In the reality imitates fiction department this morning: Where there are rats, there are cats, and turns out that the latter actually do know their way around ancient Roman catacombs. Those of you who read my Darkyn novels know this was my reason for Richard Tremayne's particular changeling transformation. Isn't it lovely when reality backs up the plausibility of a character's backstory?
Here's a neat-sounding sub op for you Cthulhu lovers: Innsmouth Free Press has an open call for their Sword and Mythos antho: "What we want: Sword and Mythos. This includes any element of the Cthulhu Mythos (creatures such as shoggoths, characters like the King in Yellow, locations like Leng) combined with sword and sorcery (heroic fantasy). Stories can be told from the viewpoint of sorcerers or other non-traditional heroic characters, although fighters with brawn and brains will also be accepted. We are looking for a variety of settings and characters (Yes, we are GLBT-friendly). Although much sword and sorcery has utilized a proto-European setting, we’d like to see stories that take place in settings inspired by Middle Eastern, African, Asian, Prehispanic, and other cultures. We will accept secondary world stories and stories set in historical settings with magical elements. For example, Robert E. Howard set his Mythos-inspired “Worms of the Earth” in real-life Great Britain. We might also consider some sword and planet stories. But no copyrighted characters, please. We can’t afford the lawsuits. There are many famous sword and sorcery male characters, but we’d also like to see women hacking tentacles. Or summoning Mythos creatures. Overall, we want to be surprised and inspired to read beyond the first page." Length: up to 5K; Payment: "Sword and Mythos pays 5 cents per word. We are asking for First English Anthology Rights. Because we are a very small press, we don’t pay royalties. We do, however, offer to buy the stories on a non-exclusive basis. Each contributor will receive two physical copies of the anthology and an e-book copy." Query on reprints, electronic submission only, see guidelines for more details. Reading period opens January 15th, 2013; do not submit before! Deadline: February 15th, 2013
Across the pond: UK Publisher Alchemy Press is starting a new e-book/omnibus print line: "The Alchemy Press intends to start a new line, Alchemy Novellas. In the first instance, we will publish four novellas a year as eBooks. Then the novellas will be collected together and published as a print book – so readers have the best of both worlds. Our proposed publication schedule for the eBooks is February, May, August and November. We are looking for original, unpublished novellas that touch on almost all areas of Fantasy and Horror. There will be a payment for both eBook and print publication." More details and submission guidelines available on their blog here.
Finally, the magic of gorgeous special effects paired with a spooky poem-story of tricks & treats = best Halloween video I've seen this season (narration and music with this one, and it may be a bit too intense for younger kids):