November 18, 2018


What We Talk About When We Talk About It

Darkhouse Books seeks submissions for the third installment in its RIFF literary series, What We Talk About When We Talk About It: Variations on the Theme of Love.

Send us your best poetry or prose on this very broad theme.

What is love, anyhow? You can love your partner, your friend, your country, your dog, cat, rat, your local library, your family, yourself. You can love money, liquor, food, wilderness, or the dive bar on the corner. What does love make people do? What will people give for it? What will they steal? Does the razor love the wrist as a baby loves the breast? Where does sex figure in all of this? Does it?

What we love and do not love:

  • This series leans toward the literary while welcoming all genres, so long as the author has paid close attention to craft.
  • We are not looking for standard romance, but if you think your romance will win our love anyway, send it.
  • Send us work that stands out because of its excellence, of course, but also because of its creative take on the theme and on the craft of writing. Take a risk and do it with panache!
  • When it comes to prose, the editors prefer short and tight, but if you write long and you can prove us wrong, you’re in.
  • We will accept reprints so long as the piece was published more than a year before you submit it, and you are submitting in accordance with the previous publisher’s guidelines, and ours.
  • Maximum length is 5,000 words; there is no minimum.

SUBMISSION Requirements:

Format your piece in 12-point Times New Roman or Courier, double spaced, with initial 5” indents, and 1” margins.

Send your manuscript as .doc or .docx. PLEASE DO NOT SEND IN ANY OTHER FORMAT.

Submit no more than five poems and/or two prose pieces. Submissions may be emailed to, and should include the word Love in the subject line.

Submissions will be accepted from November 10, 2018 through midnight (PST) February 28, 2019.

Payment to contributors is 50% of the royalties divided equally among the authors.

Call for Submissions – Mid-Century Murder

Mid-Century Murder – cozy to cozy-noir crime stories set in the late forties through the very early sixties. We want stories that evoke the era, though its fashions, homes, furniture and furnishings, vehicles, restaurants, stores and products, music, movies, radio and television, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

For authors on Facebook, we suggest two groups that could be useful in grokking the era. The first is Mid-Century Advertising. You can learn a great deal about an era by studying the advertisements. On that group you will find an unending supply of such ads. Another Facebook group to check out is America in the 1950s. It leans a bit heavy toward sentimentality and nostalgia but you will find good information mixed in.

Submission Period: October 15th, 2018 – March 31st, 2019 Please put “Submission Mid-Century” and the name of your story in the subject line.

Length: 2500 to 6000 words.

Stories outside that range will be considered, but their length will work against inclusion. We admit to a preference for slightly longer work, with four to five thousand words in the sweet spot. We expect the anthology to have approximately seventy-five thousand words.

Payment: Royalty

Fifty percent of the gross royalties per calendar quarter will be distributed equally among the contributors. Contributor copies will not be offered. A limited number of review copies will be available.

Previously Published:

Reprints are fine, provided:

You have the right to authorize us to publish your story

The story has not been published more recently than 2017.

We ask for the exclusive right to publish your story for one calendar year following contract signing, excluding publications of those previously published.

Title subject to change.