Friday, May 25, 2018

Red Room Press - Anthology Call

Red Room Press has posted an anthology call for "American Psychos - A Serial Killer Anthology".  They're looking serial killer stories of 3500 to 5500 words that are brutal, graphic, disturbing and violent.  They must be set in the USA and the serial killer can be real or fictional.  The deadline is October 1, 2018 and payment is $100 (or $150 if their fund raiser is successful).  You can find the details here.

Spring Song Press - Anthology Call

Spring Song Press has posted an anthology call for "Oath & Iron".  They're looking for fantasy/speculative fiction stories of 1000 to 10,000 words that feature fairies.  The theme is oath and iron which they go into detail about at the end of the guidelines.  The deadline is July 1, 2018 and payment is 1cent a word.  You can find the details here.  Also if you click on calls for submissions at the top of the page you'll find that they have a second anthology call that opens on August 1st for steampunk stories.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Digest Enthusiast - New Issue

Issue #8 of The Digest Enthusiast is now available for purchase.  You can find the details and links here.

Grease Monkey Bokor by Ryan Sayles

I stopped by Shotgun Honey and noticed this story in the other stories column.  Six years ago I chose this flash story as one of my top ten stories of the year and it's as good as I remembered.  "Grease Monkey Bokor" by Ryan Sayles is an excellent glimpse into a man's downward spiral to the depths of insanity.  It's always fun to revisit stories that you love on the first read.

Black Orchid Novella Award - Deadline Reminder

The deadline is fast approaching for the Black Orchid Novella Contest.  They're looking for novellas of 15,000 to 20,000 words written in the tradition of the Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout.  There is no fee to enter and the prize is $1000 and publication in Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine.  The deadline is May 31, 2018.  You can find the details here.

Planet Scumm - Open for Submissions

Planet Scumm is open for submissions to their next issue.  They're looking for science fiction and speculative fiction stories of 1000 to 5000 words (Prefer under 3000 words).  The deadline is June 16, 2018 and payment is $20 plus a royalty split.  You can find the details here.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The Changing Face of Mystery Fiction by Marvin Kaye

Over at the Ellery Queen blog there's an essay called "The Changing Face of Mystery Fiction" by Marvin Kaye.  The essay is basically a how to write a who dunnit.

While the author misses this type of fiction, I've found over the years that I was getting bored with this type of puzzle solvers.  I was given a copy of Agatha Christie's "Murder on the Orient Express" for Christmas and I read over two hundred pages and with just forty-three pages left I set it aside.  I found that I didn't care who did the murder.  I got bored with Hercule Poirot sitting around and telling everyone they were wrong in their deductions and he was always right in that smug way of his.

I have read many of Agatha's Christie's books over the years, I'm a Miss Marple fan, but I love the newer books that have some action in them.  I don't care for the big reveals with everyone sitting in a room waiting for the detective to reveal the murderer.  In this day and age the murderer would have been long gone.  The truth is we're not a polite society anymore, maybe we never were.

Knowing this I can see why the new generation of writers want to put more action into their stories.  But the truth is there are still red herrings and plot twists in these new mysteries, the criminals and the detectives just aren't so very polite anymore.

How about you?  Do you miss the old puzzle solvers?