Taking Submissions – Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies

SPAWN Book Cover

THE SUBMISSION PERIOD IS NOW CLOSED

Deadline: 31 August 2020
Payment: 6c per word for original stories, 2c per word for reprints (Australian currency)
Publisher: IFWG Publishing Australia (co-published in North America through the IFWG Publishing International imprint)
Note: Open to Australian writers only (citizens, residents and ex-pats)

To be edited by award-winning author Deborah Sheldon, Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies will comprise stories from Australian writers obtained via commission and open callout. The commissioned writers are the multi-award-winning and bestselling authors Isobelle Carmody, Jack Dann, Kaaron Warren and Sean Williams.

On-spec submissions are welcome from Australian writers of every persuasion including non-parents. Ideally, stories should be between 1500 and 5000 words, give or take. (Stories significantly longer than 5000 words would have to be outstanding.) Reprints will be considered, but must not be available for free anywhere online—the anthology will have only a small number of reprints, regardless. Artwork by commissioned Australian artists will complement selected stories.

The anthology will be a visceral, frightening read. Each story must nominally tick the box of “body horror” but there is no restriction on subgenre: anything from sci-fi to fantasy to gothic to supernatural to psychological and beyond will be given equal consideration. Feel free to play with the theme and not take it too literally. Ideally, your story should make the reader feel uncomfortably aware of their physicality, morbidity or mortality.

While graphic violence and swearing are acceptable, submissions must have a literary bent. Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies aims to deliver an elegant—and elevated—anthology of body horror.

What to avoid:

  • Gratuitous gore used purely for shock value.
  • Familiar tropes, such as Rosemary’s Baby, The Handmaid’s Tale, the face-hugger/chest-burster from the Alien film franchise, Martians kidnapping and impregnating female Earthlings, and so on.
  • The submission of first drafts, often indicated by spelling and grammatical errors.

Required rights:

  • First worldwide electronic and print rights in the English language, exclusive for one year, and non-exclusive rights thereafter.
  • For reprints, non-exclusive rights apply.
  • If the story is subsequently reprinted, please credit Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies (IFWG Publishing Australia) as the original publisher.

How to submit:

  • Your story must be in a Word document, double-spaced, Times New Roman in 12pt.
  • Your name, contact details and word count should be on the first page above the title.
  • Use double-quotation marks, single space after full stops, first-line indents, page numbers, and Australian-English spelling. No tabs and no double-returns between paragraphs.
  • Send to Deborah Sheldon at spawnsubmissions@gmail.com with the story title and your name as the Subject heading.
  • In the body of your email, provide an author bio of about 100 words (give or take), and include your Australian citizen/resident/ex-pat status.
  • If your story is a reprint, provide the full details of its first publication in the body of your email, with links if possible.
  • You can submit more than one story. Submit each story in a separate email.
  • Stories that require anything more than line editing or adjustments for house style will be rejected. Please submit only polished work of a high standard.
  • No simultaneous submissions, which means do not submit your story to another market at the same time.
  • Give yourself the best possible chance—please do not ignore these guidelines.

Response issues:

  • All acceptance and rejection emails will be sent by 31 October 2020.
  • No feedback will be offered for rejected stories. Please don’t ask.
  • Do not resubmit a rejected story, even if you have made substantial changes.
  • Accepted writers will receive payment via PayPal or bank transfer within 30 days of the contracts being signed, rather than on publication.
  • Accepted writers will also receive an ebook and one complimentary paperback.

Important note about the publication date

Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies was originally slated for release in February 2021. In response to the economic turndown caused by the coronavirus pandemic, IFWG Publishing Australia has decided to delay release of every upcoming new title. Therefore, Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth and Babies will be released later in 2021, with a strong likelihood of a mid-year publishing date.

Crowd-funding for a hardback edition, which would include illustrations for each story, is also being considered.

IFWG Publishing Australia will provide further updates on the anthology’s publication schedule in due course.

Update: Upcoming Australian Horror Anthology

IFWG is extremely happy to tease you a little more about our earlier announcement, when we revealed that Deborah Sheldon had signed up as editor of a forthcoming anthology. She will have four commissioned short fiction pieces by A-grade Australian authors, with the remainder of the TOC made up from a callout in 2020 to Australian horror fiction writers. The anthology’s cover art, design and illustrations will be commissioned from Australian artists.

We can now reveal that our commissioned authors will be:
Isobelle Carmody
Jack Dann
Kaaron Warren
Sean Williams

We are over the moon with this amazing line-up and know that not only will we get unique takes on the theme of this anthology, but the mix of these wonderful authors in a single anthology will also contribute to a combined effect that will be grander than the sum of their excellent pieces.

We can reveal that the theme will be a subset of the Body Horror sub-genre but we would rather reveal the full scope of the anthology when we make the call-out for non-commissioned submissions around March next year.

New Release: Metamorphosis by Claire Fitzpatrick

It is with great pleasure and pride that we can announce the world-wide release of Claire Fitzpatrick‘s collection of short body horror fiction, Metamorphosis.

metamorphosis2-new

“Body horror is a specialised dimension of horror,” stated Gerry Huntman, Managing Director of IFWG Publishing, “and there are several authors in Australia who have mastered it, lifting it to an art-form that is more than just guts and gore. Claire Fitzpatrick is definitely one of them. We believe this collection fills this sub-genre niche in our catalogue perfectly, and the quality of Claire’s writing also meets the high standards of horror writing that we look for. This is a winner.”

Madeline will never become a woman. William will never become a man. Does June deserve to be human? Does Lilith deserve a heart?

Seventeen stories. Seventeen tales of terror.

If imperfection is crucial to a society’s survival, what makes a monster?

Australian Shadows Award-winning author, Brian Craddock, describes Claire’s work perfectly: “Visceral and demented, full of flesh that twists and deforms…Fitzpatrick’s stories will either sicken or delight.”

Metamorphosis is now available world-wide, in all good online and print stores, and in ebook formats.

Preorder Offer: Figments and Fragments by Deborah Sheldon

Figments and Fragments Book Cover

IFWG Publishing Australia is pleased to offer English-speaking World Wide preorders for Deborah Sheldon‘s collection of short stories, Figments and Fragments. It will be released worldwide on 18 November 2019.

Brutal. Compelling. Sinister.

From wheat farms, roadhouses, caravan parks and beaches to quiet suburban streets and inner-city apartments, award-winning author Deborah Sheldon tells distinctly Australian stories about violence, loss, betrayal and revenge.

Figments and Fragments includes three new stories written especially for the collection.

Preorder offer now ceased.

 

Preorder: Metamorphosis by Claire Fitzpatrick

metamorphosis2-new

IFWG are pleased to offer preorders for Claire Fitzpatrick’s debut collection, Metamorphosis, with free shipping to US, UK, Australia and New Zealand.

The collection will be released worldwide on 2 September 2019, and those who preorder will get free shipping and it will be shipped prior the release date.

This offer ceases 31 July 2019.

Madeline will never become a woman. William will never become a man. Does June deserve to be human? Does Lilith deserve a heart? 

Seventeen stories. Seventeen tales of terror. 

If imperfection is crucial to a society’s survival, what makes a monster?

NOW CLOSED

Cover Reveal: Metamorphosis by Claire Fitzpatrick

When you commission talent like Greg Chapman, you don’t just expect a quality product – you aren’t surprised when they work lightning quickly. Such is the case with this awesome front cover artwork and design for Claire Fitzpatrick’s upcoming collection, Metamorphosis. We are looking forward to its publication more than ever!

metamorphosis2-new