SPAWN Market Update – September 2009

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Going, Going, Gone – 27 magazines, publishing companies and writing websites, gone

Here’s What’s New – 11 new items and industry changes to report and FREE WI-FI

Opportunities for Freelance Writers – 7 new magazines open to submissions, a NEW Canadian writers group plus14 “best bet” magazines that publish 100 ms/year and up.

Opportunities for Poets – 2 magazines and a press seeking good poetry plus 6 that publish 30 or more poems per year.

Opportunities for Authors – 11 potential publishers for your novel, memoir or ?

Book Promotion Opportunities – New distributor, book reviewer, a unique offer to record your book and get ready for the fall book festivals.

Opportunities for Scriptwriters – Jumpstart your career through Scriptapalooza’s 2009 competition

Opportunities for Artists and Photographers – 4 magazine photo opportunities plus a tip for photographers who want to make some money shooting professionally

Tips for Authors – Cheap/easy PDF software and more

Resources for Writers – Writers’ group listings, jobs for writers and other valuable resources

Resources for Independent Publishers and Artists – Publishing Resource Center in Oregon and Author Scoop

Going, Going, Gone

Ann Arbor Business Review will close down the magazine.

Disciple Journal has gone out of business.

Lunch Hour Stories has closed its doors.

HeyLady.com domain is for sale.

Romance Rag seems to be gone.

Son and Foe Magazine is no longer publishing.

NWWomensJournal.com is for sale.

Managed Dental Care has quit publishing.

TechLINKS plans to close this year.

PINK will stop their print publication and go online only.

Independentpublishers.com domain is for sale.

Aviation Maintenance is closing.

Wealth Manager has closed.

Lustre Magazine has suspended operation.

Modern Jeweler is no longer publishing.

RV Trade Digest is out of business.

Wood Digest has ceased publication.

Men.Style.com, has shut down.

Publisher’s Weekly Library Journal and School Library Journal are for sale.

Bend Living has closed.

The Church Herald is no longer publishing.

Inkwell Publishing Solutions has also closed its doors.

Jazz Times has ceased publishing.

Style Magazine (Las Vegas) has shut down.

The Most lasted only through one issue.

Vibe Magazine has closed

Mom and Baby has ceased publication.

In case you’re interested in the failed magazine phenomenon, you might want to read Jeff Bercovici’s Media Brain Trust: Death Watch Edition at his blog post http://www.dailyfinance.com/2009/08/05/media-brain-trust-death-watch-edition/

Meg Weaver at Wooden Horse Publishing, announced last month that 279 magazines have folded already this year and that there were 187 new magazines launched during the first half of 2009, resulting in a net loss of 92 magazines this year. MediaFinder.com, an online database owned by Oxbridge Communications, revealed recently that regional publications were the hardest hit. But, think about it, we’ve been reporting more regional startup magazines in the last year than practically any other category. According to the report, 27 of them have gone under. We’ve lost 14 in the lifestyle category and 10 business magazines. The trade magazine category has been hard hit, as well. Probably the most shocking news is that the number of major titles closing during the first 6 months of this year was double the number for 2008. (Thanks Meg, MediaFinder and Mr. Magazine for keeping track of this data for us, as dismal as it is.)

Here’s What’s New

The new 2010 Writer’s Market is out. I don’t see many new magazines listed, but I am letting you know about some new publishers (see Opportunities for Authors) below. For anyone who doesn’t know, Writer’s Market is the premiere hard copy directory listing thousands of magazines and book publishers. It’s $30 at most bookstores and on the Internet. There are discounts available—do a Google search to find them. I ordered mine at a pretty deep discount here: http://www.writersdigestshop.com/?r=writersmarketsite

Barnes and Noble now offers free Wi-Fi in their stories. That’s right, you just walk in with your lap top and you can start surfing the net without paying a dime. Spokespersons say that this is an effort to make their stores feel even more like home. For more information, go to http://tinyurl.com/mpfywm

It is reported that Pangaia Magazine has become one with Witches and Pagans—an online publication that launched last month. Their website does not reflect this, yet. Stay posted. http://www.pangaia.com

Page Six, the New York Post gossip magazine, has returned. It will be a quarterly.

By now, Mr. Magazine, Samir Husni’s new Magazine Innovation Center (MIC) should be open. He established the center for the purpose of studying magazines. We’ll keep an eye on this project and report more details next month.

Market Leap is now Acxiom Digital. This is one of the sites where you can check the popularity of your site or those of others. I like to go there from time to time and compare the popularity of my site or the SPAWN site with similar sites. It’s an eye-opening experience. You can still access this site by using http://www.marketleap.com.

Susan Casey is the new editor for O,The Oprah Magazine. If you submit articles to magazines, you’ll want to make note of this.

Mom Writer Newsletter is currently on hiatus while they do some reorganizing and revamping. Keep an eye out for their return. http://www.momwriterslitmag.com/

Business Edge is back in print. If you want to inquire about writing for this Canadian magazine, contact editor Terry Inigo-Jones at terry@businessedge.ca. Visit the website here: http://www.businessedge.ca.

ColoradoView Magazine will debut this month and they’re offering a year’s subscription for $15. This new publication will focus on fashion, lifestyle, work and family issues related to happenings in Colorado. They will be using freelancers. Their website is still a work in progress at http://www.coloradoviewmagazine.com. Keep checking back for submission guidelines.

Misty Sandefur at Coffee Break for Writers has announced that she is no longer going to circulate a newsletter. She envisions a niche website, instead. Coffee Break for Writers was originally created in 2006 as an ezine. But now, the focus will be resources and other help for writers and authors at the site. The site will include book reviews, book awards, a blog site and more. I stopped in to check out her list of recommended books for writers and authors and discovered my own book, The Right Way to Write, Publish and Sell Your Book listed there. Visit Misty’s website and see what’s new: http://www.coffeebreakforwriters.com.

Opportunities for Freelance Writers

The Writer’s Bridge is a new marketing/support service for freelance writers who specialize in magazine and website articles. For $10 month you will receive lists of job opportunities in your email box 5 days per week along with personalized job listings for opportunities in your geographic area or area of expertise. They will also send weekly ideas and even help you write those all important query letters. They are currently offering the first month of membership free.  After that, you are on a month-to-month basis. In other words, you can bail at any time. What’s the catch? They ask for a percentage of any money you earn as a result of their services. Sounds interesting, don’t you think? If you want to pursue it, check out The Writers’ Bridge at http://www.thewritersbridge.com. Or contact Darrell Laurant at writersbridge@hotmail.com.

Note of warning: Keep in mind that we do not know Darrell Laurant and we don’t know the quality of his work or his ability to work with you to formulate a selling query letter. We’re here to provide possibilities for you to check out. We recommend that you be discerning in determining whether they are right for you.

Western Farm Family is new out of Canada. This magazine is designed to profile women with farm backgrounds. It will also cover issues related to children, health, finances and other things pertinent to farm families. Learn more at: http://www.marketzonepro.com/westernfarmfamily. For submission information, contact Trevor Shirtliff at tshirtliff@marketzonepro.com.

Vain is coming this fall. This will be a women’s lifestyle quarterly with Rachelle Gauthier as the contact person, Rachelle@vainmag.com. Wow, they have quite a large list of contributors for this magazine and I could not find anything indicating that they use freelance material. But if you would like to write for Vain, after checking it out at, http://www.vainmag.com, contact Rachelle and ask about submission guidelines or inquire about getting a place on their large staff of writers.

If you have done work for Ebony or Jet Magazines, take note that they are evidently asking freelancers to write for free. If you want the credits, keep submitting. If you need to receive money for your efforts, move on.

The Canadian Writers Group, a writers union, of sorts, launched this month. They organized in order to help negotiate fees and rights on behalf of clients and collect money owed to their member writers. Of course, they do this for a percentage. If you are a freelance writer living in Canada, check out this new organization at http://www.canadianwritersgroup.com

Strange Horizons is seeking speculative fiction. They say, “If your story doesn’t have a clear fantasy or science fiction element or at least strong speculative fiction sensibilities, it’s probably not for us.” They pay 5 cents/word for stories under 5,000 words. Their minimum payment is $50. Check out their guidelines at http://www.strangehorizons.com/guidelines/fiction.shtml.

Strange Horizons also publishes articles on science and technology, history and culture and some other genres and topics. The editors suggest looking through their archives to see what has been published. They want articles of around 2,000 to 5,000 words and they pay a flat rate of $50 each. Learn more at http://www.strangehorizons.com.

Naturally Good Magazine is new and they’re in the market for articles on alternative health subjects. They pay as much as $500 per article. Their Writer’s Guidelines are on their website, but they are almost impossible to locate from the home page. Here’s the link. http://www.naturallygoodmagazine.com/writers_guidelines.shtml Contact Sarah Cain at editor@naturallygoodmagazine.com with your article ideas.

The Lookout Magazine pays 11 – 17 cents/word for articles on family concerns, discipleship, social involvement and so forth—all with a Christian focus. They’re most interested in articles that teach, inform and/or have a human interest aspect. Basically, they want articles of from 1,000 to 1,600 words. Their magazine operates through monthly themes. Check out their theme list for the coming months. In January 2010, for example, their themes are, “It’s okay to be single,” “Forgotten virtues—integrity and modesty.” In February they want articles related to, “Forgotten virtues—simplicity,”  “Making marriage meaningful,” and “Tired of being good.” Contact the editor at: lookout@standardpub.com. Visit their website at: http://www.lookoutmag.com

Best Bet Magazines

What are some of the best opportunities for freelance writers? Where can you find the best odds for getting published? It would seem that volume is key. And by this, I don’t mean pay-per-word. I’m talking about the number of articles or stories that a magazine publishes. I did a search to find magazines that publish 100 articles per year or more. Here are the results.

American Profile publishes 250 general interest and interview/profile pieces per year. They are interested in Health issues, family, finances, home and gardening. http://www.americanprofile.com. As for pay? Well, they won’t make that public. They say they will negotiate pay on an individual basis. They do pay on acceptance, though, which is a plus in this economy.

Industry Magazine buys as many as 500 manuscripts per year. And they pay from $275 to $600 for 450 to 2,000 words. If you could sell them half dozen 2,000-word articles per year, you’d make $3,600. They publish humor and interview articles featuring new products, travel, fashion and entertainment. Learn more at http://www.industrymagazine.net.

Parade publishes around 150 pieces per year on health, trends, social issues—anything of interest to a general audience. They also like to see interview/profile articles on celebrities. You probably know that this is a high-paying market, having a circulation of over 3 million. Learn how you can get a gig with Parade at http://www.parade.com

The Polishing Stone doesn’t pay much, but the opportunities for publication seem promising. They use around 75 manuscripts annually. http://www.polishingstone.org. Contact the editor at submissions@polishingstone.com with your book excerpts, essays and how-tos on whole foods, gardening, using herbs, spiritual concerns and more.

Thrive NYC uses 110 articles per year on topics related to baby boomers. They pay $100 to $300 for 800 to 1,100 word essays, historical, humor, inspirational, interview and personal experience pieces. http://www.nycplus.com. Contact the editor at vent@thrivenyc.com.

Better Nutrition pays $400 to $1,000 per piece on nutrition, alternative medicine, disease prevention, how to attain optimal health, exercise, personal care and more. And they buy as many as 180 articles each year. http://www.betternutrition.com. Contact the editors at editorial@betternutrition.com

US Airways Magazine uses 200 to 350 manuscripts per year and they pay up to $1,500 per article. Hey, sell them 6 of your great articles on some unique angle of travel, food or business, for example, and earn an additional $9,000 this year. They also want personal experience pieces, articles on sports, lifestyle and food. Contact them at edit@usairwaysmag.com. http://www.usairwaysmag.com.

Here are a few other magazines that publish volumes of articles:

Philadelphia Style http://www.phillystylemag.com, 100+

Rural Heritage http://www.ruralheritage.com 200

Nevada Home Magazine http://www.nvhome.biz 100

Discover Maine info@discovermainemagazine.com 200

Washington city Paper http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com 100

The Nation http://www.thenation.com 100

Opportunities for Poets

Strong Verse is an online poetry magazine whose editors are seeking good poetry. If you’re a serious poet, this might be a good site to get involved with. http://www.strongverse.org.

Tupelo Press publishes books of poetry. Check them out at http://www.tupelopress.org. You’ll find guidelines at their website.

Ashland Poetry Press, of Ashland, Ohio makes outright purchases of poetry collections. Study their website at: http://www.ashland.edu/aupoetry and, if you think you have what they want, contact Sarah Wells, managing editor at: app@ashland.edu

Did you know that the Atlantic Monthly buys 30 to 40 poems per year? Learn more at http://www.theatlantic.com.

West Branch publishes 30-40 poems year and they pay $20 to $100. http://www.bucknell.edu/westbranch.

Mindflights buys 60 poems per year. http://wwwmindflights.com

The Portland Review publishes 50 poems/year http://www.portlandreview.org.

Poetry Ireland Review publishes 150 poems per year http://www.poetryireland.ie

Poetry uses as many as 250 poems each year http://poetrymagazine.org

Opportunities for Authors

Here are some of the new publishers I found listed in Writer’s Market 2010.

The publishers at XYZZY Press in Brentwood, Tennessee are seeking nonfiction books on cooking, foods, nutrition, nature, environment, lifestyle, motivation, athletics, personal growth, personal finance, travel and more. Check out their guidelines at the website, http://www.xyzzypress.com.

Your Culture Gifts in Ellicott City, Maryland is currently publishing 5 titles per year related to children’s/juvenile, cooking, foods, creative nonfiction, history, young adult and others. They also publish fiction. Learn more about this publisher at http://www.yourculturegifts.com. Contact Frank Sauri, info@yourculturegifts.com.

Tupelo Press was established in 2001 in Dorset, Vermont. They publish memoirs and some fiction. Contact them at publisher@tupelopress.org. Check out their submission guidelines and catalog of books at http://www.tupelopress.org.

Komenar Publishing, established in 2005 in Walnut Creek, California, is publishing all kinds of fiction, including adventure, ethnic, experimental, historical, humor, literary, mainstream, mystery, suspense and more. http://www.komenarpublishing.com.

The publishers at Elkhorn Publishing, based in Elkhorn, Nebraska, pays $7,000 to $20,000 advance for the books they accept for publication. Most of the books they publish are from first time authors. Subjects include Americana, anthropology, archeology, business, economics, government, history, memoirs, finance, sports, and more. They also publish fiction. http://www.elkhornpublishing.com. Contact editor, Molly Harper, at: molly@elkhornpublishing.com.

Everyone’s writing memoirs and romance novels. Here are some small presses that you might approach with your perfectly edited manuscript:

Untapped Talent LLC at http://www.unit2.com. Contact Rena Wilson Fox at rena.untappedtalent@gmail.com. While Rena has a wide area of interest, romance and memoirs are two of them. If you have a manuscript that fits into the Americana, art, child guidance, parenting, computes, culture, foods, health, music, dance, photography, travel or another popular category, contact this publisher.

Top Publications, LTD is primarily a publisher of fiction. They have many areas of interest, including romance. Contact Zoila Iglesias at info@toppub.com. Check the website for submission guidelines: http://www.toppub.com.

Lucky Press, LLC publishes nonfiction and fiction, including romance. Learn more at http://www.luckypress.com

There are around 90 publishers of memoirs listed in Writer’s Market this year. They include:

Diversion Press (a member of SPAWN) at http://www.diversionpress.com

Paul Dry Books at http://pauldrybooks.com

Swan Isle Press at http://www.swanislepress.com

Book Promotion Opportunities

Authors of children’s books might be interested in learning about Ripple, a web-based audio recording opportunity where authors can make personalized audio recordings of picture books for designated children. As I understand it, you can make these personalized audio recordings using your own book and so can others. When others make recordings of your book and send it to a child, you will earn $1 per recording. In order to participate, you need to register your book(s) at their website: http://www.ripplereader.com. You’ll find additional information there, as well as a demo copy. Or contact court@ripplereader.com. The directors claim that Ripple is an excellent way to expand reach, boost income, help kids and build community.

Get your book reviewed at Strange Horizons website, http://www.strangehorizons.com. First, study the website and see if your book fits with their requirements. Then, send a brief description of your work to reviews@strangehorizons.com.

Terry Nathan, executive Director of IBPA (formerly PMA) introduced a new distribution company in the August edition of the IBPA Independent. It’s Small Press United. He seemed pretty impressed by what they offered. Again, I urge you to be discerning. Learn more at http://www.smallpressunited.com. And always do a Google search when considering a new service or company to see if there are any negative comments or warnings out there about them.

We’re coming upon a prime time for book festivals. Most are held in spring and fall. Check to see if there are any scheduled for your area or the cities where you’ll be visiting. Do a Google search using key words, “Book Festival” or “Book Fair” and the name of the city. You can also use the following links to locate directories of book fairs: http://www.loc.gov/loc/cfbook/bookfair.html. Here, you’ll find dozens and dozens of book festivals scheduled throughout the country in September-November. They’re being held in Alabama; Florida; Fostoria, Ohio; Baltimore; Banff, Canada; Bangor, Maine; Bellingham, Washington; Cincinnati; Boston; Bristol, Indiana; Wooster, Ohio; North Carolina; Kentucky; New Jersey; California and others.

If you’ve never participated in a book festival before, you might want to read these articles: “How to Successfully Promote Your Book at a Book Festival.” http://www.spawn.org/marketing/promoteatbookfestival.htm, and “How to Work a Book Festival So it Works For You.” www.matilijapress.com/articles/promo_bookFestival.htm

Opportunities for Scriptwriters.

The Scriptapalooza Television Writing Competition deadline is October 15, 2009. This year, there are four categories: one hour shows like True Blood, existing half-hour sitcoms like The Office and Two and a Half Men and original pilots and reality shows. Get more information at: http://www.scriptapaloozaTV.com. Contact them at info@scriptapolooza.com

Opportunities for Artists and Photographers

A new magazine, 1859 Oregon’s Magazine is running a photo contest. Photos must be taken in Oregon. Check out the rules and fill out the form at http://www.1859magazine.com/photo.html.

D Home and Garden Magazine uses photography. Contact Andrea Tomek using the contact form at the site: http://www.dmagazine.com/corporate/Contact%20Us.aspx. Or go to http://www.dmagazine.com and click on “contact.”

Fine Gardening uses photos. http://www.finegardening.com.

The American Gardener offers $80 to $350 for photos. http://www.ahs.org.

Tip for Photographers

Again, let me suggest that you network with freelance writers and authors for the possibility of doing photography work for them. When a writer gets an assignment for a garden, family, regional, general interest or other magazine, for example, the editors usually want photos. Not every writer can get the quality shots required. I have done a lot of my own photography as a freelance writer—having photographed birds of prey in a sanctuary for ASPCA Magazine, a meandering garden for a walking magazine, kids and kittens for Cat Fancy, horses and riders for numerous horse magazines, Pallas cats in the Denver Zoo for Cats Magazine, artists for a variety of publications, etc. But I have also hired photographers to get those tricky, more professional shots for me. The extra money from the magazine for photos pays for the photographer. One way to connect with writers and authors, who might need professional quality photos for a project, is through SPAWNDiscuss—a member only email discussion group.

Tips for Authors

Key Decision Points for Authors

I came across this good information in Brian Jud’s Book Marketing Matters July newsletter. It’s an excerpt from Eric Kampmann’s book, Book Publisher’s Handbook. Kampmann is President of Midpoint Trade Books. He lists 7 key decision points that must be addressed as a book is being prepared for publication. Those that I feel are most important include:

  • Print the right number of books
  • Price the book for your market
  • Hire an experienced designer for your book jacket.
  • Choose your printer carefully.
  • Establish a marketing plan.

Inexpensive/Easy-to-use PDF Software

I get the question occasionally, “Is there PDF software that’s inexpensive and easy to use?” Well, this is not a commercial for this product—I have not used it. But I stumbled upon a company recently offering what they call, “Easy PDF Templates at a reasonable price.” Check it out for yourself at http://www.easypdftemplates.com.

Resources for Writers

Are you looking for a writers’ discussion group? Here’s a list of 17 (at last count) in various genres and interests—self-publishing, romance, screenwriting, children’s writing and more. http://www.writesuccesss.com/writers_discussion_groups.html.

Freelance Writing Organization International seems to be a useful website for anyone interested in writing for publication. They provide over 5,000 resources and links, including a list recommended books, marketing ideas, job opportunities and more. Take a look at: http://www.fwointl.com.

Have you found Jason W. Moser’s fiction site, yet? It’s at http://www.write-and-publish-fiction.com. And it seems to be quite a substantial resource center for fiction writers and authors. I couldn’t determine whether there is a membership fee involved. The newsletter is free, but, with that, you get some bonus items worth some bucks. This always leads me to believe that there are products and services for sale. There is a forum coming to the site soon. It’s an interesting place to visit. I suggest taking a look to see if there’s anything there that you can use.

Resources for Authors and Independent Publishers

If you live anywhere near the Portland, Oregon, you must venture over to the facilities at the Independent Publishing Resource Center (IPRC) and see what’s going on. For a fee, you can even get involved in creating published media and art. Learn how to print and bind your own book, design and publish comic books and other creative projects. They conduct workshops in things such as printing basics, copyright law, design and publishing software. At the IPRC, you are provided the workspace, tools and assistance to aid in the production and distribution of zines, comics, artwork, hand-bound books. Here you can use computers to do the writing, scanning, graphic design and desktop publishing as well as printing. They’re offering a recession special of $25 for a three month membership. If you want to continue your members, pay $20 at the end of the three months and you are paid up for a year. There are other membership packages you can purchase for a variety of costs. Check out this interesting resource at http://www.iprc.org.

AuthorScoop.com (http://authorscoop.com) is a year-old site featuring news, tips, comments and inquiries. You can also get your poetry and essays published there. Check out their submission guidelines at the site and/or contact the editor at authorscoop@gmail.com

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