Lit Journals

Market Spotlight: Ilanot Review

In 2017, I had written a story in epistolary form as part of a prompt. Once I’d revised it to my satisfaction, I searched for markets and came across Ilanot Review, a journal from Israel!

Their call for submissions mentioned a ‘Letters’ theme for their upcoming issue. It excited me to find a market that looked a perfect fit, but to be sure I scouted their archives and read a few of the stories and essays available online.

After due diligence, I submitted my story ‘Perils in the Post’. I was quite excited about this story, because it was my first story in letters and also my first story not based in the modern era.

The acceptance mail arrived quite quickly, within a week. I went back-and-forth for edits with the editors as usual. After a few days, things were all set and ready to go. The changes had greatly improved my story, and three months later the issue was published online. You can read my story here.

This is not a paying journal. The quality of stories is quite good and enjoyable.

Fortunately, their submissions window is currently open, until 15th December for their winter issue themed ‘Home/Work’. If you have anything that suits the theme, be sure to send it across right away!

Lit Journals, Writing

Market Spotlight: The Writer

The Writer is one of the oldest, most venerated magazines for writers in the world. It was started in 1887 and continues to churn out issues packed with so much useful information that you could never cover in one sitting.

They host several contests for writers on a regular basis, including short stories, flash fiction and essay contests.

A year ago, I came across their essay contest which had a theme of ‘Your Writing Life’. As a software professional who dabbles in writing on the side, I felt quite passionately about this subject and had already begun an essay about how I’m constantly engaged in a tug of war with both my work and my creativity pulling at me.

I read a lot of past winning entries in both the fiction and nonfiction contests, and then I set about completing the essay and revising it. As I subscribe to their newsletter, I received timely reminders for the deadline. I have a habit of editing and revising right up until the last minute, and I’m sorry to say I did the same for this submission. My delays are mostly self-inflicted, as I worry about the quality of my writing and whether its worth the hassle of the entry free (a substantial $20!).

In fact, I dithered until the very last moment for that reason, wondering if I should splurge, and finally something pushed me to take the plunge.

Months passed, and I fully expected to receive a rejection, though I hoped for a shortlist at least. In their previous fiction contest, I had been pleasantly surprised by an encouraging note stating that they loved my story and I had made it to the final round but not placed.

So, it was with some trepidation when I woke up one morning and found an email from The Writer. The first few sentences were standard, thanking me for my entry and saying my piece had not been selected as a winner.

The last sentence perked me up: they would be interested to publish it in an upcoming issue! I did the dance and emailed them back right away saying I’d love that.

They offered me publication in the September’18 issue and $75 payment, which was credited into my Paypal just about a month later.       The whole experience was smooth and I would love to write for them again.

Here’s a link to their submission guidelines. Subscribe to their newsletter to remain updated about their contests.

Have you written for The Writer? Do you subscribe to their magazine? And if you have any tips for winning writing contests, let me know in the comments below!

Lit Journals

Market Spotlight: On the Premises

Last year I had written about my story published in On the Premises. I’d been submitting to this literary journal for a few years before that. Like most markets, I discovered this one too on Duotrope.

There’s quite a few things I like about this lit mag. To begin with, it offers payment to winning writers while maintaining free submissions. Every issue is run as a themed contest, with the top three stories and one honourable mention earning handsome prizes. They also offer a critique for stories that make the final round of judging.

When I came across the journal, I read through a number of back issues in sequence, and I must say I liked whatever I read. The stories were well-written, but also had plot and character.

In 2015, a story I sent in made it to the final round of judging. I received a detailed and really helpful critique. I used the feedback to rewrite the story.

Last year the theme for the first contest of the year was ‘It’s On You’, i.e. clothes. I had been working on a story along those lines but something was missing in it. When I realized I could tie it to the ‘clothes’ theme, I set about rewriting it. I finished drafting and revising and finally sent it out literally minutes before the deadline.

Within a week I got the good news that my story had made it to the final round of judging. I yearned to place but had decided by then I would content myself with another free critique if I didn’t.

Another week later I got the great news – I had placed second.

As the editors promised, the stories went through a round of minor edits and within the month I was both published as well as paid.

Overall it was a great experience and I would recommend everyone to send in their best stories here.

Their next contest ends on 30th August, and this time the theme is ‘Tradition’.

If you have a story or can whip up a good one in that much time, please send it across! And let me know if you win!

Lit Journals

Market Spotlight: Third Flatiron

I’ve blogged before about this wonderful science fiction literary journal called Third Flatiron. They publish around four times a year and mostly around a theme.

Their Spring/Summer anthology, “Hidden Histories” is out now, and a perfect read for folks looking for some fun, short summer reads. The anthology’s available in Kindle and paperback at Amazon.

The latest and best news about this market: Third Flatiron will be raising their per-word pay rate for accepted stories to 8 cents, beginning with the Fall/Winter 2019 anthology. As a SFWA Afilliate, their goal is to continue to pay pro rates.

They will be reopening for submissions on July 10 for three weeks. Stories are due to us during the three-week reading period: July 10 – August 3. The theme this time is “Longevity,” and they hope to find some fantastic stories for this theme!

In addition, the editor Juliana Rew has come out with her first novel, “The Unwinding: Gin’s Story,” under her new imprint, Sophont Press. It’s a space opera, book one of a planned trilogy. The ebook for Kindle is available for pre-order on Amazon, and paperbacks will be available on July 1. Kirkus reviews call it “A sci-fi romp that’s vast in scale yet thoroughly playful.”

They also did a wonderful, free podcast of Bruce Golden’s lead story about Queen Elizabeth and Shakespeare, “The Fairy’s Bell.” Check it out here.

Overall this is a great market to submit to, if you have a piece of speculative fiction looking for a home. Check out their submission guidelines and send something great!