I am thrilled to have L.L. Madrid here this month to present her amazing Speculative 66, one of the best venues for microfiction (I have listed a few of them recently here). Leigh was so kind to answer a few questions for us.
- Describe what your magazine is about. What makes it special / different compared to others?
Speculative 66 is a journal of 66-word genre stories and poems. Using creative commons images, we turn each story into a piece of art. We feel that the compressed length of the stories and the visuals create a unique reading experience.
- Why / how did you decide to start it?
Speculative 66 was conceived while I was on a micro-fiction writing kick. I had a blast submitting to places like Microfiction Monday Magazine, 101 Words, and 50-Word Stories, but I noticed a lack of journals specializing in micro-genre. It’s rare to find a lack of anything on the internet so I felt compelled to start my own magazine.
- Which particular brand of fiction do you publish in Speculative 66- if any in particular?
We publish sci-fi, horror, fantasy, alternate history, noir, and whatever tickles us just right.
- Your target audience: who reads Speculative 66?
Anyone who’s craving something speculative but doesn’t have the time to devour a giant journal! Our issues are designed to be read during the time it takes to drink a tasty beverage.
- Which qualities /characteristics you are after in the pieces you accept for publication?
Telling a story in 66-words is a challenge—if you can do that, you got our attention. With a limited number of words it’s important to make each one count.
We’ve published stories that are punchy with a twist and ones that are lyrical and gloomy. There isn’t a template for the perfect Spec 66 story. Don’t self-reject, send in your work. If you’re unsure about a piece because you haven’t seen anything similar in the magazine then we really want to see it. We love different.
- Which ones among the pieces you have published you would recommend to people?
All of them! We get a lot of wonderful pieces and are lucky to have so many repeat contributors.
I will say that when I first read M. Irene Hill’s Unclassified (Issue 9), I was drinking coffee and nearly choked from laughing.
- You are a writer, too. Tell us something about your own work.
I tend to write quirky, bittersweet stories. Recently, I’ve had stories out in Gamut Magazine, Devilfish Review, and The Coil.
- Anything else you would like to say?
Two things: If you submit something and we pass on your story/poem try us again. I’ve had to reject great stories/poems for reasons beyond the writer’s control like another piece being too similar or an over-full issue. There are too many writers that I hope to see more from who vanish after a rejection.
We’ve been around for a year, and it’s thrilling to know we have readers and writers from across the world. I’m grateful to all the people who read and contribute.
Thank you so much, Leight, for this great interview and I hope Speculative 66 continues thriving as it has done during its first, amazing year.