About Fabula Press, Creative Writing Competitions, and other such
We are not a press, not really, not the way we have traditionally understood the word. We do not own a printing machine (if you ignore the rickety deskjet version that drinks ink at a speed faster than Hemingway downing his absinthe-and-champagne cocktails), we work from home, and there are few people on our payroll. And yet, thanks to the internet, we dare call ourselves a press.
Fabula Press is an offshoot of the erstwhile Quill & Ink, the small online literary magazine that some of you may be familiar with, one which ran (okay, limped) for over a decade – from 2001 to 2011. Whilst the magazine did manage to notch up a fair share of hits, there was no revenue model – it was a fruit of passion with the editorial team bearing the costs, and that was how it would have remained. However, what did bother us was that apart from being credited for the publication, the writers / poets that we published gained very little. We were not in the paying market, and once we published a story we practically took away the opportunity for that story to be accepted elsewhere as most better known publishing houses would not work with a previously published story by an unknown author, however good. If we really wished to help our authors we needed to move on to the next level, of being in the paying market for fiction. But that called for resources, and there was this vicious circle – we needed money to pay our authors, but for that we had to have the money to invest in developing at least a modest sized internet presence so that we could attract paid subscriptions. It called for a considerable start-up financial investment, one that we were quite incapable of making at the time. We had practically given up and let the Quill and Ink lie dormant since 2011.
And then we realised that an online quarterly webzine was not the way to go. True, we were managing to attract some really good talent (poets and writers like Jeff Walt, Brett Alan Sanders, Will Daunt had been featured), but much of the talent was getting buried under the cesspool of the internet. The only option was to work backwards and go from online publishing to the offline, print format. And that was where Fabula Press stepped in.
Fabula Press will be running bi-annual theme driven creative writing competitions, with cash awards if you are a shortlisted finalist, and an opportunity to be published in an anthology if your story features in the longlist. Each such anthology will feature 15-20 short stories, and will be available at leading online bookstores. We shall also be undertaking online marketing campaigns to help sales, and of course, we are hopeful that the authors themselves will be doing their bit to increase awareness. For more details on the contest and to submit, click here.
We are also toying with the idea of keeping the online publishing option open for ‘honourable mention’ stories, i.e., the stories that do not make it to the longlist but still merit publication, but that will depend on various factors including the number of submissions received and whether there is enough interest on the part of the authors.
On a passing note, you will observe that we have moved away from the ‘free’ model to charging entry fees for the contest. Fabula Press is, as the Quill & Ink was, a not-for-profit outfit – all the persons involved hold paying jobs and this is, as yet, only about chasing a dream. Having said that, our past experience has taught us that ‘free’ ultimately does not help anyone, and it makes more sense to ask for a low fee and pool it with our own resources than to ignore the costs altogether. In return, we hope to provide our authors with a much stronger and credible platform than we could ever have hoped with the Quill & Ink.
For any queries, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Fabula Press Team
Site and Content Management Anirban Ray Choudhury and Rajeev Pareek
Site designer Gaurav Mustafi