Scholarly Pursuits FAQ

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What is Duck Prints Press?

Duck Prints Press LLC is a small, independent press based in New York State, USA. Claire Houck (aka Nina Waters, aka unforth) is the managing member/owner and is the lead editor for this project. Our founding vision is to work collaboratively with fanwork creators who wish to publish their original work. You can learn more about us here.

What is this anthology?

Scholarly Pursuits is the twelfth anthology project from Duck Prints Press. We’re taking academia settings and making them cozy and queer!

Who will be creating the stories for this anthology? How will contributors be selected?

20 authors will be selected to write stories between 4,000 and 6,000 words aligned with the project theme. 10 of these authors will be “returners”—authors who have previously completed stories with Duck Prints Press—and 10 will be new to the Press. Returning authors will be selected based on a review of pitches submitted by all interested returners; new authors will be asked to submit a story sample of no more than 1,500 words and a 400-word story pitch aligned with the anthology’s themes. Three readers will rate the story sample on a rubric (which you can see here), the results will be standardized and averaged, and the ten top-rated authors will be invited to contribute. You can review the full guidelines here.

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What is the timeline for this project?

You can see the schedule here.

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Will authors be paid?

Yes. Authors will be paid $60 USD per story for works between 4,000 and 6,000 words. The rights we ask for in exchange for these payments are outlined in our contracts—basically, we request exclusive worldwide First English Publication rights for e-book, print, and audio for a period of one year. You can see a sample of the author contract here.

During our crowdfunding campaign, we’ll include stretch goals aimed at raising enough funds to increase the contributor pay. If we reach these stretch goals, contributor payments will increase in $60 USD increments as each goal is reached, to a maximum of $480 USD per contributor.

Authors will be paid even if the crowdfunding campaign does not fund.

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Will story rights revert to the authors post-publication?

Absolutely. We encourage you to review the sample Author Contract that we’ve provided publicly; for anthologies we request First English Electronic, Print, and Audiobook Publishing rights, with exclusivity for a period of one year post-publication.

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Will contributors receive a copy of the anthology?

Yes, contributors will receive a free e-book of the anthology (in ePub and PDF formats).

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How will the anthology be sold?

Copies of the digest-sized trade paperback book (5.5″ x 8.5″) and related merchandise will initially be available during a crowdfunding campaign; subsequent to campaign fulfillment, the book will also be available on our website, through many major retailers, and at some bookstores and libraries (where exactly depends on which distribution systems are in use by the sellers; we use Ingram for book distribution). We tentatively expect the campaign to open during the spring of 2025, and the campaign will run on Kickstarter for three weeks. An “extra merchandise” sale may be held once campaign fulfillment is complete, if we have any extras available; alternatively, extras may be retained as prizes/extras for future campaigns.

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Where will net profits from anthology sales go?

If there are any net profits from the anthology, they will be re-invested in Duck Prints Press to help us grow the business and to fund the creation of future projects.

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What formats will the anthology be available in?

The anthology will be available as a digest-sized trade paperback book (5.5″ x 8.5″), and in ePub and PDF formats.

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What settings fall under the umbrella of “academia”?

Academia is a broad term open to some interpretation. While schools, colleges, and universities all obviously count as academia, we also consider libraries and museums as part of the core “academia” concept. Beyond that, the way we’re envisioning “queer characters in academia” as a setting is:

  • Places where people go to seek knowledge, and
  • The people who are pursuing that knowledge.

Some examples:

  • A barista attending culinary school would count, but a barista at a coffee shop who happens to also be a student would not.
  • A wanderer who decides to do an in-depth study of ancient ruins they find would count, but the same wanderer just exploring those ruins unsystematically or for fun would not.
  • A professor who is researching at the library would count, a professor on vacation would not.
  • A person curating an exhibit for a wealthy patron would count, but a person just collecting for fun would not.

The critical component is that the person is in an environment where they are engaged in intentional study of some kind and the person is specifically aiming and working to learn. As such, many settings could potentially count as “academia” for the purposes of Scholarly Pursuits, provided that the mentality of the characters at that setting is one of assiduous, intentional learning and study.

If you’re not sure if something you have in mind would count, don’t hesitate to drop us a question on Tumblr, in our e-mail, or on Discord. Make sure you don’t accidentally break your anonymity when you ask—we need to be able to read your pitch without automatically knowing it’s your pitch in order to rate everyone fairly!

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Have a question not answered here? Drop us an ask on Tumblr, DM us on twitter, or send us an e-mail!