You've gotta read the 'zine

Published Friday, March 19, 2010 10:24 AM
I've said it before, but I'd like to reiterate the importance of reading the magazines that you submit to. Every magazine will tell you in their submission guidelines that to have the best chance of getting your work accepted you need to read know what sort of material they like but as the constant skeptic I have to admit that I thought they were just trying to get me to read their magazine. Obviously I have nothing against reading but I can't read all the magazines. I just don't have that kind of time on my hands. I'll admit I used to read none except what I could find for free online or available in the library (public libraries don't have much but university libraries usually have subscriptions to a lot of different 'zines). My wallet is thin. For christmas I asked for subscriptions to magazines and was happy to get a couple. Now that I'm reading these two on a regular basis, I have to admit that I really can tell a difference between what they publish and, the more I looked, I found patterns in what other magazines I've been a reader of over the years will take and that has made a sugnificent difference in how and what I write and where I then submit to first, instead of just sending my work to the highest paying market when I pen the final draft (though still not a bad idea just in case).

You don't have to follow the rule of read before your write, lord knows I don't always, there are just too many magazines and I have too many unpublished stories to do that kind of research. Most that I submit to I have read at least once and I always look at their website and find out as much as I can about them, but as I said, once you become an avid reader of a magazine you really start to pick up on the patterns of what they like, thematically and stylistically. If it works for me this blog will be the first place you'll hear about it.

Until next time, I'm Eric and I'm an unpublished fiction writer.

73 days to deadline, 13 chapters complete
by DMI
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