Open Call: Our Imagined Futures*

Note: This open call is now closed.

A short story anthology by Ethos Books and Margaret River Press

Photograph © Jon Gresham

So what about tomorrow? What are our fears, and what do we think is changing us forever? We seem to be living in an era of widespread anxiety and despair with people becoming increasingly alienated and frustrated with political institutions, social and economic structures. Our sense of identity and community is changing, leading to a greater sense of mistrust, disillusionment, loneliness and isolation. Recent global reports on climate change have raised the prospect of the collapse of ‘civilisation’ and the end of human life as we know it. In order to confront our prevailing fears and concerns, where will we find the courage to face our challenges, to see and do things differently, and build hope and joy for the future?

A co-publishing project between Margaret River Press of Western Australia and Ethos Books of Singapore, this anthology will explore how writers from Western Australia and Singapore approach these issues across a range of genders, ages, class and ethnic backgrounds.

The anthology will be composed of ten stories by authors from Western Australia to be edited by Elizabeth Tan and ten stories by authors from Singapore to be edited by Jon Gresham. The final curation and arrangement of stories will be made by both editors.

This open call is organised by Ethos Books and specifically for writers to contribute to the Singapore segment of the anthology.

We are looking for new works in response to the topics:

-         Fear and hope
-         Heritage, roots and routes
-         Space / isolation – our relationships to the land and environment
-         Identity
-         Change

The anthology aims to showcase evocative, fresh, quality fiction from Singapore and Western Australia that will help readers find and connect with new literary voices and stories beyond their own communities.

*working title

Guidelines and Format

  • We are looking for ten different writers to contribute short stories (i.e. not poetry, not creative non-fiction pieces) to the Singapore segment, and the call is open to writers who are Singaporeans or Singaporean Permanent Residents or on Singaporean long-term visas.

  • Writers are welcome to submit more than one short story, but no more than two, and the editor may pick only one story to include in the anthology.

  • Each short story should be approximately 2000 to 3000 words long, and represent the original, unpublished work of the writer (online or in print), which is not subject to any publishing restrictions.

  • Stories authored by more than one author are not accepted.

  • While we accept simultaneous submissions, do kindly write in to us immediately if your work has been accepted elsewhere.

  • New and emerging writers are encouraged to submit.

Fees and Rights

  • A token fee of S$280, as well as a contributor’s copy, will be given for each accepted short story.

  • Contract terms with contributing authors will include non-exclusive world, e-book and subsidiary rights (anthology rights, condensation rights, translation rights, paperback rights, serial rights, dramatic rights, broadcasting and televising rights, film rights, radio rights, book club rights) for both publishers for an initial period of 10 years, with an option to extend after this initial period expires.

    What this means is that Ethos Books and Margaret River Press will be able to publish the anthology for up to 10 years but respective authors retain full rights to their story.



Email your submission in the form of a word doc (.doc or .docx), in 12-point times new roman, double-spaced to Ethos Books at mrp.ethos(at)ethosbooks(dot)com(dot)sg, and please state in the subject header “Submission to MRP x Ethos Anthology - [Your name]”. The deadline for submissions is 12 midnight, Singapore time, 10 February 2019.

If you have any enquiries, please email us at the aforementioned email address.

Submissions accepted for publication will be notified by mid-March 2019. Editorial work will take place thereafter. Publication of the anthology is anticipated at some time in the 3rd Quarter of 2019.


About the Editors

Jon Gresham is a writer and photographer who has lived in Singapore and Thailand for the last 18 years. Jon's debut collection of short stories, We Rose Up Slowly, was published by Math Paper Press in 2015. Jon is also a Director and co-founder of the Singaporean literary community charity, Sing Lit Station. He oversees the Book A Writer programme and leads the Writing the City Creative Writing Workshops at Toa Payoh Library each month. You can find him at

(Western Australia)
Elizabeth Tan is a writer from Perth. In 2015, she completed her PhD in creative writing at Curtin University. Her thesis investigated the intrusion of science-fictional tropes and iconography onto our current social reality, and the cultural anxieties that this has produced. This practice-led research culminated in her first novel Rubik, published in 2017. Elizabeth’s fiction has appeared in Voiceworks, Westerly, The Lifted Brow, Sleepers Almanac, Overland, Seizure, Best Australian Stories and Tincture. She is also the creator of Mais Pourquoi, a webcomic,


About the Publishers

Ethos Books is a literary publisher which aims to give voice to emerging and exciting writers from diverse backgrounds. We help foster an environment in which literature and the arts not only survive, but thrive. In short, we nurture the growing literary community in Singapore and throughout the region. By taking a collaborative approach to publishing, we bring each author‘s voice and vision to fruition. We are always open to new ideas: different ways of working and fresh ways of delivering the unparalleled satisfaction only a good book can bring. Established in 1997, Ethos Books, an imprint of Pagesetters Services Pte Ltd, aims to create books that capture the spirit of a people and reflect the ethos of our changing times.

Margaret River Press operates both in Margaret River and at the Centre for Stories in Perth, Western Australia. Its small team of staff, editorial members and ever growing interns, love the feeling that comes from publishing not in pursuit of profit, but in a sense of curiosity about people, places, and the stories they hold. More than anything, Margaret River Press offers an engaging, approachable alternative to mass publication, selecting those titles that speak to us, and bringing them to you, the reader.