Grimdark Grimoires Submission Guidelines


Today we would like to announce…



Swords and Sorcery.

Demons and Dragons.

Bards and Battlements.

Strange and Sinister.



We are looking for High Fantasy that takes place in a Secondary World – No Portal Fantasy. The themes and tone must be dark, strange, or sinister in nature.

  • 4,000 word minimum
  • 6,000 word maximum
  • Proper manuscript format (see here for details)
  • Sex and gore for the sake of sex and gore is frowned upon – it must be integral to the plot.
  • No fan-fiction, novel excerpts, or works-in-progress will be accepted.
  • Please be conservative with the use of Thy, Thou, and Ye Olde English.
  • The setting/world in of your story must be your own.
  • We will NOT accept transcripts or creative retellings of Dungeons & Dragons Campaigns (this includes Pathfinder or any other fantasy roleplaying game).
  • We claim exclusive first print and electronic rights to your story until the date of the print publication.
  • We claim non-exclusive rights to include your story into a “Best Of” issue in the future, if we so choose.

Unfortunately, we cannot financially compensate you for your story at this time. Aphotic Realm is well within its infancy. However, if your story is accepted, you will receive a .pdf copy of the issue and we will help you promote your writing.

  • Send your manuscript to as a .doc or .docx attachment.
  • Please include a 50-100 word bio and any links to your website or social media accounts that you would like to promote within the body of the email.
  • Please write in “GRIMDARK – Story Title in the subject line.
  • Simultaneous submissions are okay but please be sure to alert us as soon as possible if it’s accepted elsewhere.

At the moment, there is no deadline for submissions. However, there are a limited amount of spots open. Once those spots are filled – they’re filled.

If your story was published in Apparitions, or has been accepted for publication in Banished, we ask that you refrain from submitting to this publication.

Please allow up to three weeks for us to review your story submission and respond. If at the end of three weeks, if you have not heard from us you may email us again to inquire about the status of your submission.


-Aphotic Realm Editors
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