We’ll soon be reading manuscripts for acquisition again at Pulp Literature Press. What strikes me first is the talent that comes through our e-portals. Space is an issue, and we wish we could take more stories, if only our magazine had a thousand pages. As well, we’ll often reject a story because we’ve published our quota of, for example, zombie tales. Or … we’re looking for more zombie tales.
Other than fit, what do I look for in stories for our quarterly, and in novels for our press?
Here are three great reasons I read on.
These may be worth identifying as a time-saving effort for any submission.
- The author nails time, place, tone, promise of genre, and a hint at the central conflict on page one, often paragraph one, and continues to do so with the start of each new scene.
- It’s clear that the writer has dug deep for ideas for turning points, that are possibly archetypical, but not clichéd, within the genre.
- I can tell a fellow editor what this story is about in a sentence and we’ll both still want to know what happens. It’s about a guy who’s ambushed and sent into 30 years of cryogenic sleep, and has to return to his own past to get even and create a better future, second time around. (The Door Into Summer, Robert Heinlein.)
When it comes down to it, as an acquisitions editor, I’m also an avid reader. I hope to be a big fan of your work.
I hope you’ll have another brilliant writing week. Cheers, Mel
If you’re a fan of Mel Anastasiou’s writing tips, you might enjoy her pocket-sized writing guide The Writer’s Boon Companion: Thirty Days Towards an Extraordinary Volume. Motivates, organizes, encourages, inspires you through 30 days of hints and help with narrative structure.
From Pulp Literature Press