Parsec Ink is coordinating submissions to both the Parsec Short Story Contest and Triangulation: Extinction. Please be sure you know which entity you are submitting to. The Parsec Short Story Contest is curated by the Parsec program branch and Triangulation is curated by Parsec Ink.
Theme, word count, and deadlines are different for each.
Triangulation is open for submissions. We are Parsec Ink’s speculative fiction anthology, now in our 16th year. We’re looking for outstanding fantasy, science fiction, weird fiction, and speculative horror–from new and established writers. Take the theme and run with it. Tell us a story we won’t forget.
Theme: Triangulation: Extinction.
Every day, another species creeps closer to extinction, often brought on by things out of their control. The world changes every time an insect, a rhino, a macaw ceases to exist. These changes are tangible. Tell us about them. Bring us stories of imposing threats, extraordinary creatures brought low, stories of those warriors who fight tooth and nail for their survival. What does extinction mean to you? We like our stories to be profound, relatable, poignant yet familiar. Tell a tale for the ages.
While we appreciate and value creative freedom, please note that this issue of Triangulation has a strict theme. We don’t want to read a hundred stories about dinosaurs and asteroids; we want gritty commentaries and hopeful ruminations. Last year’s issue, Dark Skies, wrestled with light pollution, and similarly, this issue addresses an equally as challenging—and real—topic. Let’s do it justice.
Submissions Open: December 1, 2019
Submissions Close: February 29, 2020
Word Count: We consider fiction up to 5,000 words, but the sweet spot is 3,000. There is no minimum word count. Stories over 5000 words will be rejected unread.
Genre: We accept science fiction, fantasy, and horror–and enjoy intelligent blends of the three. Stories without a speculative element will not be considered.
We do not accept reprints, multiple submissions, or simultaneous submissions. If we reject a story before the end of the reading period, feel free to send another.
We love creative interpretations of our themes, but we do require the stories to be a solid fit.
We run mature content only if we like the story and find the mature content to be integral to it.
We do not accept fanfic, even if it’s based in a fictional universe that has passed into the public domain.
Manuscript Format: Please use industry standard manuscript format. We’re not testing you or trying to make you jump through hoops, but we do want a manuscript that is easy for us to read. We reserve the right to reject a story because it did not adhere to our formatting guidelines.
We accept manuscripts in the following formats:
.doc or .docx (MS Word)
.rtf (Rich Text Format — generic document format that most word processors can create)
How We Choose:
We are a meritocracy. New authors are as welcome as those with a laundry list of accomplishments. But it’s going to be the story that wins us over. Grab us by the lapels, drag us onto that plane, take us for the ride of our lives… but get us back on the ground safely and home in time for dinner.
We aim to read submissions as they are received. If a story doesn’t work for us, we reject it. If we think the story has great potential but isn’t quite there yet, we request a rewrite. The ones we love the most, we hold on to for further consideration, but we won’t keep you guessing: you’ll get an email. Next, the stories fight it out among themselves until we have our final lineup. At which time, final acceptances are sent out. It’s sort of like Enter the Dragon, but without the nunchucks. When a story is accepted, the changes we suggest will typically be minor and/or cosmetic.
Response: Final decisions are made by March 31st.
Eligibility: All writers, including those who are known or related to the editorial staff, can submit to Triangulation. That doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily get in, but we are happy to consider their work.
If Your Story Is Accepted:
Compensation: We will pay 3 cents per word for original fiction, via PayPal or check.
Rights: We purchase North American serial rights, audio and electronic rights for the downloadable version(s). All subsidiary rights released upon publication.
24th Annual Parsec SF/Fantasy/Horror Short Story Contest --
The theme for the 2020 contest is: Forging! Any interpretation of the word is acceptable, but must be integral to the story in some manner!
Contest Open: January 1st 2020 and closes April 15th 2020. There is no fee to enter, and all entrants will be notified of the results by June 15th.
Word count for all entries: No minimum, no more than 3500 words
Genre: All stories must be of the Science Fiction, Fantasy, of Horror genres
How to submit
Electronic submissions will be acceptable through Submittable (Opens January 1st 2020)
Stories must be original, unpublished, and unsold to any other market. Manuscripts should be in standard manuscript format, double-spaced, and written in either Courier or Times New Roman font. Acceptable formats include .doc, .docx, and .rtf. For an example of standard manuscript format, see: https://www.shunn.net/format/story.html
Prizes and Eligibility: The contest is open to non-professional writers (those who have not met eligibility requirements for SFWA or equivalent: sale of a novel or sale of 3 stories to a large-circulation publication (http://www.sfwa.org/about/join-us/sfwa-membership-requirements/)
Previous first-place winners and current contest coordinators are ineligible to enter.
The winning story will be the one that most effectively uses the contest theme as a key element. First-place receives $200 and publication in the 2019 Confluence program book (http://parsec-sff.org/confluence/). Second-place receives $100 and third-place receives $50.
Submission to the contest implies consent for publication, but all rights revert immediately to the author upon publication. Coordinators/Readers screen the entries and the seven best submissions are then read by the judges. Decisions of the judges and coordinators are final.
A maximum of 2 submissions is allowed. Submit each one separately.
Judges: Rebecca Roanhorse is a NYTimes bestselling and Nebula, Hugo and Locus Award-winning speculative fiction writer and the recipient of the 2018 Astounding (Campbell) Award for Best New Writer. Her novel Trail of Lightning (Book 1 in the Sixth World Series) won the Locus Award for Best First Novel and is a Nebula, Hugo and World Fantasy finalist. It was also selected as an Amazon, B&N, Library Journal, and NPR Best Books of 2018, among others. Book 2 in the Sixth World Series, Storm of Locusts, has received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist and has been named an Amazon, Powell’s, and Audible Best of 2019. Her novel, Resistance Reborn, is part of Star Wars: Journey to The Rise of Skywalkerand a USA Today and NYTimes bestseller. Her middle grade novel Race to the Sun for the Rick Riordan Present’s imprint will release in January of 2020, and an epic Fantasy novel will follow in late 2020. Her short fiction can be found in Apex Magazine, New Suns, The Mythic Dream, and various other anthologies. Her non-fiction can be found in Uncanny Magazine, Strange Horizons, and How I Resist: Activism and Hope for a New Generation (Macmillan). She lives in Northern New Mexico with her husband, daughter, and pups. She drinks a lot of black coffee. Find more at https://rebeccaroanhorse.com/ and on Twitter at @RoanhorseBex.
Daniel H. Wilson is a Cherokee citizen and author of the New York Times bestselling Robopocalypse and its sequel Robogenesis, as well as How to Survive a Robot Uprising, The Clockwork Dynasty, and Amped. He earned a PhD in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as Masters degrees in Machine Learning and Robotics. His latest novel is an authorized stand-alone sequel to Michael Crichton’s classic The Andromeda Strain, called The Andromeda Evolution. Wilson lives in Portland, Oregon.
Cat Rambo lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest. Her most recent books are Hearts of Tabat (novel), Neither Here Nor There (collection), and Moving From Idea to Draft (nonfiction). She has been nominated for the Nebula, World Fantasy, and Endeavour awards and is a two-term President of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America. She runs the popular online writing school The Rambo Academy for Wayward Writers. Find more about her at www.kittywumpus.net