Submit Your Stories Sunday: Creatures


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 book to help inspire your story submission and finish off with a list of the best writing-related articles I came across this week.

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Tell-Tale Press: Creatures

Eligibility: Original or reprint speculative fiction tales from 500 to 5 000 words on the theme of creatures. They also seek novelettes from 7 000 to 10 000 words.

Take Note: Under represented creatures will be favored over the usual vampires, werewolves, etc.

Payment: this is a bit complicated, bear with me. Fiction from 500 -1K words will be paid $5. 1K to 3K will be paid $10. 3K to 5K is $25. Novelettes are offered $50.

Submit by: March 4th, 2019

Click here to go to the original call for details.

A Book to Inspire Your Submission:

The Resurrectionist by E. B. Hudspeth is a fictional history and art book in one. The first half of this volume is the biography of a mad scientist, Dr. Spencer Black. The second half offers the Doctor’s masterpiece: an anatomy book of mythological beasts, drawn in the classic form.

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The Resurrectionist reads as a dark history book. Spencer the boy is forced into grave-robbing with his physician father, stealing corpses for cadaver research. When he is grown, Spencer also enters medicine, specializing in anatomy and gaining surgical experience with deformities and mutations. Soon Spencer develops his own theoretical evolution, supposing that humans were once closer to mythological beasts before we evolved out of our (possibly) best selves.

To further his studies, Black turns to traveling carnivals and cabinets of curiosities. His reputation in the medical community disintegrates as he attempts to publish his theories. Black then becomes a carnival showman, creating his own little oddities to delight the public. When the excitement of those creations wanes, Black begins experimenting with animals, creating living mythological franken-beasts. Inevitably, humans are next as his traveling show descends deeper into macabre and twisted wonder.

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An illustration from The Resurrectionist, by E. B. Hudspeth

Reading about how Dr. Spencer Black creates his mythological creatures, while deeply unsettling, provides a fascinating wonderscape for tales of creatures to grow from. If nothing else, flipping through the anatomy drawings are sure to spark your imagination with a creature tale or two.

Writerly links worth sharing this week:

The SFWA has announced it will be raising what is considered a professional rate from $0.06 per word to $0.08 per word effective September 1st, 2019.

Happy writing!

The Scientist’s Apprentice

Baby blankets are soft. Halloween costumes are thin and catch on the unseen flaws of fingertips. Graduation gowns are the same, but thicker. You’re not missing much.

The lab coat is stiff, but they soften with use. Glass beakers are smooth and gently curved. They are pleasurable to touch. A lab should smell of disinfectant, never that iron scent of spilled blood or the rancid smell of death. Remember that.

A descent into madness smells like smouldering pine pitch. Expect to get the shakes. Everybody does. They’re just the last dregs of your sanity holding on too tight. You’ll feel better once you let them go. It’s half-pay till you’re good and mad, so take that as your incentive.

You’ll still see your children on your day off. Once per month. If they still want you in their lives, that is. Most don’t. But at least they won’t starve. Parenting is mostly self-sacrifice, after all.

Here’s the contract. Standard, but do sign it before you begin. It’s the only thing that can keep you out of the funny farm and in the lab. I don’t want to waste my time training you if you’re destined for the straight jacket swaddle. We scientists seek a different kind of therapy, don’t you agree?

Come on, give us a taste of your cackle before we begin your descent.

Ah yes, you’ll do fine.

Courtesy giphy.com.