Getting Paid ~ Part the First
This is a writing journal and one that discusses the industry as a whole. One of the ways we can gain traction as an author worthy of a fan base is to publish articles, short stories and other short pieces in journals. This is a journey that I have recently undertaken. My first effort will be published in the up and coming, Eastern Iowa Review.
Eastern Iowa Review, like the majority of small journals, is a work of passion. The quality of the work can be exquisite (I had a peek at this one and I am honored to be included), however your work is rewarded with exposure and a free or reduced price copy, not a paycheck.
Some journals and reviews, online, print and hybrid, do pay for submissions. The trick is to find these journals and find the best fit for your style and genre. Then you must follow the rules with precision and passion. This article will be the first in a series that explores sources for getting paid as a writer.
I’d like to give a nod to Authors Publish, an online resource for authors. The three journals I checked out for this article are referenced on their site. They also provide other resources for paid gigs. I do not list the current rates since these can change without notice.
In general, the things that are important to determine are, the accepted method of submission (few if any accept emails), the format required (some are very specific), word count and target subject matter. You will not win friends and advocates in the industry if you persist in submitting pieces obviously not suitable for the publication, format in your own special world, or submit through channels or at times not listed. And don’t bug them to death. All sites I have looked at do give some idea of what to expect in response times, and what to do should that mark pass with no news.
The world of journals and reviews is a marvelous way to stretch your wings. As critical as your own website/blog or other window to the world may be, notching up acceptances and publication credits will do a lot to deepen your resume. It will also strengthen your writing skill as you push to write solid pieces that pass the critical eye of the journal’s editorial staff.
Three Penny Review
Three Penny Review is one of the most established and respected journals, Three Penny publishes short essays, short fiction and poetry.
Submissions can be made by mail or through the online submissions form.
- Do NOT submit material that was previously published.
- Do NOT include the Review in simultaneous submissions. They aim for a quick turn around and ask that you wait before submitting to another publisher.
- The Review aims to respond within two days to two months. If no communication is received at the end of two months, there was a hiccup in communications.
- Do stay within the word count limits: critical articles should be 1,200-2,500 words. Stories and memoirs 4,000 or less, poetry 100 lines or less. Preferred format is double spaced.
- Critical articles must cite the work at the beginning of the article. Details are on the site.
- The Review does recommend that you check out an issue before you submit.
- Do NOT submit from July to December. No one will look at the submission.
- Do NOT submit via email. No one will look at the submission.
- Submit in .doc or .docx format.
Flash Fiction Online
The journal accepts very few pieces. The story should be between 500 and 1,000 words no more no less. It is really important to check out their “Hard Sells” link. This is where they tell you what stories they really don’t want. Take heed, they are very specific regarding what they do and do not publish.
- Do NOT submit by email.
- The journal will accept reprints. Their current rate is $.02 per word and you must provide the previous publication information.
- Do NOT submit erotica, porn, graphic sex or violence.
- Do NOT submit poetry or fiction in poetry-like formats.
- No Simultaneous submissions will be accepted.
- Submit in .doc, .rtf or .txt – NO docx.
- If you want brownie points use Times New Roman or Courier New font, 12 pt, double spaced, and left alignment with one-inch margins.
- Make sure that author information, including your name is not in the manuscript but appears only in the cover letter.
- Multiple submissions are fine as long as they are separate.
- Responses vary from 2-10 weeks – do not query until you reach the 8 week mark.
A well respected short story journal which has been represented in recent editions of the Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses, New Stories from the Midwest, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories, New Stories from the South, Best of the West, and Best American Short Stories.
The journal provides a free subscription to writers called Writers Ask which is a newsletter focused on the trade.
There are some contests offering awards which do require a fee. The Standard Category does not require a fee and submissions are open in January, May, and September.
- Do NOT submit previously published works. Short stories only – no novels, poetry or stories written for children.
- Submit in 12 pt, double-spaced format. Include your name, contact information and word count for mail submissions, the submission online gathers it elsewhere.
- Simultaneous submissions are okay, be responsible and report acceptance elsewhere as soon as you know.
VICTORIA ADAMS is an accountant and financial analyst by profession, but numbers can get numbing. Not in a mood to allow her mind to glaze over, she has always found ways to be creative in her business career by helping in the growth, development or startup of many different kinds of enterprises. That creative spirit extended to many of her leisure activities where she pursued such things as pottery, needlepoint, gardening, and well just about anything that is creative. Her professional background has also made her a perpetual researcher. In this way she developed a deep love of philosophy, religion, history, archeology and anthropology. What she learns she loves to share so she has been a teacher and occasional speaker. For many years her husband tried to get her to share through writing. Now that she has tested the waters with her first book, which ironically was about the first year of learning to live with his dementia, she is ready to reach further and write the things he always wanted to see.