Friday Finds for Writers

Treasure ChestWriting-related resources, news, and reflections to enjoy over the weekend.

  • Beautiful essay by Daniel Nester on the influence of poet Philip Levine.
  • “Scratch Magazine publishes smart, useful stories about the intersection of writing and money. Scratch is for writers of all genres and trades—and for anyone who wants to know where the publishing and journalism industries go from here. Each quarterly issue features in-depth interviews, reportage, resources, and personal stories about the work of being a writer.” Check out the free preview issue. Perhaps, like me, you’ll decide to subscribe.
  • Ethan Gilsdorf: “Schmoozing: It’s the dirty secret that makes the writing world go ’round. This skill is especially key to freelance writing, but really it’s what connects the movers and shakers and wannabes that make up writing’s major genres — fiction, nonfiction, poetry, screenwriting, playwriting.”
  • Michael Nye on the waiting-game part of litmag submissions/publication. Related topic: Jessica Bell takes us behind-the-scenes at a literary journal (hers).
  • On the Ruminate magazine blog: reflections on perseverance, from one of the magazine’s contest winners. (via Jessica Wilbanks)
  • Have a great weekend, everyone!

    3 thoughts on “Friday Finds for Writers

    1. Phyl says:

      Another great post. Thanks.

    2. R Klempner says:

      I particularly enjoyed this batch of links. The “Schmoozing” piece and the “Waiting Forever” bit appealed to me the most. Especially the “Waiting Forever.”

      This week, I contacted a magazine whose submission page claims they usually get to a piece in the slush pile after 2-3 months, but to touch base if you’ve heard nothing after 4 months. I followed up after 4 months, and having still heard nothing, followed up upon hitting the 5 month mark. They finally emailed back and said it would take another 2 months to even read my piece.

      I could have withdrawn my submission, but instead I sucked it up. And grumbled. And kvetched. But I think writers feel like they have no choice but to wait because we are so dependent on editors who sometimes — like the Nye article points out — have forgotten what it’s like to wait.

      I’ve really enjoyed working with editors who make realistic estimates about how long it takes to hear back and then follow up promptly. The ones who remember being a new(ish) writer. Even a No on-time is better than hearing nothing and wondering if you need to sub someplace else. The human touch Michael Nye talks about — just a little empathy — can make the waiting game easier.

    3. Erika Dreifus says:

      Thank you both for the comments. I had the sense that this was an especially rich batch of links, myself. And Rebecca–I hope that you do hear something solid from that magazine soon!

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