Authors, please do give me (my fellow editors may disagree with some of this):
- an original idea
- a plot arc--something must happen externally and/or internally (note the easiest plot arc is overcoming a conflict)
- stuff that makes sense and is internally consistent
- a fully-developed world, including setting the scene (note: only give us the backstory we need)
- a sympathetic, or at least interesting, protagonist that does something
Authors, please look at your stuff with an objective eye. Obviously, you can write a fabulous story without including all the above stuff, e.g. without any dialog, but it is really difficult, IMHO. As for the plot arc, that is sort of a genre prejudice, certainly literary fiction is rife with slice-of-life stories in which very little happens.
Keep sending Electric Spec your stories! We appreciate your submissions.