We will reopen to unsolicited queries in June 2014.
Regarding #PitchMAS: If we request material from you during #PitchMAS #PitMad or other pitch event, please follow the directions in our request/Tweet. You can use the information on this page to help format your query/5k submission, but you might also like to read our previous posts “Your pitch got favorited, now what?” and notes from the Editor on how you get to know an agency/press and Dahlia Adler’s brilliant essay On Querying and Submitting Simultaneously.
World Weaver Press seeks quality fantasy, paranormal, and science fiction projects that engage the mind and ensnare the story-loving soul.
We believe in great storytelling. We believe in challenging genre boundaries and engaging the fundamental human drive to tell stories that resonate emotionally. The way we do it is by partnering with great writers to craft and edit the best fantasy, paranormal, and science fiction stories possible. By creating beautiful, well designed paperbacks and ebooks. By growing their publicity. And by fostering a family of authors excited to work with us. We just happen to make great books.
World Weaver Press publishes digital and print editions of speculative fiction at various lengths (novels, novellas) and in various formats, including collections and themed anthologies (short stories and novelettes) for Adult, YA, and New Adult audiences. Our books are carried through Ingram, but our distribution is primarily online; meaning we sell through websites (including our own starting summer 2014!), occasionally at bookstores, and always in the vendor room of conventions we attend.
In 2014, we will accept unsolicited queries (for novels, etc.) only during the months of February, June, and September.
Email submissions only. No attachments. We are not a market for middle grade, early reader, picture books, poetry, or plays. We do not accept submissions of individual short stories (except for open themed anthologies). We don’t pay advances, only royalties (see FAQ). Information for Art.
We’ll consider any novel or novella length work of speculative fiction (we suggest reading the hyperlinked definition). But there are definitely avenues of speculative fiction which are very hard to sell us on. Not that it hasn’t been known to happen.
We’re more interested in:
- Protagonists who have strength, not fainting spells
- Intriguing worlds with well-developed settings
- Reconstructed folk/fairy tales
- Space opera / space-travel SF
- Paranormal romance / Fantasy-romances / SF-romances
- Heroes that are to die for (to drool for is okay, but we’d rather find ourselves in love than in lust)
- Urban fantasy
- Vampires / werewolves / shape-shifters / witches / dragons / other magical, mythical, or paranormal creatures
- Mythology mashups
- Second-world fantasy / epic fantasy / high fantasy / sword and sorcery
- Fantasy-mysteries / SF-mysteries
- Contemporary fantasy
- Contemporary SF / near future
- Soft SF / Hard SF
- Pulp fiction throwbacks / Grand Tradition SF stories
- Hopeful SF
- Humorous speculative fiction
- Supernatural or paranormal horror / dark fantasy / dark SF
- Time travel
- LGBT protagonists
- Young adult (YA) that incorporates some of the above
- New adult (NA) that incorporates some of the above
We’re most likely not interested in:
- Giant bugs. Or giant swarms of bugs. — They squick us out. Please don’t send.
- Ghost novels (ghost short stories are okay, but not longer works)
- Alternate history set between 1800-1950 (unless steampunk)
- Decay of society
- Psychological horror (Why we consider horror an aesthetic to be applied to F/SF)
- Magical realism
- Middle grade (MG), early reader, picture books
Other genres and cross-genres:
We are not a market for strict realism. We are willing to look at multiple genres (romance, mystery, western, etc.) if they also possess speculative elements which are integral to the plot. We are a bastion for crossover fiction. A paranormal mystery with witches using their powers to solve murders sounds interesting; an otherwise earth-like world where it occasionally rains goldfish for no good reason sounds like something we’d rather not read.
Project Length / Submission Procedure
For information about standard formatting, see William Shunn’s guide to Proper Manuscript Format. We love submissions in Courier or other strong, crunchy SERIF typefaces (it has to do with eyestrain while reading critically for long periods of time).
Fiction over 50,000 words that displays speculative elements. See above sections for editorial preferences regarding content.
Send a formal query letter and the first 5,000 words to Editor Eileen Wiedbrauk at submissions[at]worldweaverpress.com, subject line “Novel Query, [title of your novel].”
There are many brilliant websites and blogs about writing query letters to agents and editors; we will not repeat their advice here. Instead, we suggest you visit Query Shark, Book Ends LLC, Pub Rants and any of the other great such resources which they recommend.
Please include in your query letter:
- Pitch us the story. This is not the time to talk about its themes or inception — check out those brilliant query writing websites listed above for more info on what we mean by “pitch.”
- An approximate word count for the novel rounded to the nearest thousand.
- Your best approximation of the genre of the novel.
- Intended market/audience (i.e. young adult, new adult, adult). Note: Adults read YA all the time. Teens read Adult Fic all the time. Your novel may appeal to people of many ages but it can only have one market/audience based on its content as far as publishers and booksellers are concerned.
- If the novel is potentially part of a series/trilogy, please take one sentence to tell us as much.
- Sign the letter with your real name (not a pen name). You can use a pseudonym for the byline, but we need to know who’s legally offering us the project.
- If you know us via Twitter, include your @Name.
Both query and first 5,000 words should be included in the body of the email. WE WILL NOT OPEN ATTACHMENTS in query letters. All submissions bearing attachments will be returned unopened.
If word 5,000 falls in the middle of a sentence, go ahead and give us the rest of the sentence.
Do not send the entire novel with your query. If we ask to see a full or partial manuscript, then you may send the submission as an attachment. We only open attachments that we’ve requested. Please use standard manuscript formatting when you send your manuscript; see William Shunn’s guide to Proper Manuscript Format.
Novels should be completed before querying.
Please inform us if this work has been published previously in part or whole (print or digital). Additionally, if you don’t hold rights to ALL formats at the time when the query is sent, please let us know who holds what. (More information on reprints below.)
If you’re worried that your email client has deleted your paragraph indentations when you copied and pasted the first 5,000 words, use the commonly accepted email format of an extra space between paragraphs. If you don’t know the find and replace commands to quickly do that, the magazine Heroic Fantasy Quarterly kindly wrote out a quick formatting shortcut for just this reason.
Same submission guidelines as novels above. We are interested in novellas that are speculative works of fiction 17,500 – 40,000 words long. Query Editor Eileen Wiedbrauk at submissions[at]worldweaverpress.com, subject line “Novella Query, [title of your novella].”
Serialized fiction is crafted with the notion that a new episode of the story will be released periodically — think of it like a TV show whereas a novel would be a full length feature film. We have no firm guidelines on the number of episodes a serial must have, although if there’s not at least three episodes, it’s not much of a series. A single episode’s length may vary greatly from one to the next as it should be determined by satisfying the plot, not word count. That said, we anticipate episodes that are less than 30,000 words and form a complete story. By “complete story” we mean it introduces a conflict/problem which it solves by the end of the episode, while also furthering the overall series narrative. For World Weaver Press to be willing to take on a serialized story from an author we’ve not worked with previously, a whole “season” of installments would need to be completed at the time of querying. All the editorial preferences at the top of the page apply to serial fiction. Query Editor Eileen Wiedbrauk at submissions[at]worldweaverpress.com, subject line “Serial Query, [title of your serialized story].”
Collections of Short Fiction
Collections are works of short fiction (short story through novella length) written by a single author. We are open to queries for collections that include a writing sample of two short stories. Before querying a collection, please consider that we are looking for collections where at least 2/3 of the content has been previously published by magazines or anthologies. In the query letter, please state which stories have been previously published, when, and with what venues. Author should possess electronic rights to all work (exclusive/first world rights not necessary for collections).
Rights sought: Exclusive world-wide right to publish in the English language in electronic book and print. (Collections of short stories: exclusive right to publish collection, non-exclusive right to individual story reprints.) We do not seek audio, film, or foreign language rights at this time.
Previously Published Novels, Novellas, and Collections
We will consider fiction which has been previously published but request that you inform us of the following information in your initial query: when the work was published, with whom, and in what format(s); what rights you hold, what rights the previous publisher(s) held which have now reverted back to you, and what rights the previous publisher(s) still holds if any; and all of the regularly requested information for project queries (see above).
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