This week’s Monday Markets focus on writing about religion. There is a webzine looking for submissions, a magazine looking for angel stories, and a publication that looks at a number of issues from a Christian perspective.
Third Order is a webzine created to engage with issues of faith and religion through mainstream, traditional, experimental, and speculative short fiction.
Religion is personal and societal; it changes single souls and entire worlds. The ways of God are not always easy or explainable. The way faith tells us to go is not always the way we expected. At Third Order Magazine, we’re interested in exploring those dynamics. We’re less DaVinci Code and more Flannery O’Connor — with, of course, the occasional extraterrestrial.
We plan to publish, on a quarterly basis, mainstream/traditional, experimental and speculative short fiction that deals with faith and religion. There are no other requirements concerning plot, characterization, or genre, save a few of the editor’s personal preferences, which are listed below.
7/25: RESPONSE TIME is now ONE WEEK for rejections and one to eight weeks for acceptances. See below for more details.
We are not accepting poetry at the moment.
We are now accepting artists’ portfolio references.
We are interested in:
— well-written, strong stories that display a sensitivity to and knowledge of the moral / theological concepts of the faith you are dealing with.
— stories about all faiths, including those you dream up.
— strong characterizations.
— science fiction, fantasy, and realistic stories.
— everyday life and extraordinary events.
— stories that respect both dogma and grey areas.
— stories that exhibit the maxim “show, don’t tell” and a depth of thought, but not necessarily anything “boring.”
We are not particularly interested in:
— red, snarling demons, angels with ‘luminescent’ wings, and stories that use popular religious mythology for window-dressing.
— atheist, nihilist, and anti-religious fiction; that’s not why we’re here.
— stories that exist only to advance an agenda, preach, or sermonize.
— simple good vs. evil stories; huge conflicts between angels and devils, etc. If you have one of these that you think I’d be interested in, feel free to send it, but make sure it knocks my socks off.
— badly-written stories. Mind your grammar, word usage, and sentence structure.
— pulp fiction, stories with overwhelming, gruesome violence or material considered purely “horror.” Also, stories containing excessive or unnecessary profanity are highly discouraged.
— stories where religion and faith are tangential to the plot. For example, it’s not science fiction without the science; likewise, it’s not a Third Order story without those questions.
We do not publish poetry.
Third Order is soliciting references to illustrators’ portfolios. To be considered, simply drop me a line and give me the address to your online gallery. You won’t hear from me unless I wish to hire you for a particular illustration job.
Artist contributors to Third Order are paid on a similar scale to writers: $20-$30.
Payment and Rights
Third Order will pay $20 for stories under 4,000 words and $30 for stories between 4,000 and 10,000 words.
We fully intend to someday operate as a monthly web / quarterly print model paying pro-level rates in the future.
Currently: we purchase first-printing exclusive rights for a period of three months, during which you may not publish the work in any other medium. Afterward, you are free to republish the story elsewhere and keep all other rights. We certainly hope that you will allow us to keep your work on the Third Order website after that period for as long as the magazine exists, but that’s your call.
How to Submit
Send a .doc or .rtf file in standard manuscript format. Use this link if you are unfamiliar with how to do this. If you are using Office 2007 and save your documents in .docx format, please convert them to an earlier Word format before submitting.
Multiple submissions are not allowed. Simultaneous submissions are absolutely allowed, but only if you let me know in your cover letter that it’s been submitted elsewhere and inform me if you sell it to another magazine immediately. If it’s in consideration at another magazine, I don’t mind seeing it, too.
No reprints yet.
Send an e-mail to [email protected] with your submission in the attachment. Title the e-mail SUB: “Your Title” by Your Name. This is very important; although Gmail has a great spam filter, I still have to set up filters to avoid being swarmed by unwanted advertisements. If you do not title your e-mail “SUB:” I may never see it.
When you submit to Third Order, you will receive a response within one week. If I like your story and wish to keep it for further consideration, I might need to keep it for up to eight weeks, depending on where I am in the production schedule of the next issue. During this period of time, I allow simultaneous submissions to other markets, if you do me the courtesy of letting me know the story is up for consideration elsewhere. I’m a writer, too, and I know what it’s like to have to wait.
I no longer give feedback in rejection notices for many reasons. If your story is not accepted for publication by Third Order, you may write for a short paragraph of feedback.
Feel free to query. It’s not a hardship for me to give you an update on where your work is in the queue. Also, my spam filter has been known to swallow even the hardiest of e-mails. Alas!
Karen Osborne will be serving as your editor. She has a website at karenosborne.com.
Angels on Earth® publishes true stories about God’s messengers at work in today’s world. We are interested in stories of heavenly angels and stories involving humans who have played angelic roles in daily life. The best stories are those where the narrator has been positively affected in some distinct way. Look for unusual situations; we have a surplus of stories about illness and car accidents. We are also especially on the lookout for recent stories.
A typical Angels on Earth story is first-person narrative written in dramatic style, with a spiritual point that the reader can “take away” and apply to his or her own life. It may be your own or someone else’s story.
Please observe the following in writing your Angels on Earth story:
* The emphasis should be on one person, and is usually told from the vantage point of the individual most deeply affected by the angelic experience. But don’t try to tell an entire life story; focus on one specific life event. Bring only as many people as needed to tell the story so the reader’s interest stays with the dominant character.
* Decide what your spiritual point will be. We like to see a positive and specific change in the narrator as a result of the angelic experience. Don’t forget: We want our readers to take away a message or insight they can use in their own lives. Everything in the story should be tied in with this specific and inspiring theme.
* Don’t leave unanswered questions. Give all the relevant facts so the reader can clearly understand what took place. Let the reader feel as if he were there, seeing the characters, hearing them talk, feeling what they felt. Use dialogue, set scenes, build tension—dramatize the story. Show how the narrator becomes a new, or different person.
* The best rule of all: STUDY THE MAGAZINE!
* For full-length manuscripts (1500 words): $100 – $400, and is made when the story is approved and scheduled for publication.
* For quotes, anecdotes to use as fillers, and material for our short features (50 – 250 words):
o “Messages”: brief, mysterious happenings, or letters describing how a specific Angels on Earth article helped you. Payment is usually $25.
o “Earning Their Wings”: unusual stories of good deeds worth imitating. Payment is usually $50.
o “Only Human?”: short narratives in which the angelic character may or may not have been a human being. The narrator is pleasantly unsure and so is the reader. Payment is usually $100.
From the Web Site:
Although most of the articles that appear in Sojourners have been requested from particular writers, we do occasionally publish unsolicited manuscripts. We are interested in feature articles that treat biblical, social, political, economic, theological, community, or church themes (to mention a few) from a progressive Christian perspective. Where it is reasonable to do so, pieces should explicitly state their grounding in Christian faith. We encourage writers who are describing social or other problems to consider suggesting creative solutions to those problems. We encourage writers to use gender neutral language.
The length of features is generally 1,200-3,000 words. In addition to feature articles, we print “Taking Action” pieces (profiles of groups making a difference in the world) of about 600 words. We also publish commentaries, of roughly 600-650 words, on particularly current events. You may view back issues of our magazine online.
Send articles to the attention of the manuscript editor at the postal address below or e-mail to [email protected] (if possible, as an attached Microsoft Word document). Please do not send more than two pieces at the same time, and do not submit a piece to another publication at the same time you have submitted it to us. We are unable to consider or respond to authors who send us more than two pieces at the same time, whose pieces are substantially over 3,000 words, or whose submissions are not sent uniquely to Sojourners.
Pays $50-$400 per article.