Tales to Terrify
What we’re looking for
Tales to Terrify is a volunteer-run fan podcast featuring short horror, dark fantasy, and other disturbing fiction. We greatly value diversity and inclusivity, and seek to publish fiction from writers of different races, religions, nationalities, physical or mental abilities, gender identities, and sexual orientations.
We encourage you to challenge the definition of horror. Standard tropes and monsters are welcome, but give us your own unique take. Avoid the cliche and expected, unless as devices used purposefully and cleverly to further your story.
Drag us deep into the unsettling atmosphere of a crumbling Gothic mansion. Show us the gritty, real-world horrors of evil people with dark intentions. Make our blood run cold and our breath catch in our throats as we’re hunted by ravenous creatures. Unhinge our minds with reality-bending, psychological horrors. Make us feel the pain and sorrow of a long-suffering spirit.
We do our best to honour the diversity within the genre and you should, too. We want to be terrified by your concepts, by your implications, by your story’s possibilities. We want to read works that threaten to bleed into our reality and corrupt something as ordinary as a toaster. Anything is allowed as long as it’s well-conceived and well-written.
What we’re NOT looking for
- Stories that are not horror, dark fantasy or some form of disturbing fiction
- Fan fiction
- Sex is fine, but total erotica and torture porn are not
- Stories that include intolerance of a person or group’s race, religion, nationality, physical or mental ability, gender identity, or sexual orientation
- Gratuitous gore and violence with no purpose – blood and guts are fine as long as there’s something deeper
- Stories that glorify, minimize, or inaccurately represent child abuse, animal abuse, or sexual assault
- Up to 10,000 words
- Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format
- Double spaced
- 12 pt. Courier New or Times New Roman font
Please include author, title and word count on first page.
Stories pasted into the body of an email will be rejected without being read.
Artificial intelligence can be a helpful tool for writers, but as a publication relying on the creativity and ingenuity of humans, we do NOT accept submissions that have been composed with AI. If AI tools have been used in the development of a story, we expect authors to disclose how and to what extent. Authors who fail to do so will be banned from submitting in the future.
Please get a feel for what we’re after by listening to our podcast prior to submitting your story. Once your manuscript it ready to go, click here to submit your story and follow the instructions.
After your story is submitted, it will be reviewed by a member of our staff and rated based on submission quality and suitability for our podcast. We receive plenty of great submissions that just don’t fit our tone or won’t work well in an audio format, so don’t be discouraged if you’re rejected.
You will be notified once your story has been accepted or rejected. If accepted, we’ll be in touch with contract and publication details.
Simultaneous submissions (submitting the same stories to other publishers at the same time) and multiple submissions are allowed. Each author may submit up to two stories during the submission period. Any story beyond the first two, or which is received outside of the submission period, will be rejected unread.
We welcome submissions of previously published works as long as they do not infringe on any existing publication agreements or copyrights. Please disclose the location and date (approximate is fine) your work was previously published when submitting.
We’re a small team, so most submissions will receive a response within 60-90 days, although it could take more time for consideration purposes. Feel free to query if you haven’t heard anything in 120 days.
Please do not respond to rejection letters. However, you can submit a different story at that time if we are open for submissions.
We hold open submissions for longer works (2,000-10,000 words) several times a year, and pay $0.01 USD per word for accepted submissions. We do not pay for flash fiction (less than 2,000 words). Payments are processed on the 7th of the month following the air date of the story.