Archive for the ‘Get Published!’ Category

10 Tips for Winning Writing Contests, Scoring an A, or Attracting an Agent/Editor

January 27, 2014

1. Hook your readers with a vivid scene right away. How? Read on.

2. Specific senses will get your reader to experience your story.

Example: Gary D. Schmidt’s Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy begins like this: Turner Buckminster had lived in Phippsburg, Maine, for fifteen minutes shy of six hours. He had dipped his hand in its waves and licked the salt from his fingers. He had smelled the sharp resin of the pines. He had heard the low rhythm of the bells on the buoys that balanced on the ridges of the sea. He had seen the fine clapboard parsonage beside the church where he was to live, and the small house set a ways beyond it that puzzled him some. Turner Buckminster had lived in Phippsburg, Maine, for almost six whole hours. He didn’t know how much longer he could stand it.

3. Show the protagonist’s problem right away. Turner’s is shown in his feelings shown in the last sentence.

4. Character dialogue must move the story forward. If it’s just talking back and forth to talk, remove it.

5. Use adverbs sparingly. Change them to verbs.
Example: He said loudly. Change to: He shouted.

6. Create suspense with tension. Author Steve Mooser employs the element of time. He says, “If the bad guys are due into town at sunset, if Friday is the day of the school play – that’s the easiest way to build tension.” In Frank L. Baum’s The Wizard of Oz, the hourglass shows how much time Dorothy has to live.

David Almond created atmosphere with action verbs and specific images in Heaven Eyes:
Mud. Black, sticky, oily, stinking mud. It was January who dared to lean out of his raft first. He dipped his hand into what should have been water. He touched mud, black mud. It oozed and dribbled from his fingers. The raft settled, and mud slithered across its surface, onto our clothes. It seeped through to our skin. It seeped through the tiny gaps between the doors. I took my flashlight out, switched it on, saw the doors disappearing as they sank . . . saw that we were being slowly sucked down into the sodden earth . . . Our feet, our hells, our knees were caught in mud . . . I grunted, whimpered, groaned. I slithered forward. . . My head filled with the mist and darkness.

7. Everyone loves humor. The unexpected is funny. Two unlike characters or objects placed together can be funny.

8. Read your piece out loud. Is it balanced? Not big chunks of description or pages of pure dialogue, but evenly paced?

9. Eliminate vague words: Possibly, many, pretty, terrible . . .

10. What has the protagonist learned or how has your character changed in some small way?

After several drafts, put away your manuscript for a while. When you return, read it aloud with fresh eyes. Are you having fun? If not, rework the story until it’s just right. You’ll feel that tingle of excitement when it works!

Teens Get Published Now!

December 10, 2013

One Teen Story is a literary magazine for young adult readers of every age. Each issue will feature one amazing short story about the teen experience.

Contest submission will be accepted from May 1st to June 30th, 2014.

One Teen Story will consider original, unpublished fiction written by teens ages 14 – 19. We are interested in great fiction of any genre — literary, fantasy, sci-fi, love stories and horror. What’s in a great short story? Interesting characters, a unique voice, and of course, a beginning, middle and end.

The winning story will be published in the May 2014 issue
. Contest winners will receive $500, 25 copies of the magazine featuring their work, and a 28″ X 20″ poster of the cover featuring their story. The winner will also have an opportunity to edit his/her story for publication with a One Teen Story editor.

*To enter, you must be between the ages of 15 and 19 as of May 31, 2013.

Short stories should be between 1500 – 4000 words and be the writer’s own original, unpublished work.

Previously published stories and stories forthcoming at other publications cannot be considered.

No entry form or fee is required.

Only one submission per person.

One Teen Story reserves the right to publish the story in the form we choose. A parent must sign a consent form for One Teen Story to publish the names of the winner and honorable mentions on our website.

You must submit through our online Submission Manager.

Questions? Visit oneteenstory.com for more information.

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YARN
is an award-winning literary journal that publishes outstanding original short fiction, poetry and essays for Young Adult readers, written by writers you know and love, as well as fresh new voices . . . including teens!

YARN is of particular interest to and for young adult readers, 14 years and up. We have no restrictions for authors (fogies over the age of 18 write YA too) and no genre restrictions. (if you’ve got a story set in 2060, bring it on!) We only ask that the writing you submit be original and publishable, with some literary merit. (In other words, if you’ve written a slasher thriller with lots of smooching and slaying, we recommend sending it to Hollywood and not to us.) Send us only your very best.

Submit online to the email address appropriate to your genre. For information on how to do this, visit yareview.net/

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And finally, for your holiday entertainment, this video promoting books and bookstores by Arthur A. Levine, an editor at Scholastic:

Get Your Memoir Published by Simon and Schuster!

December 8, 2013

Are you born before December 31, 1964? A resident of the United States? Want to have Simon and Schuster publish your memoir? The Huffington Post and AARP are offering a memoir contest NOW! Entries may be submitted through February 15, 2014.

Upload a synopsis and the first 5,000 words of your memoir written in English.

Entries must be written by the entrant and cannot have been previously published in any manner. Entries should include entrant’s name, date of birth, mailing address, email address and telephone number. Limit one per person.

Entries may be posted on the Contest Website after being submitted. Having an Initial Entry posted on the Contest Website does not constitute that the Initial Entry has met the submission requirements listed in these Official Rules.

Judges will select ten finalists based equally on originality, appeal, and the power of the storytelling.

Confirmed Finalists will be required to submit their original memoir by 11:59 pm ET on June 15, 2014. Memoirs must be 20,000-50,000 words in length and in English. Memoirs must be written by the entrant and cannot have been previously published in any manner.

Memoirs will be judged based equally on originality, appeal, and the power of the storytelling. One Grand Prize Winner will be selected.

One Grand Prize Winner will
(1) receive $5,000;
(2) receive a book publishing contract with S&S for publication of Winner’s Memoir in hardcover, trade paperback or ebook format (in S&S’s sole discretion). The approximate retail value of the book publishing contract is a book advance of no less than $5,000;
(3) be featured in The Huffington Post online site; and
(4) have an excerpt of the winning memoir printed in AARP The Magazine and posted on AARP’s online website. All components of prize, including but not limited to, publication, online feature, and excerpt publication are in Sponsors’ sole discretion.

For Contest results, send a hand-printed, self-addressed, stamped envelope to: AARP & Huff/Post 50 Memoir Contest Winner’s List Request, 601 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20049. Requests for the winner’s list must be received by December 31, 2014.

Or visit http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/22/memoir-contest-rules_n_4317794.html

Confrontation

June 4, 2013

Confrontation – – a semiannual publication for fiction, nonfiction and poetry.  Although it has begun careers of Nobel and Pultizer Prize-winning authors, it also features work from college students and teenagers.

Confrontation is open to submissions from any writer.

How to send your work:

U.S.-based writers: Along with your manuscript of previously unpublished work, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope (SASE) with standard letter-rate 1st-class postage so that we can reply to your submission. If you want us to return your manuscript along with our reply, be sure to include enough postage on your SASE to allow us to do so. If your work is a simultaneous submission, please let us know in your cover letter.

International writers: E-mail submissions (confrontationmag@gmail.com) are accepted only from writers living outside the U.S. Please include your postal mailing address with your submission.

If your work under simultaneous submission is accepted elsewhere, please inform us as soon as possible: confrontationmag@gmail.com.

We usually respond to submissions within three to four months; we are quite a small staff, so we appreciate in advance your patience if we stray beyond this window. Reading period for all submissions: August 16 – May 15. Unless specifically commissioned or solicited, all manuscripts received during the non-reading period will be returned unread.

For all submissions, please be sure not to put two spaces between sentences.

Mail your submissions to:

Confrontation Magazine
English Department
LIU Post

Brookville, NY 11548

Stories

We judge on quality of writing and thought or imagination, so we will accept genre fiction. However, it must have literary merit or it must transcend or challenge genre.

Send complete manuscript.

Length: Up to 7,200 words

Payment: $50-$125; more for commissioned work.

Poetry

Length of a poem should be kept to two pages.

Send up to six poems per submission.

Payment: $25-$75; more for commissioned work.

Nonfiction

We publish personal as well as cultural, political and other kinds of essays, and (self-contained) sections of memoirs.

Send complete manuscript.

Length: 1,500-5,000 words.

Payment: $50-$125; more for commissioned work.

For more information, visit confrontation.org

Publishing in Magazines

April 21, 2013

Which magazines would you recommend most to publish short stories?

This is an excellent question, and although it was sent in by a teenager, the answer is the same whether you are a teen or an adult.  Visit your public library or independent bookstore where you can actually study the magazines.  Why type of stories do they print?  Does your style and voice match what they are looking for?  Stop by their website.  Read their guidelines carefully.  Does your story fit them?  If not, can you write one that would?

Do you like their publication?  If you would avidly seek them out to read, then your writing may be a good fit for them. 

As to which is easier to get published in, I know Stone Soup gets a LOT of submissions.  It’s like Reader’s Digest in the adult world.  However, I do know teens who have been published in Teen Ink and Creative Kids.  Just this past month a high school student and previous California Writers Club Young Writers Contest winner won a Scholastic competition.   So if you take the risk, keep writing and get yourself out there, stuff happens!

Read.  Write.  Be willing to edit.   Markets for young people are at the right of this blog under PAGES.

New Literary Journal Publishes Poetry, Fiction and Creative Nonfiction

December 18, 2012

Catamaran Literary Reader is a new quarterly literary and visual arts magazine. Inaugural issue was published on October 17th 2012. Catamaran features fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and art. Based in the new Tannery Arts and Digital Media Center Studios, in Santa Cruz, CA., their mission is to capture the vibrant creative spirit of California in writing and art from around the world. Themes include environmentalism, personal freedom, innovation, and artistic spirit. Seek to present diverse national voices around themes such as these that have a special resonance with their region.

Catamaran Literary Reader (ISSN 2168-7226) is published in October, January,April, and July by Catamaran Literary Reader Inc., a California Nonprofit Corporation with 501C-3 fiscal sponsorship from Chicago Quarterly Review.

 Submissions

Catamaran Literary Reader accepts fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and art. Themes  especially interested in include diversity, environmentalism, artistic spirit, personal freedom, and innovation. Any setting is fine, but the California is of particular interest.  

Catamaran Literary Reader

1050 River St., Studio 113
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

http://catamaranliteraryreader.com/contact/

Write about a dog – – fiction contest for cash!

December 18, 2012

American Kennel Club’s 26th Annual Fiction Writing Contest is now accepting entries for our 26th Annual Fiction Contest. The winners will receive: $500 for first place, $250 for second place, and $100 for third place. Winning stories will be published in AKC Family Dog as space allows.

CONTEST RULES:

1. The contest is open to anyone except employees of the American Kennel Club and their immediate families.

2. Entries must be original, unpublished stories that have not been offered to or accepted by ano other publishers. Only one entry per author.

3. The American Kennel Club retains the right to publish the three prize-winning entries in AKC Family Dog or other AKC publications.

4. Entries may feature either a purebred of mixed breed dog. The maximum length is 2,000 words. Entries exceeding that length will not be considered.

6. The author’s name, address, and phone number must appear on the first page. The author’s name and the page number must appear on each successive page.

7. AKC Publictions cannot acknowledge receipt of manuscripts and assumes no responsibility for any entry under any circumstances. Entries will not be returned. No phone calls, please.

8. All acceptable entries will be read by a panel of judges selected by AKC Publications. They will choose the winners based on the style, content, originality and appeal of the story. All decisions are final. Winners will be announced in an issue of AKC Family Dog in 2013.

Deadline: Entries must be postmarked by January 31, 2013

Send entries to:

AKC Publications Fiction Contest
The American Kennel Club
260 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10016

CONTACT INFORMATION:

For submissions: AKC Publications Fiction Contest, The American Kennel Club, 260 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016

Website: http://www.akc.org

Anthology Call for Submissions

December 6, 2012

Are you the mother of a child with special needs?

 Deadline:  April 22, 2013

Nonfiction. Up to 6,000 words or 6 poems.

Submissions must address one of the themes listed below:

  • Challenges: Sometimes it sucks.
  • Purpose: I learned my own power; I get “it.”
  • Providence: Why was I chosen?
  • Pure Joy: Their joy is my joy!
  • Joy?: It’s the simple things.

For more information, visit:

http://www.literarymama.com/blog/archives/2012/11/call-for-submissions-anthology-2.html

The Sun Magazine

December 5, 2012

The Sun

I picked up a copy of this magazine and didn’t put it down until I had finished the entire copy.  Have you read it?  Short stories, essays, interviews, poetry and letters all written with depth, humor, and insight.  They don’t want opinion pieces or academia.  The best thing is they purchase one-time rights, which means you can sell them something you may have sold before. 

One section is devoted to Readers Write, which asks “readers to address subjects on which they’re the only authorities.  Topics are intentionally broad in order to give room for expression.” 

 Upcoming Topics

Breaking the Rules       January 1      Deadline             

Bullies                                    February 1            

In The Dark                        March 1                                        

Honesty                                April 1                                              

Trying Again                     May 1                                                 

Writing Prompts: 

  1. Choose one of the topics above and write a personal experience piece on this theme. 
  2. Choose one of the topics above and write a short story.
  3. Choose one of the topics and write a poem. 

www.thesunmagazine.org

 

 

College Students Get Published!

August 19, 2012

Discover a literary magazine which publishes work by college students!

First Inkling

http://firstinkling.com/mission-and-faq.html