Stories and poems on the theme of childhood are invited. The deadline for submissions is August 30th 2012. Email your submissions as word file attachments to email@example.com
- Stories and Poetry submitted must be original and unpublished work.
- Stories of up to 5000 words. Poems of any length.
- Send one story and / or up to 3 poems.
- Please include your contact details.
- Payment for published work will be £15 per 1000 words for short stories and £15 per poem.
- All successful authors will also receive a complimentary copy of the relevant anthology.
- The launch event for the anthologies will coincide with the Exetreme Imagination Children’s Literature Festival in Exeter in February 2013.
- Selected poems will form the basis for a dramatic production by Cygnet Theatre
- We regret that we are unable to give you any feedback on your work or enter into any correspondence about rejected work.
Advice to writers
In addition to our submission guidelines, new writers should also bear in mind some of the following hints and tips from the editors:
Short stories with an undercurrent. All the best short stories express conflict of some sort. They illustrate a moment of change – in the central character’s life, in his or her perception, in the reader’s understanding. The conflict and the moment of change must be connected, however elliptically.
Characterisation is paramount. A short story deals primarily with one character and his or her surroundings and illustrates some aspect of human nature. Plot springs from a character’s needs, desires and decisions. Your character needs to be three-dimensional. What the reader is shown is only a part of what you, as writer, know.
Avoid too many walk-on characters or ones that exist only as plot functions. Select a memorable feature or two to convey character and appearance. Use gesture, speech patterns, movement and clothing to communicate personality.
Plot. Don’t lose it. Something needs to happen, even if it is only in the protagonist’s consciousness, but aim to avoid confusing your reader. Don’t try to be clever or over-complicate matters by weaving too many plot threads into the story – such tapestries are the stuff of novels.
Dialogue should reveal character and carry the action forward. It needs to sound real and plausible.
Structure: Craft your story with care. A short story has substance and form. Choose where to begin and then start with a bang, pulling your reader straight into the story. Remember to show, not tell. Pay attention to cadence and tempo.
Be aware of all these ‘rules’ and then break them. But know when you are breaking them and how to manage the manoeuvre.
For queries/ submissions: firstname.lastname@example.org