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How to Pitch Your Personal Essay to Literary Magazines

Personal-Essay-Mrkt-Part-2-If you’re a writer eager to pitch your personal essay, check our latest Journalism Advice feature, which includes another 15 markets. See below for just one example. (And don’t forget to visit Part I in our Personal Essay Markets series.)

Literary magazines (see Hunger Mountain, The Threepenny Review, Tin House)
Are essays for literary magazines different from those for consumer mags? “It’s not that literary writing is ‘good’ and consumer magazine writing is ‘bad,’” said writer Alle C. Hall, a teacher at Richard Hugo House. “Consumer magazines are looking to get information to the reader, so the writing needs to be good, but it’s not everything. In a literary magazine, the writing is the whole point.”
Length: Typically 3,000-5,000 words, though a few take up to 10,000. There’s also a category called the short-short for pieces under 1,000 words, such as a Brevity.
Pay: A few literary magazines pay a flat fee for essays, such as The American Scholar ($500), but many pay in copies only. Most of the ones that do pay, such as
The Antioch Review and The Georgia Review, typically pay per printed page, and that can range from $1 a page to $50 a page.
Hall’s advice: “As everyone says, read the journals — but how, right? Follow two publications for a year, either online or through a subscription. If a writer can identify which publications make the most sense for his or her style and voice, the writer will spend far less energy on rejection.”

For more pitching advice, read: Personal Essay Markets, Part II.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Longreads Joins Forces With Automattic, Owner of WordPress

Screen Shot 2014-04-11 at 1.36.20 PMDuring the month of its five-year anniversary, Longreads was bought by Autommatic, the web development company best known for its ownership of WordPress (also Gravatar and Polldaddy, for the nerdiest types).

Longreads, started by former journalist and longform journalism enthusiast Mark Armstrong in 2009, announced April 9 it was joining forces with Autommatic in order to expand its impact and better equip itself to share the best longform (1,500+ words) work on the web.

“The world cannot live on 140 characters alone,” Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg said to Bloomberg Businessweek. “Longreads embodies a lot of what we really value with Automattic and WordPress.”

This move makes total sense. WordPress.com is the “largest and most influential publishing ecosystem in the world,” as Armstrong wrote, and its content management system powers the work of big news brands like NYPost.com and Quartz, and lesser known yet immensely talented freelance writers. Longreads is constantly looking for great journalism to share, while competing against sites like Byliner, and Automattic’s WordPress offers writers a place where their journalism can live. So, it’s a win-win situation. And, in a SXSW talk last year, Mullenweg said WordPress was looking for a way to delve deeper into — and monetize — longform journalism, as what became known as the longform “renaissance” had really started to take shape.

 


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Miami Herald Wins April Sidney Award For Project On Abused FL Kids

 

photo via cpexecutive.com

photo via cpexecutive.com

Journalists Carol Marbin Miller and Audra D.S. Burch of the Miami Herald won the April Sidney Award for “Innocents Lost“, an investigative multi-media package that spotlighted more than 400 Florida children who died due to abuse or neglect even after the state’s child protection authorities confirmed mistreatment at home yet failed to act.

Started in 2009, the Sidney Award is given monthly to honor outstanding socially-conscious, investigative journalism that encourages social and economic justice. Read more

How to Maximize Your Social Media Experience

Ongoing-Education-ArticleFor a freelance writer, maintaining and updating your social media accounts is vital to your career. But it can be easy to neglect, what with the daily grind of chasing editors, finding new gigs and writing, writing, writing. Freelancing can be exhausting and finding the time to choose a new profile picture can easily become a last priority.

When one writer realized her social media accounts were collecting digital dust, she sprang into action, setting manageable goals for herself (like tweeting once a day). In our latest Journalism Advice column, the author shares her advice for using social media effectively:

All rules that apply in person should apply online. Conduct yourself with integrity, be witty and interesting, and don’t solicit or spam the people who love and admire you. If you’re a little baffled on how to maximize your social media experience, pick one outlet to focus on, rather than trying to be omnipresent. Google+ is especially relevant for writers with its Authorship function, which links the content you write to your Google+ profile (sign up at plus.google.com/authorship). On LinkedIn, consider joining a group designed for writers like LinkEds & Writers.

For more tips, including how to keep your passion projects alive, read: Crafting Your Ongoing Education as a Writer.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Dreamstime Launches WordPress Plugin for Stock Photos

dreamstimeFinding images is my least favorite part of writing on the web. As a freelancer, it’s worse, because you don’t get to play with an organization’s subscription to Getty Images. It’s one thing when you can pull editorial photos for breaking news. It’s another entirely when you’re writing about, well, stock photos and need some media.

So let’s just say it: in those cases, it’s probably better to create your own art. But until they find me another in the hour in the day, stock photos it is.  Read more

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