Submissions Guidelines

Updated: 27 July 2022

We always welcome story submissions from our readers! After all, it’s our readers who know best exactly what works in stories like ours. You can use this form to provide feedback or to email a story submission.

This is a free, nonprofit archive. No compensation is offered. Metabods posts stories directly submitted by the author or with the author’s permission; we don’t automatically include any stories that are genre-relevant appearing elsewhere on the web.


Submitting a story

To submit a story for consideration, please use the contact/submission form and paste your story in text form in the “Message” box.

Formatting. Use regular text, with a blank line in between paragraphs. Try to avoid unusual characters, since not all browsers are compatible. You can use HTML italic and bold tags (<i> and <b>) and ampersand escape codes (e.g., &mdash; for an em dash), if you want to.

Author information. You MUST include your name and email address with a story submission. This information will be kept strictly confidential unless you explicitly agree otherwise.

Byline and author links. Feel free to supply a pen name to list your stories under. You may also include a web page and or email address that can be linked next to your byline and on your author page. If you want to attach a web page or email address to your previously posted stories, please contact me and I’ll be happy to add them on. You can also change your byline any time after publication; just let me know.

Editing. Metabods retains the right to edit any submitted story for grammar and clarity, unless the author explicitly informs the editor/moderator that the story or chapter must be either published as is or not published. (There is an option for this on the submission form.) Normally, edits are limited to what is necessary for English readability, in the judgment of the site moderator and editor. You can request to review edits made to the submitted work prior to or after posting of the submission on the site. If you want to request this at the time of submission, just include your request in the “Comments (for the Moderator only)” box on the submissions page.

Language. Your story can be in either American English or British English; don’t worry, I won’t localize “localise” into “localize” or anything like that. As of this writing, however, everything on Metabods is in the general category of English, mostly because I am not able to edit or quality-control submissions in any other language.

Possible problems

There are a few different ways a story might be potentially problematic.

Authorship. Please only submit a story if you are the author, or explicitly have permission from the author to submit the story for display on Metabods. Please do not remove or replace another author’s or poster’s attribution from a story submission.

Problematic content. Please do not submit stories with involving adults having sex with minors, or underage minors having sex with each other. Stories featuring characters who are of high school age should specify that they are 18 years old; alternatively, you could move the setting to a college or other venue not associated with minors.

Other problematic content includes what common sense would suggest. For example: rape or coercion of minors; abusive situations involving minors; graphic violence; unwilling participants; dangerous sexual acts; depiction of minors being photographed for distribution; suicide or attempted suicide without consequences; adult sexual situations with children; or works which the submitter does not have permission to contribute to Metabods.

Fanfiction. Generally speaking, stories involving copyrighted characters from mainstream media are discouraged, not only for legal reasons but because this is not generally a site focused on fanfiction and similar content. Personally—and this is stated without judgment as there is a lot of very good fanfiction out there—the tenor of Metabods is skewed toward original characters and situations. If you submit a story featuring fictional characters from television shows, movies, books, comic strips, etc., please include an author’s note flagging the use of such characters for the benefit of those who might not want to read such a story.

Celebrities. Stories about celebrities may not include stalking, threats against celebrities, or the death of celebrities or their friends or family members as a plot device. If you submit a story that features real individuals, please include an author’s note flagging the use of such individuals for the benefit of those who might not want to read such a story.

Rights

Stories belong to their authors; by submitting, you’re granting us a license to share them on the site.

Authors. Authors retain rights to and title to their submitted works. By submitting a story, you grant the Metabods a nonexclusive, worldwide, royalty-free, perpetual, and noncancellable license to display the work.

If you have concerns about this or specific issues relating to a particular work—say, it can only be published after or until a specific date—please contact me and I’ll be happy to discuss.

You can license your stories to other publishers, but that doesn’t revoke the license granted to Metabods. Metabods will respect requests for changes to stories, to attribution, and/or to email addresses by the original author of the work (See “Removing a story” below).

Publisher. Metabods retains the right to decline to publish on metabods.com, or remove from publication on metabods.com, any story or chapter submitted. Normally such refusal has to do with problematic content or intellectual property (see “Potential problems” above), or because the story or chapter is not, in the judgment of the moderator/editor, consonant with the tone, history, and existing content of the site.

Publication and removal is at the webmaster’s discretion, which may be both subjective and arbitrary. Please see also the General Disclaimers page for more information.

Removing a story

You can request your story be removed from the active site even after it’s posted.

Author rights. The author retains the right to remove or revise any story or chapter at any time upon submission of a request via email; if this request is not from the email address associated with previous correspondence, some additional verification may be necessary.

Honoring requests. Decisions to honor requests to remove a work from public display are determined on a case-by-case basis. This does not nullify, terminate, or revoke any license granted to Metabods. If a story you wrote appears on Metabods and you wish to remove it, please contact me immediately and request the story be removed.

Questions?

If you have any questions or queries about submission, just ask. And thanks for sharing your fantasies! We and our readers truly appreciate it.

Contacting me. The best way to reach me is by any of the following:


Making your story a good read

Help ensure your story is an enjoyable experience for your readers! Here are a few hints that come from my long experience as a reader, writer, and editor.

Reread for typos and snags you missed and spellcheck didn’t catch. Word processors make spell-check and often grammar-check easy these days, so please make sure you’ve machine-reviewed your story before submitting. (Third-party apps like Grammarly can also help if you have something like that, though as with the grammar-check built into in MS Word or Google Docs they only go so far.)

It’s also a good idea to give your story a complete manual read-through (or two) for mistakes your spell-check and grammar-check won’t necessarily catch. Case in point: the day after I first posted this revision to the Guidelines page, I reread a recent story of mine and noticed I’d missed a reference to my protagonist enjoying “comfort foot” (instead of “comfort food”). Not buried two thirds of the way in, either: it was in the first paragraph of the story! As you write, your mind supplies what you planned on being there even if that’s not what you typed, so it’s important to go back and experience the story, as best you can, as a reader instead of as its author. (I’ll keep reminding myself, too. Just remember, dude: comfort foot. )

Watch your tenses. One pitfall of fiction writing that often flies under the radar is that it’s surprisingly easy to accidentally switch tenses partway through a story. Even experienced authors sometimes start out in the past tense and then, without realizing it, switch to present tense when the action starts or intensifies. This is very distracting for readers, and it’s also time-consuming for me to edit, so I hope you will take a moment to review your story for tense shifts before submitting. One good indicator is your dialog tags: look through your story to see if you’ve got he said in one part of the story and he says in another.

If English isn’t your first language (or you just can’t be bothered about grammatical nugatories): there are two general kinds of stories when it comes to tense in English. Some stories are set in the present tense, with events that happened before in the past tense: Then Bob fucks Michael with great enthusiasm, remembering all the noises Michael made the first time. “That feels amazing,” Michael says.

Other stories are set in the past tense, with memories and flashbacks in the pluperfect (past of the past) tense: Then Bob fucked Michael with great enthusiasm, remembering all the noises Michael had made the first time. “That feels amazing,” Michael said.

Either is great, and which you use is subjective. Mostly it’s up to your gut feeling about what works best for you and for the story you’re writing. Just, please, stick with one or the other, and take a look afterward to see if in the heat of the moment you accidentally shifted from one to the other along the way. I’ll be very grateful if you do.

Be consistent as you’re formatting dialog. Speaking of dialog tags: the convention in American narrative is to write dialog as follows: “Fuck me,” he said sweetly. Note that the punctuation at the end of the quote is a comma before the quotation mark, followed by the next words continuing in lower case.

The reason for the latter is that grammatically this is all one sentence: in the case of something like “Fuck me,” he said, the subject is he and the sense is He said “Fuck me.” When inverted, as in routine prose dialog, this becomes “Fuck me,” he said, with the intervening comma a convention to emphasize that the quote is a clause coming before the subject of the sentence. If you’re ever trying to remember whether that he after the quote is capitalized, just think of it that way: “Fuck me,” he said is all one sentence.

Moderate your paragraph lengths. Readers tend to get lost in very long paragraphs, and may lose the thread of your story or, if it gets out of hand, they may even lose interest altogether. Try to keep your paragraphs from being too long or too short. In general, a paragraph deals with a specific idea you want to get across, so if you shift to another idea, even if it’s related (say, you’ve been talking about the character’s pecs, and now you want to talk about his abs for a while), you might want to start a new paragraph. Also bear in mind that paragraphs that look reasonable length-wise on a computer screen will seem longer for readers viewing your story on narrower devices in portrait mode, like phones or tablets.

Most of time paragraphs are three, four, or five sentences—something like that. Paragraphs are a tool, so you can use them in a whole bunch of ways—just remember that really long ones can work against you if you’re not careful.

Paragraphs in dialog. When your dialog changes speakers, you should start a new paragraph. This is admittedly another convention of English prose fiction writing, but it really does help your reader follow the dialog and the story behind it.

Again, if you have any queries or questions at all about your submission, just ask. And thanks again! Metabods would not be what it is without authors like you.

 

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