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Thank you for your interest in Shiver. Shiver is an interactive magazine, meaning it's a new world that we've left open for writers to create. Shiver has past (fantasy) stories, present (horror) stories, and future (science-fiction) stories. Shiver grows with each issue. We not only buy stories, we buy characters. If we accept your work, we will send some blank character sheets for you to fill out if any of your characters have "returnable" quality. These character sheets will be sent to other writers who might want to use them in their own stories. You will be sent character sheets from other stories we have published.
We are only buying your characters for the use of Shiver. Our contract clearly states that you will still be allowed to pursue any future stories containing your character, and that our rights to it reside only in Shiver. Every time we use your character, you will be paid a recognition fee of $5. Who knows what your creation may become in the world of Shiver? And if you're interested in obtaining character sheets, send us a self addressed stamped envelope (Please include the genre you're most interested in) and we'll stuff it full of them.
WRITERS GUIDLINES. FICTION: We want well written, character driven pieces. We accept horror, fantasy, and science-fiction. 10,000 words max. Short stories between 3,500 and 7,000 words are ideal. Here is a brief description of our genres.
Fantasy. This world is one of many islands. Most of our stories center around a town called Danlin, which has stock wizards, thieves, warriors etc. for you to play with. There are many other lands we have yet to explore. A couple of things to keep in mind: Danlin only has one dragon left and horses are about the only common animal. Ask someone in Danlin what a rabbit is and they won't know what your talking about.
Horror. We have two settings for the horror writer to explore. One is a small backwoods town called Aiklen which is way up north The other is a city which is extremely generic. It has no name, just mention the west side or the north side etc. to move around. Our horror world is very similar to Earth, but it's not Earth. Although it does share some of the same myths, the myths should be a little obscure and the flavor should be strange. The horror world is more like another dimension of Earth where unexplainable things are a little more likely to happen.
Science-Fiction. Our reader surveys have made it apparent that although most of our readers do enjoy science- fiction, they are not die hard fans. This led to the development of an action based STAR WARS style of story for our science-fiction world. This does not mean that we don't encourage involving stories that are based on the technology side, just be sure it's understandable, fun and informative. We enjoy the odd statement slipped between the pages of a good science-fiction story provided it raises a valid and interesting question. As for the world itself, hell, there's an entire world out there for you sci-fi writers to explore.
We find that once writers realize that they are helping to create an interactive world they become very enthusiastic about adding their own characters.
PAYMENT: We pay 1 cent per word for the first 5000, 1/2 cent for each word after that. We sometimes pay more but we never go below that.
POETRY: We publish only one poem per issue. No offense-it's just that we're so focused on fiction that we don't have the room or ability to handle lots of poetry. Your best bet is to try lots of horrific imagery. PAYMENT: $2.50 min.
ARTWORK/CARTOONS: A horror story cartoon with a Dick Tracy format or a Charles Addams style one-shot is great. We'd like to come across a one or two panel strip that we can publish every issue. BLACK ink only please. PHOTOCOPIES because we hate how the mail treats your work. We also keep your work on hand even if we don't use it right away. Also feel free to send us a portfolio. We use 20-30 artists per year. We recommend you send a self addressed stamped postcard with your portfolio so you'll know it arrived safely. Send a SASE if you want your work back. PAYMENT: $15.00 per full page of inside art, $60.00 for cover work min. We pay by the issue for regular contributors because we hope to be able to pay more with each issue.
NON-FICTION: We try to publish at least one interview per issue of a respected member of the horror/fantasy/science-fiction community. We also publish articles designed to help writers. Tell us what your article is going to be about. Cult Corner and Horror Homework are articles that we publish every issue. PAYMENT: 1-2 cents per word.
GENERAL INFO: Always send an S.A.S.E. (Self addressed stamped envelope) for a reply or if you want your work returned. MANUSCRIPTS: Typed, double spaced and printed on one side of the page. In top right corner on page 1 should be your name, address and phone number with an approximate word count to the nearest 50. Center the title a few spaces below your address with your pen name directly underneath. On every page put your last name/appropriate title abbreviation/page #. Use paper-clips not staples. No disks or registered mail. All manuscripts will be read and we will try to reply within three weeks. If you haven't heard from us in eight weeks, query. We are not responsible for lost work. PLEASE NOTE if you are mailing from the U.S.A. you need to have Canadian postage or an I.R.C. with your S.A.S.E. Multiple submissions are okay as long as you send an S.A.S.E. with each one. Sorry, we don't accept simultaneous submissions. Please indicate if your submissions are disposable! We buy First North American Serial Rights, and we no longer accept stories that have been previously published.
TIPS: -Shiver is a continuing world. We can't use stories that are about the end of the world or we'd have nothing to say in our following issues. -Shiver isn't Earth. Although it is very similar we still have to stray away from stories that involve Earth's past ie Nazi camps, Napoleon etc. No places ie New Orleans. -We don't use stories that involve Earth decades after a nuclear war. -Don't make the monsters too powerful, we don't need any competition of what monster can out-do the other monster. Don't make them too whimpy either. -We are a Canadian magazine so we will be making minor changes on the American stories we publish (ie in Canada 'color' is spelled 'colour') -We don't use stories that are heavy on sex and profanity due to the strong following we have with comic book and game stores, which currently have had to keep our issue sealed up just for one simple "F" word. But feel free to use scenes where characters heads get ripped off. Sorry for seeming so picky but we're just trying to leave doors open as widely as possible for other writers. We hope to see your work soon. Who knows, maybe you'll be the newest member in the next issue of Shiver!
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