Submit

In a perfect world, I would accept and publish every story that comes my way. But I’m afraid I am a person behind the blog and I do have some standards and limitations. I love stories and I want to do what I can to support them and their authors, so if the following is acceptable to you, I’d love to hear from you.

What I Welcome

  • Short non-fiction and fiction stories (any genre) of no more than 5000 words (I’ve learned blog readers tend to enjoy shorter posts)
  • Excerpts of longer works of no more than 5000 words
  • Guest posts on a topic related to writing, storytelling, publishing, editing, etc. or a guest post promoting your publications

What I Cannot Accept

  • Anything longer than 5000 words. In that case, the excerpt route would be a good option.
  • Author interview requests. I tailor my interview questions, so it’s quite time consuming. If there is an author I’m interested in interviewing, I will do the requesting.
  • 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc. drafts. The work must be polished. I wish I could accept any story, but must have some standards.
  • Poetry. I’m very sorry, but I’m not accepting any poetry or verse at this time.

Guidelines

As I must read every submission, I must have some guidelines on what I will and will not read. They’re not too different from those listed in my Review Policy.

  • Please no excessive use of profanity, violence, and sex. This means there must be more story than violent and sex scenes and I would appreciate the profanity be sprinkled rather than liberally used. Should this be an issue, an excerpt not containing violence and sex would be a good option.
  • Please no rape, abuse, torture, etc. Again, an excerpt excluding those scenes would be a good option, but if it is excerpted from a published or soon-to-be published work, I will need to know so I can add a trigger warning to anyone who chooses to seek the full work.

What I Will Do For You

  • Light proofreading. Please submit polished works, but I understand grammar and spelling can slip under the radar. I will also let you know if I have questions about the story because, if I have them, readers will as well. Prior to publication, I will send it back to you for your approval, at which time you may undo any or all changes and make any you deem necessary.
  • Communicate acceptance, expected publication date, and the link to the published post. Please be patient. It could take 1-2 weeks for me to respond with acceptance and publication date, though I will keep this page updated with any delays. The link to your post will be emailed the day of posting.
  • Removal should the author request it, as well as re-publication, but for the original date only. I will remove the post at the request of only the author unless author’s death or incapacitation can be verified by me.
  • A notice at the bottom of your post stating you, the author, retain all rights to the work, which may not be copied, reproduced, modified, sold, or distributed without your express permission. If you would like to be contacted directly, please provide a means of contacting you that can be listed, otherwise all inquiries will pass through me via the Contact page.
  • Invite you to respond to any comments left on your post. Please do feel free to respond.

What I Need From You

In addition to your story/guest post, of course:

  • A brief one paragraph author bio
  • Social media links
  • Optional: a photo of you

Important Note for How to Submit

Please send your story or guest post in the body of the email. I may not be able to accommodate any special formatting (I’m not terribly tech savvy), so if it can not be pasted into the body of your email, The Lily Cafe will likely not be the best place to share your work. It’s easier for me to keep track of everything when confined to email. I tend to misplace attachments once in a while.

Images may be sent as attachments.

Inquiry is not necessary. If your story or guest post adheres to the above, it may be submitted.

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