Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Attention All Hands: Sea Stories Wanted

Writers of original sea stories are requested to submit their work for consideration to be published in The Sea Adventure Collection.

Do you have a story with characters aboard a ship, boat, yacht or submarine?  How about a story that takes place ashore in a port of call?  If your story involves the navy, coast guard, marines, merchant sailors, fisherman, yachtsmen, a harbor pilot, lighthouse keeper, stevedore or any other seafarer, you should submit it for publication in the Sea Adventure Collection.  We're open to stories from the military, pleasure cruising, pirates, smugglers, and all other boating enthusiasts.

Stories must be original works of fiction, written in English and approximately 500 to 4,000 words.  Plots may include, but are not limited to adventure, war, thriller, crime, sci-fi, comedy, history, disaster, horror and / or romance.  R rated stories are okay, but X rated stories will not be considered.

Author Guidelines:

  • Submit stories to: in MS Word or any other popular word processing format.
  • Expect to hear back within 1-month on whether or not your story has been accepted for publication.
  • Proofread and spell check your story before you submit it, but the editor understands that a good sea story is sometimes written by a sailor who is unfamiliar with the rules of writing in the English language (and that's ok).   Appropriate proofreading, spell checking and editing will be done to improve every published story as needed.
  • If your work is accepted for publication, you will be asked to sign a release form granting the publisher, permission to publish the story in print, eBook and blog formats.  The author will retain all other copyrights.
  • Proceeds from the sale of The Sea Adventure Collection will be dispersed as follows:
  • 60% of proceeds will be donated to a Seaman, Mariner or Veteran's Service Organization such as a retired sailor's home, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Wounded Warrior Project, etc. or other organization serving Seaman or Mariners.
  • 40% of the proceeds well be retained by the editor to pay for book cover artwork, book design, proofreading, advertising, website hosting, book printing and shipping expenses.
  • Send all questions and comments to

Malcolm Torres is the author and editor of sea stories and nautical fiction.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Vatican Museum's Gallery of Maps Includes Fine Nautical Artwork

As I gazed on theses amazing maps, my eyes were constantly drawn to the ships, sea creatures and port cities painted all along the Italian coastline.

Last week I was very fortunate.  I was in Rome, Italy and spent an entire day at the Vatican.  I did not do much research before going, because I wanted to take it all in without a lot of preconceived ideas.  I wanted my mind to be fresh.  I wanted to be surprised.

So, there I was making my way through one long hall after another, each filled with the most amazing artwork in the world.  Everything from Egyptian coffins and Etruscan pottery to paintings by European masters and Greek sculptures.  Every doorway was a colossal arch held up by marble pillars, every ceiling decorated with frescoes and ornate golden trim.

Here's the scene as I entered the Gallery of Maps.

A few steps down the corridor I looked back and up and here's what I saw:

To say this is art and architecture on the grandest scale is an understatement.  Descriptions such as profound genius and epic masterpieces seem to fall short.  As I walked along the corridor, I listened to the audio guide and learned that Pope Gregory XIII, back in 1580, commissioned a map maker to draw and paint detailed maps of Italy along the corridor which is over 100-meters long.  The maps look like this:

As I walked along and gazed on theses amazing maps, my eyes were constantly drawn to the ships, sea creatures and port cities painted in all along the Italian coastline.  I felt like I was in heaven.

The intricate detail showing wooden ships with their sails full as they crossed the Mediterranean to Greece and Egypt made me wonder about the adventures those sailors must have had back in the 1500s.  The elaborate paintings of sea creatures made my imagination run wild.

As you well know if you have read this blog before, I love nautical artwork in all its forms, including sea stories, novels, movies, tattoos, drawings and paintings.  All I can say is that I was very happy, surprised and impressed with the fine details found in these old paintings.  I would give almost anything to be able to travel in a time machine back to the mid-1500s and be able to meet with the artist who painted these marvelous pictures.  I would give almost anything to be able to sail with the sailors back in those days, when the sea was full of mystery and monsters.

If you enjoy a good Sea Story,
these two salty tales are free on all eReaders:
Amazon KindleApple iBooksBarnes & Noble NookSmashwords and Kobo.

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Malcolm Torres is the author of sea stories and nautical fiction