZine (Chiaroscuro) not sure (If guessing, <5%)
Clarkesworld <1%
Dark Discoveries <1%
F&SF <1%
Grave Tales unknown (probably less than 5%)
Mothman Files Anthology unknown
One Buck Horror 5%
OSC's Intergalactic Medicine Show <1%
Pedestal Magazine <1%
Poe Little Thing 69% (what a weird place, this high an acceptance rate, pays pro rates too...) website looks dead?
Shock Totem 1%
Tor.com <1%
Weird Tales 1%

there are another 18 that are semi-pro TO pro rates - i've found that the TOP markets are <1% and the good places are usually <5% on average

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 03:26 AM
I know of at least 1 other publisher outside of CD that could be doing that, which I am sure is one you are likely talking about, not sure who else though. I hope that all of these professional markets are maybe even looking for people who they think could write something they want to publish, even if it isn't the story posted here.

well that's awesome - can you name them? PM me if you want to keep it private, i'm just curious

Nik Houser
06-15-2011, 05:01 AM
Wow, Richard, that list is way larger than I thought it would be, thanks! I need to hit up the Duotrope site, I've just been using stuff posted on their newsletter.

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 05:19 AM
i've got two columns that might be of help over at my blog, one is one my top markets, which runs the gamut from horror to fantasy/SF to neo-noir to literary as well as presses, so it's pretty large, but it's a good list i think, as well as a column on simultaneous submissions that you all may find interesting - hope it helps

Markets: http://whatdoesnotkillme.com/2009/08/31/simultaneous/
Submissions: http://whatdoesnotkillme.com/2009/07/28/richards-submissions/

JJ123
06-15-2011, 08:18 AM
This is a great thread; thanks for all the market information. I will be checking over all of it. I like it when a recent review of open markets is presented.

I'm new to these boards (via the contest), and probably won't be able to post as much as I would like, but I have two questions that perhaps have already been covered.

I've written a young-adult novel (58000 words) that I was thinking of self-publishing on Amazon. Anyone have experience with CreateSpace?

I'm also trying to submit short screenplays to film students (or more experienced directors). Does anyone know of any good forums for that aspect of the writing field? Thanks.

ozmosis7
06-15-2011, 12:31 PM
Very cool lists! Thank you for putting all of this together Richard. Currently I have about 15 subs out, so I am expecting some rejections, hopefully, accompanied by a few acceptances. We shall see. I have a bunch of stories I need to sub out, but need to take the time to research homes. Its quite the work isn't it? I have about 30-40 stories in total right now that I am juggling LOL.

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 12:37 PM
@JJ123 - why self publish? have you exhausted all of the traditional means first? i.e., small presses that are open to submissions, and agents? (I use querytracker.net for agents) - not that there's anything WRONG with SP, but IMO you should at least try the traditional means first - i haven't done create space, but i did upload an eStory called "Victimized" (http://www.amazon.com/Victimized-ebook/dp/B004QS98VO) that was originally published in Murky Depths, as i wanted the extended version (7000 words vs. 5000) to get out there - i know some people have done well with Lulu and Lightening Source - we should probably start a thread for self-publishing

@ozmosis7 - 30-40 stories? DAMN, you been holding onto those for a bit? that's almost my entire career there - i assume you use Duotrope to keep track of everything?

ozmosis7
06-15-2011, 12:45 PM
@ozmosis7 - 30-40 stories? DAMN, you been holding onto those for a bit? that's almost my entire career there - i assume you use Duotrope to keep track of everything?

Well, I don't have the day job most people do, so I write a lot. When I started this a year ago I put out a ton of short stories, and I've recently been trying to revive some of them. And yes, I do use Duotrope and a folder system habit that I picked up from 20 years as a graphic designer. Even then it can be confusing because I have a few out there that aren't on Duotrope and don't want to be, or cant be because they are on the hush as of now. On top of all of those stories, I also have about the same number of stories in the works. I am hoping to get caught up and finish bringing all of those to life as well. Then I can focus more on fresh ideas.

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 12:47 PM
tell me more about this secret "hush" market - are there places i'm missing that aren't on Duotrope? PM me if you want

ozmosis7
06-15-2011, 12:56 PM
LOL, the hush ones are more ideas from the publisher of my book. He has a novella of mine he has been holding onto for a while. But by hush, I meant there was no listed market for it as of yet. It happens to be one of my wife's favorite stories, so I am hopeful for it. I think it has a lot of that old Twilight Zone/One Step Beyond flavor to it. She says it has a Lottery like feel to it.

The others were markets brought up on Library of the Living Dead forums that were reopened, and they wanted to fill them with stories from active members I think, so they never reopened the sub on duotrope. I just happened to have stories that were applicable. Some of the charity ones don't get listed on duotrope either.

So nothing out of the ordinary, just little bits and pieces out there. I've thought about trying my hand at my own anthology or something like that, but have yet to even look at it.

I've also considered trying the agent thing at some point. Interesting to see how you are going about it. Do you still check them on P&E?

RichardThomas
06-15-2011, 01:23 PM
love "The Lottery" and i've been meaning to revisit old Twilight Zone episodes, love to write some stories like that

thanks for the info, oz - some markets slip through the cracks, or aren't on Duotrope - i check agents on Querytracker.net, sometimes I'll hit P&E if i think about it, but usually i go by the comments and all at QT - at this point, i'm basically hitting every freaking agent that reps horror and/or thrillers - i have many queries out, some partials, and a few fulls - even slower and more painful than shopping stories

ChiZine opens up for submissions again July 1st, and i'll be hitting the hard with my novel and a SSC - but they're open to stories right now (Chiaroscuro)

ozmosis7
06-15-2011, 01:28 PM
I've also written and illustrated 3 kids books, but have no idea what to do with them. Small presses won't take them because they cost too much to produce. I've sent them to Dial (of penguin) just as a cold call, but I'm not even sure they take them that way. No idea why I even decided to do such a thing, but the mood struck me and whammo....they're done LOL.

mlouisdixon
06-15-2011, 01:35 PM
I'm also trying to submit short screenplays to film students (or more experienced directors). Does anyone know of any good forums for that aspect of the writing field? Thanks.

Check out www.zoetrope.com (http://www.zoetrope.com)
They've got a number of wings dedicated to film including screenplays.

MLD

ozmosis7
06-15-2011, 01:40 PM
Here is a sample from one of the kid's books. Nothing special, but fun stuff. Sorry for the watermark...old habits are hard to break.

http://kennethwcain.com/temp/Page2.jpg

mercuryval
06-20-2011, 01:12 AM
Markets: http://whatdoesnotkillme.com/2009/08/31/simultaneous/
Submissions: http://whatdoesnotkillme.com/2009/07/28/richards-submissions/

Great list and interesting piece on simultaneous submissions!

RichardThomas
06-20-2011, 01:37 AM
thanks mercury - it's a long list, and it includes a wide range of horror, fantasy, SF, noir and literary journals, as well as presses, but at least it's finite! i really have a hard time with presses and magazines that don't allow simultaneous - i mean, if you're a 1% acceptance market AND you take six months, really?...it's going to take me 50 years - but i've also been an editor and hate when people submit only to pull their story a week later, or if they never give us a note saying they withdraw it - i always send out my withdrawal notices, even if that means sending 20 emails - submishmash helps a lot to keep things centralized - hope it helps, mercury

Randy D. Rubin
06-20-2011, 01:52 AM
Richard, I feel foolish asking this but what is a noir story?

RichardThomas
06-20-2011, 03:18 AM
well it's just French for black, or what i write, i call it neo-noir, or French for new-black - i just think of it as contemporary dark fiction - you've heard of film noir (Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep), neo-noir has less rules, less formulaic - i'd say directors like David Lynch, David Fincher, Christopher Nolan - authors like Dennis Lehane, some of Palahniuk, and relative unknowns like Stephen Graham Jones, Will Christopher Baer, and Craig Clevenger

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_noir
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neo-noir
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hardboiled

I also look at it as "transgressive" literature as well, man vs. anything (himself, society, govt, technology, rules, etc.)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transgressive_fiction

Randy D. Rubin
06-20-2011, 12:37 PM
Thanks richard, I think I may have several dark stories of that nature.

RichardThomas
06-20-2011, 02:40 PM
you could really group crime, thrillers, mystery, noir, neo-noir, hardboiled in the same group - the main different I SEE between neo-noir and many of the other detective related or mystery related stories is that you don't have to have the same formula: detective or cop with a crime or problem to solve, woman in danger, femme fatale, thugs, etc. - it can be anything - for me it's a lot about mood and tone, the setting and what you focus on, how the mindset of your protagonist works, and some feel that neo-noir has to be tragic, no happy endings - many feel that these are "losers" in the sense that they lose a lot, have fractured lives, and are falling apart in some way

i'd say neo-noir could be Blade Runner, Memento, Inception, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive, Fight Club, Seven, etc.

Dan Hocker
06-20-2011, 02:47 PM
I also think a lot of time Noir is also associated with a 50's era setting, even though that 50's era setting is not a requirement.

RichardThomas
06-20-2011, 03:03 PM
sure, and that's probably another difference between noir, or classic noir, and neo-noir - good point, dan

Randy D. Rubin
06-20-2011, 08:28 PM
Do you think Jim Butcher's "Wizard for Hire" series falls in to this noir genre?

RichardThomas
06-20-2011, 08:30 PM
Do you think Jim Butcher's "Wizard for Hire" series falls in to this noir genre?

it's a mix of fantasy and noir, but sure...I mean, Stephen King's Dark Tower series was a mix of just about everything

Randy D. Rubin
06-20-2011, 08:33 PM
How write you are, my friend. Thanks for the schoolin'.

JJ123
06-27-2011, 08:40 AM
Richard Thomas:

My apologies for not replying to you on a more timely basis. Thanks for your input, I appreciate it. You bring up an excellent point: why self-publish? I think I will take your advice and try a little harder (thanks for the tip on that agent site).

However, I'll say this: I'm starting to think that maybe, for me, self-publishing is the only way to give my work even a fighting chance in the marketplace. I've had too many rejections over the years and I figure something about my approach must change. I'm trying to start a new YA series and it is very, very difficult to interest the powers that be.

JJ123
06-27-2011, 08:44 AM
MLouisDixon:

Sorry I'm just replying now. I actually have done Zoetrope, but haven't been on that site in ages. Perhaps I should go back, thanks for the suggestion. I also tried to connect with film students there, but had no success. Triggerstreet is another place to try, I'm part of that, too, but alas, networking success eluded me there, as well.