In 2017, Orford Parish Books will be releasing WOULD BUT TIME AWAIT: AN ANTHOLOGY OF NEW ENGLAND FOLK HORROR (edited by s.j. bagley, editor [and interrogator] of THINKING HORROR: A JOURNAL OF HORROR PHILOSOPHY.)
Please read and the guidelines before submitting a query and direct all queries to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject header ‘FOLK HORROR QUERY.’
(All stories sent without a prior query will be deleted, unread.)
WHAT WE DEFINE AS FOLK HORROR AND WHAT WE’RE LOOKING FOR.
For the purposes of this project, we are defining folk horror as horror literature in which the present (which can be a year/decade of the author’s choosing) collides with the history, folklore, traditions, and psychogeography of a region and where that collision has a significant impact on the present (as defined in the work.)
We are looking for work that uses the physical, historical, and social landscapes of New England as a focal point (rather than a story that could be set anywhere else but just happens to be set in New England.)
There is a long and rich history of horrific and strange folklore in New England but that doesn’t mean a writer needs to restrict themselves to it and writers are perfectly welcome to invent their own folklore, traditions, and fictional New England locations.
We should also stress that, while Folk Horror has largely been a rural construct, we by no means consider a rural location to be necessary to any working definition of the term.
A few examples of what we consider Folk Horror in literature:
Stephen King- ‘Pet Sematary.’
Stephen King- ‘Bag of Bones.’
Peter Straub- ‘Ghost Story.’
Peter Straub- ‘Floating Dragon.’
Toni Morrison- ‘Beloved.’
H.P. Lovecraft- ‘The Picture In The House.’
M.R. James- ‘View From a Hill.’
John Farris- ‘All Heads Turn When The Hunt Goes By.’
T.E.D. Klein- ‘The Ceremonies.’
Gary McMahon- ‘All Your Gods Are Dead.’
Thomas Ligotti- ‘The Last Feast Of Harlequin.’
Michael Mcdowell- ‘Blackwater.’
Thomas Tryon- ‘Harvest Home.’
Adam Nevill- ‘The Ritual.’
Adam Nevill- ‘Last Days.’
Shirley Jackson- ‘The Lottery.’
Alain Mabanckou- ‘African Psycho.’
Shirley Jackson- ‘The Summer People.’
Matthew M. Bartlett- ‘Gateways To Abomination.’
Arthur Machen- ‘The White People.’
Flannery O’Connor- ‘A Good Man Is Hard To Find.’
Marjorie Bowen- ‘What Remained Behind.’
Chinua Achebe- ‘Things Fall Apart.’
Gemma Files- ‘We Will All Go Down Together.’
Susan Cooper- ‘The Dark Is Rising.’
Mary Buchanan- ‘The Dark Backward.’
Kingsley Amis- ‘The Green Man.’
Ray Bradbury- ‘Something Wicked This Way Comes.’
Josephine Poole- ‘Moon Eyes.’
Josephine Poole- ‘Billy Buck.’
Daniel Mills- ‘Revenants.’
Clive Barker- ‘In The Hills, The Cities.’
Clive Barker- ‘The Forbidden.’
WHO CAN SUBMIT.
We are open to submissions from writers from every global region and every walk of life and, while each story needs to focus (in some manner) on the geographic region of New England (which consists of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont) we certainly don’t require that every author needs to be from that region.
We expect and encourage diversity in regard to the voices involved in this project.
DEADLINES AND SCHEDULE.
Submissions will be open until April 2017, at which point we will no longer be accepting submissions or queries.
Publication date is summer 2017 (with a more firm date to come.)
We will be paying a flat rate of $75USD upon acceptance for first rights in print and digital.
Length: 2,000-10,000 words.
Each story MUST either be set in New England or contain elements of New England folklore and history.
Each story MUST be folk horror (which we fully and happily acknowledge as being a broad and diverse term but we are defining as stated above.)
No simultaneous submissions.
SOME THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND BEFORE SUBMITTING:
New England is an ethnically diverse region of the United States with a long (and often sordid) history so please keep the contemporary effects of that history in mind when submitting and avoid work that portrays the indigenous people and tribes of New England in a racist, bigoted, or stereotypical sense and please avoid stereotypes of the poor, and economically disenfranchised, all races, genders, sexes, sexualities, (dis)abilities, faiths, and anything that targets marginalized people.
In general, we are looking to avoid depictions of sexual violence (unless written with extreme care, an actual point beyond the simple violence of it, and, above all, empathy toward victims of sexual violence.)