The award-nominated WHEN THE HERO COMES HOME, from Dragon Moon Press, has been praised as “a perfect example of how an anthology of stories should work.” Upon the success of HERO and its follow-up, WHEN THE VILLAIN COMES HOME, co-editors Ed Greenwood and Gabrielle Harbowy are pleased to announce WHEN THE HERO COMES HOME 2.
We’re changing the format a bit this time. In the spirit of Dragon Moon Press’s commitment to discovering new authors, there will be an open submissions period for a limited number of bonus stories to appear in the e-book only — a couple of which may, at the publisher’s discretion, also appear in the print book. There are no restrictions on professional level (as-yet-unpublished authors and established award-winners are equally welcome!) or country of residence.
SUBMISSIONS OPEN DECEMBER 1, 2012 AND END DECEMBER 31, 2012 OR WHEN THE WORLD ENDS, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST. This will give you plenty of time to consider your idea and write your story. We strongly recommend reading WHEN THE HERO COMES HOME and WHEN THE VILLAIN COMES HOME to see what has already been done.
Open Submissions which do not follow the instructions on this page will not be considered.
ABOUT THE THEME:
The HERO/VILLAIN anthologies have a reputation as collections of strong, character-driven stories which explore the difference between the expectation of what “home” holds, and the reality.
The hero must have performed some distinguishing act or service; they do not need to be the protagonist or POV character, they do not need to be sympathetic characters, but there should be something heroic about them or their actions. They need not be soldiers or knights, or still alive, or even people at all. They may have won, lost, or drawn, though there doesn’t have to be a fight for there to be a homecoming. A hero does not need to have “retired” from adventuring to come home. They can come home from the epic confrontation or the mission that saves the planet, they can come home to the place of their childhood, they can find spiritual or emotional belonging, or they can come home from work at the end of the day.
A note: Don’t spend too much time on the backstory. The previous volumes have shown that the word-count limit doesn’t really allow for it. We are not looking for retrospective backstory regarding where our heroes have been, but an exploration of how circumstances have changed them, and how home meets or defies their expectations. Forward, not backward.
Stories may fall anywhere within our broad SF/F genre — fantasy, science fiction, speculative fiction, urban fantasy, historical fantasy, paranormal romance, paranormal horror. The tone is yours to play with, as well: satirical, light and humorous, dark, or bleak. We are open to stories that explore diversity in characters, cultures, situations, races, and/or sexual orientation. We ask only that you address the theme in some way (though you’re free to take license with it).
Ebook-only stories accepted through the open submissions process will receive a flat one-time payment of US $50. Original stories accepted for the print book will receive professional rates of 5 cents per word (1 cent per word for reprints) up to a maximum of 5,000 words. Due to budget constraints, we will not be able to offer additional compensation for original stories that check in above 5,000 words. All contributors will receive one author’s copy (print and ebook) per contributor and an author discount on additional copies. Advances will be payable upon publication.
THE FINE PRINT:
Our ideal word count range is 2,000-5,000 words.
Email to: dmpsubmissions @ gmail.com
Subject: HERO open submissions: [Story Title]
In the body of the email: Your name, physical address and phone number, email address, title, word count, and a short (under 100 words, third person) author bio. If you were referred from a particular website (Candlekeep, Duotrope, Miss Snark’s First Victim, etc.) please let us know. Then your story, ALSO IN THE BODY OF THE EMAIL. You do not need to provide a formal query letter.
Submissions with attachments will be deleted unread. Submissions received before December 1 or after December 31 will not be read. No guarantees regarding stories received after the end of the world.
Please do not query to ask if you may query. Please do not query to ask if we have read your story yet. We will not begin reading Open Submissions stories until January 1.
These instructions apply to WHEN THE HERO COMES HOME 2 open submissions only, and should not be used for general Dragon Moon Press submissions, or HERO 2 by-invitation submissions.