This issue includes over 50 opportunities, tips, recommendations, resources and lists for authors, poets, freelance writers and others, including access to massive job boards and directories. Learn how to spot a publishing/literary scam, where to find paying markets for fiction/poetry, which publishers accept young adult ms, where to go for credible book promotion ideas and much more.
Here’s What’s New – 6 changes and interesting publishing statistics and a couple of events with SPAWN member discounts.
Opportunities for Freelance Writers – Dozens of opportunities including job boards galore, 10 paying markets for poetry and 11 for fiction.
Opportunities for Authors – News and warnings plus 10 publishers of Young Adult books and 8 others currently seeking manuscripts.
Book Promotion Opportunities – Book signing opportunity, tips from bestselling author and a list of 6 recommended books on book promotion.
Opportunity for Screenwriters – Film festival announcement.
Opportunity for Photographers – New magazine for female photographers
Resources for Authors – Warning sites for authors.
Going, Going, Gone – 7 to report
Here’s What’s New
Untreed Reads just keeps coming up with more and more features and conveniences for readers and opportunities for authors. I got a notice this month from them saying that you can now order an ebook from them and have it sent right to your Kindle or Nook without having to go through Amazon or B&N. Check it out here: http://www.untreedreads.com
This may not be new—but it is an interesting (and believable) bit of trivia. Did you know that 49 percent of the entire population here in the US uses a smartphone? Keep this in mind when you’re considering how to present your writing/artwork. Is your website smartphone-friendly, for example?
So who do you think is the top publisher of bestselling ebooks? Hachette has had 88 bestselling ebooks with Random House at 87 and Penguin with 42. Self-publishers (I assume this takes in both independent publishers and self-publishing companies) managed 22 bestsellers. So there is hope for those who use pay-to-publish services. All it takes is a fabulous book and enormous marketing efforts.
Do you wonder how much competition there is out there for authors? Worldometers has tallied the number of books published world-wide in 2010 and came up with 2,200,000. There were 328,259 new titles published just in the US. And I’m inclined to believe this is just print books.
The New England and New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Associations have announced the Nor-easter Advertising Program. This is a joint advertising program designed to make it easier for publishers to reach independent booksellers from Maine to Virginia. Good to see that booksellers are still hanging in there and are working together to bring books to the readers in their communities.
Amazon is acquiring Good Reads. It doesn’t appear that anything will change. According to a spokesperson for Good Reads, the staff and the program will remain the same. Good Reads is billed as the largest site for readers and recommended books. http://www.goodreads.com. If you’re an author, someone at Good Reads has probably reviewed your book. Go to the site, type in your book title or your name and see what comes up.
SPAWN Member discounts
Karen Dionne is cofounder of the writers community Backspace, and organizer of the Backspace Writers Conference held in New York City for the past nine years has a new venture that promises a terrific opportunity for both published and not-yet-published authors who wish to take writing to the next level by working one-on-one with New York Times bestselling authors, top acquisition editors, and prominent literary agents in a gorgeous and inspiring setting.
The Salt Cay Writers Retreat will be held October 20-26 on Salt Cay, Bahamas. Salt Cay is a private island with in intriguing literary history, as well as the current home of Dolphin Encounters, which means that each retreat registrant also gets to participate in a dolphin swim!
They’ve been offering writers groups and organizations and extra $500 discount over and above the early registration discount (a total of $1,000 of the full tuition fees). If any of SPAWN members wish to take advantage, just have them put “2013 Discount” in the “coupon code” field on the application form. For more information, www.SaltCayWritersRetreat.com
Karen Dionne, International Thriller Writers Board of Directors, Vice President, Technology
Co-founder, Administrator, Backspace, LLC (586) 354-7753
The website for PIPW Writers’ Weekend: Glendale is now live. I have created a special password protected page for SPAWN members to register with a deeper discount than advance registration.
Here is the website: www.pipwwritersweekend.com
The SPAWN password is: July2013DiscPg4U (it’s case sensitive)
In the top section of the registration page I have placed a SPAWN button which members must click, than enter the password and they go right to the SPAWN discount registration page.
The room we are using only holds 125 classroom style seats.
Kate Sexton, Executive Director, The Pacific Institute for Professional Writing
Opportunities for Freelance Writers
If you are a freelance writer living in the Houston area or you have a novel set in Texas, for example, you might want to check out Houstonia. This is a new magazine covering Houston area events, art, local news and, of course, food. http://www.houstoniamag.com
Are you a ghostwriter? Are you aware of Ghostwriters Unite? Check them out at http://ghostwritersunite.com They just held their first annual conference in May. Keep an eye on their website to find out what they plan next.
Do you often need to interview and/or quote experts for the various articles you submit? SourceBottle is designed to help you connect with the experts you need. Sign up here: http://www.sourcebottle.com. It’s free.
Morning Coffee Newsletter is published online every Tuesday morning and it lists jobs posted within the last six days. When I visited the site, I found jobs open to freelance speech writers, sports writers, copywriters, business and technical writers, news bloggers, health writers, proofreaders and more. While many of the jobs can be done from anywhere, others are open to candidates in specific locations. Check out the Morning Coffee Newsletter with your morning coffee every Tuesday and you’ll likely find work to keep you busy for the rest of the week.
Simply Hired is another site that posts jobs. Today, as I checked out their list of jobs, I found a request for a senior writer in Massachusetts, freelance writers in New York; Boston; Chicago; Charlotte, NC; Seattle; Maryland; New Jersey and others. http://www.simplyhired.com/a/jobs/list/q-freelance+writer
And don’t forget about this job board:
And here’s a directory of freelance writer job boards
Are you still looking for a market for your poetry?
Here’s a list of magazines that publish poetry and pay for the privilege.
The Hollins Critic http://www.hollinscriticsubmissions.com. They pay $25 poem.
Illumen http://www.samsdotpublishing.com/aoife/cover.htm. Pay 1- 2 cents/word.
The Hudson Review is reading poetry through June 30. They pay 50 cents/line.
Descant pays $100 per poem. http://descant.ca
Event publishes 30-40 poems/year and pays up to $500. http://event.douglas.bc.ca
Boulevard pays as much as $300—sometimes more. http://www.boulevardmagazine.org
The New Quarterly pays $40/poem http://www.tnq.ca
Zyzzyva uses poetry and pays $50 http://zyzzyva.org
The Bear Deluxe Magazine pays $20 http://orlo.org
Ladybug publishes poetry for children http://www.cricketmag.com
Here are some magazines that publish and pay for fiction. Novelists, pay attention. Submitting fiction is a great way to build a following—to get your name and your work out there in front of your audience—thus, to get more exposure for your books.
The Capilano Review. Literary fiction. http://thecapilanoreview.ca
North American Review. Family oriented literary fiction. http://www.northamericanreview.org
New Letters. Ethnic, experimental, mainstream, contemporary. http://www.newletters.org
Ellery Queen buys up to 120 mss/year. Detective stories, mystery. No explicit sex/violence/gore. http://www.themysteryplace.com/eqmm
Aim Magazine. Needs ethnic, historical, mainstream, suspense. http://aimmagazine.org
Open Spaces. Quality is more important than type. http://www.open-spaces.com
Sofa Ink Quarterly. Adventure, ethnic, fantasy, mystery and more. http://www.sofaink.com
African Voices uses all kinds of fiction. http://www.africanvoices.com
Funny Times http://www.funnytimes.com. Uses humorous fiction. Pays up to $150.
Cosmos Magazine uses science fiction. Pays $300 per story http://www.cosmosmagazine.com
To locate additional opportunities for fiction writers, do an Internet search using keywords, “submit fiction” or “need short fiction” or “need mysteries…” etc.
Opportunities for Authors
Are you seeking a publisher? SPAWN members were treated to some interesting posts at SPAWN Discuss recently as we debated the credibility and practices of some of the more well-known self-publishing (or as we term them here at SPAWN) pay-to-publish companies. I recommend that before signing with any traditional publisher or pay-to-publish service that you do a stringent Internet search. Use keywords, the name of the company and “warning,” or “complaint.” Wait and see what pops up. If the news is bad, keep searching to find out if, indeed, the company is treating authors badly or if there are just a few authors out there gnawing on sour grapes.
Check some of the growing number of author warning sites. There’s a directory posted below under “Resources for Authors.” Make use of it. Never, ever go into a publishing agreement blindly. Always think of yourself as the CEO of your book. Take charge throughout the entire writing, publishing and book promotion process. Remember that no one cares as much about your book as you do. No one.
Barnes and Noble is now offering a new self-publishing platform similar to Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. They’re calling it Nook Press. Check it out here: http://www.nookpress.com
Blink is the new Young Adult imprint emerging from Zondervan, a division of HarperCollins Christian Publishing. Blink will publish books for the general public. It is not strictly for the Christian market. But, according to a spokesperson, “We won’t go as dark as some, but we will touch on very real issues.”
I found an interesting article in my latest Freelance Writer’s Report (which I recommend, by the way) revealing how many of your self-published books you need to sell in order to snag a traditional publisher. According to Chuck Sambuchino in his book, “Create Your Writer Platform,” even 4,000 for nonfiction or 2,000 for fiction might be enough to interest a mainstream publisher. If you really want to impress one, however, you probably need to sell closer to 30,000 for nonfiction and 15,000 for fiction.
According to the Association of American Publishers, young adult novels are still growing in popularity. Here are a few publishers that accept young adult novels:
Elohi Gadugi/The Habit of Rainy Nights Press
Wendy Lamb Books
Oak Tree Press
Wild Child Publishing
Black Heron Press
I found this link at the Christian Small Publishers of America. This is a list of 8 publishers that are currently seeking manuscripts. http://www.christianpublishers.net/?page_id=846
Book Promotion Opportunities
Are there bookstores that still host book signings? There sure are. The University of Southern California (USC) bookstore in Los Angeles is scheduling book signings for authors. Learn more at www.uscbookstores.com. Contact the manager here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you aware of how important personality is to book promotion? Your readers want more than just another book from you—they want a relationship with you. An interview with bestselling indie author Marie Force reveals that much of her continuing success is a result of her connection to her readers. She runs around 30 reader groups. One of them just welcomed its 5,000th member.
She makes herself visible. She makes sure that every reader who contacts her receives a response. If you are trying to stay behind the scenes and write, if you don’t like to do personal appearances, if you prefer to keep a low-profile, you may be missing out on sales. Do yourself and your book a favor and put yourself out there. Join a Toastmasters Club, take media training, sign up for a college speech and communication course. And then start arranging for presentations, reserve booths at book festivals and go out and do more networking. To learn more about approaching your readers, getting gigs, handling audiences and more, read Talk Up Your Book, How to Sell Books Through Public Speaking, Interviews, Signings, Festivals, Conferences and More. Available at Amazon.com in print, Kindle and audio and most other online and downtown bookstores.
Book promotion is a big deal for an author. And some authors don’t find out what a big deal it is until they have published their first book and are struggling to make a few sales. There is help out there for authors—a lot of help. Here are some books that every author should have at their elbow:
Promote Your Book, Over 250 Proven, Low-Cost Tips and Techniques for the Enterprising Author by Patricia Fry
Talk Up Your Book, How to Sell Your Book Through Public Speaking, Interviews, Signings, Festivals, Conferences and More by Patricia Fry
Red Hot Internet Publicity by Penny Sansevieri
How to Sell Your Books by the Truckload on Amazon.com by Penny Sansevieri
How to Make Real Money Selling Books by Brian Jud
The Frugal Book Promoter by Carolyn Howard Johnson
Opportunities for Screenwriters
Do you have a film you’d like to submit for the Independent Film Quarterly Film and Webisode Festival in Los Angeles September 18-21st, 2013? The festival is designed to discover, showcase and celebrate the work of today’s up-and-comers as well as established professionals. This year, aside from the usual features, documentaries, music videos, animations and short films, they will welcome media content—webisodes, web series and so forth. http://www.ifqmagazine.com
Opportunities for Artists and Photographers
There are evidently several magazines with the title, CLICK. But here’s a new one that will be of interest to women photographers. The tagline is “The magazine for the modern photograph(her)” Cute, huh? Learn more here: http://www.clickinmoms.com/click/story.
Resources for Authors
Preditors and Editors provides a list of general rules for spotting a scam publisher. They include they openly advertises, they seek to publish first-time authors, they claim they are not a vanity or subsidy publisher, they claim they have a new business model, their books are rarely in any bookstores, online forum criticism is frequently immediately responded to by a defender of that publisher, the publisher has a no return policy on its products and there’s more—much more. In fact this list includes around 30 such items. Preditors and Editors also offer a list of about 20 ways to spot a scam literary agent. These include, refuses to divulge the titles of sales for confidentiality reasons, requires an upfront payment, agency name has changed, they require that you have their agency edit your manuscript before they will represent it. Find these eye-opening lists and other warnings for writers here: http://pred-ed.com/pubwarn.htm And they list several other sites that issue warnings for writers and authors.
Here’s a great blog post with some excellent warnings. Valerie Douglas is the guest blogger for Novel Publicity and Co. Her post is called: Authors Beware! Watch for these 9 warning signs before signing your life away to a publisher. http://www.novelpublicity.com/2012/02/authors-beware-watch-for-these-9-warning-signs-before-signing-your-life-away-to-a-publisher (I know it is a long link, but just copy and paste. If you’re considering signing with a pay-to-publish company, you’ll be glad you did.)
Going, Going, Gone
CRN will cease publishing
InformationWeek is closing
Gamasutra will fold in July
Washington Examiner will become a weekly newspaper
Al Adab Magazine to close
More is closing
Dog World Magazine monthly has ceased publishing. But Dog World Annual is still publishing