The following market report on the anthology, Zombie Feed, as well as the follow-up interview are courtesy of Market Scoops by D.L. Snell.
Publisher: The Zombie Feed (an imprint of Apex Publications)
Editor: Jason Sizemore
Pay Rate: 1¢ / word
Response Time: 4-6 weeks for rejection. Longer if your story is held.
Reading Period: Until October 31st, 2010
Description: The Zombie Feed, Vol 1 is an introductory anthology for our new zombie book imprint. The stories we’re looking to publish can be thought of as more traditional zombie fiction … end of the world scenarios, social issues, etc. Like Romero attempts in his films.
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?
For novel length works, I’m a big fan of the following authors: Charlie Huston, Richard K. Morgan, Cormac McCarthy, Cherie Priest, Ekaterina Sedia, Brian Keene (I could really list a bunch more but that’s a good start).
For short fiction, I like: Jennifer Pelland, Catherynne M. Valente, Mary Robinette Kowal, Peter M. Ball, Joe Hill, Lavie Tidhar (again, this is just a small sampling).
For many of these writers, I am drawn to their ear for dialogue and narration. They understand the poetic rhythm and cadence of the English language (Huston, McCarthy, Sedia, Valente, Hill, Tidhar). And others excel in plot and characterization (Morgan, Priest, Keene, Pelland, Kowal, Ball). And naturally, all these authors are, at minimum, really damn good at both.
2) What are your favorite genres? Which genres would you like to see incorporated into submissions to this market?
I’m a fan of dark SF. While I’m looking for traditional zombie fiction for the anthology, I would be quite pleased to see quality cross genre work.
3) What settings most intrigue you? Ordinary or exotic locales? Real or fantasy? Past, present, or future?
I enjoy scenarios where the protagonists are fighting against the odds. This can be in the form of a doomsday scenario, being trapped in a barn surrounded by zombies, having just been bitten and knowing death (zombification!) is imminent. Yet, it is important that there be more to the story than just the setting.
4) Explain the type of pacing you enjoy, e.g. slow building to fast, fast throughout, etc.
I like a slow burn. Static mood pieces, when done properly, excite me. I’m also a fan of a well-written action packed work.
5) What types of characters appeal to you the most? Any examples?
I like the ‘McCready’ character as seen in Carpenter’s The Thing. Clever characters are my favorite.
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?
Dark. Nearly hopeless. It’s the zombie apocalypse!
7) What is your policy for vulgarity, violence, and sexual content? Any taboos?
Not much bothers me at this point. Having read slush for Apex for five years I’ve become impervious to most nasty crap.
8) What kind of themes are you seeking most in submissions to this market? In general, what themes interest you?
The struggle to survive. Fighting against great odds. Typical zombie metaphors.
9) Overall, do you prefer downbeat or upbeat endings?
10) Any last advice for submitters to this market? Any critical do’s or do not’s?
I’m not a fan of unhappy, bitter characters. If your story opens with a man bemoaning his miserable marriage/job/life, you’re not doing yourself any favors with me.