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SPAWNews, August, 2005

Wendy Dager, Editor

For contributions to the newsletter and Letters to the Editor, please e-mail the editor of SPAWNews:

Those of you who are SPAWN members, be sure to go to the first page of the site, and click on the "Visit Member Area" button. You will be asked to log in.

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Table of Contents

- Editor’s Note

- Market Update

- Letters

- Juniper Creek

- Does Flash Work in a Business Web Site?

- Ask the Book Doctor

- Member News

- Opportunities

- Contests and Awards

- Events and More

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Editor’s Note

Reviewing the Reviewer

By Wendy Dager

If you are a member of SPAWN, you’re privy to valuable conversations that take place within our e-mail chat, SPAWNdiscuss. Members support each other by giving advice, exchanging networking information and sharing experiences.

Recently, there was an interesting discussion about the reviewer Kirkus and its new branch, Kirkus Discoveries, a paid review service. This service provides authors who are "conventionally published, self-published, e-published, published via print-on-demand, or not published at all" with the opportunity to receive attention they may not have otherwise gotten for their books. Kirkus charges $350 per title for each review, which is posted on the Kirkus Discoveries Web site.

During the course of this topic, we learned, via SPAWNdiscuss e-mails, that some of our members were unhappy with their Kirkus Discoveries’ experience. There was also one member who felt the paid review was ultimately beneficial, but not without its drawbacks. And there was someone who said Kirkus Discoveries is perhaps more inclined to give a less favorable review in order to appear unbiased, since the reviewers are paid.

While the conversation itself allowed us to turn the tables and review the reviewer, what was truly amazing was that writers of all genres—and in different parts of the country—were able to get together electronically to talk about something of universal interest to many of us in the writing, publishing and art businesses. Some say the information gleaned from SPAWNdiscuss is worth the price of membership—even though it is just one of the many benefits you receive as a member of SPAWN.

If you’d like to partake in SPAWNdiscuss and aren’t yet a member, become one now by going to You never know what you might learn.

–Wendy Dager is editor of SPAWNews. Her e-mail address is

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Market Update

This month's SPAWN Market Update has something for every member. You'll find new markets and opportunities galore. Patricia Fry does the research and you benefit. This month she lists 16 places where you can sell your poetry, 16 reprint markets, 5 high-paying fiction markets, 5 solid opportunities for artists and photographers AND a potential gig for Trekkies. Learn where to get a list of over 1,000 publishers for $15. Find out which online publisher's showcase is getting bashed. And read an interview with a successful romance writer who happens to be a man. To miss out on the August edition of the Market Update is to miss out on over 75 markets, opportunities, resources and information bites. Don't let another month go by as simply a subscriber. Join SPAWN now and gain access to one of the most informative newsletters available for freelance writers, authors, artists and publishers today.

  • Warning – Using this company may be dangerous to your wallet
  • Find out which topic had a whopping 43 percent increase in publication last year
  • Feeling rejected? Use these two methods to recycle your articles and MAKE MONEY!
  • Check out the up-to-date researched list of outlets and opportunities for good poetry
  • Who provides FREE access to author signing and reading venues
  • Read about the three biggest mistakes new authors make

Not a member yet? Want to see what you’re missing out on? Contact to get a sneak peek.

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Hello. My name is Joe and I’m a local poet. I have poems on a variety of subjects. Unfortunately, getting them noticed is the toughest task. I have 75 poems completed. Here are a few for you to examine at your leisure. (Remainder of letter withheld.)

Hello Joe,

Thanks for sharing your poetry with us. I can only assume that you are seeking publication. When you send sample poems to someone, it is a good idea to tell them why you are sending them. You did say that you want to be noticed. But what does that mean?

First, let me say that we are a networking organization, not a publishing company. If you are seeking publication, you need to contact appropriate publishing companies. You can find listings of magazines and publishers in resources such as Writer's Market and Literary Market Place. Buy Writer's Market for about $30 at any bookstore or reference it at your public library. Use the latest version. A new volume comes out each September.

Also, I suggest you find books with poetry similar to yours and contact those publishers.

Below are a few magazines and book publishers that publish poetry. If you decide to contact any of these, read their submission guidelines first. While there is a basic protocol for submitting poetry, each publisher has its own specific guidelines. Find the magazine or publisher listed in Writer's Market and read the listing. Find submission guidelines at their Web site, or request a copy. If you request a copy by mail, be sure to include an SASE (self-addressed-stamped envelope).

Examples of magazines that publish poetry, some with their rates: Rocky Mountain Rider, Art Times, Bomb, Pangaia, A and U (pays $50 per poem), First Things uses 25-30 poems per issue (pays $50 each), Generation X National Journal, Kaleidoscope, Aim (an ethnic publication), Horizons, Bibliophilos, Cappers, and The Sun (pays $50 to $250 per).

Here are some book publishers that publish poetry books: Bear Star Press, Barnwood Press, Brooks Books, Dag Books, Eight Mountain Press, Lintel, Oberlin College Press, Still Waters Poetry Press, BKMK Press, Dan River Press, Coffee House Press, Diamond Eyes, Front Street, Homo and Sekey, Alice James, Limitless Dare 2 Dream, Lost Horse, Nodin Press, Orchiss Press and Sable Publications.

There are a lot of opportunities out there, but it is best to approach publishers in an organized manner rather than using a scattershot method. In other words, know whom you are contacting and exactly what they publish.

In the meantime, you might consider joining SPAWN for exposure and to stay informed about opportunities for poets. As a member of SPAWN, you can participate in two discussion groups with other poets and writers/authors of all types where you can network and, possibly, collaborate or learn to publish your book of poetry yourself. I write the monthly Market Update for the members’ area, where I announce new publishers, closed magazines and other industry information. I often report on opportunities for poets. Check us out at

Good luck,

Patricia Fry, President

SPAWN (Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network)

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(Note: This letter was sent to Patricia Fry at Fry’s company Matilija Press,

Hi. My name is Brittany and I am 22 years old. I am a writer and am working on my book. I have written songs, poetry, story ideas, diary/journal entries, etc. I have also done freelance writing. The following people that I've interviewed are: Eva La Rue (from the soap opera All My Children:, Tatiana Thumbtzen (from the Michael Jackson video The Way You Make Me Feel:, and Cassandra: (a young woman from Massachusetts trying to make it in the music industry). I submitted my work to various magazines, but none of these interviews have been published. Writing is a great passion of mine, so I refuse to give up on any aspect. I've been looking at a few self-publishing book companies that I am interested in (i.e. iUniverse, BookSurge), but I am unable to afford the expenses that come along with getting a book published. There is so much that I want to incorporate into this book and with your help, it will be a steppingstone for me to do so. I am 100% dedicated to my writing project and am looking for sponsors. Would you be willing to become a sponsor to help me become a published author and achieve my writing endeavors? I would be most grateful for any donation that you are able to give. If you agree to be a sponsor, upon the completion of my book, you'll receive acknowledgement and you'll have the option to display your print advertisement in the back of my book to promote your business, etc. I hope that you'll consider this opportunity. I want to give others something positive to read and something they can relate to. Becoming a published author is a HUGE goal of mine and I am hard at work with my writing trying to make this happen. Thank you very much for taking the time to read this letter. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a blessed day!



Hello Brittany,

Thank you for your email and for your interest in Matilija Press. Seeking sponsors is a unique way to get your work published, but there are other ways as well. First you must decide what you want to accomplish and then focus on that. Do you want to have a magazine article published? Or do you have a book ready to go? If you want to publish magazine articles, you must take the time to read the submission guidelines for that particular magazine. Study the magazine to become familiar with the style and type of article they publish. While a magazine might publish interview articles, they may need more than just the interview. For example, they may need a story around the interview. There are numerous magazines that publish poetry. I just created a list of them for a newsletter I write. A few of them pay up to $250 per poem.

If you have a book ready to publish, why not consider letting Booklocker publish it as an ebook. Then promote, promote, promote and get a lot of attention for it. Not only will you be making money through sales, you will be gaining credibility and may be able to interest a traditional royalty publisher in it.

Have you approached royalty publishers? I don't know the subject of your book, but there are thousands of publishers eager for good books. And I know a few publishers that specialize in publishing books by young authors. There are also contests, grants and fellowships for young authors.

Are you familiar with Writer's Market? This is a reference book for authors and it comes out each year in September. You should be able to find the 2005 edition in your public library. Here, you'll find listings for publishers, contact information and the type of books they're seeking. You'll find agent listings, contests, magazines, etc.

There is no reason why you must give up or why you should seek funds to continue your writing career. There are plenty of mainstream opportunities out there.

You might consider joining SPAWN. SPAWN is Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network ( We have a free monthly newsletter to which you can subscribe without being a member and you can view our site, which offers many articles and other resources. As a member, you also have access to the monthly Market Update that I write for members only. It is filled with opportunities for authors, freelance writers, poets, photographers, artists, etc. The fee to join is $45 per year. If you are really strapped, we give a few partial scholarships each year to writers who are serious about their craft.

Please take to heart the gifts that I have given you here, as they are more valuable than any money I could have sent you. I am attempting to help you help yourself, as this is truly the only way for you to move forward in this profession.

I have been writing for publication for over 30 years. Without a high school diploma, I've managed to carve out a full time writing career for myself. I've contributed hundreds of articles to about 190 different magazines and I'm the author of 22 books. I just finished my latest book and have a publisher interested. It's called, "The Right Way to Write, Publish and Sell a Book."

In fact, the right way is not to write the book first. So, if you haven't yet written your book, I suggest you first write a book proposal. If you have written the book, it is still valuable to write a proposal, as this will help you to find a publisher and convince a publisher that this is a salable item. It will also guide you in promoting the book once it is published.

Brittany, there is so much to know and learn in this field. Please give attention to some of the resources I've talked about and put in the time, effort and work. This is your key to becoming a successful freelance writer.


Patricia Fry, President

SPAWN (Small Publishers, Artists and Writers Network)

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Hello kind folks at SPAWN,

I've been reading up on reprints—getting more mileage from your work and promoting your book by printing an excerpt in a magazine. (Patricia Fry's book covers this topic.)

Part of my "homework" included a review of The Writer's Market. They tend to limit their discussion of reprints to a single theme—whether or not a magazine accepts them.

Before making my first attempt at placing a reprint, I'd appreciate a few words of advice, please.

  1. Do you submit an entire chapter "as is" or do you modify (rewrite) it to conform to a more specific tone and theme of a target publication?
  2. Is there a target length (or acceptable range; number of words) for an excerpt?
  3. If you submit an excerpt "as is," do you preface it with an introduction?
  4. In terms of submissions, do you follow the same rules as for a regular magazine article submission, i.e., you only submit your proposed excerpt to one magazine at a time?
  5. If you are successful in reprinting a book excerpt, is it a one-time occurrence? Or, can you approach other magazines and reprint again?
As always, I sincerely appreciate the ongoing support and encouragement from this group. Thank you again for your time and kind assistance.


A Member

Dear Member:

In your email, you have used the term "reprint," but you have described an "excerpt." A reprint is a previously published article. An excerpt is a blurb, section or chapter from your book. Some magazines will accept reprints but not excerpts and some will accept excerpts, but frown on reprints.

When you offer an editor a reprint, it must be an article for which you have sold first-time or one-time rights. You cannot sell a reprint if you’ve already sold all rights to it.

A reprint is usually submitted as it was published. You send a copy of the published clip. First, find a publication that uses reprints. If your reprint matches their requirements, you send it along. If your reprint doesn't fit the specs, you may want to offer a revision. Depending on the amount of revising, it may be considered a reprint or it may be an entirely different article that you can sell as new. For example, if you reduce an article by removing the bulleted points or some paragraphs, it would be considered a reprint, not a new article. If you change the tone and focus of the piece, however, it may be considered a new article.

As for excerpts—you can offer the magazine an excerpt of any size that makes sense to the integrity of your book and fits the magazine’s submission guidelines. If you have a 4,000-word chapter on how to make wind chimes, but the craft magazine publishes articles and excerpts of just 1,500 words, you have a decision to make. Does it make sense to cut the size to 1,500 words, can you revise the chapter to meet the guidelines or do you want to write a new article providing brief tips rather than complete details?

Regarding a preface, you would generally include a cover letter with any submission. Use this to explain what you are sending. Always think "clarity" when submitting anything.

Regarding multiple submissions, I would generally say it is allowed. However, if you authorize a significant excerpt (an entire large chapter, for example) to be published in two or three competing magazines, the editors of these and any other similar magazines would probably blackball you forever. You might offer craft magazine #1 an excerpt demonstrating how to make wind chimes using everyday household items and approach craft magazine #2 with an excerpt depicting how to sell your crafts on eBay.

You can sell the same excerpt to noncompeting magazines, but even so, I try not to allow similar excerpts to run in two or more magazines within a few months of each other. Using our craft book as an example again, you might sell the wind chime excerpt to a craft magazine, a children's magazine, a senior publication, a northwest regional newspaper and a publication circulated to Sunday school classrooms within a few months of each other. Later, offer it to an eastern regional magazine, a parenting publication, an association or club magazine and a magazine for disabled people.

I hope this has helped.

Patricia Fry, President


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Juniper Creek: Small World, Big Words

By Cathe Jones

There is a lot to be said for smaller conferences. Faces don't blend together in a flock of mayhem. The local culture bleeds out into the hallways in a warm, worn path, rather than a flashing window of a train zooming past. Nametags become gentle reminders rather than blazes of one-upmanship. And, a handshake is remembered along with a face.

Read more about the Juniper Creek Writer's Conference, held in Carson City, Nevada, at:

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Does Flash Work in a Business Web Site?

By Virginia Lawrence

When a client asks for a new Web site done completely in Flash, I tell him that we can do anything he wants. However, I also tell the client that there are problems involved in creating a Web site entirely in Flash. For marketing reasons, I recommend only using small areas of Flash to add a bit of pizzazz without slowing down the site.

Read more about the limitations of Flash at:

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Ask The Book Doctor: About trademarks, commas, ISBN numbers and more

By Bobbie Christmas

To find out more about these and other topics go to

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Member News

Hugh Rosen announces the recent publication of his book, Silent Battlefields: A Novel (Publisher: iUniverse, Price $16.95 SB, 26.95 HB). Silent Battlefields has been designated by the publisher as an "Editor's Choice" book. Silent Battlefields: A Novel is available at For more information about the book:

SPAWN president Patricia Fry will be speaking on the right way to write and publish a book on October 8 at the Write4Hope Conference and Book Signing, in association with Los Angeles Family Housing, a charitable organization. The day features author discussions, a poetry slam, a comedy workshop, a charity breakfast and some cool jazz music. Attendees will also have the opportunity to do a reading or discuss their latest books during the open mike session. This event will be held at the Posada Royale Hotel and Suites on Madera Road in Simi Valley, California. Visit for more information.

Patricia will also be a featured speaker at the 3-day Meet Me in St. Louis at the 2nd annual St. Louis Book Festival and Craft Art Fair on October 21-23 at the Muny in Forest Park,, and she has been invited to speak at the Los Angeles regional Toastmasters conference. This event is scheduled for October 29. SPAWNews will provide more information at a later date.

Wendy Dager’s original sitcom, "Day ‘n’ Night" made it to the semifinals of the 2005 Page International Screenwriting Awards competition,

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Note: SPAWNews advises "caveat emptor" when dealing with venues, contests or promotions unknown to you.

FREE access to the information you need for writing/publishing success. Discover over two hundred articles and resources for authors and freelance writers at Patricia Fry’s Web site. Click on "For Writers" and/or "Articles".

Outskirts Press is continuing to enhance its free Author Community. If you have a Web site that offers services that might be beneficial to writers, please contact Outskirts Press. Helpful links will be added to the Author's Center pages in the coming weeks.

  • Cover artists (or any kind of artist/illustrator)
  • Ghost writers or other kinds of writers/collaborators
  • Editors or proofreaders

In some cases, Outskirts Press may request reciprocal links. Mutual linking helps both sites in the search engines. Send linking information to

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Contests and Awards

Read about the latest contests at:

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Events and More

Please note: Although SPAWNews does its best to filter announcements and press releases for various events, seminars, and classes, we cannot guarantee a successful experience for all who attend.

Read about the coming events at:

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SPAWN is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization.

Donations are tax deductible.

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Join SPAWN now and receive one FREE book by Patricia Fry. See the selection from which you can choose your book at the Member Benefits page. As a member, you can enjoy the benefits of the Members Only Area. There you will find:

  • Member Forum. In the SPAWN Forum, you can discuss publishing with knowledgeable published writers and publishers.
  • Market Update. This valuable Market Update will appear every month, letting us know exactly what is going on with magazine and book publishers.
  • Event Calendar where you can submit your events. After approval, your events will be available for all members to see.
  • Member Webpages where you can upload your HTML pages to build your own Web site. Your Web pages will be viewable by everyone on the Internet.
  • Member Catalog where you can list your books and services
  • Member Discussion list where you can discuss your triumphs and questions with your publishing peers.
Join SPAWN now by clicking on the "Join SPAWN Now" button at the top of this page.

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SPAWNews SPAWN is a nonprofit corporation. Donations are tax deductible.

Small Publishers, Artists & Writers Network

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023


Telephone: 805-646-3045

Fax: 805-640-8213

Wendy Dager

SPAWNews Editor, Membership and Database Coordinator


Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

SPAWN Webmaster


Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

SPAWN Executive Director


Patricia Fry

SPAWN President


Advisory Council

Carol Doering

Dallas Glenn

Rosalie Heacock

Literary Agent

Andora Hodgin

Writer, Editor, Publicist

Irwin Zucker

Book Publicist

Jim Lane


Marcia Grad-Powers


Melvin Powers


Dan Poynter

Author, Publisher

Jean Wade


Board of Directors (as of December 1, 2003)

Patricia Fry

Author, Publisher

President of SPAWN

Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

Writer, Editor, Webmaster

Executive Director of SPAWN

Ruth Hibbard

Treasurer of SPAWN

Richard F.X. O'Connor

Author, Publisher, Editor, Consultant

Tamara Dever

Book Designer

SPAWN Founder

Mary Embree

Author, Editor, Literary Consultant of SPAWN


To promote the literary arts and provide education, information, resources and a supportive networking environment for artists, writers, and other creative people interested in the publishing process.

Submission Guidelines

Members and Nonmembers: Please send your press releases, seminar information, and books for review to Wendy Dager, Editor, SPAWNews

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023

or email

SPAWN membership dues are $45 per year; spouses, half-price. Make your check payable to SPAWN and mail to P.O. Box 2653, Ventura, CA 93002-2653. Or click on Member Application to fill out the secure online form and pay your dues by credit card.

SPAWNews, Member Directory and Web site listings, and discounts for SPAWN events are included in membership.

SPAWN is a nonprofit corporation. Donations are tax deductible.

Small Publishers, Artists & Writers Network

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023



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