SPAWN Market Update – July 2003


SPAWN Market Update – July, 2003

By Patricia L. Fry


Going, Going, Gone


Travel Holiday



Channel Business

The Child-Care Sentinal was established in 2002 by Provider Press and seems to be gone already. I cannot make contact with this Canadian newsletter. The Web site is gone. Emails to editor Patrysha Korchinski bounce back. I even attempted to locate them under The Child-Care Sentinel without success. My guess is that this newsletter has folded.

Here’s What’s New

ASPCA Animal Watch

We have a new address for Good Housekeeping Magazine: 250 West 55th St., New York, NY 10019.

American Baby

African-American Golfer’s Digest

BRAVO Magazine



Professional Woman’s Magazine

Hullabaloo Magazine

Opportunities for Writers

Do you have a humorous, poignant, unique or simply interesting travel story? Travelers’ Tales may want to publish it. According to their Web site, the folks at Travelers’ Tales, a San Francisco-based publishing company, are “publishers of stories, wit and wisdom from travelers around the world.” They want your personal nonfiction essay for their series of anthologies. This is not a huge money-maker for writers. Travelers’ Tales only offer a $100 honorarium. But it sounds like an enjoyable project. To learn more about this opportunity, write to Travelers’ Tales at 330 Townsend St., #208, San Francisco, CA 94107 or email them at

The editors of A Cup of Comfort want stories for their series of books. Categories include: A Cup of Comfort for Teachers, (Deadline July 15, 2003), A Cup of Comfort for Sisters, (Deadline August 1), A Cup of Comfort for Spirituality, (Deadline in October), A Cup of Comfort for Mothers and Sons, (a November deadline). Story Length is 1000-2000 words and those whose stories are accepted will receive $100. The author of the best story for each series will be awarded $500. Learn more at about this opportunity at or contact them at .

Writing Talent

Research/Reference Site of the Month


Sites for Writers

Peak Writing

Grammar Site

The Grammar Doctor

For Fiction Addicts This site is a mystery writer’s paradise. You’ll find resources, directories to events, groups, etc. and even a list of reviewers for your mystery book. If you write mysteries, you’ve got to check out this site.

Featured Writers

This month, I interviewed Mary Embree, founder of SPAWN. Because we wanted to make this interview available to all of our members and subscribers, we have published this interview in the July issue of SPAWNews and in a Web page dedicated to the interview.

Featured Editor/Publisher Interview

We have three lively interviews with magazine editors this month. Alejandro Gutierrez, editor of Conversely, Linda Perret, editor of Gene Perret’s Roundtable, a newsletter for comedy writers and Craig Cox, executive editor of Utne Magazine. 

First, let me introduce Alejandro Gutierrez editor of Conversely:

Q: Please describe Conversely: its history, purpose and audience.

A: We launched in 2000 as an online magazine focused on female-male romantic relationships. Our audience is both female and male, about 60%/40%, and the majority of our readers are in the 20 – 35 year age range.

Q: What type of material are you seeking at this time?

A: We publish short fiction, memoirs and personal essays. While we get more fiction submissions than we can handle, writers have a better chance of breaking in with personal essays (our ‘Antidote’ section) or memoirs. We don’t publish how-to articles, like ‘how do you know if he’s the one’ or ‘how to decide if your marriage is in trouble’ or anything like that.

Q: What sort of impact are you attempting to make with your magazine?

A: Examine relationships honestly, outside the parameters of conventional wisdom, beyond the formulaic approach that most consumer magazines are content to recycle endlessly.

Q: I’m interested in your invitation to artists and photographers. You don’t pay them, yet? But you do publish freelance artwork and photography? Would you talk about your needs in that area.

A: With each issue we publish the work of different artists, alongside our articles. We don’t pay for artwork or photography at this point. Maybe one day we will.

Q: I read in one listing that you can’t read samples and you only assign articles to writers who have worked with you previously. What does this mean? How does a writer break in?

A: There’s no magic formula. We ask that writers send us complete manuscripts because we don’t have time to read samples. We almost never assign articles because we want writers to write from the heart and from experience and on the topics that move them. The best way to break in is by sending a completed manuscript, tailored to our guidelines, on an original topic (one that we haven’t just covered), and that is consistent with the tone and quality of the work on our site. The writing we love is frank, devoid of clichés, unpredictable, intelligent, and it lets the readers draw their own conclusions.

Q: Please go over your submission process and give us your contact information.

A: We only accept submissions through an online system that is accessible from our website. That means we no longer accept regular mail or e-mail submissions. The online submissions system, instructions on how to use it, and our complete guidelines are available at: .

Writers who have a query can e-mail it to: (we do
not respond to regular mail queries). But it is not necessary to query
before submitting.

Here’s Linda Perret, editor of Gene Perret’s Roundtable Newsletter 

Q: Would you describe your newsletter—the purpose, the audience and so forth.

A: The focus of our newsletter is people who are interested in a career in comedy writing and/or performing. We are a how-to type monthly periodical. It is available in both a printed version or an email version. The email version is the same as the printed but is text only.

Q: What sort of articles are you looking for? 

A: Items that pertain to the comedy…any avenues of comedy writing or performing.

Q: What would you say to the freelancer who would like to write for Gene Perret’s Round Table? What’s your best advice to someone who might want to submit something to you? 

A: My advice would be the same as other editors, know the magazine. We have sample printed copies available for $2.00 or you can request an email version for free. But see what kind of articles we have done and get familiar with our style.

Q: In your opinion, is comedy/humor writing growing in popularity or not? Why? Is it easier or more difficult for us to laugh in today’s world? 

A: Comedy is always popular, sometimes it just takes on different forms. There aren’t as many clubs today as there were 15 years ago, but more restaurants, hotels and such are offering comedy nights. The great thing about comedy is you can make your own forum pretty easily. 

As for laughter today: It’s hard to say whether it’s easier or harder to laugh at things in the world today. But one thing you can say is that humor is needed today. Humor is a healing mechanism. It is a stress reliever. And it’s just plain fun. Three things we need in our lives and the world around us.

Q: Give us a couple of examples of recent articles appearing in the Round Table. 

A: The best way to do this is to email a request for a sample issue. Our topics range. We cover all aspects of comedy.

Q: Briefly give your submission guidelines and contact information. 

A: We pay $25 for a guest article and $50 for an interview. Interviews must be in a Q&A format. You can contact us at or at PO Box 786, Agoura Hills, CA 91376. Remember, Round Table is now available by email for only $35!

Interview with Craig Cox, executive editor of Utne Magazine

Q: Please describe Utne Magazine. Who is your audience?

A: Utne is a bi-monthly magazine that delivers the best ideas and writing from the alternative press to a mainstream audience of active, affluent men and women who care about personal growth and social change.

Q: Our readers are also interested in your contact information. I see that it has changed within the last few years. (Please add Web site address if applicable)

A: Utne is located at 1624 Harmon Place, Minneapolis, MN 55403. Web:

Q: What other changes have occurred with this magazine lately?

A: Last fall we redesigned the magazine and changed the name from Utne Reader to Utne Magazine. The content and mission remain the same as it has during the past 18 years: reprints from our library of some 1,600 periodicals that represent the best of the alternative press, plus original work on a variety of topics.

Q: Do you accept freelance submissions? What types of articles are you currently

A: We do accept freelance submissions, but we are not using much freelance material currently.

Q: What advice do you have for potential writers?

A: Read the magazine, become familiar with its tone and mission, before submitting queries.

Q: What recent article was most well-received and why?

A: Our May/June cover section on choices was very well-received. Our readers look to us for cutting-edge ideas for helping them make sense of their lives.

Q: Please share with us your submission guidelines. Do you have an editorial calendar? How can we access that?

A: We do not have an editorial calendar. Our submission guidelines are available on our Web site.

Q: Add anything you feel is important.

A: At a time when the political and cultural trends in this country are veering ever more to the right, Utne can help progressive-minded people make sense of the world.

Craig Cox
Executive Editor
Utne magazine/Utne Online
1624 Harmon Place
Minneapolis, MN 55403
phone: 612/338-5040 (ext. 319)
fax: 612/338-6043

Bonus Items

An Interview with Jessica Papin a new agent at Jane Dystel’s Literary Agency.

Q: Please tell us a little about the Dystel and Goderich Literary Management Company and what inspired you to hire on with them? 

A: Three things attracted me to DGLM: 1) they are known for working with first-time authors, 2) they have a reputation for scrupulous honesty and plain-dealing, and 3) they are quite successful.

Q: What is your background as a literary agent? 

A: I was an acquisitions editor at Warner Books for seven years. 

Q: What type of manuscripts do you work with? Do you have a specialty? 

A: Here’s my bio:  Jessica Papin recently joined Jane Dystel Literary management after spending seven years as an acquiring editor with the AOL Time Warner Book Group. There, she worked with such bestselling authors as Alan Dershowitz, Bill Cosby, David Lindsey, Dominique Lapierre and Brian Weiss, M.D. A great believer in the value of creative collaboration, she works closely with authors through the rigorous and rewarding revision process. Practical nonfiction interests include health and self-help, intelligent spirituality, and psychology. Narrative non-fiction interests include current affairs (especially good old-fashioned muckraking) memoir, and outdoor adventure. Her taste in fiction is wide ranging, but she is particularly interested in a strong female protagonist and a sturdy, well-crafted plotline. Favorite contemporary authors include Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, Nadine Gordimer, Ian McEwan, Pema Chodron, and Barbara Ehrenreich.  

Q: How would you describe a day in the life of a literary agent? 

A: A frenetic and often fascinating round-robin of phone calls, reading and e-mail, interrupted by lunch and sustained by coffee.

Q: What can an author expect once he or she is accepted by your agency? What is the procedure?   

A: Once I’ve signed a client, we embark on the revision process–editing or polishing the manuscript or proposal until it’s in top form.

Q: Please advise us on your submission process. 

A: Submission information, as well as bios of all the agents at DGLM, are on-line at  

Q: What is your contact information? 







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