Welcome to this week’s edition of Submit Your Stories Sunday. Every week I bring you a unique call for submissions to help you find a home for your stories or inspire a new one. Each call will contain a speculative element and will offer payment upon acceptance. Next, I’ll recommend a story to get you thinking about your own submission and to help newer writers understand how to fulfill a call’s thematic elements.
This week we’re submitting to Augur magazine and we’re reading Change as Seen Through an Orrery of Celestial Fire by Michael Matheson.
Eligibility: authors can submit up to two speculative stories under 5 000 words
Take Note: the theme for this call is “a multiplicity of futures” (see original call linked below for more details). They request that writers do not submit pandemic stories.
Submit By: July 15th, 2020
Payment Offered: $0.11 CDN per word for stories over 1K words, or $110.00 for flash fiction
A Story to Ignite Your Writing Mojo
Augur‘s stories aren’t available to read on their website (which is fine, of course, but does not meet this blog’s mandate of offering submissions to writers of every financial situation), however, they did publish a preview issue when the magazine first began, in which we can read reprints without a paywall. And we’re in luck, because in that preview issue is a gem of a story called Change as Seen Through An Orrery of Celestial Fire by Michael Matheson. Click here to go read that story now.
Matheson’s story is a delight of superhero-like characters imbued with qi, fire on the part of the protagonist Shurui and ice for her lover, Zetian. Throughout the story, Matheson nails the world-building by alluding to a much longer universe at play behind the story. They give us hints of Shurui’s past lovers and history, of something beyond mortal existence in the climax of Shurui’s burning, and the deep relationship between herself and the person that might have been an antagonist if this were a different kind of story. We’re given a taste, and it proves just enough to fascinate and keep our minds digging deeper into the story, hunting for more clues. I scrolled back to the beginning and read it again for any detailed delicacies I missed the first time, and I love it when a story pulls me in like that.
Another moment in the story that wowed me was the description of Shurui’s resurrection. Rather than brushing past it, or skipping to an awakening, Matheson takes up the challenge and provides the reader with a lush and visceral description of a body rebuilding itself from ruin, and it is extremely effective. Don’t miss out on that reading experience… or skip those challenges in your own work.
For a bigger picture of what the Augur editors like, click here to head over to the full preview issue, or, if you can, purchase one of their recent issues.
That’s all for today, writers. I wish you good luck on your submissions and good health to you and your families.