A very useful website is the one at Writing-World.com. It is run by experienced writer and editor Moira Allen. The site also offers a free emailed monthly newsletter full of articles of interest to writers. The newsletter also has many links to articles and sites of help to authors.
The web site is currently boasting that it has been included in the Writers Digest Top 101 Web Sites for writers. This means that many writers regard this site to be a very useful resource. With over 16000 world-wide subscribers to the newsletter they must be doing something right – or should that be – something “write”.
The web site has an extensive list of resource about 100 articles online for the writers who are looking for extra help. Topics include:
- Begin at the beginning.
- Rejection, writer’s block and other aspects of the writer’s life.
- How to find markets
- Queries and submissions
- Research, writing and skill building
- Rights and contracts
- Handling income…and getting paid.
- Expanding your career
- Related Links
- Reading material – including books by Moira Allen.
Another literary magazine I subscribe to is Freexpression. I’ve been getting this little publication for at least six or seven years now, and try to read each issue cover to cover. I look forward to receiving this periodical each month. It has been my delight to have several of my poems and stories published in it over recent years.
Freexpression includes plenty of poetry, a few short stories and articles and occasionally articles on writing. There is always a section listing upcoming writing competition details and a page advertising contact details for buying subscribers’ books. I always find that this magazine is very readable with a wide range of writing styles and topics included in each issue. Some issues are thematic but stories and poems on other themes are included in the themed issues.
The magazine does not have a web site but the editor Peter Pike can be contacted at email@example.com or by post at PO Box 4 West Hoxton, NSW Australia 2171
Last year I decided to subscribe to a few more literary magazines. This I regard as a vital part of my inservice training as a writer. It enables me to get a feel for what kinds of things are being published these days. This will help me to decide where to send my poems, short stories and essays.
I have just finished reading and enjoying the summer 2005 issue of Island, a fine little magazine publshed in Tasmania. It contained an excellent mix of fiction, reviews, essays and poetry. At 128 pages long it is quite a feast of reading.
I have read that if every writer subscribed to just three literary magazines each, the small magazines of Australia would be thriving and going from strength to strength. I currently have eight subscriptions. That is in addition to just as many other periodicals, like birding and geographic magazines.
I’m doing my bit – how about you?
For more information go to Island magazine’s web site here.
Had some bad news in the mail yesterday. I received the results of a literary competition run by an Australian magazine. I had submitted three poems and three short stories. None was successful. [Update: That last sentence should read: “None were successful.” See comments for an explanation.] Same result as last year, but with a different set of poems and stories. Oh well, all it means is that the judges didn’t like what I wrote. Print them out and resubmit elsewhere is the usual advice at writers’ seminars and workshops.
The poetry judge actually made comments on every poem submitted. The only comment on one poem was “Inventive.” Mmmm, wonder what that means? Does it have some merit? Is it worth resubmitting elsewhere, or does it mean that the judge couldn’t understand it? The comment for the other two poems was “Attempt a rewrite”. Yes, I have done that over and over and over until they were both so different from the original draft that they were essentially new works.
Judging literary competitions must be a thankless task. I’ve never done it and I’m sure it is very hard. I’ll try not to be too despondent – and try again elsewhere. Trouble is, my hit rate has taken a battering in the last 2 years with far more rejections than acceptances. (My success rate is around 10%) You get that. Now on with the next project.
I received a magazine in the mail this morning. It was the current (April 2006) issue of Compendium, a literary magazine I’ve subscribed to for many years. It is the newsletter of the Australian Christian Writers’ Fellowship which was founded in 1971. It includes letters, stories, poems and articles written by members. From time to time it includes writing hints and ideas as well as articles about writing. Sometimes there are details of writing competitions.
Over the years I have had a few poems and articles included in Compendium. This issue included my poem ‘A Handful of Sunshine’. This poem was written a few years ago when my wife was in hospital recovering from surgery.