Sunday, April 28, 2013

Hidden Guidelines: TM Magazine

For some of you, you've probably seen and even submitted to TM Magazine, and as far as I can tell, they seem to be a nice zine. However, I received an interesting response to a query I made, that sheds some unmentionables in their guidelines.

Thank you for your follow-up on your story. --snip-- For us to consider publishing your story, we would have to remove the sexual references and swear words from the story. Are these changes you would be willing to make? We enjoyed the comic tone of the piece, but it would have to be cleaned up to meet our vision of clean content. Please let us know if you would be willing to make these types of changes to your story.

This response is actually a bit old since the story was eventually rejected--by an entirely different editor than who I had submitted to. But that's okay, because I really didn't want to remove all the swears and sexual references (which were part of the humor).

But that does lead to a problem, because no where does it say in their guidelines that they do not publish fiction containing swear words and sexual references. What they do say is:

TM Publishing does not print, publish, or otherwise distribute graphic descriptions of sex or violence. Please do not submit works with graphic content.

In my book, cussing and sexual references do not fall under "graphic content"--and I would bet that's the same for many others. And it seems wrong not to include that in your guidelines. If it's too much to add in your guidelines, just say you're a PG or kid friendly magazine, like Buzzy Magazine and Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show, then writers will take the hint (assuming they read guidelines in the first place) and will choose more wisely what to submit. 'Cause yeah, I wasted a lot of time submitting a story that was unsuitable for this market, and likewise, they wasted time reading it. Although I'm sure they were downtrodden that they couldn't publish it. :)

So now you know, and the more the know, the less time you waste--time which of course will be reallocated to LOLCats and Youtube.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

UFO 2 on Kickstarter!

Yes, our favorite (and only) humorous sci-fi and fantasy anthology is back for another year. And this time with a lot more headliners, such as Mike Resnick and Jim C. Hines.

Submissions for the anthology itself will begin May 1st of this year--and unfortunately, the submission window is only open for one month, limit of two submissions per writer.(It was my 3rd or 4th submission that ultimately made it into the first anthology.) So choose wisely, I guess.

This is an anthology I believe is worth supporting, just because it's so rare to find editors willing to publish light, humorous material. Most markets are into the dark, moody stuff that gets real tiring after a while. And who doesn't like to laugh? (Although I will admit, I didn't laugh at all the stories.) But it's still a high quality anthology that's sure to have something you'll enjoy ... unless you're just a humorless ass. 

Another reason to support is to help the little guys. As the kickstarter description says, if they don't meet their goal, the anthology will still go forward, but it'll be thinner; and it'll be a hot day in Heaven if any of those headliners were to get axed. Plus, we had a quite a few W1S1 members in the first UFO, and it'd be awesome if that could continue.

So yeah, check it out, and share a few bucks if you can. Or spread the news like a plague--a plague of humor, of course.