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April 21st, 2004, 12:12 AM
What are the best professional and semi-professional markets out there?

If you've gone with non-paying markets, did you only go that route after submitting to paying markets? How did you feel about it afterward? Did you regret not reworking the story until it was deemed worthy of professional publication? Or do they offer some intrinsic reward that make it more of a first choice for you?

April 21st, 2004, 12:28 AM
I started small, but in the paying markets. I went to Spicy Green Iguana (http://www.spicygreeniguana.com) and Ralan (http://www.ralan.com) to look for places to submit. I have yet to submit to a free web site (well, ok, I did try Tavern Wench (http://www.tavernwench.com) but that site looks to be down).

I think it's all a matter of initial confidence. You'll never know if you're good enough for pro markets if you don't 1) read the market and 2) submit to that market.

I've got subscriptions (now) to 5 different mags. I've been reading a LOT lately. It's helped not only with story ideas, but ideas on how to get my stories more 'commericial' for the purpose of selling. I'm not 'selling out'. I'm still writing the stories who I want them to be written. I'm just picking up wordings, flow, and such. It does help if you're looking to sell.

If you're looking to write, most of the semi-pro zines are great to submit to and offer quick feedback (as many are e-subs). Saves time and money.

If you're looking for a relatively easy sell for that first time, try Alien Skin Mag (http://www.alienskinmag.com). I've gotten 2 sales there and I'm waiting for word from a couple more that I submitted. I've had one rejection from there and they provided much needed feedback.

Best of luck!

Rocket Sheep
April 21st, 2004, 02:16 AM
Most of the semi-pro magazines can't afford to pay a lot so you really do it for the credits and to show your friends and be acknowledged by your fellow writers.

The better ones may win awards and get a bit of attention. By having your story published, it may be eligible to be nominated for awards etc.

I had a story in the emag Scifidimensions that was nominated for an award by the mag, much to my delight.

I won the best story for 2002 in Antipodean SF. A non-paying emag. I ended up winning a small cash prize, but more importantly suddenly the Aussie sf community knew my name and if an anthology of the best of Antipodean SF is put together in the future I may be in it.

It really depends on the name and the quality of the mag I think. There's some good stuff being done on the cheap and then there's some flash in the pans.

ironchef texmex
April 21st, 2004, 04:04 PM
Personally, I'm sending my short stories to all of the biggies before I go to the smaller sights. For me I think it only makes sense since I'm more concerned about the publishing cred than about feedback. I think there is still a stigma placed on the semi's.

My 'To Send' list looks like this:

1) The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction
2) Asimov's
3) Analog
4) Absolute Magnatude
5) Amazing Stories
6) Aboriginal Sci/fi
7) Century