We appreciate your interest in submitting your work to Stone Cold Stories! We hope the information on this page is helpful and answers all of your questions.
- January 5-20, 2024: Issue 2 (March 2024) and Issue 3 (May 2024)
- May 5-20, 2024: Issue 4 (July 2024) and Issue 5 (Sept 2024)
- September 5-20, 2024: Issue 6 (Nov 2024) and Issue 7 (Jan 2025)
Prior to each submission window opening on the 5th, we have a private window from the 1st through the 4th for our Patreon supporters. This is an opportunity to receive faster and more detailed feedback on your story, with the option to resubmit after revising.
What we publish
We accept speculative stories (sci-fi, fantasy, and horror) up to 5,000 words within the theme of inanimate transformation or immobilization. Examples include
- Gorgons turning people to stone for their statue gardens
- A prison in which inmates are frozen in carbonite
- A department store in which people sometimes turn into mannequins
- A high-stakes sport in which petrifying lasers turn athletes to stone
- An ancient cursed plate that immobilizes anyone who stands on it
- …and many more possibilities!
We realize this is a niche genre, but our intent is to be a niche publication. To get a solid feel for the sort of stories we seek, check out the work we’ve already published.
Sex, violence, and profanity are acceptable if they’re integral to the story. Please use your best judgment. Nudity may feature prominently in stories about statues, mannequins, and other transformations. Again, use your judgment as to whether it fits your story, but don’t self-reject because you assume we’ll find it excessive.
We do not accept stories written by AI. Feel free to use AI tools to brainstorm plots, characters, etc. You’re welcome to use Grammarly for editing. Ask ChatGPT to write your blurb if you like. It performs that task quite well. However, please write your own stories.
We also accept reprints. If your story has already been published elsewhere, please note that in your submission. This is not limited to magazines and includes blogs, Patreon, Medium, etc. Before publication, you’ll need to affirm that exclusivity periods have lapsed.
Payment and rights
Stone Cold Stories pays a semi-pro rate of one cent per word for short stories. We intend to increase this to a professional rate of eight cents per word, but that will depend on Patreon support and magazine sales.
Once accepted, we request first electronic rights for original, unpublished stories with exclusive rights for three months from the publication date.
Though we don’t insist, we prefer to receive submissions as Word documents (.docx or .doc files) in Shunn manuscript format. We also accept .rtf, .odt, and .pdf files. Stories will not be penalized based on formatting or file type. As long as we can open the file and read your story, we’ll be good to go.
Multiple submissions in the same window are allowed, but please wait for a response before sending another story.
Simultaneous submissions are acceptable and you don’t even need to tell us. Please withdraw your story right away (using the Moksha link provided when you submitted it) if it’s accepted elsewhere.
Serialized submissions are welcome, but please query before sending the first installment.
We aim to respond to submissions within four weeks.