Looking for Great Free (Sci-fi and Fantasy) Fiction? Check Out These Online Magazines

The Sarcastic Muse

Looking for Great Free (Sci-fi and Fantasy) Fiction? Check Out These Online MagazinesDo you like reading free stories? A lot of people, surprisingly, don’t know that many online magazines and journals provide free access to their content. And that’s why I’m here today. I’m about to open up a world of free story nuggets — and you will never be short on reading again.

Since I’m a predominantly literary and speculative fiction writer, that’s what I tend to read. Literary journals typically require a subscription, but many will showcase one or two pieces from their latest or past issues. They are worth reading, especially if you’re thinking about sending a piece of your own.

Speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, and horror) magazines tend to have more content available for public consumption. Below I’ve taken the time to amass a list of a few of my favorite magazines that offer free and easily accessible fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Speculative fiction (horror, sci-fi, fantasy):


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Writing Fluid Fiction: Rolling Eyes, Turning Heads, and Other Autonomous Body Parts

The Sarcastic Muse

Have you ever paused while reading a story because the character’s body has suddenly taken on a life of its own? You know what I’m talking about: the rolling eyes and the wandering hands that no longer have an actual person controlling them. You probably find yourself with a comical image in your head, too.

As with passive voice, dangling modifiers, and simultaneous action, this phenomenon — known as autonomous, disembodied, or even animate body parts — is an issue of writing craft and remains my biggest pet peeve as an editor.

What are autonomous body parts?

A body part is “disembodied” when it acts independently of the character: “Her fist pounded on the door.” The sentient body part becomes the subject of the sentence and thus completes/does the action of the verb.

Why are they bad?

Writing Fluid Fiction: Rolling Eyes, Turning Heads, and Other Autonomous Body Parts Eyes should only be autonomous if they’re the kind you find rolling around…

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Finding a Freelance Editor: Types of Fiction Edits

The Sarcastic Muse

Finding a Freelance Editor: Types of Freelance EditsFinding a freelance editor for your novel requires research, and as I said in my post a few weeks ago, one of the ways you can narrow down your options is to know which kind of edit you’re looking for. However, different people use different terms for different kinds of edits, so I’ll try to give you the most accurate portrayal of editing types as I can.

Manuscript Assessment/Developmental Edit

A developmental editor’s primary job is to give the author a general assessment of his/her story. Instead of giving focused comments on particular passages, the developmental editor will typically type up a packet of notes in which he/she will point out the strengths and weakness of the plot, characters, and overall language use, and then offer some advice for reworking these areas.

Rewriting sections or the entire manuscript may be necessary. Good, critical beta readers can provide the same kind…

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