If it isn’t perfectly clear by now, we are looking for Ho ho, oh hell, is it that time of year again? Already? When the muzak starts cranking out lousy Casio versions of “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” non-stop? When the flavour du jour switches from pumpkin spice to eggnog every goddamn thing? When everything gets all twinkly and glittery and your eyes just want to roll out of your skull from the sparkle overload?
Worse: how about when every other person you come across wants to infect
We’re looking for deranged and demented stories and poems that snap back against all that holiday schmaltz. Our leanings are toward the dark, the speculative (SF, fantasy, horror), the flat-out weird, the humourous, but that covers a lot of ground. But basically, if it would piss off Sean Hannity or Bill O’Reilly or that stuffy old grandma that always gave you hideous socks for Christmas, we’re in. One cautionary note: it’s likely there will be a lot of Santa stories submitted. We’d urge you think more widely, especially outside the white, Judeo-Christian canon. There’s really plenty to hate about Christmas, so it shouldn’t be that hard.
Some guiding stars, if you like:
- The Ice Harvest
- Robert Devereaux’s Santa novels
- Arthur C. Clarke’s “The Star” (not the wussed-out version they did on the Twilight Zone, neither!)
- Donald E. Westlake’s “Nackles”
- Neil Gaiman’s “Nicholas Was . . .”
- Joe Hill’s NO54A2
- Damon Runyon’s “Dancing Dan’s Christmas”
- Don Bassingthwaite’s Cocktails at Seven, Apocalypse at Eight
- Submission window: Monday, January 15, 2018 to Sunday, March 4, 2018, at 11:59 PM Eastern Time.
- Open to submissions by authors of all backgrounds, from anywhere in the world.
- Please do not submit by email. We will accept digital submissions only via the Moksha submissions system at https://chizinepub.moksha.io/publication/war-on-christmas.
- Fiction: 500–5,000 words. This isn’t super-firm (we won’t impale you with a candy cane for 5,100 words, even if you ask us to) but do try to keep it in the ballpark.
- Poetry: No more than 2 pages (8.5 x 11) in length. (Maximum word count set arbitrarily to 2,000 words as our system won’t allow max lines or pages.) No need to double-space.
- Preference will be given to stories previously unpublished in English, however, we will consider previously published material.
- Stories published in languages other than English, but MUST come accompanied by a good English translation.
- Multiple submissions welcome; up to two stories maximum per author, sent under separate cover.
- NOTE ON PSEUDONYMS: we will only publish one story per author, even if you write under several names; please use your real name on all correspondence and indicate your pseudonym in the cover letter and on the byline of the story itself.
- We prefer no simultaneous submissions, please (we promise to respond promptly).
- Final responses no later than 30 days after the deadline.
- Payment is 8 cents per word in Canadian funds (SFWA qualifying after exchange to US funds) for original submissions, 1 cent per word in Canadian funds for reprints.
- Rights: First World Rights, including audio and translation rights. (NOTE: CZP has a foreign rights agent who will be presenting the anthology in foreign markets.)
- File formats accepted: .docx, .doc, or .rtf.
- Formatting: Standard Manuscript format: double-spaced, 1-inch margins, etc. Times New Roman 12 point or other readable serifed font (NOT Courier); indented paragraphs; italics in italics (not underlined); Canadian or U.S. spelling; use # (or other unambiguous symbol) to indicate scene breaks; no outlandish formatting, please; full contact info (name, street address, email, phone number) and word count on the first page.
- Please include a cover letter with a brief author bio, title of story, and full contact info, including street address.
- Please do not summarize or describe the story in the cover letter.
- To be published by ChiZine Publications in late 2018. Yup, this one’s going right to press!