Connections is seeking self-contained comics (finished sequential art) on themes of growth, renewal and reinvention. These themes also encompass loss; we will not shy away from stories dealing with darkness, as long as they are life-affirming. We also won’t shy away from humor, as long as it is appropriate for this venue. Stories can be fiction or non-fiction.
While proceeds from this anthology will benefit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, stories need not be about suicide and suicide prevention. Appropriate story ideas include but aren’t limited to: experiences as a hotline call center worker or mental health professional, survivor stories, stories that celebrate life, stories about grieving and moving forward, stories about getting through tough times, stories about living with mental illness, bullying stories, family experiences, stories about being on the outside looking in, friendship/community stories, stories about experiences that make life worth living, stories about coping with pain, stories about choices, stories that highlight coping skills, and stories that deal with handling feelings of apathy or numbness.
The issue of suicide or suicide prevention can be a difficult topic, and any submissions directly addressing suicide should be aware of guidelines for approaching these topics. The overall message should be one of hope (or even appropriate humor!), and we strongly encourage including information on recovery, overcoming suicidal thinking, and increasing coping skills. Death by suicide should not be sensationalized or glamorized, and seeking help should be encouraged. Please avoid describing suicide attempts as “successful,” “unsuccessful,” or “failed.” Please use phrasing such as “died by suicide” or “killed him/herself” rather than “committed suicide.”
Writers or writer/artists who are interested in contributing to this anthology will need to provide a short description of their intended comic along with an approximate page length. Artists who are interested in teaming up with a writer can submit samples of their artwork, and we will endeavor to match artists with writers.
Once a story idea has been chosen for inclusion in the anthology, writers and writer/artists will need to submit a script for editorial review. The final art will be due six months after the script review process is completed.
Previously published works will be accepted as long as they fit with the theme of the book, are submitted in the proper format (see below), and are submitted by the person or team with the appropriate rights to reprint.
Please note that this is not a contest, it is an open call for submissions. All works will be fairly considered, and those deemed most appropriate for publication will be included in the final printed anthology. The Connections editorial committee, an all-volunteer group of comic creators involved in Sunday Comix, will print and review each submission to determine the final pieces for publication. If accepted, please know that we will request rights to publish the comic and possibly use images in promotional material.
What to send
Story ideas or previously published works for consideration should be submitted no later than January 31, 2014. Previously published works should conform to the guidelines for final stories as indicated below. Submitters will be notified of the results of our review in mid January.
Writers and writer/artists whose story ideas are accepted will need to submit a final script by May 15, 2014. During the script review process, we may ask for specific changes if we have any concerns about suitability for the anthology. The script review process will be completed by June 15, 2014.
Final stories should be submitted as 1- to 10-page, print-ready works in PDF, JPG, or TIF format at 300 dpi minimum. Each page should be in portrait orientation and easily scale to 6 inches x 9 inches (the “live area” available on each page). All art should either be submitted in gray scale or should look acceptable when printed without color.
The printed book will be 7 inches x 10 inches and in black and white (gray scale).
How to send it
Please send all story ideas to ConnectionsComic[at]gmail.com. In the subject line, please include your last name(s) and “Connections submission.”
For previously published stories submitted for consideration, please include the following information within each email:
- The names (pseudonyms are fine) of each person involved in creating the work and their roles, for example, “Story by John Smith, pencils and inks by Jane Jones, letters by Jim Brown;” if one person did everything, indicate that too
- Short, 100-word bios for each person involved
- The name of your submission
- The actual submission, attached as a 1- to 10-page PDF, TIF, or JPG file
- Anything else we might need to know, such as previous publication information
When to send it
Story ideas or previously published stories are due by January 31, 2014.
Story scripts are due by May 15, 2014.
Final artwork is due by December 15, 2014.