Open Call For Submissions
Hello, and welcome to Stout Stoat’s open call for submissions.
You can read all about the open call below, or listen to a spoken version of it on YouTube via this link: https://youtu.be/lKi_nRyABJM
Our first round of submissions are open until May 31st 2022Quick Links:
Who are Stout Stoat?
Stout Stoat (formerly Dungeons on a Dime) is a TTRPG publisher dedicated to creating uplifting and inspiring works.
We are proud to be queer and disabled, and try to represent folks as authentically as possible in our stories. We believe that through representation we can make our hobby accessible to those who need it most. By supporting entry-level creators, we can hone skills the entire community can benefit from.
Our goals are to:
Produce games for all ages, experience levels and backgrounds.
Hire entry-level talent with fairly paid commissions.
Feature queer, disabled and marginalised stories in our publications.
Strive to uplift our community and push for equality.
Create memorable, beautiful and tightly curated work that we can be proud of.
Who is this open call for?
We will consider all applications, but will favour those we feel could best benefit from our mentorship.
Stout Stoat will be prioritising submissions from creators that are often underrepresented in our industry, or who are at a disadvantage when trying to access mentorship and support. This includes:
Black and POC creators
Queer Creators, especially and including Trans, Non-Binary & Two-Spirit creators
Working Class creators
Creators who are Primary Carers
As a publisher based in Scotland, Stout Stoat will also be prioritising creators residing in Scotland.
Creators do not have to submit projects focusing on their own marginalised experiences. Our goal is to skill-share and uplift, not stereotype and restrict the stories that you can tell.
What are we looking to publish?
Stout Stoat is looking to publish TTRPGs, Journaling and Choose-Your-Own-Path games. We want to produce physical print-runs, e-books and PDFs.
Stout Stoat is accepting submissions of first drafts, or an equivalent amount of developed work. We’re looking for creators who need support to take their projects to the next level.
Submissions don’t have to be finished, but it will need to be more than just a good idea scribbled in your phone’s Notes app!
We are not accepting submissions for board games, but will consider submissions with some board game elements, such as a play mat or a custom card deck.
— Genres —
We are open to projects of all genres (such as fantasy, sci-fi, crime, thriller, horror, adult, etc) so long as it is inclusive of both new and experienced audiences.
— Writing Styles —
We prefer quick-to-grasp mechanics with delightful nuance, and resources that give players the agency to tell personal stories and/or experience new perspectives.
— Systems —
We prefer system neutral content, or ‘self contained’ content (where everything needed for play is collected in a single book).
Stout Stoat will consider content built for other gaming systems, such as an adventure for Troika. However, we will not be considering any project built specifically for any edition of Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder, or other ‘big buy-in cost’ TTRPGs.
We are also hesitant about materials for OSR-system titles, because of their adjacent connection to and compatibility with works containing ethno-nationalist, racist and sexist themes. Please do submit, but be aware that works of this nature will be put under closer scrutiny.
— Size —
Projects can range from zines to small books. Larger projects and/or sequential projects will be considered, but are less likely to be accepted. Our TTRPG book ‘Scurry’ is good example of a small book.
— Production —
Submitted projects will most likely be created with a crowdfunding campaign. Projects will most likely have a development timeline of up to a year, with an aim to fulfil in 2023.
— Quantity —
Stout Stoat is looking support 2 - 4 projects from 2022 to 2023, alongside in-house projects like ‘Apawthecaria: A Poulticepounder Adventure’, ‘Carved in Stone’, and other as yet unannounced titles.
How do I submit?
To submit, you'll need to put together a pitch document covering the following information:
Names, a short bio, social media handles and emails and roles of everyone involved on your project
A short overview of your project (recommended 500 characters)
A more detailed look at your projects mechanics and core content (recommended 2,000 characters)
An outline of the content you've produced so far, and what you have yet to do (recommended 1,000 characters)
Examples of project work*
A completed release form, either as part of your Pitch Document or attached with it in a .ZIP file
*If you are not at a stage where you feel comfortable submitting work from the project you are pitching, you can use work from a previous project.
There's no perfect way a pitch should look, and we won't provide an example in case it discourages anyone from applying. However, we have assembled a template with the above prompts to help you organise your thoughts. It is not necessary to use this template if you want to submit.
You can find the Pitch Template here: https://bit.ly/DOADPitchTemplate
You can find the Release Form here: https://bit.ly/DOADSubmissionRelease
What sort of contracts does Stout Stoat offer?
Our contracts favour creators retaining ownership of their work, and prefer to be written in ‘simple English’, focusing on intent over edge-cases and legalese.
When possible, we would like to pay an advance, and offer fair royalties alongside a portion of inventory stock from successfully published projects.
As with all things, contracts should be a negotiation *and* a conversation, aiming to best fit everyone involved. What’s written here is a guiding intention; we can discuss this in detail if your submission is successful.
What can Stout Stoat offer you?
With many titles under our belt, crowdfunded campaigns both big and small, and a perfect record for fulfilment, Stout Stoat has a lot to offer at every stage of a project. Here are some of the things you can ask for if we work together:
— Constructive & Collaborative Feedback —
Helping develop mechanics, flavour and concepts into clear and engaging gameplay.
— Editing —
Refining manuscripts into tightly-worded and efficient texts, with tried-and-tested editors from some of the industries biggest indie publications.
— Graphic Design —
Laying out finished manuscripts into beautiful PDFs, books, and accessibly formatted plain-text documents.
— Illustration —
Award-nominated in-house illustrators and a plethora of inspiring artists will help uplift your projects.
— Project Management —
Keeping multiple plates and deadlines spinning, allowing you to focus on creating great work.
— Crowdfunding Support —
Organising captivating campaigns that convince backers to support your work, including professional trailers, animated GIFs and persuasive copy. Support continues throughout a campaign with community management, FAQs and more.
— Printing & Fulfilment —
Preparing finished books for print-runs, and fulfilling hundreds of pre-orders for crowdfunding campaigns.
— Social Media & Advertising —
Getting the word out about your project to our dedicated base of fans, and to new audiences through advertising platforms, news articles and reviewers.
— Mentorship and Industry Contacts —
Genuine advice, given freely to help you flourish in the work that makes you happiest.
Can I submit multiple projects?
Yes, but please limit yourself to 2 or 3 submissions. We understand what its like to have a million good ideas; however, we heavily advise choosing your strongest concept, and the one you’re most passionate about.
A buckshot submission approach won’t work here.
I’ve never been published before. Can I apply?
Yes, please! Stout Stoat is here to uplift new creators.
Can I submit as a group?
Yes! Please include the information of your group in your Pitch Document. All team members need to be 18 or older.
Can I submit something that’s already been published?
Yes, so long as you now hold the rights. For example, if you self-published a zine but now want to rerelease an improved and updated version, or if you published a single print-run with a different publisher or distributor that has since sold out.
When will I find out about my submission?
We aim to reply to all submissions within 6 weeks via the contact email you supply, though an unexpectedly large number of submissions may mean it takes us longer to get back to you. If you don’t hear from us, please don’t send follow up emails.
What happens if I am successful?
A successful submission is not a guaranteed agreement to represent you; It is just an offer to continue this conversation. We’ll be in contact via email, where we can organise a face-to-face chat via Google Meet. We'll assess what support is feasible. If talking live isn't possible, we can discuss talking through other means.
What happens if I am unsuccessful?
An unsuccessful submission is not a judgement of you or your work, but your work as it fits into Stout Stoat's growing catalogue, and our ability to support you as a creator. You can opt in for comments and feedback on your submission.
Is there any content you won’t publish?
We follow a general rule - ‘don’t be a dick’. If you or your submission is seen as offensive (essentially, content which is transphobic, homophobic, racist, sexist, fascist, etc), then it will not be considered. We will not give feedback, nor reply to your submission.