What is Curious Fictions?

Our goal is to help the fantastic short fiction out there reach a wider audience, and to help authors make recurring income on their work.

We believe the rise of mobile devices has created the perfect platform for reading short stories, but many readers aren't aware of them.

On Curious Fictions, authors can post their reprints once the original publisher's exclusivity period expires (this varies by contract, but typically takes 6 months to a year).

How do payments work?

All financial transactions are powered by Stripe, a secure payment processor. To read stories on Curious Fictions, people sign up with their credit card info, and will be prompted to contribute to any author whose story they like with a single click. We're starting with a pay-what-you-can system, allowing payments between $1-$10 per story.

For each payment, Curious Fictions charges 25% to cover credit card processing fees and (hopefully, someday) the cost of doing business.

We're aware that fair payment for online content is an unsolved problem, so this is all very experimental and subject to change, but we do have a few guiding principles:

  1. No ads!
  2. The bulk of payments will always go to authors.
  3. We're working to foster a community based on respect for the value of creative work, not an adversarial relationship that encourages gaming the system.
  4. We'd like to create more of a connection between readers and authors and opportunity for healthy discussion, but won't tolerate abuse of any kind.

We believe that setting the right expectations early on can be hugely powerful (and we're not afraid to kick people off the site if they aren't behaving well)!

What countries are supported?

Currently, readers can make credit card payments from anywhere in the world, but to accept payments, authors must be located in one of these 25 countries.

What stories can I post?

Right now we're accepting stories that have appeared in these publications:

If you have an eligible story you'd like to post, contact us for an author invitation. If you'd like to recommend a publication to add, email this address. We're focused on high-quality stories with diverse perspectives, and ideally publications that pay their authors professional rates (6 cents a word or more).

Why only previously-published stories?

For a few reasons: most journals and magazines don't accept stories that have already appeared online, and we don't want to harm an author's ability to publish. Since we're also emphasizing to readers that stories are worth paying for, we also need to ensure quality, and we're not editors ourselves. We know there's a diversity/gatekeeper problem in publishing, though, so we're also considering additional options for the future, such as commissioning some stories directly or partnering with editors for certain series.

These publishers tend toward science fiction and fantasy; is that all you accept?

No, that's more of a side effect of our own reading preferences, and that the SFF community has already been doing a lot to experiment with different payment and publishing models. If you've published a story and think the market should be added, you're welcome to make a recommendation to us!

Do I retain the rights to my story?

Yes, all rights remain with the author, and we require no exclusivity. We might use excerpts of your story to promote it to readers (for example, via email or social media) as long as it's on our site, but you can remove it at any time. If we ever consider other forms of publishing (for example, audio recordings or print anthologies), we'll contact you for permission (and to discuss any separate terms) first.

Can I take my story down once I've posted it?

Yes! You're under no obligation to keep your story up once you've posted it on Curious Fictions, and can remove it at any time you like.

I write under a pseudonym; will people see my legal name?

Not unless you want them to! You'll create one (or more) author profiles when posting your stories, and whatever pen name you use will appear as the byline on the story, and on readers' credit card statements.

Who are you?

We're a very small (as in, one person!) company based in San Francisco, California. Check out our About page to learn more.

What features are in progress?

We're working on a mobile app to make login and payments as smooth as possible, as well as enabling optional commenting, tagging by genre, content warnings, length, and more.

Can I make a suggestion/feature request/tell you about a bug?

Yes! Use this form to note any issues. We may not always be able to implement things right away, but we'll make a note of it and get back to you as soon as we can!

I'm an editor; can this benefit my publication?

We hope so! Short fiction publishers out there do amazing work finding stories, paying authors, and supporting the industry. We include links back to stories' original publications wherever possible, and encourage readers to contribute to publications they like. Contact us if you'd like to accept payments from readers through us (or if you have any other questions, comments, or suggestions).

Do you take artwork?

Not yet, but we're very interested in it! Contact us at art@curiousfictions.com if you'd like to be notified if/when we do.

I have more questions!

You're welcome to contact me with any other questions you have. Thank you for your time and interest!

- Tanya Breshears, Founder