Guidelines – The Haunted Life

It was the wind. Right?

Old houses lie abandoned at the side of the road. Some are derelicts that have been abandoned for years. Still, as you drive by, knowing these old houses in the middle of nowhere couldn’t possibly have anything in them bigger than a mouse, you see something out of the corner of your eye. Was that a person? Why were their eyes red? It had to be your imagination. You make it home, safe and sound; the place where you’ve lived for so long. Are those whispers? No, your neighbors are simply have their TV too loud. And the lights flickering? This neighborhood has always had brownouts, ever since your grandmother first owned the place. All of it is easily identified, easily dismissed. So how do you account for your grandmother’s smiling face in the kitchen, busy preparing your meal as she glides over the tiles, humming a tune in a voice that is no longer human? Perhaps you live The Haunted Life.

What We Want

There are numerous television shows about it; Ghost Hunters, Ghost Adventures, Most Haunted, and the like. People go exploring old abandoned buildings, houses, architecture or even places that are still alive and thriving but have terrifying stories attached to them. These are the stories we’re looking for. We want the stories of ghosts and terrifying apparitions that people find – through dedicated purpose or by complete accident – and the experiences that come with. It can be something as elaborate as someone trying to debunk a haunted house finding demons and releasing them to the world or as simple as someone realizing that the reason things keep happening in their house is because their dead mother is trying to keep an eye on them all these years later. They don’t necessarily have to be frightening or terrifying, and they could even be comical in nature, but they have to have a ghostly, supernatural aspect to them entering the life of someone ordinary. We want strong plots and subplots if you need them, and great descriptives that draw the reader into the world you’ve created, as well as characters we care about and want to see win, even if they don’t always make in the end.

Publishing Details

Lead editor for this anthology is Bill Otto. The anthology is open to submissions now and will close when filled. This is a single anthology that has no regular release date, though we may use the idea again in the future.

Its format is perfect-bound magazine, 6 x 9, color cover and b&w interior.

Submission Details

  • Stories
  • Stories should not be shorter than 3000 words or longer than 10,000 words and be fiction. However, we may consider works longer than 10,000 words. We are interested only in original fiction and will not accept reprints.

  • Flash Fiction
  • Flash fiction are stories that are 1200 words or less. We are open to these but are looking for for full short stories.


    Stories: $25 for original work.

    Flash fiction: $8 for original work.

    Each contributor will receive one copy of the issue in which that person’s work appears.

    For original work we purchase FNASR.

    How to Submit

    Submit your work to

    Be sure to put HAUNTED LIFE and the title of your story in the subject line. As we use this address for most of our anthologies now, we need to know which anthology you are submitting to. If we don’t know, we will probably just delete your submission out of hand, without response.

    Here’s an example: “HAUNTED LIFE – Bagans – Did You Hear That?”

    Submit your story as an rtf, doc, or docx attachment.

    Submit art as a jpeg or png attachment.

    Next, make sure your contact information is in the upper left corner of your manuscript and in your email. Put the approximate word count in the upper right corner of your manuscript.

    Contact information example:

    Jason Hawes Word Count: 3427
    2362 W Shore Rd
    Warwick, RI 02889
    paypal [if any]:

    If your submission does not include your contact information, Alban Lake Publishing reserves the right to delete your submission unread and without notifying you.

    Please, do not put any fancy formatting into your submissions, such as adding your name, title and page number randomly throughout the story, headers and footers, or anything else that might take away from reading and editing.

    An example of what we don’t want:

    Story story story story. “Story, story?”

    Author Name / Story Title / Page Number

    Story. Story story story story.

    It is important to note that style is much different than the above, and centering certain parts, bold, or italicized type is acceptable.

    It takes a great deal of time to read and edit things properly, so if we see things like this Alban Lake Publishing reserves the right to delete your submission unread and without notifying you.