Limited Demographic: Australian residents or ex-pats, or members of CSFG Note: Please remove your name from the manuscript to facilitate anonymous judging The premise
Rogues, thieves, pirates and ne’er-do-wells abound in speculative fiction. Sometimes heroic, sometimes villainous, often somewhere in between, rogues are as likely to steal one’s heart as one’s purse, and show little remorse while helping themselves to either.
So why do we love them? Because they’re imperfect, fallible, and even vulnerable under that carefully-maintained, world-weary exterior.
Rogues represent something we rarely see in our daily lives: ordinary people prepared to take on the “powers that be” by way of guile and subterfuge. But are they only in it for the loot, or are they – deep down – romantic at heart?
What we want:
Swashbuckling adventures brimming with humour, loot, and bad blood.
Gut-wrenching dilemmas, resolved (for good or ill), by the thrust of a knife in the dark.
Thoughtful stories exploring the foggy spaces between justice, and the law.
Heroic deeds performed by someone with a less-than-heroic past.
Magic and/or technology, combined with charm and charisma, to pull off an impossible heist.
Hilarious sea shanties.
Sweaty tales of betrayal and Machiavellian intrigue.
We want to discover passion, righteous indignation, and the depths of one thief’s hatred of another. How far will the lure of gold, revenge, or the promise of a midnight tryst push one toward the brink of what is honourable, and that which lies beyond? What horrors await a scoundrel who goes too far?
Han and Chewie, Arya Stark, Captain Jack Harkness, Koen “Cleverman” West, Deadpool, Imperator Furiosa and Captain Jack Sparrow are all fantastic examples of what we want for A Hand of Knaves. You might notice our list isn’t made up entirely of able-bodied, straight, white dudes. That’s important to us. We want this anthology to reflect the rich diversity of the human race and our imaginations. Amaze us with thrilling new worlds, adventures, and characters with unique faults and quirks.
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