Current Books

BOUND FOR EVIL Submission Guidelines REVISED

Stories should be about books that do not belong in a sane person's library; books that wreck havoc in the lives of their owners; books that are no damn good! The "bad" book in your story should be central to the plot. The book should exert an emotional, or a physical, or a supernatural effect on the characters, or on reality, or time, or space. The book should be the villain of your story. Perhaps a sympathetic villain, or an unwitting accomplice to evil---but nevertheless, the book should be a "character" in your story, play a major role, and be "on stage" for a good part of the tale. You can think of this as "the secret lives and evil times of diabolical books." In fact, that's the tag line.
Consider these classic examples: Lovecraft's "The Book" (the ancient tome transports the reader to strange vistas); Fred Chappell's "The Adder" (the book feeds on other texts in a bookstore); M R James's "Canon Alberic's Scrapbook" (the book comes complete with a demon).
Further illustrations: How about a book that steals time? (All books do in a way.) Or money? (A whimsical idea, yes, but one I continually have to deal with!) How about a book that supernaturally forces a man to spend his last dollar on it? Poor guy goes home and dies of starvation. The authorities later find his emaciated corpse lying in a house with the walls covered floor to ceiling with expensive volumes! (That would be laughable---if it hadn't really happened to one poor bibliomaniac.) Any variation on one of these themes might make a great tale.
The typical "book that conjures a demon" story has been overdone. So unless you can put an original spin on this idea, then don’t try it. Please limit violence, sexual content and profanity to the absolute minimum necessary to tell your story. Sometimes suggestion is far more powerful than detailed description.

I will accept 4000 to 12,000 words. If it’s longer or shorter, it had better be GOOD! Pay scale is 1 cent per word and 2 copies. I will also pay $25 to $60 for reprint rights of previously published work.


Tom English


Jeff said...

So I guess any book involving the tax code is a good place to start? ;)

Sounds cool...I'll have to see iffin I can't think of something.

Pamela K. Kinney said...

A friend sent me link to this blog about the guidelines to this anthology. Is there a last date to submit--the lastest?

Paul said...

Just found this today via duotrope. Is there a deadline?

Quillers said...

This is a great idea! What better thing for writers to write about than books?

Do you take subs from international writers? (I'm in Britain)

anna said...

Over 4000 words is a lot to put in the body of an e-mail. My previous experience with such efforts has yielded a complete melt-down of format.

How strict are you on format, or what suggestions do you have for would-be submitters?