General Guidelines / Themes / Previous Anthologies
-- FYI: We can always tell who only read part of the way down the page. Authors need to read ALL of the guidelines (please). --
(1) Anthology Submissions are by EMAIL ONLY. All submissions should be emailed as WORD or RTF attachments to the address specified by the individual theme.
***Contact information (name, shipping address, email address) must appear in the body of the submission email.***
(2) File name should match the title of the story and subject line of email should read: "Anthology Submission for ___________ theme" (fill in the blank).
(3) Authors may submit 1 story or two poems per theme for the reading period; maximum length: 10,000 words (fiction/nonfiction), 60 lines per poem. Flash fiction is acceptable as are stand-alone novel excerpts. Do not submit the same story or poem to different themes even if there is overlap.
(4) Stories should be double-space using 11 or 12pt serif font (Times, Times New Roman, etc.). Single space is fine for poetry.
(5) Reading Period: Anthologies may differ, so be sure to read the specific terms below. Submissions close 5pm EASTERN on the deadline date with final report time 2-3 months afterward.
(6) Previously Published are eligible if they have NOT been published in print within the past 5 years (prior to submission) in another anthology or magazine. Items published in individual collections are fine, but items Previously Published Online are NOT eligible.
(7) NO Simultaneous Submissions. We will not include work in this collection that is scheduled for publication elsewhere (with the exception of an author's individual book), so we'd rather not invest the time reading something that may not be available press time. We appreciate authors' understanding our rationale.
If you have any questions in regard to eligibility, query first to firstname.lastname@example.org. If the question concerns previously published, please include where and when it was previously published.
NEW for 2015: Prizes $100 for best short fiction (2K words or more)
$50 for best flash fiction
$50 for best poem
$50 best creative nonfiction story
Each anthology will have separate prize winners
(Submisson links will be made active when reading period begins.)
SUSPENSE. Reading/submission period: May 31, 2015 through July 31, 2015. Editors: David Bell and Molly McCaffrey. Shouldn't all writing hold us in suspense? Shouldn't we be dying to turn the pages if only to fulfill that most basic question: What happens next? For that reason, we're looking for stories, poems, and nonfiction essays that are page-turners, the kind of writing that makes the reader's heart catch in her throat and causes her fingers sweat as she turns the pages. But we're not looking for cheap thrills here. We're not interested in blood and guts. We're interested in stories of psychological suspense, stories that explore the workings of the human mind and heart much more than the workings of a gun or knife. And we're not looking for straight detective stories either. We're less interested in who done it and more interested in why. Think Hitchcock. Think Patricia Highsmith. And keep those pages turning.
Submissions need to be sent to: Suspense@mainstreetrag.com. Authors should not contact editors directly. Submissions are screened for eligibility prior to being passed on to the editors. Any that bypass this process may not be eligible for acceptance/publication.
GHOSTS. Reading/submission period: May 31, 2015 through July 31, 2015. We all have them. The dead won't stay still. The departed won't shut up. Do you see dead people? What do they want? Do you hear your name called when no one is there? Poltergeists may throw plates or slam doors, but hauntings can include anything that makes the hair on your arms stand up. We're looking for poems, stories, and essays to make us believe in spooks. Submit writing that scares the hell out of us, moves us, or even makes us laugh. Coming back from the dead; it's not easy. Why do they do it? Think about the last time you were afraid to look behind you. What was there?
Submissions need to be sent to: Ghosts@mainstreetrag.com. Authors should not contact editors directly. Submissions are screened for eligibility prior to being passed on to the editors. Any that bypass this process may not be eligible for acceptance/publication.
It's About TIME. Reading/submission period: May 31, 2015 through July 31, 2015. "It's about time." When you hear that phrase, what comes to your mind? A parent or a spouse, arms crossed, foot tapping, watching as someone sneaks in at night? Or do you see a calendar, its days or weeks flapping. Maybe you see time extending into an imagined future, something yet to be understood or experienced.
Birthdays. Monday Night Football. The arrival of hormones or their subsequent departure. Eyes opening wide to the world for the first time, or wrinkles causing those eyes to disappear in a smile. Parallels in reality and in the universe. Do deadlines make you crazy? Do you see time with hour and minute hands on a white face, or bright green digital numbers, a colon beating between like a heart? Send us short stories, creative nonfiction, or poetry that will have us thinking about time in all of its metamorphoses and metaphors. Whether you hear time in the pacing of feet, the passing of minutes, the snapping of a voice or tendons, or the noontime chime of Big Ben or a FitBit reminder to move, stretch, bend, write about it. Send them in. On time, of course.
Submissions need to be sent to: AboutTime@mainstreetrag.com. Authors should not contact editors directly. Submissions are screened for eligibility prior to being passed on to the editors. Any that bypass this process may not be eligible for acceptance/publication.
DOGS. Reading/submission period: May 31, 2015 through July 31, 2015. Lassie or Old Yeller, White Fang or Cujo, those canine creatures we call dogs hold a special place in the hearts and psyches of human beings everywhere. Here's an opportunity for writers to explore those feelings. It doesn't have to be a "Peta" moment, though those would be welcome as well. What we're looking for are poems, short stories, and nonfiction essays where a dog is a featured "player" and important facet to the narrative. Engage our hearts and minds with the page-turner dog lit you submit.
Submissions need to be sent to: Dogs@mainstreetrag.com. Authors should not contact editors directly. Submissions are screened for eligibility prior to being passed on to the editors. Any that bypass this process may not be eligible for acceptance/publication.
When no link is available for a specific anthology, please direct questions to: email@example.com
CARS. Reading/submission period: CLOSED. Book due out in Summer 2015
CROSSING LINES. Reading/submission period: CLOSED. Book due out in Spring 2015
HOMES AND HOUSES. Reading/submission period: CLOSED. Book due out in Spring 2015
Main Street Rag Anthologies
What better way to know what we do than to read what we've already done. Listed below are anthologies Main Street Rag has published with links directly to their authors' page for details. Others can be found on the MSR Online Bookstore.
Aftermath (Fall/Winter 2012, Rayne Debski, Editor)
Altered States (2011, Amy Locklin, Editor)
a la carte (2010, S. Craig Renfroe, Jr., Editor)
Big Water (2008, S. Craig Renfroe, Jr., Editor)
The Book of Villains (2011, Josh Woods, Editor)
Coming Home (2010, Katey Schultz, Editor)
Commutability (2010, David Jack Bell & Molly McCaffrey, Editors)
Dots on a Map (2009, Katey Schultz, Editor)
Keeping Track (Fall/Winter 2012, Yelizaveta P. Renfro, Editor)
Law & Disorder (Fall 2014, Amy Locklin, Editor)
Mountain Memoirs (non-fiction & poetry, Fall/Winter 2012, Chris Arvidson, Scot Pope, & Julie E. Townsend, Editors)
Suicidally Beautiful (2011, Dennis Bormann, Steve Taylor editors)
Tattoos (Fall/Winter 2012, Alice Osborn, Editor)
Voices from the Porch (Fall/Winter 2013, Maureen A. Sherbondy, Editor)
XX Excentric (2009, S. Craig Renfroe, Jr., Editor)
The MSR Monthly Newsletter
In December 2001, Main Street Rag began circulating a monthly electronic newsletter. Among other things, our goal with this service is to provide subscribers with a monthly reminder of events, deadlines, contests, and magazines that are actively seeking manuscripts. If you would like to learn more about this service, just click.
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