4 Anthologies to Submit to NOW

Submitting to anthologies is a great way to showcase your work. You can find your story side-by-side with a story from a best-selling author, which happened to me with an MWA anthology when my story was right next to one by Sara Paretsky. (That same anthology, Crime Hits Home, is an Anthony Award finalist!) Because most anthologies have themes, you can find yourself challenged to write something you might never have attempted. Many anthologies are associated with conferences, which means signing parties and panels. The book itself is often beautifully-done. Best of all, even if your story isn’t chosen, you still wind up with a finished story that you can send to another market. Here are 4 great anthologies that are looking for submissions now.

1. A Killing Rain, Left Coast Crime Convention

Theme: Stories must say something substantive about the Puget Sound, as a setting either real or imagined.

Submission length: Between 2,000 and 5,000 words.

Conference: Left Coast Crime Convention, Seattle Shakedown, April 10-14, 2024

Deadline: September 3, 2023

Payment: $100

How to submit: https://leftcoastcrime.org/2024/Anthology/

Additional Details: “The Puget Sound is beautiful, lush with green trees, sun-sparkled waters, wide-open spaces, and white-capped mountains. It’s also rich with darkness, with gunmetal-gray skies, rain-slicked streets, and deep shadows that give cover to its darkest secrets. Small wonder that our corner of the country is an in-demand lifestyle destination and skyjacker D.B. Cooper’s choice of locale to disappear forever with his ill-gotten riches (possibly at the hands of Sasquatch). Not to mention that the greater Seattle area is still the serial-killer capital of the world. It’s that delicious dichotomy that we hope to capture in stories, for a new anthology of short crime fiction to be released in conjunction with the return of the Left Coast Crime convention to the greater Seattle area, for Seattle Shakedown April 10-14, 2024. Our anthology — A Killing Rain — will be published by Down & Out Books, and profits will benefit the Page Ahead literacy program.”

2. Malice Domestic 18: Mystery Most International

Theme: “Mystery Most International” means that the story takes place in an international location, i.e. not the United States.

Submission Length: Up to 5,000 words

Conference: Malice Domestic, Bethesda, Maryland. April 26-28, 2024

Deadline: July 31, 2023

How to submit: https://form.jotform.com/231224980959162

Additional Details: Stories must be Traditional Mysteries (no graphic sex or violence, please)

3. I Just Died in Your Arms: A Crime Anthology Based on One Hit Wonders

Theme: Your work must be based on a song that’s a true One-Hit Wonder.

Submission Length: We’re not looking for flash fiction, but we’re not against it if it works. Prefer more in the regular short story length (2000-5000 words).

How to Submit: All entries should be sent to jhartman@thejayhartmanagency.com with ONE-HIT in the subject heading. All entries will be acknowledged.

Deadline: All submissions need to be received no later than 11:59PST, August 31st.

Payment: Each contributor will receive payment of $25 plus a free ebook copy and 50% off print versions.

Additional Details: Ahh, the One-Hit Wonder! That one song everybody knows but was the only hit for the artist who recorded it. Songs such as “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” from The Breakfast Club was a monster hit for Simple Minds, but it was their only Billboard Top 10 hit. Throughout the decades, so many musical artists have had just the one hit, and that’s a crime.

So is murder.

So what better way to celebrate both than by combining them into an anthology? Here’s your chance to be inspired by your favorite One-Hit Wonder and give a chance to breathe some new life into the greatest hits of our lives.

4. Capture, Horror and Thriller Anthology

Theme: The VCR and the camcorder took much of the world by storm in the 1980’s—especially in America. The novelty of being able to watch a movie at home on demand created “watch parties.” As more people found room in their budgets for these hot gadgets, private watching (and rewatching) of videos became more the norm. Experiences, shows, and movies could be captured and rewatched, relived, dissected, analyzed, or sometimes… erased. Bring us stories of moments, events, shows or movies caught on these ubiquitous plastic tapes and the fallout when maybe the least kind thing to do is to rewind.

Publisher: Unsettling Reads, LLC

Submission Length: Between 1,500 to 5,000 words

How to Submit: Submission form on site.

Deadline: Oct. 1, 2023 (or until full)

Additional Details: We’re looking for stories that follow these FOUR guidelines:

Respect the genre norms from the Horror/Thriller genres (and their associated sub-genres).

Feature the 1980’s prominently in the setting of the story

Feature at least one VCR or camcorder recording

We’re looking for stories that focus on the theme: UNKIND REWIND

How about you? Do you have any anthologies to recommend? Please post in the comments sections. We’d love to hear from you.

Susan Breen is the author of the Maggie Dove mystery series. Her stories have been published in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine and Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine. The MWA anthology, Crime Hits Home, in which she has a story, just won an Anthony Award. She teaches novel-writing at Gotham Writers and is on the staff of the New York Write to Pitch Conference. www.susanjbreen.com


  1. I’m trying Malice this year, and agree they are a great way to add marketing.
    Happy 4 th— and loved your pup on the keyboard photo!

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