Art guidelines

Guidelines for cover art submissions

We buy one piece of commissioned art per month, at a flat rate of $50. Art submitted must be 1800 x 2700 pixels, or a multiple thereof. We buy non-exclusive rights for use on our website, in a monthly issue, and in an annual anthology. A sample contract is here.

The process is usually as follows (for a cover for month X)

  1. We contact the artist to confirm they’re available, briefly describing stories that will be included in the month’s issue, and then the full text of the story/story they’re interested in. (~X minus 2 months)
  2. Artist submits 2-3 rough concept sketches for one or more stories, and we agree on a concept/approach (X minus 45 days)
  3. Artist submits a full, near-complete draft, and we offer any suggestions (X minus 25 days)
  4. Artist submits a final version, we sign a contract (can be done earlier at artist request), the payment goes out (X minus 20 days)

You can see the general look of previous covers here, though we’re very open to different styles. Generally speaking, we prefer single, integrated images to collages or pastiches. We don’t buy ready-made art.

If the story allows for it, we encourage the depiction of characters as members groups under-represented in the US market. We’re also much more interested in a character’s personality than their beauty; we’d much rather see interesting people who aren’t attractive than standard cover types who are.

If you’re interested to be considered, please use the contact form to send us a link to your portfolio or other representative pieces.

Payment process

We pay when we accept the piece, regardless of publication date. We pay only through PayPal.