Tag Archives: The Best Small Fictions 2015

Queen’s Ferry’s Year-End Wrap-Up

2015 has been a banner year for Queen’s Ferry Press! This year saw the release of twelve titles, to include flash, hybrid, alternate-history and traditional story collections, as well as our first novel; these books, we believe, encapsulate the press’s eclectic aesthetic and advance our commitment to publishing innovative fiction.

2016 will see the release of a title every month (two in October), and features an impressive and varied line-up of voices and works:

Jan. – Adulterous Generation, Amy L. Clark

Feb. – So Many True Believers, Tyrone Jaeger

March – Whiskey, Etc., Sherrie Flick

April – In Case of Emergency, Break Glass, Sarah Van Arsdale

May – Love Slaves of Helen Hadley Hall, James Magruder

June – Middle West, Marc Watkins

July – Bad Faith, Theodore Wheeler

Aug. – The Summer She Was Under Water, Jen Michalski

Sept. – The Widow’s Guide to Edible Mushrooms, Chauna Craig

Oct. – Future Perfect, Matthew James Babcock

           The Best Small Fictions 2016, Tara L. Masih; Stuart Dybek

Nov. – Lesser American Boys, Zach VandeZande

Dec. – Everyone Was There, Anthony Varallo

 

Before we lift our eyes to the new year, however, we celebrate our recent successes:

Helen McClory was just last month named winner of the Saltire Society’s First Book of the Year Award for On the Edges of Vision. This QFP title got to rub shoulders at literary awards recognized as the most prestigious in Scotland, with the likes of Michael Faber’s The Book of Strange New Things. We are thrilled for Helen!

On the Edges of Vision frontcover

 

October saw another exciting avenue of growth take root with the release of the bestselling The Best Small Fictions. Shepherded by series editor Tara L. Masih and guest edited in 2015 by Pulitzer Prize–winning author Robert Olen Butler, this contemporary annual is solely devoted to compiling the best hybrid fiction in a calendar year. We are heartened by the response to this anthology’s debut and very much look forward to the 2016 compilation, guest edited by Stuart Dybek.

BSF2015_FrontCover

Nominations are currently open; please consult the full guidelines.

 

In that vein, here are our own selections for The Best Small Fictions 2016:

Ben Segal – “Planters” (from Pool Party Trap Loop; originally appeared in Digital Hamper)

Greg Gerke – “High on the Thigh” (from My Brooklyn Writer Friend; originally appeared in The Collagist)

Helen McClory – “Pretty Dead Girl Takes a Break” (from On the Edges of Vision; originally appeared in The Toast)

Rob McClure Smith – “Glasgow Lullaby” (from The Violence; originally appeared in SmokeLong Quarterly)

Ryan Ridge & Mel Bosworth – “The Next Room” (from Camouflage Country; originally appeared in the EEEL)

 

We eagerly anticipate what’s to come and thank you for your support for all that’s been!

 

 

THE BEST SMALL FICTIONS 2016 Nomination Time!

“I believe The Best Small Fictions series, which will begin with this 2015 volume, is an extraordinarily important literary event. The art form of the small fiction speaks strongly to the zeitgeist of the 21st century and this sort of focused recognition is long overdue.”

–Robert Olen Butler

With The Best Small Fictions 2015 launched (and now available on international sites BookDepository and bol.com), we are heartened by the support we’ve received and the wonderful reviews, many of which are coming from readers unfamiliar with flash who are discovering this genre for the first time, and who are finding a new appreciation for the form. Readers are commenting on the exceptional variety in the book, and we hope to continue to highlight the field’s diversity. They are also enjoying the discovery of new journals and presses.

Just this week NYU hosted some The Best Small Fictions 2015 authors as part of the McGhee Inside/Outside Reading Series:

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As we look ahead to The Best Small Fictions 2016, guest edited by PEN/Malamud Award–winner Stuart Dybek, and with Tara L. Masih at the helm as series editor, we invite you to send in your nominations, starting November 1. As our guidelines and FAQs have recently changed, they are posted below in full, and are also available on the QFP site: http://www.queensferrypress.com/bsf/bsf2016guidelines.pdf

The Best Small Fictions 2016 Nomination Guidelines

Queen’s Ferry Press—founded to promote collections of literary fiction—is pleased to publish the first contemporary anthology solely devoted to compiling the best short hybrid fiction in a calendar year. With this annual—honoring work appearing in literary journals and story collections worldwide—we seek to promote the seasoned writer as well as the emerging writer in a compilation that reveals the depth of literary fiction and highlights historical trends as they occur due to world events and human considerations. The Best Small Fictions is a brief, affordable, yet powerful reader that supplements instructors’ current classroom anthologies and texts and offers writers and readers examples of what their contemporaries are achieving.

Journal editors and book publishers: submit up to five nominations (print or online) from your journals, chapbooks, broadsides, or story collections. Small fictions consist of 6 words to 1,000 words, and may take any traditional or experimental form and include illustrations or photos. However, the fictions must be prose and self-contained (no novel/novella excerpts) and published/translated into English. Poetry that sits on the edge of fiction and verse may be submitted, but should be mainly in prose form (haibuns qualify). Small fictions must be published in 2015 and submitted November 1, 2015, until January 18, 2016 (postmark deadline). NOTE: foreign submissions have a January 11 postmark deadline.

Submission Checklist:

  • Up to 5 nominations (tearsheets, printouts, or photocopies)
  • 2 copies of each nominated small fiction
  • Cover letter (editor email contact info; author/artist email contact info; publication info and word count)

Do not send originals as all submissions will be recycled. We accept no email submissions. Mail nominations to:

Best Small Fictions 2016

c/o Tara Masih, series ed.

3321 Haley Point Rd.

St. Augustine, FL 32084

 

Questions regarding the nomination process may be sent to series editor Tara Masih at QueensFerrySmallFictions@gmail.com, but queries as to the status of a nomination will go unanswered. Use tracking or enclose an SASE of you want acknowledgment of receipt. The 2016 guest editor, PEN/Malamud Award–winner Stuart Dybek, will be judging the finalists blindly. At no time may the guest editor be contacted.

Writers accepted will be notified late spring, with a publication date in Oct. 2016. Finalists will be acknowledged in the book.

For updates, please see the Queen’s Ferry Press blog, like our “The Best Small Fictions” Facebook page, or follow @Qfpress on Twitter.

Frequently Asked Questions:

You mention you are looking for hybrid work. Can I send in my flash story, which is not considered hybrid?

Yes, we use hybrid lightly to encompass the whole genre of small fictions, as we consider flash stories to fall under the hybrid umbrella. Traditional and experimental are both welcome.

In what year do the stories have to be published?

Within January 1 and December 31 of the calendar year in which the submission period begins. If the story has yet to appear, the manuscript is welcome as long as there is a commitment to publish by the 31st.

Can the stories receive an edit before submission?

Yes, as long as a substantial part of the story remains as it appeared in the publication, edits are acceptable.

What rights are you asking for?

We are going to ask for one-time republication rights to revert back to the author on publication.

Should the pages of each story be stapled or paper-clipped together, or should all pages in the packet remain loose? 

 

All methods are acceptable.

 

When printing stories from the web, is it acceptable to hand-print the author’s contact information at the top of the first page?

 

Yes, but we still need a cover letter with the nominating editor’s name and email and word counts either on the story or in the cover letter.

 

If bios appear at the beginning or end of each story, is it okay to include them, or do I need to cut and paste those stories into Word and strip out the bios?

 

It is fine to retain bios; they will be stripped out for the guest editor. Cutting and pasting the stories into Word is acceptable, too, and has its benefits, as word counts can then be verified, but this is totally optional.

 

Are stories that won competitions eligible?

 

Yes, as long as they appeared in print or on a website as a published winner.

 

If a story collection includes stories published prior to the calendar year, can they be nominated?

 

Yes, as long as the collection was published in the nominating year, each story is eligible.

 

Is self-published work eligible?
Not at this time. The same applies to Fictionaut and similar venues.

How are winners and finalists notified?
We send winners and their nominating editors personal emails in the spring; finalists are notified in a group email and asked to let their nominating editors know their status.

THE BEST SMALL FICTIONS 2015 Launches!

The Best Small Fictions 2015 is now available through Amazon, Amazon UK, and other online retailers such as Barnes & Noble for the general release date of October 6, 2015; the ebook (Nook and Kindle) will be released early for international readers and downloadable on the 6th.

As we approach the official launch, we feel this is a good time to share some exciting anthology news.

A wonderful new review is in from BookTrib in which Rebecca Foster says, “Super-short stories . . . have exploded in popularity. Where should newbies start? With Best Small Fictions 2015 . . . [r]eaders will be introduced to a wealth of fresh and existing talent…. Discover some haunting voices for yourself this fall.”

BookCourt, located in Brooklyn, was first to carry BSF copies, displaying the book prominently in its window:

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Many thanks to BookCourt for their support. We are also grateful to the following bookstores for recent orders: Prairie Lights (Iowa City, IA), Well Read Books (Plaistow, NH), and The Brewster Bookstore (Brewster, MA). The press also appreciates when readers request that their local bookstore carry a Queen’s Ferry title.

We’re also pleased to announce that as of this date the anthology will be taught at Baldwin Wallace University, CW Post College, Georgia State University, Hendrix College, Lighthouse Writers Workshop, and Regis University.

Events and readings for 2015-16 are scheduled on the East and West Coast:

*25 October, 2015KGB Bar Reading Series, KGB Bar, New York, NY
Lisa Marie Basile, Randall Brown, Jesse Kohn (finalist), Jane Liddle, and Julia Strayer (with Amina Gautier)
*28 October, 2015NYU Bookstore, New York, NY
Rusty Barnes, Lisa Marie Basile, Randall Brown, George Choundas, Jesse Kohn (finalist), Jane Liddle, Dawn Raffel, Kathryn Savage, and Julia Strayer
*7 January, 2016Book Soup, West Hollywood, CA
Lauren Becker, Yennie Cheung, James Claffey, Blake Kimzey, and Chris L. Terry
*4 February, 2016Flash Fiction Collective, Alley Cat Books, San Francisco
Stefanie Freele and Dan Moreau (with Jane Ciabattari and Grant Faulkner)
*3 June, 2016Dire Reading Series, Out of the Blue Gallery, Cambridge, MA
Allison Adair (finalist), Rusty Barnes, Randall Brown, Tara L. Masih, and Brent Rydin
*30 April, 2016 – Best Small Fictions: The Art of Compression, Newburyport Literary Festival, Newburyport, MA
Tara L. Masih, Dawn Raffel, and Brent Rydin

Please watch this blog for updates, visit and like The Best Small Fictions 2015 Facebook page, and/or follow @QFPress on Twitter.

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A year in the making, it is with great pleasure that Queen’s Ferry acknowledges everyone who has helped make this debut “something significant, something worthwhile, and something necessary.”

Without the editors who nominated stories, there could be no book; we appreciate your faith. To the BSF finalists and winners: your writing made this anthology a vibrant, compelling volume we are proud to publish. To the 2015 consulting editors Kathy Fish, Christopher Merkner, Robert Shapard, and Claudia Smith, and roving editors Michelle Elvy and Clare MacQueen: we are in debt to you. We’re also appreciative for the general assistance of Heather L. Nelson. Gratitude to Steven Seighman for his interior design, and to Brian Mihok for so strikingly covering the book.

We are immensely grateful to Robert Olen Butler, who lent this project his prominence and wisdom and helped give the anthology its best start. Tara L. Masih is the reason this book exists at all and to thank her for her experience, expertise, and dedication feels flimsy but is offered most sincerely; I’m sure the authors agree that Tara gave her all to make The Best Small Fictions 2015 the very best representation of short short fiction.

And finally, we are immensely thankful to those who have bought a book or otherwise supported this title or the press.

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The 2016 nomination period will open November 1; be sure to check out the updated guidelines and read the 2016 editor bios.

The Best Small Fictions 2015 — Editorial Elucidation from the Editors

“I believe The Best Small Fictions series, which will begin with this 2015 volume, is an extraordinarily important literary event. The art form of the small fiction speaks strongly to the zeitgeist of the 21st century and this sort of focused recognition is long overdue.” –Robert Olen Butler

 The Best Small Fictions 2015 guest editor Robert Olen Butler was kind enough to talk with Pleiades Magazine, a journal to see three of its small fictions included in the anthology’s debut; read about the perils of success, the search for balance, the biggest surprises in selecting authors for BSF, and more in “‘Lone Wolf of a Lie': Robert Olen Butler on The Best Small Fictions of 2015.”

Series editor Tara L. Masih also offers her insight in Fiction Southeast’s Ask an Editor Series on revision and recognition and, of course, the anthology she is responsible for: The Best Small Fictions 2015.

 

Robert Olen Butler, Empire vertical

The Best Small Fictions: Update

This Friday marks the international nominations deadline for The Best Small Fictions of 2015.

The Best Small Fictions NominationsOver 100 nominations have been received to date, though we expect a great deal more before the final, US deadline, January 23rd.

International nominations have come in from Japan, Australia, Cyprus, The Netherlands, India, Canada and the UK.

We’re very pleased with the response from editors so far, but please submit your nominations and–if you haven’t yet–announce them to your readers! Show your support for this long overdue compilation the best of the smallest fiction available!

 

The Crossing: Issue 1

Queen’s Ferry Press is pleased to distribute the first issue of The Crossing, a monthly newsletter for readers and subscribers of Queen’s Ferry Press.

The Crossing
The Crossing

A web-only version of The Crossing will appear each month, and is downloadable in PDF form here. Those who subscribe to receive e-mail updates of The Crossing will receive a promotional code to be used at check-out during the lifespan of each issue.

 

The Best Small Fictions of 2015, Edited by Tara L. Masih and Guest Edited by Robert Olen Butler

Queen’s Ferry Press set to release a new anthology of the best short hybrid fiction in October, 2015.

Plano, TX, November 17, 2014—Queen’s Ferry Press is pleased to announce the debut of the first contemporary anthology to compile the best short hybrid fiction in a calendar year. To date, there is no annual print recognition of the best examples of this exciting new work appearing in literary journals and story collections from throughout the world. With this new annual, we seek to promote the seasoned writer as well as the new writer in a compilation that will reveal the depth of literary fiction and highlight historical trends as they occur due to world events and human considerations. The Best Small Fictions is a brief, affordable, yet powerful reader that will supplement instructors’ current classroom anthologies and texts and will offer writers and readers examples of what their contemporaries are achieving worldwide.

Notifications will be made in late spring, ahead of an October 2015 release date.

The press is proud to announce award-winning editor Tara L. Masih as Series Editor and Pulitzer Prize–winning author Robert Olen Butler as this year’s Guest Editor.

Interested editors should download the full nomination guidelines.

About the Editors:

Tara L. Masih
Tara L. Masih, Photo Credit: Michael Gilligan

Tara L. Masih has won multiple book awards as editor of The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction and The Chalk Circle: Intercultural Prizewinning Essays. Where the Dog Star Never Glows: Stories was a National Best Books Award finalist. Her flash has been anthologized in Word of Mouth, Brevity & Echo, BITE, and Flash Fiction Funny; was featured in Fiction Writer’s Review for National Short Story Month; and was a finalist for the Reynolds Price Prize in Fiction. Awards for her work include first place in The Ledge Magazine’s fiction contest and Pushcart Prize, Best New American Voices, and Best of the Web nominations. www.taramasih.com

Robert Olen Butler
Robert Olen Butler, Photo Credit: Kelly Lee Butler

Robert Olen Butler has published sixteen novels and six volumes of short stories, one of which, A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain, won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, and three of which—Severence,Intercourse, and Weegee Stories—are comprised entirely of small fictions (225 in all). He has also published a volume of his lectures on the creative process, From Where You Dream. He was the 2013 recipient of the F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Literature. He teaches creative writing at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.

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Media Contact: Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity

kwehmueller@queensferrypress.com