NOTE: No submissions will be accepted until the current anthology is published.
Science fiction stories. Fantasy stories. Horror stories. All for adults, but of the family-friendly persuasion.
T. Gene Davis’s Speculative Blog posts free science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories–mostly by guest authors. Subscribe (on the left) for the free sci-fi, horror and fantasy stories newsletter delivered when new stories post. The stories accepted are for adults (sometimes with mature themes), but safe to leave open on a tablet at the kitchen table where kids can get ahold of it. I currently pay $100 (US) for the right to publish your story on the blog and in the anthology. Check out the submission guidelines for more information.
Here are a few stories chosen at random to read, or check out the archives for more.
- Unlikely Things"Help me get convicted." "No." "You don't feel I need to go to jail?" Ruby groaned. "Being a defense attorney shouldn't be this complex." "I will die if they put me back on that ship. How would that make you feel?" Ishmael's plump face projected patience and interest, rather than fear and hope. "I know you are innocent, and if I prove you are in court I'll never forgive myself." "I agree. You can't tell them what I've told you. You have to get me convicted." She threw her pile of legal documents across the room, spreading papers and breaking tablets. "I hate you! I'll be disbarred for this! I hate you!" She glanced up to see the prison guard looking through the observation window inquisitively. Ruby discreetly wiped her eye, careful not to smear any makeup. Satisfied that he did not need to intervene, the guard disappeared from the small window. Ishmael leaned back in his aluminum chair, crossing his arms with a broad smile. "Thank you."
- A Healing Song’s Curse"You never sing for me. Why is that?" Rob's voice was casual, but I froze. It was a breezy evening in March and a tired sun handed out the last lights for the day. "I have an awful voice. I fear you'll stop loving me once you hear me sing." I tried to keep my voice playful, but fear in me didn't make it easy. He sighed and put a finger under my chin, turning my face so that my eyes met his. Chocolate brown and inviting—that was what his eyes were. "Don't lie, Nupur." His casual tone had gone, and hurt framed his voice. "You sing for the young, the old, the sick and I always hear that you have a lovely voice. Some say your voice has magic." With a great effort, I kept my face expressionless. The last word hit too close to home. "So why not for me, love? What have I done wrong?"
- In the Company of Shadows"Child, keep out of gravestone shadows." Wendy gave Aiden's hand a slight tug, dragging him farther from an elongated shadow in the grass. "I don't want to die." "No one dies in here. Just don't step in any shadows. The sun's getting higher. See. The shadows are already disappearing." "Will they follow us then?" Aiden stumbled on a root hidden in the uncut weeds. "The shadows?" "Those men."
- ErosionFred looked down on her burnt form. His squinting eyes bookmarked a crumpled expression and one twitching nostril that threatened to make his voluminous mustache crawl away to find a more appetizing site. Smokey smells replaced the expected morning scent of sagebrush after rain. Her right arm flung wildly above her reposed form, clawed at the scorched bark of an ancient pinyon destroyed by the previous night’s fire. He scratched his back and rubbed his fingers through the mustache to calm its twitching, then cleared his throat. He looked at the late morning sun, as if to burn the image of her scorched flesh out of his mind. She opened one eye slightly. Her voice rasp, “I must have slipped out. It won’t let me back in.” Her left fist unclenched, but the right hand kept rubbing raw burnt fingers against the remains of the pinyon.
- MesmeristHe leaned in, intruding on her personal space in a familiar way she only allowed her mentor. Lucy felt his words as heated breath on one ear more than she heard them. "Be evasive." His lips and breath withdrew, leaving her questioning his intensions. They stood on an empty tube platform. No cars. Above, concrete and countless feet of dirt. Below, rails in a six-foot deep pit. She put a hand on her stomach to settle it.
- Tom CrowThe young people living in Rose County had never seen Tom Crow on account of him living as a hermit somewhere up in the wooded hills. Everyone knew of him though; he was a legend in my growing-up time. The rumors were that he lived somewhere northeast of Culver’s Pass. When I was 12, Robby Lee and I decided to go hiking up that way and try to find his cabin, maybe get a glimpse of him, maybe steal something as a souvenir. That would sure enough give us bragging rights, that is, if anyone would believe we really did it.
- Not Of This WorldIt was a Saturday afternoon in the autumn of the year. The sky was cloudy. A cold wind had just started to blow. A figure, male by appearance, possibly between age thirty and forty, walked along a lonely sidewalk. He had black hair, frizzled, reaching down to the collar of his green windbreaker. He sported blue jeans and decrepit running shoes. The zipper of his jacket was broken, requiring him to hold the two halves shut with his left hand in an attempt to guard against the wind. He had a twitch, his right eye lid opening and closing; making it appear that he was constantly winking. He ground his jaw from side to side, a habit of decades that was slowly wearing down his teeth. He mumbled to himself, low and inconspicuous sounds that could have been words, easily lost in the noise of the neighborhood. The locals pegged him quickly as peculiar. People who saw him ignored him or made distance, establishing a comfort zone that could be as far as a city block.
- Inpestation“Go on, dear,” urges Janice, pushing her through the door of the First Contact Community Centre. “Trust me. This is exactly what you need.” Maya’s not so sure. What she really needs is an evening away from her problems. All those hundreds and thousands of problems scurrying through her cupboards and burrowing under her carpets. Who’d have guessed an alien invasion would have quite so many legs? She shudders, sitting down beside an embarrassed looking lady with thick rimmed glasses and braids, and tries her best to look invisible. “Welcome,” says the man from the newly formed Inpestation Information Board. “Thank you for coming.” “Of course I’m not here for me,” Janice tells the people in the next row. Just loudly enough for the entire room to hear. “Maya’s the one with the horrible creatures.”
- The Real StuffI was headin’ out to feed the cows when I heard a zinnia ask, “You got a minute?” I shoulda known. When a flower asks you if you got a minute, it’s gonna take more’n a minute.
- Layover"The layover was only two years." Hazel let out a breath and crinkled her already wrinkled forehead. "He told me about it." Keira bounced her newborn child, more to calm herself than to calm the baby. "We're newlyweds. How could he die? Was there a malfunction in stasis?"