Thursday, 20 April 2017

We Want Your Dragons

Wait, you wanted dragon STORIES?
We're about halfway through the submissions period for Hic Sunt Dracones, the Digital Fiction Publishing dragon-themed anthology that I'm slush-reading for, and we've had a more than solid response so far, one that's included some pretty terrific stories.  But we don't have near the material for a full book yet, so I thought now might be a good time to spread the word a little.

Hic Sunt Dracones is reprint-only, with payment being one cent a word and enrollment into the Digital Fiction Publishing League, which would take way too much explaining here but basically means that there's a realistic chance you might see some royalties at some point; you can find the full details and the submissions form here.

And here's what editor Michael Wills has to say about what he's after:
Dragons - bad-ass dragons. Dragons that destroy things and eat people, and the people/robots/aliens/time lords that fight them or out-smart them - or get eaten by them. No story book dragons that live in forests helping orphans or peddling psychedelics. My dragons eat orphans for breakfast. Timeline and setting is wide open. Your dragons aren't necessarily getting stabbed by swords - but swords are welcome too. I want dragons - awe inspiring fear provoking monsters. They can be mechanical, mystical, steam-powered, alien, aquatic, from another dimension, or from outer space - but they must be terrifying beasts of destruction. Here be dragons.
For my part, I'd add that I could live with a dragon that wasn't wholly bad-ass, so long as it was contained in a story that was really splendid.  I mean, I think that in a pinch we might be flexible on that one; so don't let the fact that your dragon is only quite terrifying or destructive be too much of a decider.  For me, what we haven't seen enough of yet are those other kinds of dragon: the mechanical, mystical, steam-powered, alien, aquatic, from another dimension, or from outer space ones.  Lots of trad fantasy, absolutely; lots of comic fantasy, too, though not all of it terribly comic.  But I'm itching for some really good dragon sci-fi, or dragon horror for that matter.  It feels to me that there's more scope here than we've yet seen.  (And it's worth noting that those stories that have bucked the trends have frequently been among the best; or maybe that's just my tastes talking.)

Anyway.  The point is, we want your dragon stories.  And despite what I've said, they can be traditional as all get-out so long as they're good; believe me, I've put forward stories as old-school as anything, where they were genuinely excellent.  So give us your fantasy dragons.  Give us your science-fiction dragons.  Give us your tired dragons, your poor dragons, your huddled masses of dragons yearning to breathe fire freely.  Based on what we've seen already, this promises to be one hell of an anthology; wouldn't you like to be part of it?

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