21 Jun, 2016

Insights from Judging a Writing Contest

June 21st, 2016|Tags: , |

Hemingway Birthplace Home, Oak Park, IL I just wrapped up serving as one of the judges in the Hemingway Shorts contest sponsored by the Hemingway Foundation of Oak [...]

11 Jul, 2013

A Lesson in Submitting

July 11th, 2013|Tags: , |

...or: How I got published in the Wall Street Journal. I'm a guest at my friend Nancy Kopp's blog today, so please head on over to discover her blog and [...]

6 May, 2013

Patience, A Writer Must Have

May 6th, 2013|Tags: , , |

Patience, the trees seem to say, we're not ready to be green yet. My kids have been into Yoda lately, thus my inverted title, but I really feel that Yoda's [...]

1 Apr, 2013

The Many Lives of a Story

April 1st, 2013|Tags: , |

Today I bring you what I think is a most inspiring post: My longtime student Diane Hurles has shared here before how she managed to find her voice as a memoir [...]

26 Feb, 2013

Some End-of-the-Month Submission Opportunities

February 26th, 2013|Tags: , |

I haven't written much about submitting work to literary magazines lately, mainly because I've been slacking off in that department. But yesterday I got back in submissions mode and came [...]

13 Feb, 2013

That Satisfying Plop of the Mail Box

February 13th, 2013|Tags: , |

Today I mailed off two photos to the Starved Rock Photo Contest. Sounds straightforward, but it was quite a production. First, photos could not be submitted electronically. Rather, you had [...]

15 Oct, 2012

How to Submit your Writing to Literary Magazines

October 15th, 2012|Tags: , |

Every so often, when my students' work reaches the stage where workshop participants say, "You should send this out," the initial joy turns into bafflement: How do I actually do [...]

11 Jun, 2012

Literary Magazine Layout

June 11th, 2012|Tags: , , , , |

The past few days I've become obsessed with creating a book in blurb, as I am handling the layout of the literary magazine my son's school is publishing. It's been [...]

29 Oct, 2011

Blog Mash Up: Submission Opportunities, Interesting Insights and Memoirs

October 29th, 2011|Tags: , |

Tracks in the snow on our cabin's deck this morning... While I've been trying not to freeze (see photo) at the writers conference I'm attending in northern Virginia where it [...]

6 Oct, 2011

Write Your Story and Publish It: One of my Students Shares her Journey

October 6th, 2011|Tags: , , |

A story might catch you unaware but if you stick with it, it might lead somewhere! Congratulations to my longtime student Diane Hurles who stuck with her story through many rewrites [...]

29 Sep, 2011

Submissions: My Worst Submissions Story Yet

September 29th, 2011|Tags: |

Since I'm always waxing about how to get the submissions process done right, I thought I'd share, for a change, the story of my own worst mishap. In February of 2010, [...]

22 Sep, 2011

Submissions: Cover Letters

September 22nd, 2011|Tags: |

Many of my students wonder how to write the cover letter to send along with a submission to a literary magazine, so I thought I'd devote a post to that aspect [...]

15 Sep, 2011

Submissions: Follow the Guidelines

September 15th, 2011|Tags: |

It might be obvious to follow the submission guidelines of each literary magazine you submit to, but I've been tripped up myself because I wasn't diligent enough, or thought I knew [...]

9 Sep, 2011

Submissions: The Beauty of Snail Mail Submissions

September 9th, 2011|Tags: , |

Don't get me wrong: I love online submissions. But this morning, after submitting a few manuscripts online in a manner of minutes, I came across a literary journal that is not [...]

8 Sep, 2011

Submissions: Best Literary Magazines for Nonfiction that Don’t Accept Simultaneous Submissions

September 8th, 2011|Tags: , |

In my opinion, a literary journal that does not accept simultaneous submissions is the bane of a writer's existence (to use a cliché) because this means a journal is arrogant [...]

1 Sep, 2011

Submissions: All You Need to Know About Submitting to Literary Magazines

September 1st, 2011|Tags: |

I haven't written about submissions to literary magazines for a while because many of them are published by universities and thus adhere to the academic calendar of taking the summer [...]

12 Jul, 2011

Submissions: A Word on Writing Contests

July 12th, 2011|Tags: |

My take on writing contests was first published in Tiny Lights, but it's been a while so I'm offering this update. A few years ago, at one of my MFA residencies, a panel [...]

29 Jun, 2011

Let’s go short: Creative Nonfiction’s Tiny Truths Daily Contest

June 29th, 2011|Tags: |

Creative Nonfiction magazine has really spruced up its looks and contents, and they are currently running a micro essay contest on Twitter that's fun to watch: Tiny Truths Daily Contest. Once [...]

23 Jun, 2011

Submissions: Submitting is Like Dating

June 23rd, 2011|Tags: |

If you’ve been lucky enough to receive “ink” from an editor on a rejection slip – ink meaning a handwritten note saying something like “nice work, send us more” – [...]

20 Jun, 2011

Submissions: Agent Insight – A Memoir is not the Story of Your Life

June 20th, 2011|Tags: , |

Wonderful clarification from Katie Shea of Caren Johnson Literary Agency on what memoir is not: a story of your life (that would be an autobiography). Here's her answer regarding memoir manuscripts [...]

16 Jun, 2011

Third Rule for Literary Magazine Submissions: Don’t Give Up

June 16th, 2011|Tags: , |

...or as the director of my MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte, Fred Leebron, likes to say: “Writing is a game of attrition. Don’t attrish.” This means don’t give [...]

14 Jun, 2011

Six Words on Dad

June 14th, 2011|Tags: , |

Dad's love: "Checked your oil lately?" (As posted by DrumHeart23 on SMITH Magazine) The quote above is my favorite six word memoir contribution so far on SMITH Magazine's dad project. [...]

9 Jun, 2011

Best Online Literary Magazines for Nonfiction

June 9th, 2011|Tags: , , |

My listings of the best literary magazines for nonfiction as well as the second and third best focused on print magazines. Of course some of these also publish content online but [...]

7 Jun, 2011

Withdrawing a Manuscript Submission

June 7th, 2011|Tags: , |

The next best thing after having a manuscript accepted for publication is withdrawing it from other magazines you’ve submitted it to. I’ve been doing that today and I must say [...]

2 Jun, 2011

Submissions: Insights from a Newly Minted Nonfiction Editor

June 2nd, 2011|Tags: , |

My friend Tracy Crow started as nonfiction editor at literary magazine Prime Number a week ago. Click here to read her insights now that she's on the receiving end of [...]

31 May, 2011

Second Rule for Literary Magazine Submissions: Manuscript Editing

May 31st, 2011|Tags: , |

This maybe should have been the first rule in literary magazine submissions because before you need to worry about developing a system (see my post of May 27), you need to have [...]

27 May, 2011

First Rule for Literary Magazine Submissions: Develop a System

May 27th, 2011|Tags: , |

As an aspiring literary writer, you sooner or later need to submit your writing to literary magazines if you want to get published. Having a system helps:1.       Develop two lists: [...]

26 May, 2011

Second and Third Best Literary Magazines for Nonfiction

May 26th, 2011|Tags: , |

Blogger restored my post that fell victim to their May 12 outage, so here it is again: Adding to my listing of the best literary magazines for nonfiction, following are the [...]

18 May, 2011

Submissions: Consider Markets Outside of the U.S.

May 18th, 2011|Tags: |

View from my bedroom at Joyce's house I’m currently visiting my longtime writer friend Joyce Finn in her sunny paradise in Sun City Hilton Head, South Carolina. We met many [...]

6 May, 2011

In Honor of Mothers Day: “Momoirs”

May 6th, 2011|Tags: , , |

"Pregnancy is poetry. Parenting is prose." (As heard on Twitter May 4 via SMITH Magazine) What a priceless assessment of motherhood! In honor of Mother's Day, check out SMITH Magazine's Six-Word [...]

5 May, 2011

Best Literary Magazines for Nonfiction (Updated)

May 5th, 2011|Tags: , |

Following up on my list of January, I’ve just updated my personal ranking of literary magazines with the Pushcart Prize 2011 information. I list magazines that publish literary nonfiction, namely [...]

16 Mar, 2011

Acceptances Never Arrive in an SASE

March 16th, 2011|Tags: |

Today I found three envelopes addressed to me in my own handwriting in my mailbox. I immediately know what those are: rejection notices from literary journals. Because if a journal [...]

3 Mar, 2011

The Journey to Publishing

March 3rd, 2011|Tags: , |

Listen in – the journey to publishing can take many roads: This recording captures an interesting discussion about the publishing experience that I was part of at an author’s roundtable last [...]

15 Feb, 2011

Bluestem is looking for nonfiction

February 15th, 2011|Tags: |

I found this call for submissions on Brevity, an online journal for brief creative nonfiction that I respect very much, and although I didn't know Bluestem before, I must say [...]

27 Jan, 2011

Stories that Keep on Giving

January 27th, 2011|Tags: , |

Once a story has been published, you know it’s good. That’s not to say a story that hasn’t been published isn’t good, but at least you’re over the hump of [...]

17 Jan, 2011

Calls for Short Nonfiction

January 17th, 2011|Tags: |

As I was doing my submissions last week, three opportunities for short nonfiction came across my desk, or rather, my laptop:The Bellingham Literary Review is notoriously hard to get into [...]

6 Jan, 2011

Two Acceptances in One Day

January 6th, 2011|Tags: , |

How likely are you to receive two acceptances for publication in one day? Highly unlikely, I should say, until the very thing happened yesterday. I checked one email account to find [...]

5 Jan, 2011

Submit More?

January 5th, 2011|Tags: |

My writer friend Nancy Kopp says one of her goals for this year is to submit more, write more, read more. But what does "more" mean? Is that one submission [...]

3 Jan, 2011

Best Literary Magazines for Nonfiction

January 3rd, 2011|Tags: |

For those of you whose New Year’s resolutions include getting published or publishing more: The first rule of the submission game is: Be discriminate, meaning don’t submit your writing just [...]

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