Tuesday, April 22, 2014
S is for Submissions
All a writer really needs to do to build a career is to create good work and then put it where people can see it. There are other more subtle things we can work on like social media marketing and other random projects, but those two things are the key. They're the building blocks.
So once we've got a spit-polished piece--a piece we've edited and gotten feedback and edited some more--then its time to submit. At least that's how it works for fiction and poetry. With things like articles and other non-fiction pieces, you submit a polished pitch and they hire you or not based on that.
Basically, with all the genres and types of writing that people need, my goal has been to find and submit one pitch or piece or query per day. I only succeed in that goal about half the time, but I'm getting better.
And with a few good places to look, it isn't even too difficult to find all the possible writing gigs. I'm still working on putting together my own list of resources (so if you have suggestions please leave them in the comments) but here are a few helpful places I've found.
NewPages is one of the best. If you look at the side bar it not only has a list of magazines, it has a list of contests and calls for submissions. This ones worth looking at basically every day.
Poets & Writers is another great one. It has an even more user friendly list of contests than NewPages, in my opinion, and also has a great list of magazines and even small presses.
It's also worthwhile, I think, to keep an eye on the Writers Digest contest page. The entry fees can be a little off-putting, but if you have a piece you're really proud of, this could be a great opportunity.
There are also a couple great freelance writing sites that post the best freelance gigs and writing contests. They are FreelanceWriting.com and FreelanceWritingGigs.com. Check them out. It might even be worth checking out the writing gigs page of your local Craigslist.
And for you non-fiction writers, I can't not mention the wonderful Chicken Soup series, which is always accepting applications for various subjects.
I also have to recommend the Writers Market books. Yes the internet is an incredibly useful tool, but I think the difference of having a physical book in front of us can also be a huge help. With agents, contests, magazines, articles, game writing, blogging, all of the options out there, I'm hoping I can get better and better at submitting something once a day.
Your turn. Where have you found some great writing gigs?