Ahoy, Critterfolk!
New entry Dec 07

Critter Notices

Critters is 22!

Yes, 21 years ago Critters was born. Wow! Thanks so much to all of you, who've made it such a resounding success!

Books from Critters!

Check out Books by Critters for books by your fellow Critterfolk, as well as my list of recommended books for writers.

How to Write SF

The Craft of Writing Science Fiction that Sells by Ben Bova, best-selling author and six-time Hugo Award winner for Best Editor. (This is one of the books your ol' Critter Captain learned from himself, and I highly recommend it.) (Also via Amazon)

New Book from a Critter Member

**NOW IN PRINT EDITION TOO!** Awesome new book, HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR SPECULATIVE FICTION OPENINGS, from a Critter member whose unearthed a shard of The Secret to becoming a pro writer. Really good piece of work. "...if you're at all concerned about story openings, you'd be nuts not to read what Qualkinbush has to say." —Wil McCarthy, author of BLOOM and THE COLLAPSIUM

P&E Seeks New Caretaker

Unfortunately, much of the data on the P&E site has become stale and outdated, and needs a new caretaker with the time required to update the site. The listings are being removed until they can be updated by a new caretaker.

Note that the P&E/Critters Annual Readers Poll will run as usual in January.

If you are interested in taking the reins of P&E, and possess what's needed — at least 20hrs/week to volunteer, excellent investigative skills, in-depth knowledge of the publishing industry, ability to detect scams from not-scams, thick skin, good web site skills, good writing ability — please get in touch. Thanks for your interest!


I'm being interviewed live on public radio for Critters 20th birthday. For those who want to listen, it's on the 10am (Mountain time) show on Thursday, 11/19/16, on Colorado Public Radio - has streaming on the site or it's 90.1 FM in the Denver area. [Interview is done, you can listen on the site]

Free Web Sites

Free web sites for authors (and others) are available at

ReAnimus Acquires Advent!

ReAnimus Press is pleased to announce the acquisition of the legendary Advent Publishers! Advent is now a subsidiary of ReAnimus Press, and we will continue to publish Advent's titles under the Advent name. Advent was founded in 1956 by Earl Kemp and others, and has published the likes of James Blish, Hal Clement, Robert Heinlein, Damon Knight, E.E. "Doc" Smith, and many others. Advent's high quality titles have won and been finalists for several Hugo Awards, such as The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy and Heinlein's Children. Watch this space for ebook and print editions of all of Advent's current titles!

Network speeding up

I'm switching the connection over to a new, shiny 10X faster network because of all the load. There might be bits of downtime as your boxes learn new addresses and things. Should be brief. Let me know of any prolonged outages you see.

Preditors & Editors Changeover

With the very sad passing of Dave Kuzminski, who ran P&E, I've taken over the P&E duties. Lots of what I hope are improvements; check it out at

Critters Server is Dying has been Replaced

See important details here in my blog. Let me know if you find anything that isn't working right. (Manuscripts are now available for this week, FYI.)

Book Recommendation

THE SIGIL TRILOGY: The universe is dying from within... "Great stuff... Really enjoyed it." — SFWA Grandmaster Michael Moorcock

Announcing ReAnimus Press

If you need help making ebooks from manuscripts or print copies—or finding great stuff to read—look no further! An ebook publisher started by your very own Critter Captain. (And with a 12% Affiliate program.) [More]








Manuscript Submission

Submit a WordPerfect Manuscript to Critters


No guarantees this will properly convert your manuscript!

If you don't have an empty box and a "browse" button next to "filename to send" down below, sorry, your browser won't let you use this form. Just email it as usual.

This page also only works for WordPerfect files. And not always at that. Try it and see how it goes. :-)

If this isn't what you were looking for, try the form to submit a text manuscript.

Your E-mail address (If this is wrong, you won't get any critiques!):

Your Name (Mixed caps & lower case, please, as in "John R. R. Tolkien"):

(Real Life name please, no pseudonyms)

Manuscript Title (Mixed caps, as in "The Return of the King, Chapters 1-5"):

Genre: Science Fiction    Fantasy    Horror

Form: What you want critiqued is a ...
Short Story/Novelette (self-contained prose fiction under 20,000 words)
Novel/Novella (chapters or RFDR -- prose fiction over 20,000 words or part thereof)
Query letter/synopsis

Word Count (approx.):

Is this a REsubmission (revision) of something CURRENTLY in the queue:

 Yes -- This is a new file for a manuscript already in the queue (or already submitted to Aburt to be added to the queue but for which you haven't yet received a confirmation from Aburt; i.e., no additional entry in the queue needs to be added, just use this file instead -- note that the manuscript title above must be exactly the same as it is currently in the queue (or as already submitted) or you will incur the wrath of Aburt!)
 No -- This is a brand new manuscript neither currently in the queue nor recently sent in to be added to the queue; a new entry in the queue definitely needs to be added for it

Is this a novel you want marked as a Request For Dedicated Readers:

Yes -- This is for a novel I want marked as a Request For Dedicated Readers
No -- This is an ordinary short story or chapters of a novel for which I don't want dedicated readers

Manuscript (WordPerfect!) filename to send:

Author notes to readers (will go at end of manuscript; this is where most notes belong):

URGENT reader notes (placed at top of manuscript; use to indicate e.g. mature content, British spellings, synopsis of prior chapters, or other URGENT things readers need to know before reading -- 99% of notes should go at the end, though, and not here [trust me!]. FYI, assume that readers understand things like _underlines mean italic_ or *stars means emphasis* etc. and don't bother mentioning those. Beware, I will relocate comments to the end that I don't feel are urgent!):

Any important comments to aburt (these will NOT be in the manuscript file):


[via ►PayPal or: Square]
Happy minion   Happy minion — last donation was 3 days ago. About $800 to go. A big Thank You! to Terrance Crow, Bill Leonard, Jacob Brauner, and lots of other Critterfolk for their contributions!

Critters is entirely funded by donations from Critterfolk like you, so yours is most appreciated. Click here to make the minions happy. Every dollar helps. Thanks for your support!



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(Or want to collect money for other people reading your stories?) Check out Aburt's ReAnimus Press.


Fundamental to Critters' success is how people deliver criticisms. Start by reading Critiquing the Wild Writer: It's Not What You Say, But How You Say It. and The Diplomatic Critiquer.


Critters has a special program to get whole novels critiqued. Read about it here.


Please follow these guidelines for formatting and submitting manuscripts to Critters.


Critters keeps a queue of manuscripts out or to be sent. See the Queue.


Want to jump to the head of the Critters queue? The Most Productive Critter or MPC is Awarded weekly to encourage mo' better critting. How to win...


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