The following market report on the anthology, Leather, Denim & Silver, as well as the follow-up interview are courtesy of Market Scoops by D.L. Snell.
Anthology: Leather, Denim & Silver – Legends of the Monster Hunter
Editor: Miles Boothe
Pay Rate: 1/4 cent/word. Anything over 5,000 words includes a contributor’s copy.
Response Time: Under 1 month
Reading Time: Open Until Filled
Description: Hair-raising, Hell-bent stories about the people that take the monsters down.
Complete Guidelines: Writer’s Guidelines
Note: Horror author D.L. Snell conducted the following interview to give writers a better idea of what the editors of this specific market are seeking; however, most editors are open to ideas outside of the preferences discussed here, as long as they fit the basic submission guidelines.
1. What authors do you enjoy, and why does their writing captivate you?
I recently discovered Brian P. Easton’s Autobiography of a Werewolf Hunter, loved it, and realized that there is a terrible shortage of monster hunting books out there. Looking for more, I turned to non-fiction hunting books with a safari flavor; old Peter Hatahaway Capstick and Robert Ruark tales about big-game hunting in Africa, some of which will raise your hair as much as any monster hunt.
All of their writing is action oriented, and all of it deals with hunting something that will hunt and kill you right back. Great stuff.
Mix in a few old Westerns from Louis L’Amour, add a little Stoker, and you’ve got the general recipe for this antho.
2. What are your favorite genres? Which genres would you like to see incorporated into submissions to this market?
Dark Fantasy and Horror are at the top of my list, and are a natural fit for this antho. Action-adventure and mystery are also a good fit.
3. What settings most intrigue you? Ordinary or exotic locales? Real or fantasy? Past, present, or future?
I’m a sucker for a “hidden” setting, something unusual, something that you didn’t necessarily know was there. If it catches my attention and draws me in without beating me purple, I’m there. I do prefer real settings over fantasy, and am interested in past or present day stories.
4. Explain the type of pacing you enjoy, e.g. slow building to fast, fast throughout, etc.
For me, this depends on the story and the writing. As long as I’m drawn in, I’m up for whatever ride the writer wants to take me on.
For this antho, action will be a central part of any story, so I expect to see a lot of fast pacing, hopefully mixed with some slow, atmospheric stuff.
5. What types of characters appeal to you the most? Any examples?
Characters who experience life in unusual ways grab me every time. Someone who is motivated by deep loyalty, courage, terror, or anguish is worth reading about.
Movie characters are the most recognizable, and for this book I can easily picture male and female characters similar to Indiana Jones, Josey Wales, Quint from Jaws, Van Helsing, Sherlock Holmes, or the short lady from Poltergeist. Any character who deeply inspires you can be used as a model.
6. Is there a specific tone you’d like to set in your publication? What kind of voices grab you and keep you enthralled? Any examples?
I’m really hoping for all different kinds of tones. This is one area that I am wide open in, and stories built on grim determination or revenge are great, but I’m hoping for a wider range to balance those out. Just make it powerful.
I would love to see at least one piece built on somber tones that ends in complete anguish.
I’m open to voice as well. Whatever moves you will probably move your readers.
7. What is your policy for vulgarity, violence, and sexual content? Any taboos?
Violence is almost required in monster hunting, and a well-placed curse is only natural. I don’t expect to see a lot of sex, but it’s welcome if it is central to the plot and really moves the story along.
On the other hand, anything that pulls the reader out of the story is undesirable, so a poorly placed curse can be equally damaging. The same goes for pointless sex and gore.
8. What kind of themes are you seeking most in submissions to this market? In general, what themes interest you?
For these types of stories, anything highly emotional is good. Commentary about the current human condition is great, but so are timeless themes such as love and valor. Subtle themes are more difficult to present with monsters lurking about, but I’m open to any interpretation.
I love sideways views of society that highlight the kind of stuff you just glance past day to day. I feel like a lot of monsters can hide there as well.
9. Overall, do you prefer downbeat or upbeat endings?
I very much enjoy both. I love a triumphant hero, but I equally love a decimated squadron leaving behind only a crackling radio.
Anything goes, and I’m happy as long as I read that last sentence and wish there was more!
10. Any last advice for submitters to this market? Any critical do’s or do not’s?
Keep the hunters human, and the monsters non-human (at least until the end – a turned hunter is great)!
A lot of writers go to great lengths to avoid clichés, but in this genre, those stories are sometimes the best! Don’t limit yourself!
Mary Sue’s are boring, but exciting and emotionally wrought deaths can be great.