Submitting is hard. Writing about my dog is easy.

By July 1, 2009Ursa, Writing

I’m feeling a little whiney today because I spent a good deal of yesterday trying to figure out where to send one of my stories. Here’s the whining: *Submitting is hard.* There. That’s done.

Luckily I’m over at my friend Mary Anne’s house and we are socializing (instead of writing). She has just informed me that I need to write about my dog more. Which I will happily do.

I love my dog. How did I live so long without a puppy? I had a cat, but I’m sorry: A cat is barely a pet. At least my cat isn’t. My dog, though, is my baby. We hang out all day (for now—don’t even get me started about how much I’ll miss her when I have to get a job). The best part is when I get up in the morning. The first time she sees me every day, she just about wiggles her ass off. No one, including my husband, has not-ever, not-once been that excited to see me. And certainly not every day. And there are very few people I would let lick my toes.

OK, back to submitting for a minute. Yesterday I paid $2 to submit a story to a magazine. I would not recommend this as a rule, but then I figured out that I could pay the $2 to submit electronically and get a faster result (theoretically—the publication advertises this) instead of paying about $1.48 for postage (plus paper and ink) to submit by post. Plus then the agony that is the Post Office trip. It seemed to work out evenly, so I did it. As a rule, though, you shouldn’t have to pay for a publication to consider your work. Contests charge fees, but you shouldn’t have to pay “reading fees.” I wondered what anyone else thought of this paying to submit electronically deal, since quite a few places allow electronic submissions for free.

This magazine, though, turns out to be kind of good. So for today’s reading pleasure, a story from Carve. It’s about a tortured poet. You’ll like it.

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • WIDNEY WOMAN says:

    Your blog title made me giggle. You are right. It seems a bit wrong to charge for submissions. When I did research for Mary Anne on submissions, it seemed the smaller publishers did it to reduce the amount of subs they had to read and to cover for the cost of publishing. Very interesting beast to say the least.

  • Lori says:

    That's actually interesting—charging as a way of cutting down your slush pile. I bet it works. I don't even think that's crazy. It forces the writer to think seriously about what they send and to whom. Which I do already. But having worked at a small lit mag (Oyez represent!) I know that not everyone pays attention to what the mag publishes, how they want their submissions sent. I guess if a mag wanted me to pay to submit at all, I'd want to think very carefully about that market. So carefully that I doubt I'd ever send anything.

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