The Book of Imaginary Beasts is a webzine for oneshot original fiction (or basically, short stories). We lean towards crazy genre fiction of any and all genres, so long as it fits within the theme of the issue.
We accept gen, het, and gay of any and all genders, together with porn. <3 We believe in free lovin' here, even if it is not our, uh, primary concern. XD
Issues will be released every two months, and each issue will have a theme as chosen by the editors.
For every issue, a theme will be selected in advance. A sign-up post will be made to inform the community, and interested writers and artists may then sign up. Themes can range from specific genres (eg. a steampunk issue or a uh, soap opera issue?) or genre conventions (a cross dressing issue?) to more general prompts, though those will probably come later, when we've exhausted... everything else. So to speak. XD Each theme might or might not come with a brief write-up explaining it, to give the community an idea of what it IS (for example, an explanation of specific genres).
Writers may interpret each theme as they see fit. If you are in doubt, submit it and the editors will make a final call.
To participate, simply join the community, sign up for the issue (if the theme interests you), and produce your story by deadline. XD Should response prove overwhelming, we might have to, I don't know, introduce measures to regulate the number of stories per issue, but since this hasn't happened yet, we're still operating on an accept-all-comers policy.
Each issue will have a cover, hopefully, featuring art from
We'll also be happy to have artists illustrate stories. Just sign up at the sign up post specifying illustration, and with a few links to online samples of your art. Interested writers can then contact you. You could also hit up writers who've signed up, if you see anyone you'd like to draw for. The editors do not moderate this process in any way.
HOWEVER, if your agreed writer can't produce their story in time for you to illustrate, or by deadline, but you'd still like to illustrate for SOMEONE, you can hit us up and we'll try to match you up with someone who HAS submitted.
We're not looking out for poetry, but if you would like to submit poetry for a theme, you are welcome to. XD Please specify this when signing up, and editors will make the decision on a case-by-case basis.
All submissions will go through a basic spelling and grammar check at the very least, to ensure readability. The editorial pool for the issue will be credited, but you will not be told who worked on your story.
This zine is focused on oneshots. If you wish a submit a serial, I suggest that you make the individual installments episodic and standalone. Since the issues work on differing themes anyway, I would
This community will be the main face of the zine (for now at least). The community is at the moment controlled, so that only the moderator(s) can post, All admin posts are locked, for example sign up threads, reminder posts, etc. All issues will be public.
Stories will be archived on ib_archive.
This zine/community unofficially spins off the bb_shousetsu, a original fiction zine for oneshot boy's love stories, and follows much of their operational methods. Much credit thus goes to petronia for her original idea.
1. Please sign up for the theme before submitting, that the editor(s) may have a decent idea of what to expect for the issue turn-out.
2. To submit, email your story/art to email@example.com.
STORY/OTHER WRITING: .txt format ONLY
ART/ILLUSTRATION: .jpg, .gif or .png ONLY
This is for consistency purposes and so the editor(s) doesn't go crazy formatting/dealing with several dozen files in several dozen different file formats.
For ALL submissions (story/art/illustration/other), please read the COMPLETE SUBMISSION RULES. These rules are compulsory requirements, and if you ignore them, we will reject your submission and ask you to resubmit following the rules anyway.
3. Along with your story/art, please provide me with the name you wish to be published under, the email you want readers to reach you at, and your lj username if you want it to be attached. If you have submitted a shameless porn-fest or a pseudo-Harlequin or... whatever-it-is that you do not wish your actual/fandom name to be associated with, you may publish it under a penname/anonymously. However, for repeat contributors, the editor(s) would want you to pick a few names and stick with them to minimise confusion on all sides, thank you. XD It'll help readers keep track of you. XD
4. All submissions should be between 1,000 to 10,000 words. I say 10,000 because the lj entry word limit is in that range. You could maybe go up to 11,000 but if your story does not fit into one entry, we will have to ask you to either trim it down or divide it into sections to post separately, whichever works better.
Anything under 1,000 words would probably count more as flashfic, and while I am not banning flashfic, our preference is for longer, plot-driven pieces. If you would like to submit something shorter than 1,000 words, please let us know and we'll consider your submission on a case-by-case basis.
5. Linked to the above, all stories should have a semblance of a beginning, middle and end and be able to stand alone somewhat decently. They should also be original work, ie. nominally not fanfic
6. Bad grammar and spelling are not okay. Please check your spelling and grammar before submitting. You should proofread your story at least once, if not twice, before submission, to catch your own mistakes. If you can get a beta reader to look it through for you, that is strongly recommended.
Yes, the editors will read through your story and edit it for any mistakes we find, as a safeguard. But we're not here to be your beta readers - catching some typos and grammatical slip ups is fine, but there's a limit to how much editing we have time to do, and we are a) anal and b) here to ensure readability for everyone. If we can't tell, say, who is doing what in a given sentence, adjectives are incorrect, adverbs are abused, etc, we will have to reject you unless you get a beta reader to help clean it up.
7. Submissions should be new work, or work you have not submitted or posted elsewhere before. However, I am not strictly banning older submissions - if you would like to submit an older piece, ask me and we will discuss the possibility. I would prefer it if writers did not make a habit of submiting older work, however.
8. If you signed up for a theme but later find that you are unable to meet the deadline, that is fine. Anyone who does not submit by the specified date will simply be assumed to have dropped out. Don't worry, you may still sign up and contribute to future issues. XD You may not submit after the deadline. If you are unable to submit by the specified date but still want to contribute to that particular issue, let me know at least two days ahead of the deadline so that we can discuss it.
9. Yes, we will be more than happy to say yes if you'd like to contribute multiple submissions to an issue. XD
10. Editors reserve the right to reject a story if they feel it does not fit the issue theme, if submission guidelines are not followed, or if they feel the writing is not up to our standards of readability.
The editors/moderators do not moderate feedback to the submissions, and we can't prevent readers from leaving negative comments on your work. We DO request that everyone be civil and polite - it's okay to not like something, it's a lot less okay to tell the writer or artist so in offensive language or through personal attacks.
So far everyone has been playing really nice though, so thank you all. XD
Given our posting format, contributors don't get LJ notifications when readers comment on their work, and it's probably hard for most of you to keep track if someone leaves a comment of your art or story weeks after the issue goes out.
However, if you'll like to track comments, LJ does have a feature that lets you. For those of you that didn't know about it, it's this feature:
At the top of every LJ entry is a row of icons - click on the thumbtack icon, or "Track This", and you can set it to send you notifications whenever someone comments on your submission, even if you didn't post it.
Stories so far have not been given ratings, as a glance at past issues can tell you. There are no immediate plans to do so, though this might change depending on how things go. As stated, we're open to porn, violence and hetero/homosexual relationships, so please consider this a warning that you might encounter mature material, or material that does not adhere to your personal beliefs.
We do not claim to hold any copyright whatsoever on anything you submit to us, your work remains strictly within your control. This is (sadly) a non-profit project. We'll prefer it if you wait until the issue is out before you post your story anywhere else, but apart from that, you are perfectly free to post your story anywhere you'll like.
That said, if you are considering submitting your story to professional publications in future, you may note that some publications request/insist on first publication rights. This is... an iffy point, and there is not much we can do about it beyond, uh, keep our mouths shut, perhaps. Should you feel at some later point that you would like us to remove a story for any reason, we will be happy to take it down as per request.
If you have any advice in this area, please feel free to let me know and I'll be glad to find out more about the legalities (argh) possibly involved.
The name of the zine, The Book of Imaginary Beasts, is derived from Jorges Luis Borges' The Book of Imaginary Beings. I admit to irregular bouts of artsy pretention, though I promise to try not to inflict them on anyone else. XD
You may contact the magazine by comments on the community, comments on lilacfield's journal or email.
If you have any questions, leave a comment below and I'll see to it. XD