Daniel Scott White's first professional writing gig was a children's book. His most recent was a short story in Daily Science Fiction. In between, he published and edited numerous magazines with the world's leading authors inside.



Daniel Scott White has written short stories since he was a child. He would turn in writing assignments in school, but his teacher refused to give them back. He had to start making copies by hand to retain his own content. She did not dump heaps of praise on him for his efforts, contrary to what most authors experience. Apparently, the stories were pretty atrocious. Then again, his teacher had never heard of Isaac Asimov before. She loved kittens.

From there he tried to write his first novel. It was a murder mystery with twin brothers and mistaken identity. His goal was to get to 100 pages. He wrote with really big letters and often only put three words on a line, knowing sometimes you have to do whatever it takes. His brother thought it was interesting but pointed out several flaws in the plot. Daniel Scott White was happy he'd gotten his first reader. But not a promising review!

He would often sit in his closet with a lamp and a cardboard box for a desk and a typewriter. It took all day to get a typed page with no mistakes. He would hunt out every key and go slowly. Later, someone explained the concept of correct tape. Little did he know. The novel never made it all the way into print. And there was no way he could submit a handwritten work.

In those days, a novel had to be 100,000 words long or no publisher would look at it. This was before the age of self-publishing. Short stories couldn't be too short. This was before the time of flash fiction, micro stories, and one line stories. There were a lot of rules, and a lot of great work was overlooked, because of those nasty bridge trolls called the "gatekeepers". (By the way, Animal Farm, considered to be one of the 20 best books ever written in the English language, is only 30,000 words long.)

He wrote a short story, called The Code, and for the first time in his experience, an online magazine accepted it. Instantly he was hooked on the idea of submitting more work to these new outlets, online publishers. His stories weren't so bad after all, it turned out. That magazine rejected his next story and quickly went out of business. However, other magazines and anthologies took his work. Sometimes they even paid him!

Returning to school to earn an MBA degree, he got the idea to open his own publishing company. It was called Pebblefoot Press. While consulting on textbooks for another company, he independently acquired rights to a new textbook, called Work and Play Abroad, by Elias Gasparas. The book was a success and his company was off the ground and running! Then he brought together 24 authors from around the world, including David Grigg who had been the chair of the World Science Fiction Convention held in Melbourne, Australia, to create his first anthology, called The Art of Losing. The collection of short stories sold modestly well for the first 90 days and then fell off the cliff. It was a steep learning curve.


Longshot Island was born out of the dream to learn to fly again. This time, he included only six stories. He paid the authors up front, meaning they took little risk. He packaged it as a magazine instead of an anthology. He gave the six authors free copies. Everyone was happy. The series went on to include a dozen issues and renown authors such as John Crowley (Little, Big), Daniel Wallace (Big Fish), Eric Guignard (two time Bram Stoker winner and recipient of the Shirley Jackson award), Jerry Oltion (Nebula award winner), David Grigg (World SF chair), Emily Devenport (Philip K. Dick award nominee) and others.

He realized he was on to something. Invite prestigious authors to the magazines and give unknown authors a chance at much deserved recognition! It was a winning formula. From there, he opened Unfit magazine and Unreal magazine to act as sister-brother publications, one focused more on science fiction short stories and the other, fantasy stories. All three publications were housed neatly under the name Longshot Press, which boasted to be a "very independent publisher".

He acquired stories by the best: Robert Silverberg, Martha Wells, David Brin, Emily Devenport, and Ken Liu.

He paid well. Very well. In fact, at the peak, they became the highest paying magazines in the history of science fiction and fantasy, offering 25 cents per word, double what other magazines were paying at the time. The crowd went wild! Until...

Thunder Games

He wasn't a member of the SFWA. They are an association that attempts to regulate publishers of science fiction and fantasy. They weren't a member of any association that regulates associations. They still aren't. They aren't professionals. At the same time, associations were losing interest because of the easygoing way public activities could be organized through social media. At the time, the SFWA had about 1,700 members. People realized they could get the benefits of the SFWA without joining.

Also, they have a long history of badgering authors, renown authors such as Stanislaw Lem. They are an exclusive club with plenty of snobs. For example, Ray Bradbury never won the Hugo or Nebula awards, although he was clearly one of the best authors ever in the field.

In addition, by playing under the SFWA rules, there would be little room to differentiate or innovate. That meant the big magazines would stay big and the small ones small. Which is, put plainly, bad for the industry. The world of science fiction and fantasy short stories was dying because of this stranglehold. The SFWA was born out of infighting and has struggled to lose that image to this day.

Early on, Daniel Scott White had volunteered to work for the SFWA, but was ignored. So he went on to create new ways, rocking the boat. And he became Public Enemy No. 1 of the SFWA. How ironic.

The Review

In his next magazine, called Mythaxis Review, Daniel Scott White focused on talking to successful artists who could share ideas on how they developed their talent. He acquired and edited interviews with many acclaimed authors, musicians and filmmakers, such as Andy Weir (The Martian), Lois Lowry (The Giver), David Brin (The Postman), Jackie Fuchs (The Runaways), Paul Williams (president of ASCAP), and Tim Reynolds (Dave Matthews Band).

The Future

And then, he discovered a world of opportunities in the realm of scriptwriting. He went on to win numerous awards for his work!

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Award Winning Scripts

Short Fiction