A Compendium of Enigmatic Species

Announcing: A Compendium of Enigmatic Species

Stories to be featured in A Compendium of Enigmatic Species have now been selected, and the editors and authors have been preparing the volume for publication.

We’ve partnered with author and scientist Mary Thaler to launch this collection of stories featuring imaginary species. Our goal is to evoke the wonder, curiosity, and surprise that comes with encountering an unknown life form, often in a familiar place. All stories are set on Earth, with the fantastic making surprising intrusions into the real.

To help fund the anthology so that we can pay contributors, please visit our Indiegogo page!


For Authors (call for submissions now closed):

Q. Can I write about a real species, or a fantasy species that has already been invented?
A. No. All species described in the Compendium must be original and imaginary. That said, you are welcome to send us descriptions of species that are inspired by real ones, or new twists on classic fantasy creatures!

Q. Can I include an illustration of the species I’m describing?
A. Yes! If you would like to include an image, please send it in .jpg or .png format (300 ppi resolution), and please bear in mind that we would prefer that it be part of the story rather than an addition by the author (e.g. a field illustration by a character in the narrative). The rate of pay will remain the same.

Q. Do you accept submissions in other media (video, photo essays, etc)?
A. Unfortunately, because of the format in which we intend to publish, we cannot accept videos. We can accept visual media, so if your short story is told in images, we can consider it, though acceptance remains at our discretion. Please send images as .jpg or .png files (300 ppi resolution). Similarly, poems that require specific formatting to create a visual effect are welcome and should be sent as .jpg or .png files (300 ppi resolution) if they cannot be sent as word documents.

Q. Can you accept international submissions?
A. Yes, international submissions are welcome! We are currently publishing in English, but there is no restriction on where submissions come from. We will simply need a PayPal address or similar so that we can send your payment after publication.

Q. Can my story be part of a bigger fantasy work?
A. As long as that work is your original creation, and takes place on Earth, absolutely. Please indicate if this is the case, so that we can include this information and help readers find your work beyond this anthology.

Q. What is the rating for this anthology?
A. While there’s no exact rating we’re trying to follow, we’re not looking for gore or erotica–though a story containing sex, violence, or swearing won’t be disqualified on those grounds. If your characters discover a new species on a battlefield, for instance, there can be descriptions of the scene. Use your own discretion when writing in these elements, as our main concern is how the parts of the story fit together, and how the story fits with our theme.

Q. Will stories be disqualified for spelling or grammar?
A. All stories will be copy-edited for spelling and grammar before publication, and an edited copy sent to the contributor for approval. Stories will not be disqualified for spelling errors; however, if your grammar is unclear to the point of being incomprehensible, we may reject your story. If this is a concern, we recommend asking a friend to read it over, or finding an online tool to check spelling and grammar.

For Supporters:

Q. As a $20 contributor, when can I expect the recorded audio version of my story of choice?
A. Recordings will become available no later than a month after they are requested, and will be available via our YouTube channel.

Q. What formats are you using to publish this anthology?
A. The anthology will be available as an ePub as well as a PDF.

Q. Will the ebook be mobile compatible?
A. We’re working to make it compatible with most phones and tablets.

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