We are pleased to invite you to submit your next new short fiction work to Alchemy and Artifacts (Tesseracts Twenty-Two), which is the next planned themed anthology of EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing’s ongoing Tesseracts anthology series – the first and the longest running Canadian anthology series of speculative fiction.

Alchemy and Artifacts will examine the magic behind the history, the myths arising from the artifacts, the mysteries missed (or dismissed), but which lie at the root of world events. As the editors, we are looking for tales that explore laws magical as well as physical, the manipulation of reality in the past, resulting in the present. History, sorcery, alchemy, mystery. All with the sense of ‘what if?’

For example:

  • What if the Black Plague was a curse unleased by Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales?
  • What if Egyptian hieroglyphics were incantations that moved pharaohs into the future instead of an afterlife?
  • What if the terracotta army from the Qin Shi Huang dynasty were golem soldiers, waiting to be animated through magic?
  • What if Picasso’s Guernica was a magical attempt to fight Franco during the Spanish Civil War?
  • What if Paul Revere’s silversmithing was a spell enacted to fight England during the American Revolution?
  • What if Elizabeth I was a witch, employing Drake to find a forgotten, powerful artifact to grant her godhead?
  • What if Haida totems animated and walked the coast?

These are only a sampling of the sorts of story ideas we are looking for.

Alternate histories will be considered, but we are inclined to choose work that considers actual world events and characters, and how some form of magic has manipulated history in a subtle way.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Alchemy and Artifacts will reflect as broad a spectrum of stories as possible, highlighting unique styles and manners. The greater the magic or magical event and the subtler (yet dramatic) effect it has on history, the better. We want to raise questions about the reality of magic behind events.
  • We are looking to represent as many historical periods as possible, from places all over the world.
  • Submissions must be speculative in nature, including fantasy, dark fantasy, magic realism, slipstream, supernatural horror, weird tales, surrealism, mythic fantasy, etc. We will consider steampunk, but with an emphasis on magic rather than technology.
  • Short fiction may be up to 5000 words in length.
  • We will also consider poetry.

The submission period is from January 15 to May 15, 2018. We hope you will be as excited about this anthology as we are. Should you choose to submit, we will receive your submission with anticipation. See Submission Details below.

The Editors

Susan MacGregor
Susan MacGregor

Susan MacGregor is the author of The Tattooed Witch trilogy, a historical fantasy set in an alternate Spain in 1550. The first book of the trilogy, The Tattooed Witch was shortlisted for the Prix Aurora Award. A prior editor of 20+ years with On Spec magazine, she has also edited the anthologies Tesseracts Fifteen: A Case of Quite Curious Tales, and Divine Realms. Her short fiction has appeared in many periodicals and anthologies, the most recent being in Equus and forthcoming in 2018, Fire. Her non-fiction book, The ABC’s of How NOT to Write Speculative Fiction has been the basis of writing workshops and is also featured on her blog at suzenyms.blogspot.com. As well as being a writer and an editor, Susan devotes much of her time practicing and performing her other passion – flamenco – in both dance and song.

Lorina Stephens

Lorina Stephens established her own publishing house, Five Rivers Publishing, in 2008—a direct response to the changing face of publishing. She brings with her over 30 years of experience as a freelance writer, author and editor, and a commitment to publishing new Canadian voices which might otherwise remain silent. She is the author of three novels, a collection of short speculative fiction, two chapbooks of poetry, a cookbook, and a travel guide she wrote with her photographer husband. Her articles have appeared in regional and national print media, and her short fiction in Polar Borealis, On Spec, Neo-Opsis, Postscripts to Darkness, Deluge: Stories of Survival & Tragedy in the Great Flood, Strangers Among Us, and Sword and Sorceress X.

In addition to her work in the literary arts, she has been a visual artist all her life, producing work primarily in watercolour, but also pen and ink, oil, acrylic and textiles, as well as digital media. Her work has been commissioned by both public and private patrons, and hangs in government, corporate and private spaces. Her personal website can be found at lorinastephens.com.

Submission Details:

Do not query before submitting.

Email submissions to: [email protected]

Emails MUST contain the word “submission” in the subject line, or they will be deleted automatically by the server. Please also include the story title in the subject line.

Submissions MUST come in an attachment: only. RTF and/or .DOC formats are acceptable.

Emails MUST contain a cover letter in the body of the email; for security reasons, email attachments with no cover letter will be deleted unread and unanswered.

Cover letter: include your name, the title of your story, your full contact information (address, phone, email), and a brief bio. If you do not live in the place where you were born, please also include your place of birth.

Do not describe or summarize the story.

If your address is not within Canada, please indicate in the cover letter your status vis-à-vis Canada. Submissions are ONLY open to Canadians and expat Canadians.

Reprints (stories having previously appeared in English in any format, print or electronic, including but not limited to any form of web publication) can be considered but will be a hard sell; reprints must come from a source not easily available in Canada. If your submission is a reprint, please supply full publication history of the story. If your story appeared previously, including but not limited to anywhere on the web, and you do not disclose this information to the editor upon submission, you will be disqualified from consideration.

Submission format: no strange formatting, colour fonts, changing fonts, borders, backgrounds, etc. Leave italics in italics, NOT underlined. Put your full contact information on the first page (name, address, email address, phone). No headers, no footers, no page numbering. DO NOT leave a blank line between paragraphs. Indent paragraphs. ALWAYS put a # to indicate scene breaks (a blank line is NOT enough).

ALWAYS include your full contact information (name/address/email/phone number) on the first page of the attached submission.

Payment for short poetry is $20.00. Payment for short stories is prorated as follows: $50 for stories up to 1,500 words, rising to a maximum of $150 for stories up to 5,000 words (longer stories are paid a slightly higher fee. and stories which exceed the 5,000 word length limit must be of surpassing excellence.)

Rights: for original fiction, first World English publication, with a two-month exclusive from publication date; for all, non-exclusive anthology rights; all other rights remain with the author.

Spelling: please use American spelling. The editors will change non-American spellings to American spelling.

Response time: initial responses (no / rewrite request / hold for further consideration) will be prompt, usually within thirty days. Please query if you’ve not heard back within 60 days.

Submit only one story at a time. You can submit up to five short poems and a story simultaneously. We do not advise that you submit more than one story.

Simultaneous submissions are not encouraged but are acceptable. Should you receive a “rewrite request” or “hold for further consideration” response, please indicate immediately whether your story is under consideration anywhere else.

Publication: Spring 2019 (trade paperback & e-Book).

Email submissions to: [email protected]

Yours creatively,

Susan MacGregor and Lorina Stephens, Editors.

[email protected]


EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing