Public Domain Superhero Anthology

Open Call for Short Stories Starring Public Domain Characters

Attention authors of superhero and action/adventure fiction: we would like to assemble an anthology of the most exciting and thoughtful original takes on classic heroes who have shattered the chains of copyright and broken free into the glorious public domain!

We are looking for short stories about superheroes and two-fisted adventurers from the Golden Age of Comics and early 20th century pulps. Any character is fair game, so long as they are certifiably free of copyright. Selected stories will be in the range of 1,000 to 10,000 words (flexible) and should feature a public domain hero in a prominent role. Authors may submit previously published stories as long as they have the right to do so, but preference will be given to all-new material. There is no limit on the amount of stories one may submit for consideration and no limit on how many characters. However, in the interests of variety (and to avoid putting out a book filled entirely by Tarzan and Black Terror stories!), we will give preference to lesser known characters.

Those stories selected for inclusion will be tightly plotted, filled with compelling and believable characters, and tell a complete and satisfying story (no vignettes or partial stories!). Extra consideration will be given for unique takes on the characters and elaborate world building. Selected stories will also tend to avoid excessive gore, explicit depictions of sex, or gratuitous vulgarity, but are otherwise free to explore a wide latitude of themes and situations. Stories must be thoroughly edited and proof-read before submission.

Publishing Rights and Compensation

Authors must agree to a perpetual license for any stories selected for inclusion in this anthology and all subsequent editions and releases. Authors will not receive any monetary compensation for their inclusion in this volume. Authors will, however, retain the full rights to their own stories, characters, and concepts, and may freely publish them elsewhere. Creative Commons and other open source licenses are OK (and encouraged!).

Authors profiles in the book, complete with sales links to their other books (if applicable). Authors will also be asked to write a short introduction for their stories.

Authors will receive one free e-book copy and one free paperback copy once they go to print. Thereafter, authors will be entitled to purchase paperback copies of the anthology at cost (plus shipping).


The anthology will be released in ebook format on Amazon as a Kindle Unlimited (KU) title for at least the first 90 days. Depending on the KU borrows, we may continue with KU exclusivity or make the titles available on other portals, including but not limited to B&N, Kobo, and Apple.


All stories should be submitted electronically to by the deadline dates below. Documents should be in unprotected Microsoft Word, Open Office, or Rich Text Format.


  • Basic story idea: October 1, 2016
  • First draft: October 31, 2016
  • Corrections and final draft: November 30, 2016
  • Projected ebook release: December 26, 2016 (just in time to take advantage of all those gifted kindles)
  • Paperback: TBD (probably early 2017)