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The Kaleidocast is only open to submissions from members of the Brooklyn Speculative Fiction Writers or The Octavia Project

Brooklyn Centered Speculative Fiction

Speculative Fiction /ˈspɛkjʊlətɪv ˈfɪkʃən/ noun: a super category for all genres that deliberately depart from imitating “consensus reality” of everyday experience including fantasy, science fiction, and horror, but also their derivatives, hybrids, and cognate genres like the gothic, dystopia, weird fiction, post-apocalyptic fiction, ghost stories, superhero tales, alternate history, steampunk, slipstream, magic realism, fractured fairy tales, and more. (

Brooklyn is variety. It’s a collection of cultures thrown together, growing and interacting among parks and food trucks. Mom and pop shops surviving alongside corporate giants spreading into the brownstones and building crystalline apartment complexes. Identity is central to life in Brooklyn. Where someone’s home can be just as much of an identifier as the food they grew up with.

We want that sense of culture and identity reflected in the stories submitted to us. We’re open to anything under the sun of speculative fiction from whimsical fantasy, alternative histories, horror, solarpunk, science fiction futures, or magical realism to name a few.  We’re looking for stories encapsulating the vibrancy and struggles of urban/city life. Sample topics and themes that resonate with us are below:

  • immigration

  • Black lives

  • urban city / living struggles

  • interactions of different cultures

  • toughness and the hustle 

  • crime (noir)

  • politics of urban development

  • amazing food and the people who make it

  • public transportation

  • intergenerational change

  • community changes over time

  • gentrification

  • living in the shadow of historic icons

  • feeling lost in sea of people

  • street art

  • mermaids

  • the high cost of living


Q: What's so special about BSFW? Why should I join?
A: The workshops and community! Brooklyn Speculative Fiction Writers is the largest most active speculative fiction writers group in New York City with nearly two hundred members and growing. The whole point of the Kaleidocast is to support the writers in the BSFW community. Original stories are encouraged to go through our critique process where you'll get friendly feedback from people with the same goal as you, to get published. If your story doesn't get accepted, you have the opportunity to edit your story and resubmit a second time. And you can do that with the help of those who'll be making the final call on whether your story will be published.


Q: What's the Octavia Project? How can I join?

A: The Octavia Project is a free summer program that brings together young women and trans and nonbinary youth to build new worlds. We believe that their ideas and imaginations are vital to a more just and equitable future. The Octavia Project provides them with the support and tools to build their dreams. Through their curriculum, young folks explore how the world around them is created by a series of choices that can be remade or replaced. Follow the link to learn more about them. Current and former alumni will be informed about the submissions process and any questions can be sent to Ask about the Kaleidocast mentorship program, Constellations.

Q: How long can my story be?
A: Oh, you ambitious pigeon, you. We like to limit our stories to 5,000 words and will take as few as 500.


Q: Does the story have  to be set in Brooklyn?

A: No, a story doesn’t have to be set in Brooklyn to have that Brooklyn soul! It could be on the moon or in another dimension, or dance on the head of a pin. But Brooklyn is urban life, so if your story is not in a city then it will be a harder sell. 


Q: So I can take a story that I've already written and retrofit it for the Kaleidocast?

A: Maybe, but it's harder. We've revised our submissions to pinpoint more specifically the kinds of themes and ideas that we want to produce. Unless your story was already talking about these things and had that urban feel, then you may be trying to shove a square peg into a circular hole. Our editors can tell when Brooklyn has been shoe-horned into a story. So let our themes be your guide and write something new!

Q: Do you accept stories that have been published or sent elsewhere?
A: Yes, but with a caveat. If it has been published elsewhere, there's no re-submission process as mentioned above. That's simply because there's no chance of editing the material. So if you're submitting elsewhere, please let us know because this can be a potential legal issue for us and other publishers. If your work has already been published, it would be considered a secondary market. That all being said, you are still more than welcome to workshop your story with us as a BSFW member.

Q: Will I get paid for my story?
A: Ab-So-Lutely! We offer 8¢ per word for new, unpublished stories. Then $20 for flash fiction reprints and $70 for short story reprints. Flash fiction counts as any story with 1500 words or less.

Q: I still have some questions; where can I contact you?
A: You can find more specific details for submissions on our Submissions Details page. And if that doesn't answer your questions, click here or find our information on our contacts page. Please note, the contact email is different from our submissions  email.

Q: Okay then, my story fits the thematic criteria, and it's awesome. How do I submit my story?
A: You can do so here, but please read the submissions process below. It is different from other publications in important ways.


  • Please email your story to , or click on the Submit Your Story Here button.

    • SUBJECT: "The Title" - Your Real Name.

      • EXAMPLE: "Death to the Weasel" - Seymour Aliens

      • If the story is a resubmission, write Resubmission in the subject line.

    • MESSAGE: Your Name, Title, and Word Count, Any additional info.

      • If it’s a reprint, then please direct us to the original publication and any audio rights we should know about.

      • EXAMPLE: Rob Cameron, Death to the Weasel - 5,000 words. This is a supernatural horror. It was originally printed in

    • COVER LETTER: In the body of the email, give us a brief description of what makes your story a Brooklyn centered story. Make sure it includes one or more of the thematic elements we are looking for.


        • When you move into a new community, there are things you need to learn to belong. This is a story about immigration and the feeling lost in a sea of people. The main character learns to adjust to a new world, one where dream weasels teach her how to navigate the various complications of her new fairy realm home. It's not an easy adjustment and dream weasels don't work for free.


      • TAKE YOUR NAME AND CONTACT INFO OFF OF YOUR MANUSCRIPT.  The editors will receive your story anonymously

    • Attach your document. RTF, .DOCX, and DOC are preferred. Please, NO PDFs.

      • We only accept attachments, not stories in the text of the email.

    • Do not include: pictures, reviews, audio of yourself reading the story, or a summary of the story.


We are looking forward to reading your story!

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