Welcome to Practicing Writing! Here you’ll find updates on writing and publishing opportunities (especially handy between issues of our popular monthly newsletter). You’ll discover ONLY opportunities that charge no fees, and ONLY publications/contests that will pay for your writing. The blog also shares writing-related news and resources, book reviews, and updates regarding this practicing writer’s own work.
Last weekend, I had the happy opportunity to spend a few hours at the fourth annual “Compleat Biographer Conference” organized by the smart and intrepid folks behind Biographers International Organization (BIO), “the only organization of its kind, completely devoted to all aspects of the art and craft of biography.” The conference migrates. This year, it took place here in New York City; when I was offered the chance to visit, I snapped up the opportunity.
As a child, I was blessed with an early love for reading that was sustained, in part, by feeding a hearty appetite for biographies. I gobbled up the standard early-elementary introductions to Abraham Lincoln and other stalwarts, but I also read (and reread) a collection of profiles of other (albeit less) famous Americans published by Highlights. I was also an avid consumer of the Scholastic Book Club titles, and I remember in particular one book, They Led the Way: 14 American Women, which I encountered just a few years after its 1973 publication.
So maybe it’s not all that surprising that some of my earliest freelancing assignments were biographical profiles for encyclopedias. Or that my first idea for a history dissertation topic was a biography, of a French author and activist named Suzanne Prou (here’s the New York Times obituary that inspired my interest). My dissertation ended up taking a different direction, but I’m still drawn to biographies as a reader. (Most recently, I’ve read Jonathan Kirsch’s new biography of “boy avenger” Herschel Grynszpan, and I’ve just published a Q&A with the author on my other blog.) I continue to look for and file away possible subject ideas for my own writing purposes.
All of which is to explain why I’ve followed the development of BIO (I wrote a brief profile of the organization for The Writer magazine some years ago), and why I was so pleased to visit the conference. If I ever do plunge more bravely into the waters of biography-writing, I’ll definitely depend on BIO for guidance.
Monday brings the weekly batch of no-fee competitions/contests, paying submission calls, and jobs for those of us who write (especially those of us who write fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction). Continue reading ›
It has taken me until the middle of May–Short Story Month–but I’m finally announcing the 2013 SSM giveaway of Quiet Americans. Details in a moment.
First, I want to encourage you to go over to Books, Personally and read Jennifer’s wonderful post all about Short Story Month (complete with links to other celebrating sites, including Fiction Writers Review, where I’ve done my bit to contribute to this year’s festivities).
Then, please come on back here and leave a comment. Bonus points if you mention one of the stories (or collections) you’ve most enjoyed over the past year. Extra bonus points if you mention a story that’s available online and give us a link to it. (I’m serious–you’ll get one or two additional entries in the giveaway if you do these things when you leave your comment.)
Comment anytime between now and May 30. On May 31, I’ll announce the giveaway winner. Please note that I can ship your SIGNED copy of Quiet Americans only within the U.S. at this time. And thanks for playing along!
Monday brings the weekly batch of no-fee competitions/contests, paying submission calls, and jobs for those of us who write (especially those of us who write fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction).
“Flavorwire is thrilled to announce its first-ever short fiction contest. In honor of May’s National Short Story Month, we’re offering a prize of $500 for one outstanding short story.” Deadline is soon: May 17. No entry fee indicated. (h/t @taniahershman)
New contest from Cha: An Asian Literary Journal seeks unpublished poems on the theme of “Void.” Cash prizes (payable via Paypal) and publication in the journal. Deadline: September 15, 2013. No entry fee.
From Salt Publishing: “Salt is actively seeking novel submissions directly from authors. Please carefully read the guidelines [linked below]. We only wish to receive fiction submissions that meet these criteria….All works must be in English. All works must be aimed at a British market. You do not require an agent to submit to Salt. We prefer works of less than 80,000 words. Please note we are not currently accepting submissions of short stories, poetry or memoirs.”
“Bloomsbury Spark is a one-of-a-kind, global, digital imprint from Bloomsbury Publishing dedicated to publishing a wide array of exciting fiction eBooks to teen, YA and new adult readers. Launching in Autumn 2013 our outstanding list will feature multiple genres: romance, contemporary, dystopian, paranormal, sci-fi, mystery, thriller, and more. If you’re an author, Bloomsbury Spark is the premiere place to publish your work.
Why? Because we are a hands-on, full-service publishing house We will publish you globally but market you locally. We are not just interested in publishing your book; we want to help craft your career. If you have a manuscript between 25 and 60k words long, then send it to us.” (via @Duotrope)
Poets & Writers, Inc. (New York) is looking for a Web Editor.
Teaching positions in poetry and fiction writing are available at The Putney School Summer Programs in Vermont. (Thanks to my friend Lené Gary for sharing this information.)