Aug 9, 2017 | news

Here are the stories we bought in April, along with some statistics on race and ethnicity

For a week this April, we were open to short-story submissions of up to 4,000 words. We received 850 submissions and accepted 8, an acceptance rate of 0.94 percent.

This was our second submissions period in which we asked submitters to take a quick, anonymous, 100% voluntary survey in which we asked people’s race and ethnicity. (You can read the results of the first survey here).

This is part of our effort in the wake of our first #BlackSpecFic report to get a better understanding of who is submitting to Fireside, so we can continue working on our mission of inclusivity. (Our second #BlackSpecFic report just wrapped up last week.)

Of the 850 submitters, 735 responded to the survey, or about 86 percent, the same response rate as the first survey. While this is not a scientific survey and we cannot verify the responses, we’re very happy that so many people continue to participate, as we feel it gives us a solid look at who is submitting to Fireside.

Also as before, there were only a few jackass responses, including “Decline to state. Please stop perpetuating myths of ethnicity by acknowleding them. Other than isozyme variants in a few genes here and there, this concept should be gone within about seven generations of global travel” and someone who said that they were white but thought it was helpful to add that they had non-white daughters in law and once lived near a Native American reservation. Three dipshits filled in “Human” as their race.


Here are the results of the survey in a graphic. (People could select multiple options, and they could also fill in a text box under other):


And in plain text:

  • Black 59 (8.0%)
  • Hispanic/Latinx 32 (4.4%)
  • Asian/Pacific Islander 54 (7.3%)
  • First Peoples/Native American/Native Canadian 19 (2.6%)
  • White 569 (77.4 %)

Categories that received more than one fill-in vote included: 4 Indian, 4 African, 3 Arab, and 3 Middle Eastern.

If you’re interested in digging in deeper, the full spreadsheet of responses can be found here This is only our second data point. We’ll be collecting the same information on all of our submissions periods for the foreseeable future, and we’ll continue to post the results.

And now! Here are the stories we bought from April:

Hehua, by Millie Ho

Millie Ho is a writer and illustrator from Toronto. She draws your dark side at Creepify Me and makes nice cat things at feel fine feline. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Uncanny Magazine, LampLight Magazine, Joyland Magazine, and others. She enjoys travelling and divides her time between Canada and Asia. You can find her at and on Twitter as @millie_ho.

River Boy, by Innocent Chizaram Ilo

Innocent Chizaram Ilo lives in Nigeria but dreams about inhabiting strange places and bodies — this is why he writes. He studies undergraduate economics but prefers writing stories anytime of the day to analyzing clunky graphs. He draws strong influences from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Lesley Nneka Arimah, Petina Gappah and Yiyun Li. He once wore fake glasses to up his nerd-game. It didn’t work.

Flow, by Marissa Lingen

Marissa Lingen is a freelance writer of science fiction and fantasy living in the Minneapolis suburbs with two large men and one small dog. She hikes when she can, bakes when she can’t, thinks way too much about soil rehabilitation, and worries about as much as you’d think, all things considered.

Rab the Giant versus the Witch of the Waterfall, by Brian M. Milton

Brian M. Milton is a short, tweed bound writer living in the wilds south of Glasgow. He splits his time between running away from bees, writing up daft ideas and trying to work for a living. He is a member of the Glasgow Science Fiction Writers Circle and has many bruises to show for their robust critiquing methods. He has also been published in anthologies such as Thirty Years of Rain and Caledonia Dreamin’ as well as the magazine KZine and can be found shouting at things on the internet as @munchkinstein

Caesura, by Hayley Stone

Hayley Stone is a writer, editor, and poet from California. Her debut sci-fi novel, Machinations, was chosen as an Amazon Best Sci-fi & Fantasy Book of the Year for 2016. “Caesura” is her first short fiction sale. When not reading or writing, Hayley studies history, falls in love with video game characters, and analyzes buildings for velociraptor entry points. Find her at and on Twitter @hayley_stone.

On Good Friday the Raven Washes Its Young, by Bogi Takács

Bogi Takács is a Hungarian Jewish author currently living in the US as a resident alien. Eir work has been published in venues like Clarkesworld, Apex and Strange Horizons, among others. You can find em on Twitter and Instagram as @bogiperson, or see what happens when Bogi Reads the World.

Reaching Beyond, by Evelyn Wong

It’s taken Evelyn a circuitous time to arrive at her actual purpose in life — writing stories. A reformed brand marketer, she now spends her time experiencing everything life has to offer, weaving them into her stories. Evelyn participated in a Bulgarian artist residency in May and will continue with others throughout Europe for the rest of this year.

© 2017 Brian J. White

About the author

Brian J. White

Brian White started Fireside in 2012 with a Kickstarter and a whole lot of love. Over the next five years as editor and publisher – with the help of his amazing team and of Lauren, his wife and partner in crime – he expanded Fireside from a one-off magazine to a monthly publication to its current form, a site with weekly fiction and occasional nonfiction. Fireside published 150 stories under his tenure, as well as five novels and one novella. He is deeply proud to have had a part in bringing those stories into the world. He was gratified to have proved that writers can be paid more for their work than the industry accepted, and perhaps most proud of the #BlackSpecFic report that Fireside published in 2016. He stepped down as editor and publisher in the summer of 2017, but he remains an equity partner in the company.