2017 Themes

Welcome to the complete list of Splickety’s 2017 themes. Please adhere to submission deadlines and review our submission guidelines to ensure your story is ready for review.

January: Literary Mutations

Havok Logo - New 2016Featured Author: Nadine Brandes
Submission Deadline: October 28, 2016

Sub-genres – Classics with a speculative twist using the same plot and settings, but with new characters.

The classics. We’ve all read one or two over the course of our high school careers, and maybe more since then. We know them by whether or not everyone else knows them. But do you really know them?

What if White Fang was actually a chupacabra? What if a pod of warmongering mermaids sank the Titanic? What if Oliver Twist turned out to be a twisted leprechaun?

In these literary retellings, we want to know who really populated the stories that history wouldn’t allow told. The plot and motivations will stay largely the same, but the characters will be a little different than we remember. Think Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter, and Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters when you’re writing the true versions of these classic spec-fic masterpieces.

(Please include the title of the original classic story in your submission.)

February: Literary Change of Heart

Featured Author: Julie Lessman
Submission Deadline: November 25, 2016

Sub-genres – A new twist on a classic, using the same characters and setting, but with different motivations and plot.

What if Romeo wed Rosaline and Juliet became history? Maybe Scarlett chased Ashley into war and talked him into defecting so they could live happily ever after in Canada. Would you like to see if sparks still fly if Elizabeth took after her father’s penchant for African safaris and tavern brawls?

We want classic love stories and famous romance with a twist. If you’ve ever wished for a different outcome, now’s your chance to write it. Use the same characters and setting to deliver a new and exciting plot. Something that makes our hearts race and our minds imagine the possibilities.

(Please include the title of the original classic story in your submission.)

March: Literary Time Warp Splickety Magazine Logo - New 2016

Featured Author: Katie Cross
Submission Deadline: January 13, 2017

Sub-genres – The not-so classic Classics using the same plot and characters thrown into all-new settings.

If the Coen brothers could turn the The Odyssey into O Brother, Where Art Thou?, imagine all the classics that could be recast and retold. For our Literary Retellings theme, we want recognizable characters and plot thrown into unique settings. Take Shakespeare or Dickens, Twain or Hemingway beyond where we’d expect. Moby Dick in the great lakes? Sure. Robin Hood during the Roaring 20s? Why not? The Tell-Tale Heart beating below a samurai’s tatami-covered floors? Absolutely.

(Please include the title of the original classic story in your submission.)

April: Tyrannosaurus Reads

Havok Logo - New 2016

Featured Author: Kerry Nietz
Submission Deadline: February 10, 2017

Sub-genres – Primitive survival, ancient aliens, Jurassic Park

Sharks are the last vestige of a world ruled by super-creatures. Taller than buildings, faster than cars, and stronger than bulldozers, dinosaurs were forged in fire and fueled by an insatiable appetite for survival.

Hundreds of millions of years later, literature and cinema are still infatuated with them. Jurassic Park, 10,000 BC, Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Lost World, and even Ice Age inspire imaginations to dream big. And here at Splickety, we’re just as hungry as the dinosaurs. Give us anything that represents the awesomeness surrounding prehistory’s creatures, settings, and adventures.

May: Ancient History

CONTEST ISSUE (special submission process)
Featured Author: Melanie Dickerson
Submission Deadline: March 10, 2017

Sub-genres – Silk Road Romance, Mythological Love, Egyptian Tryst or Treason, Mesopotamian Marriage, Seven Wonders Passion

Some of the world’s most enduring love stories are ancient: Cleopatra and Marc Antony, Orpheus and Eurydice, Solomon and his bride. Maybe it was the brevity of life or a better sense of honor, but ancient couples understood that love was for always and worth sacrifice.

Whether your hero and heroine walk the cobbled streets of Rome, dance beneath the shadow of Stonehenge, or kiss as the walls of Jericho fall, we want romance that reaches through time and captivates us with its passion and attention to historical detail.

June: Medieval MayhemSplickety Magazine Logo - New 2016

Featured Author: Julie Berry
Submission Deadline: April 7, 2017

Sub-genres – Battles, Knights and Ladies, Quests, Bravery and Chivalry, Legends

Europe in the Middle Ages. It’s the substance of epic history and foundational legends. The Black Death and the Renaissance. Heretics and the Crusades. Talk about a richness of story possibility! We want to see stories set in medieval times. Show us people we know—Friar Tuck, Joan of Arc, King Arthur, whomever—as well as characters created by you. Bring them to life, showing us a world of bravery, chivalry, quests, and really uncomfortable clothes. For ideas, check out these public domain medieval characters.

(Please, no fantasy, magic, time-travel, or speculative.)

July: Mythical Clashes Havok Logo - New 2016

CONTEST ISSUE (special submission process
Featured Author: David Farland
Submission Deadline: May 5, 2017

Sub-genres – Dragons. Unicorns. Titans. Leprechauns. Chupacabras.

You’ve heard the stories, but never like this—never all at once. Imagine every legendary beast and being throughout history thrown onto a battlefield for an all-out brawl.

A medieval dragon heats things up on mount Olympus. A leprechaun slips from a Kraken’s grasp. A demigod tames a unicorn. Mermaids invade ancient Egypt via the Nile. Any mythical combination you can come up with is fair game in our Mythical Clashes issue. We’re looking for battles of legendary proportions as creatures and universes collide.

August: Out of My League

Featured Author: Melissa Tagg
Submission Deadline: June 2, 2017

Sub-genres – Love in the outfield, all-star hearts, total knock out, benched in love, most valuable sweetheart, beauty and the quarterback, the pitcher and me

There is nothing better than winning the heart of the one you love. Sometimes it’s a tough call and sometimes it’s an out-of-the-park homerun. This issue we want stories that take us out to the ballgame, keep us on the edge of our seat, and delight us with an unexpected winning play.

Whether it’s at the concession stand, the dugout, a championship game, or someone’s backyard, hit us with all you’ve got. An old rivalry becomes love in the outfield at a co-ed softball game, high school sweethearts meet one more time at homecoming game, a sports-averse reporter spills a mustard dog on Mr. Right at the concessions stand, and the MVP has been on a losing streak all season until he looks up and finally sees her in the stand with a sign that says, “Yes.”

September: Whodunit?

CONTEST ISSUE (special submission processSplickety Magazine Logo - New 2016
Featured Author: Megan Linski
Submission Deadline: June 30, 2017

Sub-genres – Amateur Detective, Whodunit, Courtroom Drama, Anti-hero, Forensic

For our mystery issue, puzzle us. Throw red herrings. Keep us in the dark until we can’t stand it. We want genuine, clean, edge-of-your-seat mystery—the sort that makes us wonder why we didn’t notice the clues. Make us see the magnifying glass in our hands, feel the charcoal powder, and smell a rat!

October: Holiday Cauldron

Havok Logo - New 2016

Featured Author: Steve Rzasa
Submission Deadline: July 28, 2017

Sub-genres – Dark Humor, Good vs. Evil, Anti-Hero

We’re wreaking Havok this Halloween! All your favorite holidays, all jumbled up. Santa’s reindeer are zombies? Been there. The Easter Bunny served up on a Thanksgiving platter? Sure. Miracle on Elm Street? You bet.

Think Nightmare before Christmas and Rise of the Guardians and other mash-ups for this Halloween issue. We’re looking for stories that combine two or more holidays and splash in a bit of Halloween creepiness for a twisted celebration.

November: Picture Perfect

Featured Author: Kristi Ann Hunter
Submission Deadline: August 25, 2017

Sub-genres – An Opera Encounter, First Dance at the Ballet, Museum Mystery Romance, The Painter and the Poet, Broadway Romeo

Art touches us. It speaks to the human spirit and inspires us to greater things. And what is greater than love? It’s easy to find the romance in the strength and agility of two dancers channeling Odette and Prince Siegfried or in the haunting melody of a violin solo.

In this issue of Splickety Love, we want fine art and the passion it evokes and stirs up. Show us love at the ballet, orchestra, symphony, art exhibit, and museum. Bring us characters who dance, paint, play, and create. Use the natural tension in a Broadway show, the excitement of a newly discovered Monet, and an opera’s passionate music to tell a story that leaves us breathless.

December: Wreck the Halls Splickety Magazine Logo - New 2016

Featured Author: DiAnn Mills
Submission Deadline: September 22, 2017

Sub-genres – Holiday catastrophe, heart-warming humor, Christmas abroad, non-traditional family, slapstick, nostalgia

Christmas is full of things like family and ugly sweaters and snowballs—all of which make great ingredients for a comedy. Make us laugh while telling a story that captures all the essence of Christmas. From travel delays to the kids’ holiday programs to weird Uncle Johnny’s pants ripping, create a memory that makes us smile.