This issue has all of the elements you’ll need in order to move your career forward. We highlight 4 directories with paying freelance writing work. We feature publishers you have probably never heard of—10 for fiction and 7 for nonfiction. We introduce a brand new social community for authors who are seeking agents, plus 2 dozen additional resources, tips and news bytes
Here’s What’s New – a submissions manager, an interactive ebook format and more
Opportunities for Freelance Writers – 4 job directories, 3 poetry markets and more
Opportunities for Authors – publisher listings galore and a new agent search site
Book Promotion Opportunities – personality sells books, learn how
Opportunities for Artists – 2 items to check out
Going, Going, Gone – 5 magazines close, 3 publishers closed to submissions
Bonus Item – Editorial—Serious Freelancer Writers Need a Friend
Here’s What’s New
Submishmash, a submissions manager used by freelancers, publishers, editors is now Submittable. They have a $10/month package and one that costs $20. I’d love to interview someone who is using the original Submishmash, now known as Submittable. Contact me: Patricia@spawn.org. If you’re interested in a way to more effectively handle your submissions, learn more about Submittable here: http://www.submittable.com
Have you heard about the TREEbook? It’s “an innovative new ebook format featuring an underlying time-triggered reading experience that allows the book to generate multiple storylines based on individual reading pace and other embedded triggers.” This ebook format has been in development since 2010 by Medallion Media Group. A TREEbook-compatible ereader app is supposed to be released in October and the first TREEbook novel will follow in 2013.
In case you’re wondering, TREEbook stands for “Timed Reading Experience Ebook.” According to Medallion president, Adam Mock, the new format will allow authors and publishers to embed multiple storylines or narrative branches into a story, which are triggered by readers’ behavior or even lack of action. Fascinating. Learn more about the TREEbook here: http://thetreebook.com
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co. has sought bankruptcy protection. Did you know that Houghton began publishing in 1832 and they published such notables as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Tolkien and Mark Twain?
A couple of formerly closed magazines are being resurrected. National Speed Sport Magazine is back. http://www.nationalspeedsportnews.com. And watch for Domino, the home design magazine to be revived as Domino Quick Fix. http://www.dominomag.com. Do you remember Briefly Speaking? It was closed a while back. Well, TC Media has brought out JUST to take its place. The tagline is “For People with a Calling.” It’s supposed to include a balance of lifestyle and industry—I assume related to the field of law. The magazine is published by the Ontario Bar Association.
For Freelance Writers
Mr. Magazine (Samir Husni) reports that May had a record number of magazine start-ups. Over 50 new magazines have been launched each month so far this year, with May ushering in 82 new ones. I noticed a lot of cooking and other home arts titles: Cook’n; Louisiana Kitchen; Farmer’s Market Cookbook; Quilty (for quilters); Daily Craft; Boxes, Bowls and Baskets (for crafters) and some sports magazines such as Dirt Toy and Golf Illustrated. Learn more here: http://www.mrmagazine.com
Damselfly Press is now accepting submissions by women for their 21st issue and the deadline is September 15, 2012. If you are a woman who has some worthy fiction, poetry or nonfiction pieces you’d like to submit, visit, http://www.damselflypress.net.
Leaf Press is seeking poems for an anthology. Do you have poetry related to “the newly born, the almost born and/or the journey in-between?” Send to email@example.com.
If you write poetry and you don’t know where to send it, consider visiting New Pages. They have a large list of publications seeking poetry of all kinds. http://www.newpages.com/classifieds/calls
Have you heard of JustMarkets.com? They list jobs for writers. When I visited their website, I saw that their Market of the Day is 9 months old. Other areas of the website seem to be up-to-date, however. This may be a good place to find work as a screenwriter, freelance editor, personal finance managing editor, social media writer, ghostwriter, resume writer, catalog copywriter, article writer, blogger, PR writer, tech writer etc. They charge for the listings they offer, but you get to choose how much to pay them for their services. If you get a good gig from their list, you might be inclined to give them a higher fee, for example. Check them out—it may be a quite legitimate way for you to find some good jobs. http://www.justmarkets.com
Writers Write also provides a list of paying markets. http://www.writerswrite.net/paylist.cfm
Freelance Writing Gigs offers up paying markets for writers. Here is their website address: http://www.freelancewritinggigs.com If you want a slightly outdated list of jobs that pay $100 or more, here’s a long link you can copy and paste.
I found some interesting opportunities for fiction writers at the Absolute Write Water Cooler. Check them out: http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=24
Opportunities for Authors
Do you have a novel in the works? Are you looking for a publisher? Word is that Amazon.com is publishing a lot of novels. And it appears that they are offering (at least some) authors contracts that resemble those from traditional publishing houses. Learn more about it at http://tinyurl.com/d8e7wxg
Narelle Bailey is currently looking for strong, new paranormal or science-fiction romance manuscripts for Etopia Press. She is particularly interested in hot love stories with engaging characters. Do you have anything featuring romance between humans and non-humans? For submission guidelines, contact Narellebailey@gmail.com. By the way, they pay an advance of $100 to $500 for accepted manuscripts of over 40,000 words. http://etopiapressblog.wordpress.com
Bondfire Books is paying 50 percent net royalties for the Christian and inspirational ebooks they produce. http://www.bondfirebooks.com
Do you remember Simon and Schuster’s Pocket Star imprint? Well, the company plans to open this division again to produce ebooks in popular genres.
Little Patriot Press is a new imprint of Regnery Publishing. They’ll publish children’s books focusing on American history and government for children ages 5-8. http://www.littlepatriotpress.com
Morgan James Publishing has negotiated a deal with Koehler Books to start publishing fiction. If you have a good mystery, thriller, romance of science fiction manuscript, you might check the submission guidelines for Koehler Books, http://www.koehlerbooks.com.
Broadthink will launch BroadLit in order to publish romance ebooks. http://www.trulovestories.com
Pressgang, founded in 2012, is seeking book-length fiction, creative nonfiction and graphic novels. They’re looking for seriousness of purpose, surprising execution, the well-wrought joke, the well-crafted sentence and the blurring of boundaries. Visit http://blogs.butler.edu/pressgang to learn more about this publishing house and to submit your best work.
Annick Press is currently publishing teen fiction, middle reader fiction and middle reader and teen nonfiction books. In the past, they have also published books for younger children, but are not accepting picture book manuscripts at this time. They especially like working with Canadian authors. Study their submission guidelines here: http://www.annickpress.com/guidelines.html
BatCat Press will close their reading period at the end of this month. They publish manuscripts of all kinds. This year, they are especially interested in collections of short fiction, graphic novels and/or comics, novellas, creative nonfiction and prose poetry collections. http://www.batcatpress.com/submissions.
Greenpoint Press publishes personal nonfiction, including memoirs. They do not accept submissions until winter. So, if you have something they might like, make a note on your calendar to contact them sometime in November or December. In the meantime, you’ll find their submission guidelines here: http://greenpointpress.org/gp_faqs.html
Trumpet Fiction Books is a new imprint of Greenpoint Press, established to produce fiction titles. They do not want to see romance or science fiction manuscripts, although most other genres are welcome. They will begin to accept submissions in the winter of 2012. http://greenpointpress.org/gp_faqs.html
Counterpoint (previously Shoemaker and Hoard) publishes literary fiction and nonfiction including history, memoir, literary biography, religion and philosophy and natural history. They want to see a query first and a detailed proposal with two sample chapters. Submission guidelines here: http://counterpointpress.com/submissions.
Do you need an illustrator for your upcoming children’s book? Check out the Market Update archives. But also here’s a directory of illustrators that might fit the bill for you: http://www.storybookillustrators.com
There’s a new social community website for authors seeking agents. Here, you can more easily locate the right agent for your particular book. That’s the proposed focus of the folks operating this brand new site, Lit Factor. It appears that the service is free and that the site is interactive. It isn’t scheduled to launch until July 1, however. If it’s on schedule, you may be one of the first to use the site. http://www.LitFactor.com
Are you still looking for a traditional royalty publisher? New Pages lists hundreds of them in all categories. Take some time out of your busy day and devote it to scouring this massive list of publishers. You’re bound to create a connection. http://www.newpages.com/book-publisher
Book Promotion Opportunities
Are you familiar with Google’s Talks at Google program (or Talks@Google)? Google started Authors@Google in 2005 where authors would visit one of their locations in CA, NY or Chicago and talk about their books. Some of the programs have showed up on YouTube. Now, besides authors, they also feature musicians, artists, photographers, actors, sports figures and others. I visited http://www.google.com/talks and I did an Internet search, but could find no information indicating how to contact the program directors. I’ll keep my ear to the ground. In the meantime, let me know if you have the key to this opportunity. Patricia@spawn.org.
Personality Sells Books
How’s your book promotion work going? Are you selling a lot of books? Have you hit upon an activity that really works for your book? Or are sales a bit slow these days? With so many books available now and fewer people sitting down to read, it really is a challenge to sell books. And our traditional book-buying habits have changed dramatically. I notice that Amazon is getting almost all of the business my own website used to get where my books are concerned. I rarely receive purchase orders from bookstores or Baker and Taylor (who distributes to bookstores). I don’t know about you, but most of the sales I make anymore come through personal contact.
I just finished another book for Allworth Press (Skyhorse). It’s called, “Talk Up Your Book, How to Sell Your Book Through Public Speaking, Interviews, Signings, Festivals, Conferences and More.” It will debut in the fall. In this book, I maintain that personality sells more books than anything else these days. I checked in with several other authors to see if their experiences were similar to mine. They all agreed that personality sells anywhere from 75 to 95 percent of their books. One author said, “It’s all personality.”
So my message to you this month is that, if you aren’t getting out and promoting your book personally to your audience, maybe this is something you should think about doing sooner rather than later. And by the way, if you hope to keep your sales figures up, understand that this mode of book promotion must be ongoing for as long as you want to sell books.
So what are some of the methods you can use in order to meet personally with your audience and charm them into buying your book? Let me count the ways:
- Get a booth at some local book festivals and flea markets and even travel to greet your readers. Expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $750 (or so) for a booth, depending on the size of the event.
- Schedule book programs. These might be at bookstores or any number of specialty stores from children’s shops to flower shops or nurseries, gift shops to accessory stores, motorcycle shops to pet stores or hobby shops. How about giving a presentation at a cupcake bakery, bicycle shop, pharmacy, art studio, kitchen store, small airport or the animal shelter. You get the idea. Approach the proprietor or manager and offer to present a demonstration related to the theme or genre of your book, give an informational talk (on how to prune your roses, for example), combine or entertain folks. Combine your book signing with a hike, a cooking demonstration or a live play. Do tons of promotion for the event and even bribe everyone you know to show up.
- This might be a good time to contact all of the clubs in your area that meet regularly and rely on guest speakers to entertain their members. Prepare a great presentation and then contact program directors and offer to be a presenter at one of their meetings.
- Research local radio and TV and see if you can get booked.
- Research blog radio shows and find a few that are a fit.
- Get out more—join, volunteer and just plain show up and support various programs in your area. Talk about your book everywhere you go. I know authors who have sold copies of their books at their grandson’s Little League games, class reunions, on flights to and from a book speech, while waiting in line at a grocery store or post office, in business meetings, at work, while shopping (to clerks and other shoppers), while eating out, while on community hikes or clean-up activities, etc.
Use your imagination and find new and interesting ways to use your personality to sell copies of your book this summer.
Opportunities for Artists
The publisher of Art Opportunities Monthly (AOM) is offering a free, no-obligation three-month subscription to new subscribers. Annual subscriptions are $25. Go to http://www.artopportunitiesmonthly.com/AOM_3_free_sub.html to get the details and to sign up. (Note, you must use caps for AOM or this link won’t work.) And hurry. The offer expires August 16, 2012. The letter we received here at SPAWN states that AOM has changed considerably. So if you have been subscribing or if you have given up your subscription, you may be quite pleasantly surprised by the changes. What does AOM consist of? It’s a monthly list of opportunities for artists and photographers and they pride themselves on the fact that they screen out scams and for-profit contests.
Canadian publishing house, Annick Press, produces children’s picture books, teen fiction, middle reader fiction and middle reader and teen nonfiction. Along with good manuscripts, they are also interested in receiving illustrations for possible use with their projects. While they are not accepting picture book manuscripts at present time, they may take a look at artwork for picture books as well as for their books for older children. Check out their submission guidelines for illustrators here: http://www.annickpress.com/guidelines.html#illustrator
Going, Going, Gone
Berkshire Living has closed
Indianapolis Woman has ceased publishing
Soap Operate Weekly is no longer publishing
The American Prospect is in trouble—needs funding.
Pixie—a teen magazine—has quit.
The Toby Press is not accepting submissions at this time.
Wild Ocean Press is not accepting submissions at this time.
Starcherone Press is not accepting submission during this period.
Serious Freelance Writers Need a Friend
I’ve been disappointed lately in both of my favorite publications related to the freelance article-writing industry. They report on too many magazines that don’t use outside writers (they are staff-written) and publications that don’t pay at all. I know that there are those of you who earn your living, as I did for many years, or supplement your income by writing articles for magazines. And you want to know about the many new magazines that appear on the horizon by the dozens every month. But you aren’t particularly interested in those that don’t pay.
I know that you want a magazine that supplements what major directories such as the Writer’s Market and Wooden Horse Pubs online data base offer. You want monthly or weekly updates noting new magazines and significant changes to the magazines you write for. And you want to know about new magazines that pay. You aren’t particularly interested in those that are staff written, industry statistics and so forth. And this is where a couple of my favorite publications for freelance writers are headed.
Writer’s Weekly still provides a few paying markets for freelance writers, as does Working Writer Newsletter. You can sign up for HARO (Help a Reporter Out) and get some leads. And we’ve provided some links in this issue where you can learn of writing jobs. But I really miss receiving a good publication that arrives in my mail or email box regularly and that keeps me up to date with a generous helping of markets for freelance writers who are serious about their careers. Don’t you?