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Letters to Black Gate: iPads and Submission Windows

Sunday, July 4th, 2010 | Posted by John ONeill

cover_issue2Matthew Maestri writes:

I’m a new writer looking for open markets, especially in the fantasy/science fiction genre. I’m very impressed and intrigued by Black Gate, which I stumbled upon a couple months ago. I will be the first to admit that I tend to hover near the longer side of fiction, and it was very appealing to me that your magazine is one of the few remaining that actually prefers to publish longer stories. I have some brewing and I was just wondering when you might be accepting submissions again? Thanks for your time.

Glad to hear you’re interested in Black Gate, Matthew. Unfortunately, we’re still digging through the pile of submissions we received during the brief period we opened last year. 

We were deluged with submissions, far more than we expected, and just as we were making progress, I was waylaid by an 8-month project that demanded all my time (my company was bought by Microsoft).

After dropping everything else to get Black Gate 14 out the door this spring, I’ve started a fresh reading period, returning to reading submissions for the first time since last summer. 

I hope to have all submissions returned by the end of the summer, and then we’ll re-assess when we can realistically open to submissions again.  At the earliest, that will be some time next year.

Sorry to disappoint you. Keep your eye on our Submission Guidelines, and the Black Gate blog, for up-to-date news.

Marilyn Ponty writes:

What are your art submission guidelines?

Great question. We’re looking for dynamic, attention-getting black & white art to illustrate original fiction appearing in Black Gate.  You can see some representative samples of the art we’ve published here and here.

Please don’t send us art illustrating existing or upcoming stories in Black Gate.  All our illustrations are private commissions.  If you have small-sized (50k or less) samples of your work, we’re happy to look at 2-3 black & white samples.  E-mail them to us at

I hope that helps.  And good luck!

Brent Knowles from tells of us experiencing the PDF version of Black Gate on the iPad:

I haven’t finished reading the electronic version of Black Gate 14 (when I do I’ll post a review on my blog) but I’ve done some quick experimenting with the PDF. So far things look good, thought I’d let you know.

  1. Viewing on PC worked great of course;
  2. iPad – On the iPad it is (almost) as good as reading the print version and looks slick, handling all the images (so far) correctly. If it’s okay with you when I do post the review I was going to take a couple pictures (of the table of contents of BG on the iPad) and post them to my blog.

Anyways just thought I’d let you know it does work well. Now I’m going to take the iPad into the backyard and get back to reading Black Gate!

Thanks Brent — we don’t get enough feedback on the PDF. And certainly, please feel free to use 1-2 images from the magazine as part of your review of the issue.  Looking forward to seeing it!

See previous letters to Black Gate here.


  1. Thanks for posting this! Now I know why I haven’t heard back yet. Good luck!

    Comment by karen wester newton - July 5, 2010 6:05 pm

  2. That’s useful to know, I was worrying my submission never reached you.

    Also, “my company was bought by Microsoft.” Wow!

    Comment by Shiny - July 6, 2010 4:32 am

  3. Thanks for understanding, Karen. I read submissions all weekend, and will work hard at them until I am done.


    Comment by John ONeill - July 6, 2010 11:30 am

  4. Shiny – yes, being bought by Microsoft was quite a ride.

    The company was Teamprise; I was hired as CEO by three friends who owned the company in 2006. I’d worked with all three when I was a manager at a small software start-up called Spyglass in 1994-96.

    At Spyglass we had a product called Enhanced Mosaic, which became a lot more popular after Microsoft purchased it in 1995 and renamed it “Internet Explorer 1.0”

    As you can see, we’ve had quite a relationship with Microsoft. :)

    It was exciting to be involved with another sale to Microsoft – this one even larger than when we sold IE – but it consumed my life for many months. I was on contract to Microsoft until April of this year; I’m just now getting my life back.


    Comment by John ONeill - July 6, 2010 11:36 am

  5. Waa-Waa. Read our stories mister!

    Comment by Jason M. Waltz - July 6, 2010 5:51 pm

  6. P.S. Very cool to hear about BG on the iPad. I’m drooling even more now.

    Comment by Jason M. Waltz - July 6, 2010 5:52 pm

  7. Me too! I’m a publisher, when do I get an iPad??


    Comment by John ONeill - July 6, 2010 6:54 pm

  8. There’s an apartment complex in a suburb of Milwaukee running a special: Rent this month and receive an iPad!

    Comment by Jason M. Waltz - July 6, 2010 7:37 pm

  9. oh… seriously? the rent in Milwaukee and the ipad… is it true…?
    another thing, I live in Spain, how can I get some issues of Black gate?

    Comment by francisco72 - July 18, 2010 12:44 pm

  10. Hey Francisco! I had dinner with Goth Chick Friday night, and she mentioned you as one of her favorite fans. She’ll be jealous that you posted here too – keep an eye out for her minions!

    We ship Black Gate back issues overseas for $16 shipping, plus $9.95 for most issues. An even better option is the PDF versions, available for just $4.95/issue. What issues are your interested in?


    Comment by John ONeill - July 18, 2010 1:16 pm

  11. jejeje… I like Goth chick humour the most… keep this in secret…
    a question, I prefer the pdf but how can I pay it? a bank transfer? paypal?
    I’m interested in the first issues and later the most recent

    Comment by francisco72 - July 19, 2010 4:46 pm

  12. Hey Francisco,

    Paypal is perfect. You can use our online order form, or I can send you a Paypal payment request for $4.95 (or $17.95 for 4 issues).

    Issues 11, 12, 13 and 14 are currently available as PDFs. We’re working hard to convert earlier issues.


    Comment by John ONeill - July 21, 2010 1:39 am

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