Monday, September 21, 2009

Storyteller Tips 1: Call for Paranormal Romance Writers

Welcome to the official blog for Cliffhanger Books, a short story anthology publisher. My name is Evelyn Welle, and I am one of the editors. I was born to write and earned a degree in English and journalism. As a meticulous writer, editor and proofreader, I’ll provide tips for fiction writers, announcements for readers and news for both.

My initial four-part Storyteller Tips series focuses on content and style pointers for our prospective authors. This will give you an inside look at the story types we’re seeking. I share my well-honed advice with all submitting writers. If you’re a seasoned wordsmith like I am, you probably don’t need coaching on the basics. But your story will have a greater chance of acceptance when you follow these guidelines.

Short Story Submissions
If you have a flair for writing dark and edgy paranormal romance, Cliffhanger Books wants to hear from you. We’re seeking new, previously unpublished short stories for inclusion in Paramourtal, our upcoming anthology. Truly original love stories will combine unique, well-defined and emotionally complex characters with paranormal happenings.

Submissions are open to all U.S. and international new and published writers age 18 and up. Only stories written in English are eligible. Authors should be familiar with this popular genre as well as current trends in characterization, point of view, story structure, plotting and style. Check future blogs in this series for tips on these story elements.

Unique Variety
Writing and reading paranormal romance is captivating because the possibilities are endless, so be creative. We’re looking for a variety of paranormal character types and writing tones. Make one character an otherworldly, magical, immortal, ghostly, undead or shape-shifting entity. Send us page-turners that are dark, ominous, foreboding, eerie, creepy, intriguing, mysterious, suspenseful, haunting, thrillers, heartwarming or even funny.

Make Your Story Stand Out
• Give us an innovative take on an established paranormal character type.
• Create an unfamiliar, fantasy or even a realistic setting.
• Approach your love story from a fresh angle or motivation.
• Write with a unique voice.
• Hook fans in with an imaginative and perplexing plot that keeps them engaged until the end.
• Use supernatural entities and happenings to enhance the plot and explore phenomena beyond the scope of traditional romance.
• Evolve the romantic couple through a strong story line that takes readers on a startling and unpredictable journey.

Find Out More
You may have an appropriate tale hidden away that you can adapt quickly to our submission and formatting guidelines. Or read them over at, and begin writing today. If we select your story for publication, we may make content and style comments for you to revise. But we’re not conducting a writing workshop, so please submit a tight, impeccable manuscript. Then email your submission as an attachment to by midnight Nov. 1, 2009. Despite an intriguing synopsis of an imaginative story idea, we’re likely to reject a manuscript if you format it improperly, disregarded our content/style guidelines and/or proofread and correct it inadequately. So familiarize yourself with what we want, and then send your best work.

What’s Next?
Read part two of my Storyteller Tips blog: Characters and POV.

Keep checking this blog and the Cliffhanger Books website for more details, selected stories, publication dates and future
anthologies in this and other genres.

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