Well, we are right into Week Two for Etherea magazine! Submissions have been coming in thick and fast, and our site has been added to several online writing resources, such as The Submission Grinder, Duotrope, and Literarium. This is all fantastic news for the magazine, and we couldn’t have asked for a better start.
Odds are likely that the initial issue will have to be brought forward to mid August, such is the amount and quality of submissions that have arrived.
Speaking of the submissions themselves, we have received a variety from all corners of the globe (a ridiculous saying really). There have been fantastical stories involving valiant knights, killer robots, or inquisitive aliens. All original, all entertaining, and all fantastic. So thank you to everyone who has submitted so far.
As a bit of a nerd myself, and a bit of an excel fan, I thought I would plot some of the more recurring themes. Please read nothing into this, this isn’t a comment on any type of tropes that appear, or a criticism of any kind. In all honesty, I am surprised that some themes don’t turn up more often.
As you can see, Fantasy is outweighing Science Fiction by about fifty-five to forty-five percent.
Almost one out of every five of our Heroes die (poor bastards), and around one in ten stories has a twist ending.
There are surprisingly few insane protagonists, similarly less non-human main characters than I would have anticipated.
Quite a few authors are taking their cues from the real world, and using their narrative as commentary.
This little chart is not scientific, and has a tiny sample size, so don’t read too much into it. Maybe in a year I’ll revisit it, and see what has changed.
Another comparison that intrigued me is that short story (between 2000-5000 words) outweighed the flash fiction (500-1000 words) submissions three times over. This isn’t what I would have predicted at all. There could be several reasons for this I suppose:
- We are not paying enough for stories between 500 and 1000 words?
- It is harder to write a very short story?
- Once a person starts writing a story, the story doesn’t allow them to stop?
Potentially it is a mix of all three, or maybe it could be because we only added flash fiction late in the piece. Who knows.
The final statistic, the one which I will admit I am a bit disappointed in, is only one in ten submissions are from Australia. You may think I am harping on about it (which I am), but I was really hoping to get a quarter of submissions at least from Australia. Ah well, I’ll have to stow the jingoism for a little while longer.
If you have made it this far into the post, thanks for reading! Our little magazine will soon finally have an issue out, and I can’t wait to share it with you. Having so many incredible stories submitted, it is a pure tragedy that we cannot publish them all.
Maybe if I win the lottery, we could publish a magazine as thick as a brick. Fingers crossed