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Finding the best literary magazines for your creative writing submissions can take up a lot of your time—thousands of literary journals are actively publishing! And thousands more appear to be active online but are actually on hiatus or are no longer publishing. Writer’s Relief knows that researching literary magazines for your submissions isn’t just about identifying the ones that are right for you; it’s also about eliminating the thousands that aren’t!
Is it any wonder so many authors want help researching the best literary magazines for their writing?
Quick Tips For Spending LESS Time Researching Literary Magazines For Your Creative Writing Submissions
Narrow your scope. If you’re taking a DIY approach to your submission process, one way to make your literary magazine research less overwhelming is to home in on the specific type of publication you’re seeking. Some criteria to consider:
- Literary magazines affiliated with colleges and universities?
- Paying markets only?
- Magazines dedicated to a specific genre (poetry, stories, essays)?
- New markets or only established publications?
- Literary magazines that specialize in certain commercial genres?
Knowing what you’re looking for in your future publication will help you narrow down the choices. If a quick glance at a literary magazine shows that it doesn’t meet your initial criteria, move on. You can always widen your search later on.
Know how to spot the signs of reputable publications. Many small literary magazines are excellent resources for new writers. That said, if you’re hoping to publish in literary magazines that have an established reputation, you’ll need to know what to look for when you’re reviewing potential literary markets.
Get help—delegate to the experts! If you’re really, really busy and you just can’t manage to carve out the time needed to research the best literary markets for your creative writing, consider reaching out to the experts here at Writer’s Relief. We’ve been helping creative writers get published since 1994, and our clients have ranged from promising new writers to best-selling authors.
Consider entering a contest. Many literary journals host creative writing contests—and you may discover that entering a writing contest is a great way to get your foot in the door with literary journal editors. Creative writing contests are often easier to win than you think! So if you’re overwhelmed by the number of choices at your fingertips when you’re researching literary magazines, consider narrowing the pool by focusing on writing contests instead.
Use an online database. Though print books of market listings can still be found in bookstores, many writers prefer the ease of digital research. But there are perils to searching for literary magazines on the Internet, especially if you’re using a big database for your research. The key is finding a database of market listings that’s a) truly up to date, b) accurate, c) easy to skim, d) sortable by your criteria. Many writer’s markets are not regularly updated and require you to jump from page to page to view listings, which wastes your time.
Question: What do you do to save time making submissions?