Stumar Press

an independent publisher of horror and fantasy fiction

Ten Terrors (anthology series) - Submission Guidelines

 

Ten Terrors will be an ongoing anthology series of horror stories by established and emerging authors. Each volume will contain ten short stories.

The anthology is open to unsolicited submissions.

There’s no theme – other than the story needs to be a horror one – because we want to avoid the anthology having a samey feel to it.

When we say horror, we mean the full breadth of the genre from gentle ghost stories to nasty pieces full of blood, guts and gore. The horror can deal with the psychological or the supernatural, with the fantastic or the normal.

So what are we looking for?

First and foremost the story needs strong characters. We’re looking for believable ordinary people, going about their ordinary lives, who suddenly find their ordinary world is far from ordinary. We’re interested in how they react when the rules change.

But character isn’t enough the story must also have a strong storyline in its own right. The more original and innovative the premise, the better. That said we’re not averse to genre tropes – serial killers, vampires, werewolves, zombies.

We’re looking for stories that provoke a reader response whether it is emotional, psychological or physical that causes them to react with fear. Stories that intrude into the reader’s comfort levels, speaking of the human condition and forcibly reminding us of how little we actually know and understand.

We do not mind violence in our stories or blood, guts and gore, but these need to be pivotal to the plot and not over written. Gratuitous violence for the sake of it, or narrative that would sit better in a medical text book, will not go down well with us.

Likewise adult scenes are fine if they are central to the plot or the character’s development but, again, these should not be overwritten. We are looking to publish horror stories, not porn.

Swearing is fine if a character swears when speaking or thinking but profanity should be minimised, preferably avoided, when the narrative is not in character.

Specifics

There’s no maximum or minimum word length. We’re looking for the average story length in the anthology to be around 4,000 words. This means that we need 2,000 word stories in order to be able to publish 6,000 word stories.

We’re not particularly looking for flash fiction so anything under 750 words will need to be very good indeed. Stories over 6,000 words will really need to wow us as well.

We prefer stories that are told from the viewpoint of one character – either third person or first person – but will also consider stories with more than one viewpoint character. Where the story has more than one viewpoint character, head-hopping should be avoided and the narrative split into clear sections with the viewpoint in each section being from one character only.