Snap Judgment Episode 6: The Slush Reader Episode3 min read

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Apex Magazine is excited to present SNAP JUDGMENT Episode 6 (The Slush Reader Episode!) of our rapid-fire, live-streaming critique series. 

Every quarter, industry professionals Jason Sizemore, Lesley Conner, and a special guest offer live feedback on the first page (up to 250 words) of genre short stories or novels. These first pages are read aloud by our talented host and narrator, Aly Grauer.

We are pleased to announce that our special guest editor for this event is author and Apex Magazine slush reader Kai Delmas! 

Kai Delmas is a slush reader for Apex Magazine and a writer of many short short stories. He is a winner of the monthly Apex Microfiction Contest and he has a story forthcoming in Apex’s Strange Libations: Dark Cocktails. More of his fiction can be found in Martian, Etherea, Tree And Stone, Black Hare Press, Wyldblood, Flash in a Flash, Troopers, and several Shacklebound anthologies. Find him on Twitter @KaiDelmas.

Snap Judgment # 6 will be livestreamed on Friday, March 03 at 1pm ET (10 am, PT 12 pm CT, 6 pm UTC).  


Our host reads the title, genre, and text of the submission aloud without identifying the author. If at any point our panelists feel they would stop reading and reject the piece from their slush pile, they raise their hand. If all three hands are raised, our narrator stops reading.

Each panelist then gives their feedback on the opening: what works for them, what doesn’t, and what could be done to improve it. Don’t expect our panelists to be a mean group, but do expect them to be honest when it comes to assessing the work.


The event is available for anyone to watch. We’ll be streaming it live via two outlets:

  • Apex Magazine Patreon (Note: The link will be live on the day of the event and afterward. Prior to that, it will take you to a 404.)
  • Apex Magazine YouTube


Submissions are limited to our backers (Patreon supporters, magazine subscribers, and Kickstarter backers) until the final week before close. It should be only the first 250 words (approximately) of your novel or short story. To submit…

  1. Please make the subject of your email “Snap Judgment Episode 6” and the title of your story. 
  2. In the body of your email, include the title of your story again, the genre, and whether it’s a short story, novella, or novel, etc. 
  3. Copy-paste your first 250 words directly below that.
  4. Please include either your backer/subscriber email address or receipt of your subscription/support (not required if submitting in the last week open period)
  5. Send your submission to [email protected]

In case of a final sentence taking your submission over 250 words, please cut the last line. All entries will be read anonymously and our panelists will not be given any identifying information before, during, or after the event. 

Submissions close midnight Friday, February 03.

Host & Narrator – Alyson Grauer

Alyson Grauer is an author, actor, and podcaster based out of Chicago. Her first novel, On the Isle of Sound and Wonder, is a steampunk Shakespeare retelling and her short fiction has appeared in Apparition Lit, Cast of Wonders, and several indie anthologies. Her audio production work can be heard on such podcasts as Skyjacks: Courier’s Call, The Write Mindset, Warda, and the One Shot Podcast Secret Archive. She’s also known for performing at renaissance faires and world-class theme parks. Find her at or on Twitter & Instagram @dreamstobecome.

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