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Coffin Bell is an online journal for dark literature. Publishing quarterly, Coffin Bell reads submissions year-round. If your submission misses the deadline for one issue, it will automatically be considered for the next.

Genres: flash fiction, short story, creative nonfiction, poetry, essay, short criticism
Reading window: 1 Jan. — 31 Dec.

Issues are published on the following dates:

Issue No. 1: January 1 (unthemed)
Issue No. 2: April 1 (themed)
Issue No. 3: July 1 (unthemed)
Issue No. 4: October 1 (themed)

We are not currently a paying market, but hope to be in the future.

WHAT WE ARE NOT LOOKING FOR: While we encourage writers to take risks and push the limits of literary horror, we ask that writers be socially responsible while doing so. Work that’s homophobic, transphobic, racist, ableist, or discriminatory will not be considered for publication.

Submission guidelines:

FICTION + POETRY + CNF:

Include a short third-person bio with your cover letter. We’re nosy. Allow eight weeks before querying, but we will try to get back to you much faster than that.

We’re looking for flash (up to 1,500 words), short stories (up to 7,500 words), and poetry of any length. Please send up to 5 poems, 5 flashes, or 1 short story per submission. Simultaneous submissions are great, but PLEASE PROMPTLY WITHDRAW your work from consideration if it is accepted elsewhere.

All rights revert to the author upon publication. We ask that if your piece is subsequently published elsewhere, you credit Coffin Bell for first publication.

We do not offer feedback on declined submissions.

 

ESSAY / SHORT WORKS OF CRITICISM:

We are looking for essays and short works of criticism that deal with one or more “dark” elements. This is a new category as of October 1, 2018. For an example, see Kirsty McGrory’s “The Subversive Fantasy of Isobel Gowdie” in Issue 1.4. We have no hard limits for word count, but please keep in mind that we are an online venue.

Include a short third-person bio with your cover letter. If applicable, paste an abstract into your cover letter or add it as a note in Submittable. Allow eight weeks before querying, but we will try to get back to you much faster than that.

All rights revert to the author upon publication. We ask that if your piece is subsequently published elsewhere, you credit Coffin Bell for first publication.

We do not offer feedback on declined submissions.

 

VISUAL ART:

Please send your terrifying photos, paintings, and / or illustrations as JPG or PNG files via our Submittable submissions manager. Do not email submissions to us; submissions sent via email will be deleted unread. If we accept your work we will solicit a high quality image file through our Dropbox. Selected work will be featured on the site and / or alongside written work. We may accept your work for a future issue, but we will always email you the link once your work goes live.

Questions? Shoot us an email.


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