EQMM uses an online submission system that was designed to streamline our process and improve communication with authors. We ask that all submissions be made electronically, using this system, rather than on paper. Our online submissions form for fiction asks for your name, e-mail address, cover letter, story title, and story. Your cover letter should state the length of your story, your publishing history (briefly!), and any other relevant information. If you have not been previously published, let us know that your story should be considered for our Department of First Stories. We ask for the same information for poetry. Please fill out a separate form for each poem submitted for consideration. All stories and poems should be in standard manuscript format and submitted in .DOC, .DOCX, or .RTF format. For information about standard formatting, see William Shunn’s guide to Proper Manuscript Format.
After you have submitted your work, a tracking number will be displayed and an automated e-mail confirmation containing this information will be sent to you. If you have not received this e-mail within twenty-four hours, please notify us by e-mail. Your tracking number will allow you to monitor the status of your submission through our website, so please don’t lose it. NOTE: Some service providers occasionally treat our e-mails as spam, so please keep an eye on your spam folder.
Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine welcomes submissions from both new and established writers. We publish every kind of mystery short story: the psychological suspense tale, the deductive puzzle, the private eye case—the gamut of crime and detection from the realistic (including the policeman’s lot and stories of police procedure) to the more imaginative (including “locked rooms” and “impossible crimes”). We need hard-boiled stories as well as “cozies,” but we are not interested in explicit sex or violence. We do not want true detective or crime stories. With the exception of a regular book review column and a mystery crossword, EQMM publishes only fiction. We are especially happy to review first stories by authors who have never before published fiction professionally. First-story submissions should be addressed to EQMM’s Department of First Stories.
EQMM has been in continuous publication since 1941. From the beginning three general criteria have been employed in evaluating submissions: We look for strong writing, an original and exciting plot, and professional craftsmanship. We encourage writers whose work meets these general criteria to read an issue of EQMM before making a submission. EQMM’s range in the mystery genre is extensive: Almost any story that involves crime or the threat of crime comes within our purview. However, like all magazines, EQMM has a distinctive tone and style and you can only get a sense of whether your work will suit us by reading an issue.
For a sample copy, please send a check made out to Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine for $9.50 (double issue)* to:
Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine
Attn: Sandy Marlowe
6 Prowitt Street
Norwalk, CT 06855
*Please add $2.00 for shipping outside the U.S.
EQMM uses stories of almost every length. 2,500-8,000 words is the preferred range, but we occasionally use stories of up to 12,000 words and we feature one or two short novels (up to 20,000 words) each year, although these spaces are usually reserved for established writers. Shorter stories are also considered, including minute mysteries of as little as 250 words. Our rates for original stories are from 5 to 8¢ a word, sometimes higher for established authors. It is not necessary to query EQMM as to subject matter or to ask permission to submit a story. EQMM does not accept stories previously published in the United States.
We regret that we cannot provide criticism with returned stories. Response time is up to three months. Please do not send a query about a submission until at least three months have passed.
We will continue to accept paper submissions only from authors who have a publishing history with EQMM and lack the technical capability to submit electronically. With any questions or concerns about our guidelines or online submissions system, please e-mail us or call us at (212) 686-7188 x 675.