Spec Fic publisher Otter Libris has an open call for a circus-themed antho: "The Concept: Let’s go to the circus. Circuses are supposed to be places of joy and wonder, but they are also full of clowns and many people find clowns distinctly creepy. Circuses come into town and disappear after a brief stay, leaving behind nothing but a memory of the magic. They are homes for misfits, bearded ladies and contortionists who might be shunned in the outside world. What better environment than a circus for a story of magic and wonder that leaves you wondering if it ever happened. Give us your best wonderful, dark, or fantastic story about the circus.
What we don’t want to see: Gratuitous anything – violence, sex, profanity, doesn’t matter. If it is not integral to the story and it’s not advancing the plot or character development, we don’t want to see blood, gore, or sex just for shock value’s sake (this goes for language too). We are not opposed to violence, sex, or profanity – as long as it belongs in the story and it’s not just there to shock and titillate. Some things would be a very hard sell for us, like rape or torture of any sort, and torture of children or animals will get an immediate rejection. Think of how far we’re willing to go based on the well known movie rating system – if it would qualify for a PG, PG-13, or R rating, we’ll look at it. If it would be NC-17 or up, we’ll have to pass, thank you.
Word Count: We’re looking for stories that fall in the 3,000 to 10,000 word range. We will consider looking at stories outside this range, but they need to be just too good for us to pass up. You have a much better chance if you keep the word count within our range. Please query us before sending a story outside of the word count guidelines.
Reprints: We prefer unpublished, original fiction. You may query about reprints, but to be perfectly honest, unless 1) it’s an absolutely perfect fit for the book and so well-written that we can’t bear not to print it, or 2) you’re an author with a lot of name recognition and a significant publication history who can help drive book sales simply by being in the book, we’re not likely to accept it. Better to just send us something original.
Rights: We wish to purchase exclusive print, e-book, and audio rights for one year, and non-exclusive print, e-book, and audio rights for a period of five years after that, with the option to re-negotiate additional years of rights after that.
Payment: Onetime fee of $25 plus one contributor’s copy for the original terms of the contract. Payment is on publication.
Sending your submission: We will be accepting electronic submissions only. Make sure you put “Circus” in your email subject line. No simultaneous or multiple submissions please. Send your story as a .doc or .rtf file to submissions at otterlibris dot com. Please include your name and contact information in the document.
Submission Window: We will be open for submissions for the anthology beginning on March 1, 2016 and close to submissions on May 31, 2016. Any submissions received outside of this window will be deleted unread. We expect to respond to submissions throughout the window with a “no, thanks” or “we’d like to hold this for further consideration,” with final decisions going out approximately four to six weeks after the closing date."