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Q: Describe what you publish in 25 characters or less.
A: Weird, wicked, lovely.
Q: What other current publications (or publishers) do you admire most?
A: We have great respect for Small Beer Press, Lightspeed Magazine, Weird Tales magazine, Elder Signs Press, and Clarkesworld Magazine, to name a few.
Q: If you publish writing, who are your favorite writers? If you publish art, who are your favorite artists?
A: Of course, we adore our writers, including Cody Goodfellow, Simon C. Larter, Ken Liu, Don Pizarro, Steven James Scearce, K. V. Taylor, and many more. We're also big fans of Kelly Link, Ted Chiang, Neil Gaiman, Sean Stewart, Joe Hill, Karen Joy Fowler, Bruce Sterling, China Mieville, Seanan McGuire, H.P. Lovecraft, and William Shakespeare.
Q: What sets your publication apart from others that publish similar material?
A: We only print what we love. We're far more interested in making brilliant books than we are in meeting a production or sales quota, and will take as long as we need to in order to create the best books we possibly can. In addition, we delight in indulging our weird tastes with unusual tales of madness, beauty, and wonder.
Q: What is the best advice you can give people who are considering submitting work to your publication?
A: Love reading, and read as much as you can. We do, and can spot a cheap knock-off a mile away. We want original stories, told with finess and creativity, and the more you read, the better chance you have to knowing what that looks like. Most of all, we want your stories! Tell us what you see, how it makes you feel, and show us the world in a way that only you can.
Q: Describe the ideal submission.
A: The best submissions are crisp, clean, well-written, clever without being pretentious, lovely without being trite, and posessing a unique perspective. Best of all, they're a joy to read.
Q: What do submitters most often get wrong about your submissions process?
A: The biggest mistakes are not reading the submission guidelines, assuming we won't realize when they've turned in a rough draft, or those that attempt to be "modern retellings" of famous stories or characters without adding anything new to the story.
Q: How much do you want to know about the person submitting to you?
A: Short story submissions require less of a cover letter than do novel length subs, but the accompanying email still needs to include your real name (note a pen name if you have one but never, never, submit under your pen name alone), contact information, and whether the story has been previously published.
Q: If you publish writing, how much of a piece do you read before making the decision to reject it?
A: We read each piece submitted, in its entirety. Each submission is read by at least two readers before a decision is made, and may be read by several more before offered acceptance.
Q: What additional evaluations, if any, does a piece go through before it is accepted?
A: If a story has technical elements or requires a specialist's knowledge, we may send it out for expert reading or editing.
Q: What is a day in the life of an editor like for you?
A: Much of my week is spent working at my dayjob, or spending time with my family. I steal hours from whatever place can spare them - meaning that in order to read, write, and edit, I give up quite a lot of sleep.
Q: How important do you feel it is for publishers to embrace modern technologies?
A: We accept email submissions, maintain websites, have Twitter feeds and Facebook pages dedicated both to Dagan Books proper and various individual titles, and use both PoD and traditional print services. While we would never give up the printed word, we find a great story reads just as well on an e-reader too.