THE PRACTICING WRITER
Supporting the Craft and Business of Excellent Writing
Volume 15, Number 2: March 2018
OUR FIFTEENTH YEAR
Editor: Erika Dreifus
Copyright (c) 2018 Erika Dreifus
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IN THIS ISSUE:
1. Editor’s Note: What’s New
2. Article/Lessons Learned
3. Featured Resource
4. Upcoming/Ongoing Contests, Competitions, and Other Opportunities (NO ENTRY FEES; PAYING OPPORTUNITIES ONLY)
5. Submission Alerts!!! (NO SUBMISSION/READING FEES; PAYING CALLS ONLY)
6. Blog Notes
7. Newsletter Matters
1. EDITOR’S NOTE: WHAT’S NEW
Greetings, practicing writers:
February somehow always seems to whoosh by, doesn’t it?
Over at Practicing Writer HQ, I’ve been spending plenty of time with my full-length poetry manuscript. BIRTHRIGHT is now out with two publishers, and I’ve been researching others to try this spring (I’m noticing that a number of opportunities seem to open up in April).
I’ve also been hard at work with my freelance book-publicity practice, which I’ve been developing since leaving my publishing-company job last summer. What I most loved about my previous position was the work that I did to help spread the word about our authors’ books. I am fortunate to be continuing similar efforts, working these days with individual writers and the publishing companies that are bringing forth their books to augment what any individual writer or in-house staffer can do alone. So that’s all going well.
I have, however, seen a lot of evidence lately that suggests that my rates are lower that what many other freelance publicists charge. And not just *somewhat* lower. *Much* lower.
Now, I’m not necessarily in the same league as some of these folks, and since I acknowledge that truth, I’m not about to raise my fees to their levels. But I do have a birthday coming up this spring, and as a gift to myself, I plan to increase my rates on May 1.
So if you’ve been thinking of reaching out to discuss a possible collaboration, please take note of that. One-off consultations and project contracts signed before May 1 will continue to be offered at current rates; as of that date, prices will go up. To discuss any of this further, please be in touch: http://www.erikadreifus.com/contact.
Thanks so much. And here’s wishing everyone a marvelous March,
P.S. A congratulatory note to Practicing Writer Sue Granzella (http://www.suegranzella.com): A few weeks ago, Sue e-mailed the news that she had won the Naomi Rodden Essay Award, an opportunity that she discovered via this newsletter and that confers a $100 prize. Congratulations, Sue, and thank *you* for sharing your news with us. Any practicing writing with similar news that results from newsletter or blog tips is welcome to contact me via http://www.erikadreifus.com/contact. And a postscript to the postscript: The same folks who offer the Naomi Rodden Essay Award run some other no-fee contests that award cash prizes, too; you’ll find the HH Egbert Essay Award, for one, listed later in this issue.
2. ARTICLE/LESSONS LEARNED: A POEM AND THE PROCESS THAT GENERATED IT
A POEM AND THE PROCESS THAT GENERATED IT
By Erika Dreifus
This newsletter is going out to subscribers hours before the beginning of the Jewish holiday of Purim. I recently published a Purim-related poem, along with some background on the process that generated it. So in place of a newsletter article this month, I thought I’d point you to the poem and the text that complements it over on the JEWESS magazine website.
3. FEATURED RESOURCE: BUSINESSOFWRITING.ORG
Early in Jane Friedman’s soon-to-be-published THE BUSINESS OF BEING A WRITER, the author notes that the book “has a companion website, businessofwriting.org, that offers examples of submissions materials (queries, synopsis, and book proposals), as well as links to supporting resources and information.”
Having followed Jane’s sage writing- and publishing-related advice for years, and having just finished reading an early copy of this marvelous book, I’ve bookmarked that “supplemental resources” page of the new site. The promised items haven’t populated that page quite yet, but I’m confident enough in the utility of what will be shared there that I’m going ahead and recommending that you do the same.
(My thanks to Jane Friedman for providing me with a complimentary electronic galley of THE BUSINESS OF BEING A WRITER, out in March 2018 from The University of Chicago Press.)
4. UPCOMING/ONGOING CONTESTS, COMPETITIONS, AND OTHER OPPORTUNITIES OF INTEREST
IRENE ADLER PRIZE
Deadline: April 30, 2018
NO APPLICATION FEE
From Lucas Aykroyd: “I’ve been very fortunate, and it’s time for me to give back. With the Irene Adler Prize, I’m awarding a $1,000 scholarship to a woman pursuing a degree in journalism, creative writing, or literature at a recognized post-secondary institution in the U.S. or Canada, based on an essay competition. My mother is a journalist and my sister works in publishing. The editors who gave me my big breaks with the New York Times, the Washington Post, and National Geographic Traveler are all female. Nearly every story of mine that’s won an award was assigned by a woman. Teachers, librarians, publicists, literary agents, fellow writers…I could go on. Women have had a huge impact on my career. In today’s challenging climate, I want to let my female colleagues know – past, present and future – that they and their work are respected and valued. This is not to minimize men. It’s to help maximize the talents of the other 50 percent of the world’s population, which is too frequently shortchanged. The time is right.” Entrants must be U.S. or Canadian citizens. Competition requires submission of a 500-word essay in English on one of three topics (which are presented in the guidelines).
ALPINE FELLOWSHIP WRITING PRIZE
Deadline: March 15, 2018
NO ENTRY FEE
A prize of GBP 3,000 will be awarded “for the best piece of writing on the topic of ‘Childhood’ — the theme of the 2018 Alpine Fellowship Annual Symposium.” Winner and two runners up are invited to attend the symposium in Venice, Italy, in June 2018. NB: Open to all nationalities, aged 18 and above. All genres permitted. A maximum of 2500 words per entry. Limited to one entry per person. Text must not have been published, self-published or accepted for publication in print or online, or have won or been placed in another competition at any time.”
GORDON BURN PRIZE
Deadline: March 15, 2018
NO ENTRY FEE
“The Gordon Burn Prize is a partnership between the Gordon Burn Trust, New Writing North, Durham Book Festival and Faber & Faber. The winning writer receives a cheque for GBP 5,000 and is offered the opportunity to undertake a writing retreat of up to three months at Gordon Burn’s cottage in Berwickshire in the Scottish Borders.” NB: “The prize is open to submissions of work written in World English by writers of any nationality or descent who at the time of entering are permanently resident in the United Kingdom or United States of America. Entries must be written by a single author. The 2018 award will focus on work published between 1 July 2017 and 1 July 2018. To be eligible, books must have been first published in hardback, paperback or e-book format between these dates in the UK or USA. Books that have previously been published outside of these territories are not eligible. Books can be written in any genre, and books that challenge genre are particularly welcome. Works of translation, books for children and poetry are not eligible for the award.”
HH EGBERT ESSAY AWARD
http://egbertroddenwa.wixsite.com/erwa/hh-egbert-essay-award (see also http://egbertroddenwa.wixsite.com/erwa/award-rules)
Deadline: March 31, 2018
“HH Egbert dedicated his life to serve the United States military in three wars. From his hardscrabble childhood, he was able to overcome many obstacles to serve his country and his family. Submissions must be written by a current or former US Military serviceperson. Submissions for the award must be unpublished or scheduled for publication at the time of submission. Essays can be any length from 500-3000 words. Subject matter is open and need not be about military life.” This award confers a prize of $100 (via PayPal). NB: Like others offered within the Egbert-Rodden Writing Awards group, this prize is intended to encourage the creation of new work but is not a publication/production award.
FOLEY POETRY CONTEST
Deadline: March 31, 2018
NO ENTRY FEE
America Media, “the leading provider of news and analysis for thinking Catholics and those who want to know what Catholics are thinking,” sponsors this annual award, given in honor of William T. Foley, M.D. Each entrant is asked to submit one poem of 30 lines or fewer for consideration. Only unpublished poems not under consideration elsewhere will be considered.” No topic is specified. There is a cash prize of $1,000, plus publication.
MARGUERITE AND LAMAR SMITH FELLOWSHIP FOR WRITERS
Deadline: April 1, 2018 (received/completed)
NO APPLICATION FEE
“The Marguerite and Lamar Fellowship for Writers is offered during fall semester. The fellowship begins the first of September and ends the first of December. During this time, the writing fellow will reside in a spacious private apartment inside Carson McCullers’s childhood home, the Smith-McCullers House. The fellow is provided with a stipend of $5,000 to cover costs of transportation, food and other incidentals. Fellowship recipients are encouraged to take an active role in the community and to meet informally with students and local residents interested in writing. The fellow will work with the McCullers Center director to plan a presentation near the end of the residency.”
THRESHOLDS FEATURES COMPETITION 2018
Deadline: March 18, 2018, 11:59pm (GMT)
NO ENTRY FEES.
“THRESHOLDS is the only online forum dedicated to the reading, writing and study of the short story form.” For this nonfiction competition, they invite submissions in either of two feature categories: “author profile,” which explores “the life, writings and influence of a single short story writer,” and “We Recommend,” for “personal recommendations of a collection, an anthology, a group of short stories or single short story.” Winning and runner-up feature essays and shortlist “will be published…during 2018.” Winner receives a prize of GBP500; two runners-up will each receive GBP1000. “Three shortlisted entries will receive a selection of fantastic short story titles generously provided by our friends at the Comma Press, Bristol Short Story Prize and Writing Maps.” No simultaneous submissions. NB: “The Competition is open to writers of any nationality writing in English, 16 years old and over at the time of the closing date.”
WERGLE FLOMP HUMOR POETRY CONTEST
Deadline: April 1, 2018
NO ENTRY FEE
Contest from WinningWriters.com for humor poems. First prize: $1,000. Second prize: $250. Ten awards of $100 each. Online publication for the top 12 entries.
WESLEYAN WRITERS CONFERENCE SCHOLARSHIPS AND FELLOWSHIPS
Deadline: March 15, 2018
NO APPLICATION FEE (“If your attendance at the conference is contingent on your receiving financial assistance, you do not need to send the $100 deposit with your fellowship or scholarship materials.”)
“Scholarships are awarded competitively, and applicants are judged on the basis of promise shown in their work. Entries should consist of a work in one genre: novel, short story, poetry, nonfiction, or journalism. Several scholarships provide full tuition, room, and board, but most offer smaller awards, covering a part of the Conference tuition. Several teaching fellowships are available and are awarded to outstanding applicants who have completed book-length manuscripts.”
WHITING CREATIVE NONFICTION GRANTS
Deadline: May 2, 2018
NO APPLICATION FEE
“The Whiting Creative Nonfiction Grant of $40,000 will be awarded to as many as eight writers in the process of completing a book-length work of nonfiction for a general, not an academic, readership. Its purpose is to give grantees the additional means to do exacting research, to free up the time to bring the writing to the highest possible standard, and to encourage original and ambitious projects. Whiting welcomes submissions for works of history, cultural or political reportage, biography, memoir, the sciences, philosophy, criticism, food or travel writing, and personal essays, among other categories. Again, the work should be intended for a general reader. Self-help titles and textbooks are not eligible. Projects must currently be under contract with a publisher in the United States to be eligible, and the contract must have been signed at least two years before applying for the grant; this is to ensure that the writer is sufficiently far along to identify challenges that have arisen since beginning work. Contracts have to be dated on or prior to May 2, 2016 in order to be eligible – no exceptions. Authors must be US citizens or residents to qualify.”
5. SUBMISSION ALERTS!!!
From COFFEE HOUSE PRESS: “Beginning March 1, 2018, we will accept submissions of novels, essays, and book-length nonfiction through our online submissions manager. There is no fee to submit. Submissions will be capped at 300, and we will not accept unsolicited poetry or short story manuscripts.” See https://coffeehousepress.org/pages/submissions for more information.
FOREST AVENUE PRESS is open for novel submissions until March 14, 2018. “Our committee of women readers is seeking one or two literary novels to publish in 2020. Forest Avenue keeps its catalog small because we believe in building strong author-publisher relationships and maximizing the dollars and hours we put into each release….Adult literary fiction only, preferably in the 50,000-to-80,0000-word range. No short story collections, novellas, poetry, or nonfiction. We are only able to work with those who currently reside in the U.S. due to our locally focused publicity and marketing strategies. We feel it’s essential to continue adding more authors of color to our catalog. We’d also love to see more submissions from authors with disabilities, LGBTQ authors, neuroatypical authors, and others who have stories to tell that will – in their own creative and effective ways – subvert the dominant paradigm.” Visit http://www.forestavenuepress.com/about/submissions/ for more info.
NOTRE DAME REVIEW’s current submissions window closes at the end of March. “Excellence is our sole criteria for selection, although we are especially interested in fiction and poetry that take on big issues.” Pays: “a small gratuity” after publication. Website: http://ndreview.nd.edu/submission-guidelines/.
Unsolicited work may be submitted to WEST BRANCH until April 1. The editors consider poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and translation. Pays: “Payment is awarded for accepted works in the amount of $50 per submission of poetry, and $.05/word for prose with a maximum payment of $100. Additionally, we provide each contributor with two copies of the issue in which his/her work appears and a one-year subscription to West Branch.” NB: “Book reviews are typically arranged by assignment, and we publish only poetry reviews. If you are interested in writing reviews, please query with a sample. We currently pay $200 per assigned review.” Guidelines are available at http://westbranchsubmissions.bucknell.edu.
“THE RUSH is a literary magazine edited by the graduate students at Mount Saint Mary’s University in Los Angeles. We’re looking for high-energy pieces that reflect the rush of life. We’re delighted to be able to pay writers.” Deadline: April 15, 2018. Website: http://www.therushmag.com/.
There’s also an April 15 deadline for a call from BELT PUBLISHING for “an anthology of essays, stories, and poems about Minneapolis” that will be published in 2019 as part of BELT’s City Anthology Series. “We are looking for stories, scenes and memories from the city that evoke the place in compelling ways. Submissions can be related to a specific place, event (personal or historical) or personage, and must take place in or around the city. St. Paul will also be considered, as will most suburbs. We are not looking for news-related pieces unless there is a personal/emotional connection to news events (such as the I-35 bridge collapse) and submissions should retain their relevance for years to come. We are actively looking for stories from Twin Cities’ African-American, Lakota, Anishinaabe, Somali, Hmong, Latino, and other communities, so please circulate. Stories that involve humor, heartbreak, redemption and discovery will be given priority. Stories that ramble will be frowned upon. Authors can submit multiple pieces. We will accept previously published pieces, but the author must include the original publication information and have the rights to the piece. Accepted submissions will likely be edited in coordination with the author.” The anthology editor is Frank Bures. Pays: “Contributors will receive an honorarium.” Full guidelines posted at https://beltpublishing.com/blogs/news/hey-minneapolis.
April 15 is the closing date as well if you want to send poetry, fiction, or nonfiction to BLACKBIRD. “Payment is after publication.” See http://blackbird.vcu.edu/v16n2/submissions.shtml for guidelines.
Also closing April 15: the current submissions window for EPOCH. “EPOCH is an open forum for literary fiction, poetry, essays, screenplays, cartoons, graphic art, and graphic fiction. We consider only work that is previously unpublished. We do not accept electronic submissions or simultaneous submissions.” Pays: “Our payments vary from year to year depending on our funding. We presently pay a minimum of $50 per poem. We pay a maximum of $150 per story, more for fiction submitted by literary agencies and for long stories and novellas.” More info at http://www.epoch.cornell.edu/submit.html.
“RAISED VOICE PRESS seeks creative nonfiction manuscripts between 100-250 pages from authors located in the United States writing in English. Your manuscript should be complete before you submit to us. We are not accepting proposals or partially completed manuscripts at this time….” We are interested in hybrid forms and essay collections. Please note, however, that we are not accepting anthology submissions or proposals at this time. We are especially interested in working with authors whose life experience and/or literary work is outside what is considered mainstream and who have had difficulty making their voices heard.” Pays: $200 advance plus 10 print copies; quarterly royalties.” Visit http://www.raisedvoicepress.com/submission-guidelines/ for complete guidelines. Deadline: May 15, 2018. (Found this one via http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CRWROPPS-B/info.)
Reminder: The CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL anthologies are ALWAYS looking for submissions on various themes. And they pay! Check in every so often at http://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/possible-book-topics.
6. BLOG NOTES
The newsletter is published just once each month, but there’s *always* something new at our Practicing Writing blog: fresh market news, current contest and job listings, links to writing-related articles, newly-discovered craft and business resources, and so much more. Regular blog features include:
–Monday Markets for Writers
–Midweek Notes from a Practicing Writer (formerly “Wednesday’s Work-in-Progress”)
–Friday Finds for Writers
Please visit, and comment! http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/practicing-writing/.
And for those of you practicing writers who are interested in matters of specifically Jewish cultural interest, please also visit My Machberet (http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/my-machberet). For the curious, “machberet” is the Hebrew word for “notebook”.
7. NEWSLETTER MATTERS
Information contained in THE PRACTICING WRITER is collected from many sources, with the purpose of providing general references. It is researched to the best of our ability but readers should verify information when necessary and appropriate. THE PRACTICING WRITER and its editor/publisher disclaim any liability for the use of information contained within. Thank you for subscribing.
For updates and additional opportunity listings between newsletters, please check in with our “Practicing Writing” blog, http://www.erikadreifus.com/blogs/practicing-writing.
ABOUT THE EDITOR: Based in New York City, Erika Dreifus is a freelance writer and book publicist. She is the author of QUIET AMERICANS: STORIES, which is an American Library Association Sophie Brody Medal Honor Title for outstanding achievement in Jewish literature. She has taught for Harvard University, the Cambridge (Mass.) Center for Adult Education, and the low-residency MFA programs in creative writing at Lesley University, the Northwest Institute for Literary Arts, and Oklahoma City University. From 2014-2017, Erika served as Media Editor for Fig Tree Books LLC. Please visit http://www.erikadreifus.com to learn more about Erika’s work, and go directly to http://www.erikadreifus.com/quiet-americans/book-clubs/ to arrange for her to visit your book club!
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