Archive for Serial Killers Tres Tria

Getting that Shorty Published – Who’s Got the 5K?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2013 by royalmanaball

Shorts, poetry, and flash are great opportunities to exercise your writing skills as well as getting your name on a bookshelf. Yes, we all have a magnum opus either in our heads or on Amazon, but those aren’t written in a mere week. Large works are tough to sell – and guess what? So are the small works!

It’s true, but if you are new to the writing biz, you’ll have a better chance of publishing exposure beyond the indie/vanity presses if you gather the guts and submit. But first, there are a few pointers I’d like to share with you Manaballers. After all, I’ve been published a whopping THREE times this month with a fourth and fifth hopefully on the way. Ahem… So, here’s what worked for me:

Where to Find Calls for Submissions?

Facebook. I know, everyone secretly hates the damn thing, but as an author, this is a powerful tool. Yes, you get to first meet really cool people on Twitter, but hog calls for collections and anthologies don’t always pop up on the feed. It scrolls past faster than goose turds through a tin horn and you only get 140 characters to advertise. Every time I’ve been published (or attempted to publish), I had heard the battle cry on Facebook. It’s as detailed as the publisher wants it to be and it allows other applicants to hook up and compare notes.

Get to Know the Publisher.

I’ve been published by James Ward Kirk’s horror anthologies three times so far. First, in Serial Killers Tres Tria, then in his anthology Bones, and just the other day I had secured a story for Ugly Babies. James and his fleet of editors are now my friends on Facebook and we not only talk about books, we also sit around and bullshit about anything, really. I don’t even consider him anything more or less than a friend now (Heh, I like to call him Cap’n – Trekkies will understand why). I’ve just become part of his scene.

Follow the Rules.

When you read the Facebook post for submissions, you must, and I cannot stress this more, MUST follow the submission guidelines to a “T“. The safest bet is to format your manuscript in the time-honored SHUNN style. If you have any questions about the submission’s parameters, email the publisher and ask. Yes, your story may rival the wordsmithing of Edgar Allan Poe, but don’t send the damn thing in between two pieces of white bread with mayo. You’re not Julian Schnable. Here is the precise format for the SHUNN style. Follow it. You will be thankful you did!

http://www.shunn.net/format/story.html

Newbies – Don’t Showboat.

This is just a piece of advice, but not set in stone. Say if the submission guidelines allow for twenty thousand words maximum, I’d err on something smaller. Look at it like this: You’re an indie or self-publisher new to the game. Fair enough, but if you write a tale that is 19,999 words and then Neil Gaiman submits against you, you’re going to get knocked out of the running no matter how tight your story. Why? Ink. Mr. Gaiman is a bigger draw than you just by name alone. A publisher will be hesitant to feature and spotlight an unknown over a bigger, better-established name. Sorry, that’s just business. I’d do the same thing if I were in their position. Don’t be afraid to submit a short story, but I’d keep the language economical until your name generates more buzz.

Submit Early!

You’re a newb and you see the call on Facebook and you check the date. THREE DAYS UNTIL DEADLINE! Sure, give it a shot, but expect nothing. By this time, Stephen King and Tom Clancy have signed, sealed and delivered their contracts. I made this error when submitting to Neverland Library at the last minute. The good folks there said: “Yo, M.C. We loved your story, but we could not fit you in because so many well-established names are in the hopper at this point.” They even advised me to submit early in the future. I see their point. These babies fill up FAST! Work!

Don’t Go Broke on Edits.

I have a proofreader I pay to clean up my novels. These are 400+ page books. That really adds up to a pretty penny. For flashes and shorts, find other authors you trust in your social network and have them beta read it. My friend, the U.K. Horror/Bizarro author of Darke Times, David Eccles and I have an unsaid relationship to beta read each others works. Thus far, our efforts have worked well and this is very important. Every thing we’ve beta’d for each other has been published. Not bad. Use the buddy system. Find that author-friend you trust and develop that beta relationship. It really works in the end.

Stick with Your Fave Genre.

If you are a horror writer, I’d advise against branching into an erotica collection. The publisher will probably call the cops on you. (Of course,that would be pretty fuckin’ cool). But, yeah, you’ll have a better chance of acceptance if you stick with your usual mindset, and style. Besides, you’ll get a better buzz in the future if you huddle to your own ship than trying to jump the shark.

The Rule of Cool.

You do understand that you will get rejected in this business, right? Okay, glad we’re on the same page. My friend David Mack, yes, the author of Kabuki, says to always obey the Rule of Cool. Rejection is a part of any business, but definitely common for writing. Again, you WILL get rejections. Don’t take it personally. I’ve gone over the reasons you may not get the ink. but just like McDonald’s, it’s a business. Deal with it. But remember not to be an asshole when you get the boot. The publisher may not accept you THIS time, but maybe tomorrow? Keep your connections in your back pocket. Don’t chew-out a publisher who says “no.”

Kabuki by my dude David Mack

Kabuki by my dude David Mack

Okay, you’ve read this and you’re solid. Find it, write it, submit! Godspeed, you!

UPDATE: James Ward Kirk has informed me that he and Shawna Leigh Bernard are the sole editors for James Ward Kirk Fiction. Ms. Bernard is the mastermind behind the anthologies Ugly Babies and Cellar Door. This addenda was posted for clarification. Thank you.

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Serial Killers Are GO!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2013 by royalmanaball

Living in Des Plaines, Illinois isn’t easy. It’s like the Beverly Hills for serial killers. Why, I only live a mile away from John Wayne Gacy’s House of Horrors! Robin Gecht of the Ripper Crew is from here and even Speck and Dahmer hung out in this burg. I suppose that’s why I felt compelled to submit a story to master of horror James Ward Kirk’s anthology Serial Killers Tres Tria.

Serial Killers Tres Tria

Serial Killers Tres Tria

It’s the third installment of the series, and I was lucky enough to have my short story, Conduct Disorder accepted! This ditty is a take on the early years of a young (and very spoiled) girl who becomes a powerful serial killer. In it, I give play to the current “Illuminati Panic” which is permeating our culture right now with a heavy nod to generational Satanism. So, not much of a leap from the themes of my YA novels when you really think about it. As an added plus, my story won the Editor’s Choice Award!

James Ward Kirk - the man with the plan.

James Ward Kirk – the man with the plan.

If you have an unorthodox sense of humor, you’re gonna laugh your ass off at my story. But the rest of the book is chock-full of poems, art, nonfiction and other talents ranging from all over the globe. The brilliant cover art and design was concocted by author and artist William Cook. I love it! The thing gives me nightmares! I cannot wait for my copy to arrive in the mail. And you can’t either! Order your copy of Serial Killers Tres Tria from Amazon today!

Coming Up

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 12, 2013 by royalmanaball

Hello, everyone!

Been a bit scarce lately, but I have been busy with numerous short story submissions to various anthologies. I know, you might think, “You’ve tapped out two novels! Why short stories?” Here’s why:

I love anthologies. Sure, they are collections of short stories and flash where you aren’t treated to thick plots chock-full of an orchestra of characters, but sometimes, a short story can be so fun to write. I suppose it’s like sharpening your teeth for a Main Event, but they are what they are. Although I might be a bit old school when it comes to the publishing game, I have normally found new authors whom I love via these collections. And, damn it! I just want to be in one.

Already, I have been accepted into The Apocalypse Collective’s anthology Echoes of the Wasteland. My editor Michel King has been great and I would love to work with her again in the future. She’s a whip-cracker, but you will be assured a tight product. My story is called Petey Says. Like most of everything I write, this one is pretty dark, but contains no humor whatsoever. Kinda sad, actually. Michel said she cried while reading it. You might too.

After that, I have just submitted a shorty, Holiday in Modal City,  for the Neverland’s Library Anthology of Rediscovery. This is a fantasy-based, nature-themed ditty featuring a heavy use of Hindu mythology. I really want to get into this collection. Like, really bad. Please cross your fingers, guys.

William Cook is a master of the horror genre. His upcoming anthology “Fresh Fear” focuses on quiet, psychological horror. I am waiting on the scoop for my submission entitled Unholy Mortal Sin. The terror in this tale is the horrible life and mind of the featured protagonist. Sometimes real life is the worst terror of all. You’ll see.

Currently, I am working on a short called Conduct Disorder for horror maven James Ward Kirk’s anthology Serial Killers Tres Tria. It’s Mr. Kirk’s third installment of his serial killer series and, let me just say, this yarn is rough! Imagine what happens if you are born into a family of rich Satanists and you finally get Barbie’s Dream House for Walpurgisnacht when you are a little girl. Yeah… Total shit-storm.

Speaking of James Ward Kirk, I’d like to give a shout-out to my friend and fine Briton David Eccles whose story Doing it for JRD (Justice, Revenge and Deliverance), has just been greenlighted into Kirk’s anthology Sex, Drugs and Horror. It’s NASTY and raw and will hit the shelves in July. Good job, David!

As promised, I will be releasing my own anthology of shorts, flash and prose called Everybody Must be Crushed around November or December. It’s a collection of Bizarro tales focusing on the prevalent culture of anger pervading the 2010’s. Totally sarcastic and weird, these stories will make you say, “Huh?”

Not one of these submissions are YA-friendly, but, you know? I have gotta do what I have gotta do.

I’ll keep you posted to my progress, and whatever the outcome, I’ll keep writing. Thank you, guys.

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