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This is not an erotica anthology!

The goal of this anthology is to focus on the deeper emotional aspects of romantic love and not so happy endings. All entries must be clean with no romantic content exceeding a general PG-13 range

Everything that stands in the light 
Also has a side that stands in the darkness.

Love is no exception.

Love is often depicted as light, joyful, fun, exciting, carefree ... 

But there is also a darker side to love—a deeper, frightening, desperate, tragic side. 

Dare to dive deep into this raw, emotional collection of short stories, prose, and poems which strives to expose the lightless side of tragedy, heartbreak, desperation, and love. 

Taking Submissions NOW!

Rules for Submitting:

Releasing: Spring 2022


Theme: Exposing the deeper sides of love and romance


Genre: Any and all genres welcome! Must follow theme/categories/guidelines


Categories: Tragedy/Sad, Twisted/Villain Romance, and Worth Fighting for/Desperation


Payment: I will pay authors for their accepted pieces:


Short stories---$10each

Length: Poetry under 1k. Short stories between 500 and 5k


Due Date: December 7th, midnight Central time

Submit to: and add your name to the subject line Aphotic Submission.

Submissions must be: Size 12 font. Times New Roman. Double Spaced. Word or Google Docs. Put your story title in the document title.

I pay YOU if your entry is accepted!

No entry fee required to send in a submission

Please keep in mine that until a contract is signed, I hold rights to retract an acceptance or change prices paid to authors at any time 

Due to amount of entries incoming, submissions may close early 


Sometimes love isn't all fun and games. Sometimes it's heartache and war. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. 

Sometimes it's not a happily ever after, and sometimes we have to fight for our happy endings.

In this anthology, we are striving to expose the deeper side of love. 

Think tragedy romance, the kind we know well like Titanic 

Or passionate, desperate romance that lets nothing stand in it's way like Edgar Allen Poe's "for we loved with a love that was more than love"

Or even the twisted kind of romance—the kind where the villains fall in love, or love makes them the villain, like Phantom of the Opera.

This anthology is all about the raw emotional depth of love and the way it warps and changes who we are. It's about exposing the challenges that love throws our way and how it sometimes breaks our hearts. It's about how it can sometimes turn to hate, but is also worth dying for. 

What does the deeper side of love look like to you?


—All short stories must be between 500 and 5K words

—Short poems are up to 100 words

—Long poems and prose must be between 100 and 1K words

—NO SMUT. This is not an erotica anthology.

—PG-13 cursing and gore is accepted but not in excessive amounts*

What romantic content do we allow?

This anthology is all about the EMOTIONAL side of love, not the physical. 

Detailed/graphic sexual acts will be rejected or you will be asked to remove them. 

Clean romantic content is allowed but nothing over a typical PG-13 rating


There will three categories open to submissions.

 1) It Was Never Meant to Be (tragic/sad)

2) A Crime to Love (twisted/villain romance)


3) A Love More Than Love (worth fighting for/desperate)


All genres are accepted as long as they fit into one of these categories and the main theme

*except erotica*

How it works:

We will be receiving poetry and short story submissions from now until December 7th at midnight (Central Time), and if your work is accepted, you will be notified by the end of December 2021. 

Please email your submissions to Effie Joe Stock at: 

Accepted authors will be paid $10 per short story, and $5 per poem. 


Please keep in mind that we will receive many wonderful submissions which will be accepted for the book, so if your work is rejected, it doesn't mean it isn't good. 

That being said, don't be afraid to send in your work if you've never been published before! It's an excellent way to get familiar with the world of publishing wh1ile also getting your name and work into readers hands!

We will only be accepting stories that don’t require large amounts of developmental editing, so please send in polished work and be willing to accept critiques and required changes!


All authors who end up in the book will keep full rights to their work, so feel free to submit stories that have already been published elsewhere or which you would like to republish in the future. 


We are thrilled to be working with you and are so excited to read your work!

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