Somniscope A Dreampunk Anthology

Another lonely night, another borrowed dream. You know you’ll never get to sleep on your own, so why bother trying? It’ll only waste time, and you’ve got to be up in six hours. Five and a half now.

What is it about other people’s lives that satisfies that gnawing hunger in your chest, if only for a moment? Living in someone else’s skin scratches an itch that can’t be reached any other way. All the little parts of yourself that aggravate like a pebble in your shoe… they’re just not there anymore. Sure, everybody’s got problems, but they don’t have your problems, not exactly. It’s this momentary relief that keeps you coming back night after night.

So you pull out the device, plug it into the wall beside your bed, slip on the cap, and lie back onto your pillow. You close your eyes and listen to those ten hypnotic clicks, your countdown to dreamland. Precisely one second after the tenth click, you lose consciousness. There in front of your eyes is the loading screen…



Somniscope will be another dreampunk anthology, a follow-up to Mirrormaze, and we’re looking for submissions along those same lines. Each story should involve either literal dreaming or some kind of false reality or internal world that resembles a dream. Psychedelic hallucinations, mystic visions, immersive simulations, and quixotic delusions all count. On top of that, the more punk, the better.

Adult themes are fine, but we’re not looking for erotica or anything too gratuitous. Some violence is okay, but it shouldn’t be celebrated.

Ideal entries will be between 2,000 and 5,000 words, but this is somewhat flexible. Stories should be previously unpublished, and we’d prefer third-person narration in the past tense to maintain continuity from one story to the next. They will all be connected into one overarching narrative, but it’s not necessary to reference the “somniscope” or anything like that.

Royalties will be distributed among the contributors based on relative word count. (So a 4,000-word story will pay twice as much as a 2,000-word story.) The other details are not yet settled as Somniscope is still seeking a publisher.

It would be nice to have all the stories in hand by August 31st to start getting the frame story worked out around that time. If you think you’ll have a story ready to submit anywhere near that date, connect with Cliff Jones Jr. on social media (preferably via Messenger or Twitter).