Fallen London Narrative Designer Open Submissions

Hello! If you have somehow found this page from a direct link, please be aware that we are currently not accepting unsolicited applications. We’ll leave this up so you can review the process, should we accept them again. Thanks!

We are looking for candidates who are both writer and game designer – who can use choice, consequence and game mechanics to produce a satisfying experience, and also produce quality prose. And we need people who can provide polished, finished work to deadline. It’s hard to find those people.

So we’re now accepting open submissions! If you’re interested, read on, and read carefully. We can’t review or respond to any submissions that don’t follow this format.

If you’d like to write for us, this is what you need to do.

Send an email to writers@failbettergames.com with:

  • something on why you want to work for us, and what you can offer
  • your CV
  • links to two commercially published pieces of interactive fiction that you’ve worked on. These can be AAA releases, indie games, Twine pieces sold on itch.io, mobile digital fiction – but they must be complete and polished, not work in progress, and you must be credited, and they must feature a non-linear story.
  • a pitch of up to 500 words (see below)
  • a copyright assignment document (see below)


The Pitch

Pitch an episode of Fallen London content.  It should contain an outline of the structure/mechanics, the choices and possible outcomes.

It should be based around one of the three following themes:

  • the protagonist fakes their own assassination; or,
  • the protagonist composes an elegy for the grand and solemn funeral of a former opium-smuggler turned legitimate; or,
  • the protagonist becomes a lighthouse-keeper as part of some larger scheme

We want to see:

  • concise, evocative, clear prose in the Fallen London voice;
  • an appropriate mood – eerie, blackly comic;
  • familiarity with the Fallen London lore and setting;
  • evidence that you can use choice and consequence effectively, at a more mechanically sophisticated level than simple branching story.

The pitch must be no more than 500 words long, but must include at least 100 words of sample prose, in addition to the structural outline.

Copyright Assignment

You’ll need to request and print a copyright assignment document, add your name and address, and scan (a good quality smartphone photo of the signed document will do). This is for our protection; we can’t review pitches without it.


Q. What if I haven’t worked on two pieces of commercially published interactive fiction?
A. You can write them now! There are a number of free tools available, and self-publishing is fine. We’ve done well hiring industry outsiders in the past, but we need to see a portfolio and know you can finish work.

Q. Is there a deadline?
A. This is an open application process, though we can’t promise it’ll stay open for ever.

Q. I’m not based in the UK. Can I apply?
A. You can, but honestly, your chances are much lower. Sponsoring visas involves time, risk and expense, and we strongly prefer to hire candidates with UK work visas. We’ll make exceptions for the exceptional only.

Q. I’ve applied for a role with you before. Can I try again?
A. Yes.

Q. What are the next steps?
A. If we like your pitch, we will (a) get you to work it into a test piece (b) offer you an interview.

Q. What’s it like working for Failbetter?
A. Pretty great. More here.

Thanks, and good luck!