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Thread: Publishing a Short Story
February 17th, 2015, 05:17 AM #1
Publishing a Short Story
I recently finished writing a short story and since then I've been wondering how to go about publishing it. I'm sorry if this is a silly question, and I have checked online on how to get it done, but I thought it would be better to hear from actual people. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks!
February 17th, 2015, 06:52 AM #2
Are you asking, "How do I find a market (magazine, webzine, anthology, etc.) to submit to?"
If so, then a good option is to browse a market listing like Ralan, or register with search services like Duotrope (requires an annual fee) or The Grinder (doesn't) to find markets that take the kind of material you have written.
If you find a likely target, check their website to find out if they expect submissions to be formatted in a particular way - the best way to not get published is to ignore what markets want on that count. William Shunn's article on Standard Manuscript Format is still looked upon favourably, but many places will take a clean approximation of it. Check first.
Finally, be prepared for rejection letters. The best preparation for this is to spend the time it takes for markets to make a decision on your submission by writing other stories, since A) practice makes perfect, and B) whether you sell that first story or not, you're going to need more in the future.
February 17th, 2015, 09:22 AM #3
What Andrew said is spot on. The only thing I'd add is to read widely. Most magazines have online content now, so you can see what you like and where your story might fit. Subscribe to the ones you like and follow them closely. Submitting your story to a magazine where it actually fits is going to save you (and them) some time.
And not that you asked, but we do have a workshop thread. Check it out and get involved if you're interested.
February 17th, 2015, 02:41 PM #4
- Join Date
- Mar 2012
Personally, I'd send it to the top four or five markets in the genre (assuming you think it's the kind of story they'd buy), then self-publish if they all reject it. Which is likely, since they typically publish less than 1% of the stories submitted.
The two main reasons for sending a short story to a traditional market are money and exposure, so there's not much point going too far down the food chain.
February 18th, 2015, 01:09 PM #5
Thanks for the feedback guys, it definitely helped.