New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

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New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:10 pm

Far Worlds: The Third Bolthole Anthology


The Premise:

Out in the universe, there is predicted to be millions of planets harbouring sentient life, thousands of civilisations of sapient races, going about their lives; struggling, fighting, maybe loving, having adventures, maybe suffering under dystopian tyrants, or in societies of harmony and peace and complacency. These worlds, due to the nature of the speed of light and relativity, will never meet each other in person across the vast stretches of space, and any messages or signals sent between them wouldn’t reach their destinations for millions of years, long after both civilisations are gone.

The premise of our anthology is themed very specifically towards being an anthology which collects stories from these diverse worlds and settings. Each short story would be a snapshot of that location and time. The only motif linking the stories will be the mysterious Drift Engine; an outwardly-featureless cylinder exactly one kilometre long, and one hundred metres in diameter; a strange wandering machine from some forgotten corner of the universe, travelling the universe, searching out and documenting these settings.

Writer Guidelines

What we want from any writers looking to contribute to the anthology is both very broad and very specific (if such a thing is possible). We want people to submit any kind of short story. Any genre you can think of. Techno thrillers, horrors, political dramas, tragic romance stories, comedies, hard sci-fi, space operas, high fantasy stories, low-fantasy stories, utopias, dystopias, stories of exploration or discovery; literally any genre you like. In fact, the more diverse and different synopses we get, the better. However, there are three cast-iron stipulations; breaking any of them means your synopsis cannot be accepted. They are as follows:

1) Your story cannot be set on Earth. It cannot even mention Earth. As far as your characters are concerned, they and their people evolved in your setting, and have no links to Earth. Your alien characters can still be humanoid, or even functionally identical to humanity, but your setting (be it a single world, or one world in an interplanetary or interstellar empire, or whatever) should seem to be self-contained for the most part.
2) No ability to travel faster than light. This is important, as if you have faster than light travel; it undermines the anthology’s setting fundamentally. Just don’t bother with it.
3) At some point in your story, the Drift Engine will enter your system; take a week to pass through, before accelerating away from your setting, never to be seen again. How you handle its brief cameo appearance is entirely up to you. It might simply appear as a comet in the night’s sky that a character mentions in passing, or it could be emphasised more within your tale; the importance you place upon the cylinder is entirely at your discretion. However, the Drift Engine is functionally indestructible (no blowing up my connecting narrative device! *shakes fist*) and generally won’t react to outside contact. If you think your story really needs to contact the cylinder, make your case when pitching your synopsis to us, and we will consider it.

Submission Guidelines

1) Story must be between 2000-10000 words long, give or take 200 words.
2) You must first send me or one of the other editors a 200 word synopsis, explaining your plot and your genre, and perhaps an idea of how Drift Engine enters the story.
3) All stories written in 12pt Times New Roman Font please, with single line spaces between paragraphs, and a centred ‘###’ for scene breaks. Also indent your new paragraphs.
4) We’d also prefer speech marks to be used for speech, instead of inverted commas/apostrophes.
5) Please limit the types of file you use for your attachments to ODT, .RTF or .DOC formats.
6) UK English is preferred, but not mandatory.
7) Use three periods for ellipsis... like so.
8) Send your stories to andyaston80[at]yahoo[dot]co[dot]uk. The title of the email should be like this; ‘Far Worlds Anthology:[Your story title]’. Your attached submission document should be titled thusly; ‘Far Worlds: [Story Title]by[Author Name]’
9) The Deadline for your synopses is 20th November.
10) After that, you’ll have until December 15thto get your First Drafts done. However, the earlier you get your drafts in, the earlier we can get them back to you, and the sooner you get your story in. This anthology, unlike the previous two will be illustrated inside. The earlier you get your stories to the final draft stages, the more likely they are to get an illustration (and I am sure many of you would like that).



If you have any further questions, let me know on this thread. Good luck, and I look forwards to reading what you guys come up with.
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby He2etic » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:21 pm

This is important everyone. Please also send any drafts to jmfadeley[at]gmail[dot]com as well as LL's.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Tyrant » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:33 pm

Excellent!

I could paste this onto the FB Bolthole group page if there are no objections?

Also I already sent a synopsis to LL, do we have to wait a while to find out about those?
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:57 pm

Post it up Tyrant!

Your synopsis will be considered alongside the others, and the decision will come in November if that's ok?
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Tyrant » Mon Sep 23, 2013 2:44 pm

LordLucan wrote:Post it up Tyrant!

Your synopsis will be considered alongside the others, and the decision will come in November if that's ok?


T'is done!

And sure, that means I won't get distracted from my novel for a while yet!
My Facebook writing page. Like it, it's awesome!

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Valerion

I think Valerion could stand toe-to-toe with the best of Gaunt's Ghosts. I loved it. Gundi Da Grot

The sense of threat that permeates the entire piece is fantastic. xrayex

Tash'shi is made of win and awesome. Raziel4707
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:18 pm

I've been advised that it would be better if we got a decision back to you before November, so expect an email sometime before then! :D
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Razhbad » Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:45 pm

For me surely this is fate, only last night did i have the most awesome sci fi dream, now this, all good
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:56 pm

Razhbad wrote:For me surely this is fate, only last night did i have the most awesome sci fi dream, now this, all good


Yaaay!
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Mossy Toes » Mon Sep 23, 2013 5:00 pm

Drift Engine, eh? Sounds an awful lot like Clarke's Rama.

(Will attempt to come up with an idea for this one, since I feel the Shame for not having contributed to the last two. Speaking of which, I need to go buy Marching Time...)
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Erunanion » Mon Sep 23, 2013 5:27 pm

Oooooo... :)

I like the sound of this. And I similarly would like to try and contribute to this, having sat out the other two. I shall put my thinking cap on...
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Squiggle » Mon Sep 23, 2013 5:40 pm

Me also. Gutted I didnt pull my socks up to write my idea up for the last one, so hopefully get myself together for this.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:41 pm

Mossy Toes wrote:Drift Engine, eh? Sounds an awful lot like Clarke's Rama.



Rama? *goes to look up story*
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Ghurlag » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:42 pm

Rendezvous with Rama is one of Clarke's best.

The Drift Engine sounds a bit different, though, as it's here to observe rather than.. well, I'll not spoil it for LL.

As the misty veil of Albion is cast aside, we turn our gaze to the war-torn island of Albany, where the Red King vies with his former master for the control of a realm in dire threat.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Xisor » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:44 pm

Squiggle wrote:Me also. Gutted I didnt pull my socks up to write my idea up for the last one, so hopefully get myself together for this.


Quoted, as the old adage goes, for truth.

---

And yep, very similar 'principle event' akin to Rama, LL. That said, the topic seems very much like... 'the rest of the story', e.g. what happens otherwise, beyond that 'one Earth' incident. (Actually, I'm sure there's 'sequels' to Rama, but I'm not sure I'dwant to read them. The first was pretty damn... intriguing.)

Point being: similar touch-stone concept, but already massively divergent.

Also: I really want to boil out a story. (Was haranguing people at work about Marching Time, too.)
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby LordLucan » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:47 pm

Oh I see. Yeah, it is a bit similar, with a large alien artifact exploring space, but as xisor says, the drift engine is just passing through multiple settings and incidents, catching snapshots of many and varied stories.
Check out my debut fantasy novel from Fox Spirit Books, The Hobgoblin's Herald (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hobgoblins-Herald-R-Aston/dp/1910462047). If you've read it, please rate and review it on amazon; I'd be eternally grateful. The sequel, Eater of Names, is out in 2018, so watch this space.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Liliedhe » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:53 pm

I guess I will make an attempt, too. :)
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby He2etic » Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:22 pm

Ghurlag wrote:Rendezvous with Rama is one of Clarke's best.

The Drift Engine sounds a bit different, though, as it's here to observe rather than.. well, I'll not spoil it for LL.


Observe rather than... Oh my gods! LL, if the Drift Engine is some kind of anal probing device, then so help me!
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Mossy Toes » Mon Sep 23, 2013 11:13 pm

Quite like Rama, actually.

Spoiler: A cylindrical spacecraft that enters the system, resists attempts to probe it, then leaves the system again without reacting to the system's inhabitants? Sure, this one is observing and Rama was just using our sun as a slingshot en route to an unknown destination, but...



(I've never read the later Rama novels so I don't know what follows after)
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby schaferwhat‽ » Tue Sep 24, 2013 1:22 am

"Each short story would be a snapshot of that location and time"

With that in mind how appropriate would it be for the coming of the Drift Engine to be a catalyst for change/upheaval within the setting. Be it superstitious cultures taking the comet to be an omen from their eldritch horrors or something that inspires technological advancement (theoretically making the story being set decades after the coming of the drift engine when some folks are sent to follow it).

Thematically the drift engine is an observer so it being a root cause of change could violate that notion if that is important to the anthology, then again there is the general principle that the very act of observation changes things so this is bound to happen.
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Re: New Bolthole Anthology: Far Worlds

Postby Corrigan Phoenix » Tue Sep 24, 2013 8:50 am

schaferwhat‽ wrote:
Thematically the drift engine is an observer so it being a root cause of change could violate that notion if that is important to the anthology, then again there is the general principle that the very act of observation changes things so this is bound to happen.


I'd like to know about the editors views on this, too. I had a similar quandry with one of my initial ideas.
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