Authors Please Note:
99.9% of our titles are reprints of previously published books and stories, and most of those are reprinted by Print on Demand (PoD). PoD prints one copy of a book every time one is sold. PoD is not the way to sell millions of books. If that is your goal, your time is better spent with larger New York publishers. We are great at republishing books for which there is a steady, small demand—at least 20 copies per year to 1,000 copies per year.
Guidelines For Authors
Submissions are currently closed, unless you are an author who was previously published through Wildside Press or have a significant number of older backlist titles or an ongoing series with steady demand that has been dropped by the larger New York publishers. If this is you, please contact us, and we'll discuss your project(s).
Please note that Wildside Press is an MWA (Mystery Writers of America) qualified publisher.
Guidelines For Artists
We are in need of cover art for Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine. We publish 4 issues per year. Requirements: a strong central image of Sherlock, either in a scene from one of his stories or as a portrait. Leave a dead space at the top (for the logo) and on one side (for cover names). Submissions may be emailed to the publisher at wildsidepress (at) gmail [dot] com. Payment is $150.00.
GUIDELINES FOR Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine submissions, by Marvin Kaye (the fiction editor)
Basically, any story that would be usable either in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine or Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine will interest us. Length is variable; we’ve run short-shorts and have occasionally featured novellas, as well. Most of the fiction we use tends to be in the 3,000-7,000 word range, but we are very flexible about this. Our pay rate is three cents a word upon publication.
Though we do feature Sherlock Holmes pastiches and an occasional parody, we are actually more interested in reader-solvable mysteries, crime stories, even occasional conte cruelles and ghost stories (in the fashion of the old London Mystery Magazine.) We tend not to do SF, but even here we have made at least one exception if the story is a mystery in the broader sense of the term.
We are open to new submissions. Files should be sent to email@example.com and should be in one of the following formats: .rtf, .doc, .docx, or .wpd. We cannot accept .pdf or hard copy.
Be sure to include a byline—amazing how many authors forget to do so!—and please double space. Include both your mailing address and e-address on the first page.
It is not necessary to query us about a story you'd like to submit; just send it along.
We are also very interested in nonfiction, but if you have an article idea of any sort, do query first.
A few stylistic issues:
- Paragraphs should be double-spaced and indent all paragraphs. DO NOT LEAVE EXTRA SPACE BETWEEN PARAGRAPHS.
- There is no such word as “alright.” Correct form is “all right.”
- Usage has effectively now allowed “anymore,” but in SHMM it should still appear as “any more.”
- I consider “try and” to be incorrect. Instead, please use “try to.”
- Two unacknowledged sexist locutions are “him and her” and “his and hers.” The English language always put lists in alphabetical order. Thus, the correct usage ought to be “her and him” and “hers and his.”
- Never underline, use italics.
- Names of books and novels should be italicized. Short story titles should be between quotation marks.
- If you submit a Watsonian pastiche, you must employ UK style of that period. Thus, there must be no periods after titles; e. g., Mr Holmes, Mrs Hudson, Dr Watson, St Giles. Always use the letter “u” where appropriate, as in “colour,” “favourite,” etc.
I have a special problem with the word “had.” There is an excellent exegesis of this in the best writing text I’ve ever read, Leon Surmelian’s The Techniques of Fiction Writing, Method and Madness.
Boiled down, here is what’s wrong with some (not all) compound past tenses—except for fiction written in present tense, our convention is to put things in the simple past. The reader, of course, translates the action into it “just happening.” But as soon as a compound verb is introduced, such as “she had already bought the book,” the action is shoved a little into the past, and is therefore more immediate. Thus, in this magazine, unnecessary “hads” are deleted, so that the above would be rendered as “she already bought the book,” which now seems to be “just happening.”
Even such an excellent author as Dick Francis peppers his books with many worthless “hads,” and so does his son Felix, who continues to write splendid books stylistically indistinguishable from his late father’s.
As for “had had,” I have never seen a justifiable instance of its usage!
Black Cat Mystery Magazine GUIDELINES
These guidelines are valid through 2019.
ABOUT THE MAGAZINE
Black Cat Mystery Magazine is a new publication, debuting in September 2017, which showcases short mystery fiction. These guidelines are designed to help writers craft stories for publication in Black Cat Mystery Magazine.
We want to feature stories by a mix of new and established authors. We don’t care about race, gender, age, height, weight, sexual orientation, political attitudes, or much of anything else about our authors. We don’t care if this is you five hundredth story or your very first story. We care about writing quality. Period.
JUST THE FACTS
FREQUENCY: 2-4 issues per year
EDITORS: John Gregory Betancourt
PUBLISHER: Wildside Press LLC.
WEB SITE: bcmystery.com or wildsidepress.com
SISTER PUBLICATION: Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine
OTHER MAGAZINES FROM WILDSIDE PRESS: Weirdbook and Adventure Tales.
READ THEM, FOLLOW THEM!
* We have been overwhelmed with submissions and are closing submissions until late 2019.*
We will do our best to respond within 1-2 weeks. Sometimes even sooner!
It is not necessary to query us about a story you’d like to submit. If it fits our content guidelines, just send it along during the open submission period. We do not want early or late submissions.
WHAT WE WANT
Contemporary and traditional mysteries, as well as thrillers and suspense stories. Private eye stories, cozy stories, and edgy, noir-tinged stories—all of which happen to contain a crime of some sort. (A crime is essential or it isn’t mystery fiction!)
We want stories with characters who feel real, in situations that are possible (and plausible), and of course great writing.
WHAT WE DO NOT WANT
We do not want flash fiction.
We do not want poetry.
We do not want routine revenge stories.
We do not want stories that feature sadism for the sake of sadism.
We do not want stories that feature supernatural elements: no vampires (no matter how sparkly), werewolves, ghosts, or otherworldly monsters—unless thoroughly debunked by story’s end.
We especially do not want genre fantasy, horror, science fiction, romance, or westerns...unless they feature a crime. And even then it will be a very hard sell.
Best length is between 1,000 and 8,000 words. We will look at material up to 15,000 words in length—but it better blow us away to take up that much of an issue!
Our pay rate is three cents per word ($250 maximum) plus 2 copies of the magazine.
HOW TO SUBMIT
ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION REQUIRED
Email us the story as an electronic file. We prefer one of the following formats: .rtf, .doc, or .docx. We cannot look at .pdfs or hard copy submissions, with very few exceptions. (Okay, if you’re an old pro like Bill Pronzini or Stephen King, we’ll make an exception!)
** Be sure to include your byline under the story title—it’s amazing how many authors forget to do so!—and please include both your mailing address and email address on the first page. (Upper left-hand corner is standard.) **
WHERE TO EMAIL
Stories should be sent via EMAIL to: wildsidepress (at sign) gmail.com
IMPORTANT -- A BIT MORE ON FORMATTING
1. Paragraphs should be double-spaced. Indent all paragraphs using either the tab key or an indented paragraph style. Do not leave extra line spaces between paragraphs.
2. Never underline, use italics.
3. Please, please, please—proofread your story before sending it. Yes, typos happen, but after the third or fourth one on a page, we will stop reading.
4. Use a simple, easy-to-read font like Times Roman. If we can't easily read a submission, it will be rejected.