Sunday, September 04, 2005

Open Call for Submissions - A Time for Dragons: An Anthology of Philippine Draconic Fiction

National Book Awardee Vincent Simbulan loves Dragons. And so he's putting together the first collection of short fiction and poetry about the awesome beast, to be written by Filipinos and slated for publication early next year.

He's sounded an open call for submissions, which I've taken the liberty of reposting here. I'm especially delighted because I love Dragons as well - as much as any of the magical elements of fantasy. And I will submit, of course, and hope for the best.

Spread the word. Dragons are coming in 2006.

In the realms of fantasy, no other mythic creature inspires the same sense of awe and wonder, menace and majesty as the Dragon. Crossing cultural boundaries, the dragon is represented in a myriad of forms, in many tales from across the globe, spanning centuries of art and literature. Perhaps the fascination stems from what the dragon represents- a creature of unbridled power, a primeval force of nature that challenges the mettle of anyone who crosses its path.

In the West the dragon has become an avatar of malice, devourer of maidens, keeper of priceless hoards, a threat to be overcome by knights in shining armor. In contrast, the Oriental dragon is a revered icon, master of storms and rain, and keeper of wisdom.

Given the popularity of dragons, particularly in the genre of "pop-fantasy" (of the Dungeons and Dragons RPG variety), it comes as no surprise that some of the sense of wonder has faded. The dragon has suffered from over-exposure and become diminished, stale.

Despite the flood of mediocrity, there are many excellent stories that deal with dragons, among the most noteworthy off the top of my head are: King Dragon by Michael Swanwick, The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin, The Dragonbone Flute by Lois Tilton, and The Man who Painted the Dragon Griaule by Lucius Shepard. All are excellent tales, written by pedigreed authors.

And so, encouraged by the response to best bud Dean Alfar's Speculative Fiction anthology (featuring fantasy, science fiction and stories of the interstitial/slipstream mode), I have decided to publish "A Time for Dragons: An Anthology of Philippine Draconic Fiction".

I'm now extending an open call for submissions. My agenda is simple. Show me something new, something fresh, something that presents the dragon in a new light and restores a sense of awe and wonder. I'll accept tales from across genres: classic fantasy, science fiction, horror, slipstream, children's fiction/juvenilia, as well as poetry - whatever strikes your fancy. Show me new dragons that have never been seen before, make it grand or small, just keep in mind that we are dealing with a creature that has fascinated humanity's collective imagination for centuries. Give it the treatment it deserves.


1. Word Count. For fiction, anywhere from 2500 to 6000 words. For poetry, short or long form is acceptable.

2. Language & Setting. English language. Can be set in original imaginary worlds or the "real" world, not necessarily the Philippines (as Dragons are "universal"). Absolutely no fan fic.

3. Number of Entries. Each author may submit up to two (2) submissions.

4. Format. Only via email. Attach as a Word Document - just make sure your submission is virus-free. Please email all submissions to: viniquest(at)yahoo(dot)com

5. Cover Letter. Kindly include a cover letter that includes the title of your submission, the word count, your full name, contact details including contact numbers, as well as a list of your previously published work, if any. New unpublished authors are more than welcome to submit.

6. Compensation. Each author whose work becomes part of the anthology will receive two (2) author's copies of the final publication. Similar to Dean's anthology, the Dragon antho is completely self-funded - except that selected authors may also avail of special discounts at Comic Quest and Petty Pets (right, Dean?) ;)

7. Deadline & Publication Schedule. All submissions must be received before midnight of January 4, 2006. Authors of selected pieces will be informed thereafter. The book will be released by the first quarter of 2006.

Have fun!

Gah! A discount at Petty Pets? Now I have to stock up on Dragons ;)


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