Note: Space Squid will no longer read humor stories about aliens abducting and raping people. Seriously, every third submission we get is like that and we believe that, although profound for abductees, these just have nothing left to say to the rest of us.
Submission Guidelines for Space Squid
Space Squid is a scifi/humor 'zine that's oriented to people who are bored easily. If your story is boring, then we can't take it. We reject lots of stuff. There needs to be totally rocking shit blasting out of that story of yours.
What isn't boring? Subversion isn't boring. Literary skill isn't boring. Memorable imagery isn't boring. Funny isn't boring. Funny and sad goes a long way. We want to laugh so hard that snot comes out of our noses while crying and beating our breasts. Try digressing from the standard style.
We like funny but it isn't always appropriate. That's why there's a slash when we describe ourselves as a sci-fi/humor 'zine. To be honest, we're not even tied to the sci-fi. We're technically a speculative fiction/humor 'zine, but we like to slum it in the genre ghetto.
We often publish the story you have that nobody else understands. You know, the one you wrote that's pure genius, but it's so far outside the accepted norm of professional fiction that JJ Adams didn't even bother to scrawl his initials on your form reject. Space Squid appreciates you and we appreciate your vision. And we promise not to give your name to the FBI after we find out what goes on in that freakish head of yours.
Most of the stories we buy are 750 to 2000 words. Your best bet is to send us something short that we're not going to forget. We may print-publish one longer piece a year (less than 5000 words). We strongly encourage submissions by women writers who help dilute the nasty testosterone scent in the Squid offices. Try sending us something experimental or something beautiful or something profane. But please, no sloppy wandering grade-school humor stories.
We publish reprints if they rock... and they haven't been around the block. I.e., less than 3 printings, please.
We love comics, and it doesn't matter what kind: gag, strip, or full-page adventure. Shoot, even meandering experimental comics with stupid non sequiturs are cool with us. Color is great, too; we anticipate our future paper publications will also be in full color.
No matter what you do, all you're going to get out of us is a flat payment of $5 USD or $5 credit toward a Squid funny t-shirt. If you are so unfortunate that we accept two of your products in a single issue, then you're still only going to get that measly five bucks.
How to submit
Send your story or graphic as an attachment (either RTF or JPG, preferably) via the form at the bottom of this page. This works for most people, but if you have trouble with it you can email us directly at:
We do suspect that spamfiltering might be causing some submissions to be lost. This is the sucky spam-littered world we live in, and is not an intentional squid conspiracy. You can email us if you don't hear back in a month, but only if you've checked your own spam folder for our emails. Neurotic writers who berate us only to find they ignored our responses will be docked a full month's pay. Ha ha.
Standard manuscript format is preferable. Putting your personal information at the top of the file is going to mitigate mistakes we will possibly or probably make later.
This tends to be either shockingly short or shockingly long. Keep in mind that this is an Austin-based zine, so we're spending most of our time drinking Mexican martinis and eating egg-chorizo kolaches. We shoot for a return time of less than 45 days, but if you make it past the first round of reading, you're looking at around three months, longer if the editorial staff is feeling crabby.
Feel free to send us a query about the status of your submission after 45 days. It might not speed things up, but it's sure to make you feel better and it will alert us to any spamfilter misbehavior. Again, only if you've already checked your own spam folder for our responses. Hell hath no wrath like the editor ignored.
Feel free to submit to other markets when you submit to us, but if you think anyplace else would be interested in your story, you probably are making a mistake somewhere along the line. Multiple subs are okay, but we're likely to get confused if we have more than one of your stories on the table at a time (seriously, it could stretch the return time out by months). Read the stuff we consider to be funny scifi.
Of course, if you've never actually owned a copy, you will be at a disadvantage. Luckily you can find a PDF for free online!
If you have a print-on-demand novel that nobody's buying, how 'bout you advertise in Space Squid? It guarantees that your core audience (sci-fi fans who are careless with their money) will see it, our circ is comparable to many 'zines and journals, and it'll probably be the cheapest ad you'll ever buy.
Okay, Here's the Submission Form
Do not use this form to inquire about the status of a story you sent in already. Please use this form instead. And again, please check your spam folder before you ask.