More Market Information!

Don’t forget Liz Withey’s wunderbar evening presentation From Writer to Author: A Talk on Self-Publishing at the Stanley A. Milner Library (Milner Program Room), February 3rd at 7 pm.

And a wee note: Gail will not be in her office on Thursday, January 29th.

As a follow-up to my workshop of last week, I thought I’d share some additional resourceswrite-for-food-299x300  about markets.

Strong recommendations:

  • always check out any website (a dead link likely means a defunct journal)
  • always check out the backlist to ensure that your piece is aligned with the sort of work the journal/ magazine/ e-zine publishes
  • READ the journal and consider subscribing (supporting literary mags is good karma!)
  • more generally, you should be READING all the time, especially in your chosen genre

General Manuscript Submission Tips:

Beware of any publisher who offers to publish your poem or story for money.  Can you smell the stink?  Something is rotten!  Publishers pay you for your work, not the other way around.

  1. That said, modest entry fees for a competition are not unusual, and may range from $5 to $50, depending on the calibre of the competition and the prizes offered.
  2. Always check out the website of any publisher, magazine, or journal.  Make sure that what you’ve written truly fits the “call for submission” requirements before you submit.  READ the magazine or journal first to see if your work matches the style and content.
  3. Follow submission guidelines meticulously.  Editors are busy people.  If your manuscript is messy, error-ridden, or incorrectly formatted, it’s likely to be filed in “recycle” also known as “rejected.”
  4. Use an easily readable font.  Size 12 – no bigger, no smaller. Double space.  Use 1 to 1.5 inch margins on all four sides of the page.  Print single-sided on white paper.
  5. Don’t send an electronic copy to a journal that ONLY accepts snailmail.
  6. If you send via snailmail, you may be asked to include a SASE (stamped and self-addressed envelope) or International Reply Coupon (IRC) for return of your manuscript.
  7. For Pete’s sake, for the love of Mike, PROOFREAD!!!
  8. Don’t pester the editors.  Read the submission guidelines for response times.  Many publishers, unfortunately, only reply to those writers whose work they are intending to publish.
  9. Never send original work or artwork.  Make a copy or keep your originals in a cloud storage like Dropbox.  Keep your originals safe at home, both electronic and hard copies!

If your work is rejected, take heart.  There are other publishers out there. Do consider editorial suggestions, but remember you are the author of your own story.  In the end, you are the arbiter of your own words.  Tinker or rework and send out your manuscript again.  And again.  And again.

TEN (Markets and Resources): 

  1. Places for Writers:  “[places for writers] helps writers find homes for their work. Our goal is to help you write more and get your writing published. Since 1997 [places for writers] has featured submission calls and contests for publications in Canada and around the world: from independent presses to large well-established journals, from blogs and web journals to print magazines with wide distribution.”
  2. Quick Brown Fox: “Brian Henry’s Quick Brown Fox – Creative Writing Courses and Workshops and other great stuff for writers.”
  3. Broken Pencil:  “Since 1995, we have been a mega-zine dedicated exclusively to exploring independent creative action. Published four times a year, each issue of Broken Pencil features reviews of hundreds of zines and small press books, plus comics, excerpts from the best of the underground press, interviews, original fiction and commentary on all aspects of the indie arts. From the hilarious to the perverse, Broken Pencil challenges conformity and demands attention.”
  4. The Puritan: “The Puritan: Frontiers of New English is an online, quarterly publication based in Toronto, Ontario, committed to publishing the best in new fiction, poetry, interviews, essays, and reviews. The Puritan seeks, above all, a pioneering literature—work that pushes boundaries, or sees boundaries as unstable, or lines to be re-drawn.”
  5. paperplates: “a literary quarterly published in Toronto….[that publishes] short personal essays, reminiscences, and travel accounts…. short stories, one-act plays, musical scores, poems short and long, extended travel pieces, formal essays, interviews, and reminiscences…. reviews, mostly of books.”
  6. forget magazine:  “What we are really after: what we are really after in this publication is the publishing of material that is ignored in the mainstream press and the even the independent news. Anything that has reason and passion. And more stuff that is Canadian than not.”
  7. Joyland: “is a literary magazine that selects fiction and essays regionally. Our editors work with stories and excerpts by authors connected to locales across North America.”
  8. Stone Soup: “the print magazine written and illustrated by young writers and artists. It is the leading publisher of creative writing by children ages 8 to 13.”
  9. Grip Magazine: “is written by youth for youth, 13-18 years. Launched in 2006, its focus is mental health and well-being topics relevant to this age group.”
  10. Predators and Editors: “was founded in July 1997 by Dave Kuzminski as a resource and a simple compendium for the serious writer, composer, game designer, or artist to consult for information, regardless of genre.”

Writing Quote:

For the young who want to – Marge Piercy (b. 1936, novelist and poet)

The real writer is one 
who really writes. Talent 
is an invention like phlogiston 
after the fact of fire. 
Work is its own cure. You have to 
like it better than being loved.


Writing Tip:
  Read aloud to yourself from your writing.  Your ear will pick up the rhythms and mis-rhythms in your sentences or lines of poetry.  Hearing your own words will reveal the beauty and the faults.

Writing Prompt:  “Walked to the Old Bailey to see Daniel Isaac Eaton in the pillory.  As I expected, his punishment of shame was his glory.” – Henry Crabb Robinson (lawyer, 1775-1867)

Have fun!  There are no rules here.  Treat this as an exercise or a beginning or a departure.

 

Submitting manuscripts to Gail:

Just a few words about manuscript submissions.  Being a writer is very much about following submission guidelines closely.  Here are mine:

Please…

  • submit a maximum fifteen pages of prose in a separate Word Doc – double spaced
  • submit a maximum six pages of poetry – double spaced
  • use margins as you would for a letter
  • use a readable font size of 12 (e.g. Times or Helvetica)
  • include page numbers
  • include your name and the title of the piece on a cover page or running header

My hours are Monday to Thursday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  You’re welcome to drop by, but it’s best to set up an appointment with me at regionalwir@gmail.com, as I may be busy working with other writers.

I’m also happy to just have a conversation with you about writing and all related topics. You don’t have to submit a manuscript to meet up with me.

Self-publishing! Opinion writing! February writing events at EPL

I’m pleased to announce two writing talks happening at the Edmonton Public Library during the month of February. Both feature established, award-winning local writers who I’ve no doubt will make the sessions both informative and entertaining.

From Writer to Author: A Talk on Self-Publishing
Tuesday Feb 3, 7 p.m.
Stanley A. Milner Library – Milner Program Room **MakerSpace** (room change!)

Interested in publishing your finished manuscript or daunted by the difficult task of getting published once you finish your masterpiece? Join acclaimed novelist Thomas Wharton and Faces of Edmonton creator Shayne Woodsmith for a conversation on self-publishing. These two writers will discuss their experiences with, the process of, and what challenges with preparing a story for self-publication.
Thomas Wharton is author of seven books of fiction, including The Perilous Realm trilogy. He has been a finalist for many major literary prizes, including the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, and recently self-published his latest novel, Every Blade of Grass, through CreateSpace. Shayne Woodsmith is the author of two self-published novels and the creator of the Faces of Edmonton storytelling project.

But That’s Just My Opinion
Sunday Feb 22, 2 p.m.
Jasper Place Branch – Edmonton Public Library

We all have opinions about all kinds of things. But how do you write a persuasive essay or on-line rant that gets beyond mere sound and fury? Prolific Edmonton Journal columnist Paula Simons (Twitter: @paulatics) talks about techniques good writers can use to get beyond the empty JMO rhetoric.

To Market! To Market!

Join me this Tuesday evening from 7 pm – 9 pm at the Strathcona County Library forMarketingBlogPosts1 tips about writing markets.

 

Discover some of the different markets that exist both in print and online, whether for novels, short stories, poetry, creative non-fiction, articles or comics. Find out industry facts and fictions. In this interactive session, ask Gail questions about her journeys through the hills and vales of the publishing world.

If time permits, we’ll also take a look at marketing yourself as a writer – the good, the bad and the ugly.

Don’t be afraid of the “M” word!

Delighted…to say the least!

 

Writer-in-ResidenceI write today from my light-drenched office on the second floor of the Strathcona County Library, a beautiful facility in the heart of Sherwood Park, Alberta.  Am I lucky, or what?

I’ve already received a number of manuscripts, and I’m busily reading and thinking about words, words, words.

This Saturday at SCL, from 1:00 – 3:00 pm, I’ll be happy to personally welcome any potential scribes who wish to share their writing with me.  I look forward to having a cuppa with y’all!  Please don’t be shy about saying hello.

Just a few words about manuscript submissions.  Being a writer is very much about following submission guidelines closely.  Here are mine:

Please…

  • submit a maximum fifteen pages of prose in a separate Word Doc – double spaced
  • submit a maximum six pages of poetry – double spaced
  • use margins as you would for a letter
  • use a readable font size of 12 (e.g. Times or Helvetica)
  • include page numbers
  • include your name and the title of the piece on a cover page or running header

My hours are Monday to Thursday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  You’re welcome to drop by, but it’s best to set up an appointment with me at regionalwir@gmail.com, as I may be busy working with other writers.

I’m also happy to just have a conversation with you about writing and all related topics. You don’t have to submit a manuscript to meet up with me.

And now for what I hope will be a regular feature:

Writing Quote: “Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” – Gene Fowler, American journalist and biographer (1890-1960)

Writing Tip:  Don’t wait for the illusory muse of inspiration to arrive with a Hallelujah chorus.  Sit yourself down.  Open the book or the page and put your hand(s) to pen or keyboard and begin.

Writing Prompt:  “They were identified by displaying a wisp of straw in their shoes.”

Have fun!  There are no rules here.  Treat this as an exercise or a beginning or a departure.