Call For Submissions – Faire Times Anthology


Innsmouth Look Publishing is seeking submissions for Faire Times – A Fantasy Anthology to Benefit RESCU, to be published in the second quarter of 2021, in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook formats. Sales of the anthology will benefit the Renaissance Entertainers Services and Crafters United (RESCU) Foundation.

Please read the overview below carefully. If you have any questions, send them to anthology co-curator Michael Bailey at

The Anthology

The anthology will be a curated collection of up to twelve short stories with a shared theme. Submissions will be judged and selected based on overall quality. The anthology will be sold exclusively through Amazon to provide the greatest possible audience reach, and to take advantage of promotional tools unavailable through other platforms (Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, etc.). The audiobook version will be produced through ACX, which sells audiobooks through Amazon, Audible, and iTunes.

Who We’re Looking For

In order to be eligible to submit a story to the anthology, writers must be active or past participants in the US renaissance faire community as a scenario or street cast member, variety performer, merchant, volunteer or support staff member, or production/creative staff member. The anthology is not open to faire patrons.

Submissions are open to authors of all experience levels, including previously unpublished writers. Experience and previous publication history will not be factors in choosing contributors; stories will be selected based on the strength of the writing.

What We’re Looking For

We’re looking for professional-quality stories between 4,000 and 7,000 words in the fantasy genre. New, original stories are preferred but we would consider previously published stories that fit the theme of the anthology. All appropriate rights must be cleared for previously published material.

Stories must fall under the general umbrella of the fantasy genre. Traditional fantasy and historical fiction with fantasy elements are preferred as these types of stories will be more appealing to the anthology’s main target audience: fans of fantasy fiction.

As the specific target audience is renaissance faire enthusiasts, the unifying theme of the anthology will be fairs and festivals; all stories must include as a significant setting or story element a fair, festival, marketplace, or similar location or gathering that invokes the atmosphere of a renaissance faire.

However, we will NOT consider stories set in a modern renaissance faire. We would also prefer the stories to take place in a fantasy or historical setting, i.e., not in the modern world, though we would consider a well-written and compelling urban fantasy story if it meets all other requirements.

For legal reasons we will not consider fanfic (original stories featuring proprietary characters to which the author does not own the rights) or “fairefic” (stories featuring the author’s “faire persona” as a character or a real-life faire character transplanted into a fictional situation).

We are not considering poetry submissions at this time. This may change depending on the volume and quality of story submissions.

The tone of the anthology is PG-13 to make it suitable for a wide range of readers, therefore we will not consider submissions with extensive and/or explicit violence, gore, profanity, or sex (romance is fine, erotica is not).

We will not accept stories that promote racism, sexism, homo/transphobia, or other messages of hate aimed at marginalized communities.

Benefits for Contributors

Accepted authors will receive a one-time flat fee of $40 upon publication. Contributing authors will also receive two printed copies of the anthology, which are theirs to do with as they please. Additional copies would be provided upon request at a nominal cost that covers production and postage for shipping (cost to be determined during the publishing phase of the project, but the anticipated cost per book is about $6, plus Media Mail rate postage). Authors will also receive a free Audible code for the audiobook version.

Innsmouth Look Publishing would hold all first rights to all accepted stories for a period of one year following publication. Authors would not be allowed to submit their stories to another publication, reprint or re-purpose them in any way, or distribute them independently of the anthology until the one-year period has ended. After that, Innsmouth Look Publishing would retain anthology rights.

Writers unfamiliar with various rights may learn more here:

All authors would retain the copyright for their individual stories.

The Submission Process

If you have little to no experience submitting your writing, please read the list of helpful tips at the bottom of the page.

Beginning on September 1, 202o, Innsmouth Look Publishing will begin accepting submissions. The deadline for submitting stories is December 31, 2020. We will not accept multiple simultaneous submissions from individual authors, but an author whose submission is rejected would be welcome to submit new material.

Files must be in MS Word (preferred) or an MS Word-compatible format and named “Faire Anthology Submission – [Story Title] – [Author Name].” Submissions are to be e-mailed as an attachment to Michael Bailey at Please include a brief query in the e-mail that includes your name (real name, please, no “faire names”); a little bit about yourself, including the names of the faires in which you participate, and in what capacity; a one- to two-sentence summary of your story; and an approximate word count.

Curators Michael Bailey and Lyndsey Luther will review all submissions. To make the selection process as unbiased as possible, Ms. Luther will receive submissions from Mr. Bailey with the author’s identity omitted.

Some authors may receive editorial suggestions for changes to their stories to make them suitable for publication, along with a request to resubmit their material. The curators will not provide feedback on rejected stories.

Authors of selected stories will be notified by e-mail and provided with a contract.

A private Facebook group for anthology contributors will be set up to expedite and consolidate communications between the curators and authors.

What Happens Next

Once all contributors have signed and returned their contracts, the project would move on to the funding phase.

The project will be funded through a Kickstarter campaign with a $5,000 goal. Base costs include author fees, cover art, graphic design, professional editing, ISBN purchase, the audiobook narrator fee, author copies and postage, and rewards for backers. Should the campaign exceed the base goal, stretch goals may be added to cover the costs of advertising and promoting the anthology.

Any surplus funds would be donated to RESCU, along with 75 percent of all profits from the anthology’s sale, in perpetuity; Innsmouth Look Publishing would retain 25 percent of the profits to fund ongoing promotions for the anthology through Amazon and e-newsletters such as The Fussy Librarian.

Anyone selected as a contributor would be expected to help promote the Kickstarter campaign through social media.

Should the Kickstarter campaign fail to meet its fundraising goal, the project would be canceled. All contracts would be canceled and contributors would regain all rights to their work.

New to the Submission Process?

To make the process smoother and easier for you and for the curators, here are some helpful tips for submitting your story.

The Query E-Mail

  • Keep your query short, sweet, and to the point
  • Make sure you include all the requested information
  • Keep it professional, and don’t be clever in an effort to get our attention. A query that opens with, “Hail and well met, M’Lord! I be Sir John Smith from the shire of Boston!” will not score you any points with the curators (or any professional publisher or agent, for that matter)

The Manuscript

  • Submit finished stories only! Works in progress will be rejected
  • Keep the formatting basic — single spacing, indented paragraphs and even margins, no headers or footers, no page numbers — and use a simple font such as Courier New or Times New Roman
  • Do NOT use two spaces after periods. The extra space would have to be removed during formatting, which wastes time
  • Make sure the story is in keeping with the theme of the anthology and is within the requested word count range
  • Your story should be as polished as possible. Do your best to make sure everything is spelled properly, the grammar and punctuation are correct, etc., but don’t worry if it’s not absolutely perfect. A professional editor will go over everything prior to publication
  • Submit as early as possible. If you submit a late entry and it’s rejected, you might not have time to submit a new story

Once You’ve Submitted

  • You will receive two responses: one immediately to confirm that we’ve received your submission, and another when the curators have made a decision on your story
  • Please be patient! Reviewing manuscripts takes time, especially if there are a lot of submissions
  • Do not send follow-up e-mails of any kind. “Touching base” or “checking in” could result in your submission being rejected
  • If your submission receives a flat rejection (e.g., “Thank you for your interest but we have decided to pass on your submission.”), the process is done. Please do not reply, not even with a polite “thank you” message. You may submit a new story at this point, but please treat it as a brand-new submission
  • If your submission is returned with notes from the curators and a request to resubmit, you may either rework your story based on the feedback you’ve received and resubmit it, or ask to withdraw your story from consideration. If you choose the latter, treat it as a flat rejection. You may submit a new story at this point
  • If your submission is accepted, you will likely receive the acceptance message after the deadline for submissions, along with a contract to sign and return ASAP. The terms of the contract will not be negotiable, so if you find the conditions unacceptable, please formally withdraw your story from consideration ASAP