Submission Guidelines

GENERAL NOTES:

POLAR BOREALIS is CURRENTLY CLOSED to poetry and short story submissions, and is still open for cover art.

POLAR STARLIGHT is OPEN DURING THE MONTH OF NOVEMBER TO POEMS. Always open for cover art.

Contributors must be Canadian, or at least resident in Canada.

I prefer Science Fiction over Fantasy, though of course SF can include fantasy elements, so I’m flexible. Weird Fantasy would intrigue me. Also interested in Horror with SF aspects. Have a weakness for Lovecraftian Horror. Nothing obscene or ultra-violent. Idea-driven combined with character-driven would be ideal.

Particularly interested in beginning writers who haven’t made a sale yet. The primary purpose of this zine is to encourage beginning writers. I welcome experienced authors but will judge unpublished writers as a separate category so they won’t have to compete with pros. Ideally at least two to three first-sale stories will be in in every issue. Be sure to mention whether you have been published or not so I’ll be sure to place you in the proper category.

SPECIFICS:

I offer First Publication English Language World Serial Online (PDF) Internet Rights with a post-publication exclusivity period of just one week, after which the author/artist is free to sell as a reprint to anyone anywhere.

The exclusivity period is unusually short because I have no financial stake in holding on to rights and am more than willing to encourage the author to sell again ASAP.

Note that reprints are less desirable to most publishers and are more difficult to place. On the other hand, my payment rates are so low you might even make more money selling your work as a reprint than you did selling it to me as a first publication!

The advantage of selling First Publication to me is that I want to publish at least two or three works per issue which are first sales for previously unpublished authors, so I am more likely to buy than magazines concentrating on known authors with proven sales records.

I am also willing to publish reprints under the same rights as First Publication, but no exclusivity period is involved. You can sell it again even before I publish it.

Please bear in mind:

Short stories must be three thousand words or less. For budget / financial reasons I prefer stories 1,000 words or less, will look at stories 2,000 words or less but will only accept a few, and just one story 3,000 words or less per issue.

Up to 2 stories may be submitted. Prefer each submittedseparately. Doesn’t matter if simultaneous submission elsewhere.

Up to 4 poems may be submitted, either separately or together. Doesn’t matter if simultaneous submission elsewhere.

Short stories and poems can be Science Fiction, Fantasy, or Horror.

Subgenres can include:

Science Fiction: Alternate History, Apocalyptic/Post-Apocalyptic, Contemporary/Near Future, Cyberpunk, Dystopian, Hard SF, Humorous SF, Mystery cross genre, Space Opera, Steampunk, Time Travel, Weird Tale, Weird Western, etc.

Fantasy: Dark Fantasy, Gothic, Heroic, Mythological, Science Fantasy, Shapeshifter, Steampunk, Supernatural, Sword & Sorcery, Weird Tale, Weird Western, etc.

Horror: Creature Horror, Gothic, Historical, Horror Western, Lovecraftian, Monsters, Noir, SF Horror, Shapeshifter, Steampunk, Supernatural, Weird Tale, Weird Western, etc.

In other words, almost anything goes as long as it is genre-related and imaginative.

Note: all poems received are considered submissions to both Polar Borealis and Polar Starlight. Can be sixty lines or less on any of the above themes

Not currently open to themed interior art for specific stories (hope to be some day) or interior fillo pieces, but am currently open to potential Cover Art.

Be aware normally contributors are paid after they have signed the contract but before publication. (See “Contract” for a sample contract.)

Everyone submitting should include a short, one or two paragraph bio which confirms Canadian status, publication status, and makes you appear quite the character.

Include word count (if story) or line count (if poem).

Also, be sure to let me know if the work being submitted has been previously published or not, and whether my acceptance would constitute your first sale ever.

And please include your full mailing address as I will need to put that into the contract.

HOW TO SUBMIT:

E-mail a word doc (not a PDF) to me at <  polar.borealis.magazine@gmail.com   > and include “PB Sub” (or, if poems, “PS Sub”) in your heading.

The format of your submission should be as follows: A word doc. in either Courier or Times Roman font size 12, black print on white page, double spaced, beginning of paragraphs indented, ragged justification, your name and title on each page in the header, each page numbered, and your name, address and contact info on the title page. In other words, the standard, traditional, classic format.

Note: prefer single space between the end of one sentence and the start of the next sentence.

Note concerning poems: indentation, and justification albeit left, centred, or right, is entirely according to the visual pattern the poet has laid out. To ensure the layout is printed as intended, it would be best to submit the poem with Bookman Old Style font, point size 13, and line spacing 1.5, as this is how the poem will appear in the magazine.

Note concerning cover art: Must be portrait-shaped (as opposed to landscaped shaped) in JPEG form about 1,000 kb in size. It will fit under title on cover page and be surrounded by white space, no bleed. I will adjust size of JPEG to fit space.

Note: I do accept both reprints and multiple submissions, and don’t care if simultaneously submitted elsewhere.