Issue #129

Writers' Newsletter

December 2013  



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Fantastic Christmas give-away from!

Christmas may be over, but has one last present to give away: free access to the databases of literary agents, book publishers, magazines, and writing competitions, for every subscriber to this newsletter!

To claim your subscription to the website simply go to and click one of the subscribe buttons. When prompted for a voucher or coupon code enter the following text:


You will then be able to subscribe to the website and receive all our services at absolutely no cost – but you need to be quick! This festive offer is available only till January 14, 2014, at which point the code will become invalid.

What you will get included in your subscription:

Access to the entire current databases, including over 850 literary agencies, over 1,500 book publishers, over 1,700 magazines, and constantly updated listings of current writing competitions, with typically more than 50 added each month.

Advanced search features

  • Save searches and save time – set up to 15 search parameters specific to your work, save them, and then access the search results with a single click whenever you log in. You can even save multiple different searches if you have different types of work you are looking to place.
  • Add personal notes to listings, visible only to you and fully searchable – helping you to organise your actions.
  • Set reminders on listings to notify you when to submit your work, when to follow up, when to expect a reply, or any other custom action.
  • Track which listings you've viewed and when, to help you organise your search – any listings which have changed since you last viewed them will be highlighted for your attention! 

Daily email updates 
As a subscriber you will be able to take advantage of our email alert service, meaning you can specify your particular interests and we'll send you automatic email updates when we change or add a listing that matches them. So if you're interested in agents dealing in romantic fiction in the United States you can have us send you emails with the latest updates about them – keeping you up to date without even having to log in. 

User feedback 
Our agent, publisher, and magazine databases all include a user feedback feature that allows our subscribers to leave feedback on each listing – giving you not only the chance to have your say about the markets you contact, but giving a unique authors' perspective on the listings. 

Save on copyright protection fees 
If you're sending your work away to publishers, competitions, or literary agents, it's vital that you first protect your copyright. As a subscriber to you can do this through our site and save 10% on the copyright registration fees normally payable for protecting your work internationally through the Intellectual Property Rights Office

firstwriter.magazine showcases the best in new poetry and fiction from around the world. If you're interested in writing and want to get published, the most important thing you can do is read contemporary writing that's getting into print now. firstwriter.magazine helps you do that. 

Half price competitions 
As well as saving money on copyright registration, subscribers to can also make further savings by entering writing competitions at a special reduced rate. Subscribers can enter the International Poetry Competition and International Short Story Contest for half price. 

Take out your no-cost subscription now at!



TWP Poetry Competition

The Writers Place (TWP) February 2013 – January 2014 poetry competition is in full swing. Submit your best poetry at Single or multiple entries welcome. We accept all subject areas. 

$250 in cash prizes. Plus publication in TWP Poetry Review. Winners also receive a free year's subscription to Poets & Writers Magazine.

EARLY ENTRIES: must be submitted not later the January 31, 2014. Final (late) Deadline is February 15, 2014.

Standard 3-poem submission (5-page limit): $10.
Multiple submissions (not less than 4 but not more than 6 poems [10-page limit]): $15.
Late Fee: (submitted after January 31, 2014): standard fee + $5 per submission.

Submit your verse electronically and eliminate the hassle of paper and postage. See

Finalists announced: March 1, 2014
Winners announced: April 1, 2014

For the details of over 100 other writing contests, click here


International Copyright Registration 
Register your copyright online for instant copyright protection in more than 160 different countries worldwide. Click here for more information.


Paying market for short stories, articles, poems, and more...

Startupquid is a website publishing news, jokes, poems, short stories, etc. Payment is £0.04 per word and maximum article length accepted is 500 words. All themes welcome. The website aims to entertain you, your family, your friends and loved ones and also those who don't know you. Articles can be emailed to You can also advertise your goods and services for free in the classified adverts section. 

For more information go to  



Artists Embassy International's twenty first dancing poetry contest

Deadline May 1, 2014 
Over $1,000 in prize money to be awarded

All prize winners will receive a prize certificate suitable for framing, a ticket to the Dancing Poetry Festival and be invited to read their prize winning poem at the 2014 Dancing Poetry Festival – Palace of the Legion of Honor Florence Gould Theater in San Francisco.

Three Grand Prizes will receive $100 each plus the poems will be choreographed, costumed, danced, and videotaped for you. Each Grand PrizeWinner will be invited on stage for photo with the dancers.

Six First Prizes will receive $50 each. Twelve Second Prizes will receive $25 each. Thirty Third Prizes will receive $10 each.

Line Limit: 40 lines, maximum each poem (to facilitate choreography). No limit on number of entries. Send two typed, clear copies of each entry. Show name, address, telephone number, email and how you heard about us, on one copy only. The anonymous copy goes to the judges. Judges decisions are final.

Poems must be in English or include English translation. Entry Fee: One poem for $5 or three poems for $10. Make checks payable to Artists Embassy International Poets outside the USA, please send an international postal money order in US currency. No poems will be returned. Send all entries and fees postmarked by May 1, 2014 to:

AEI Contest Chair, Judy Cheung
704 Brigham Ave.
Santa Rosa, CA 95404

For more information go to

For the details of over 100 other writing contests, click here


Click here for great value writing classes!


Editor's pick: New literary agent, publisher and magazine listings in December

The Editor's pick of new literary agent and magazine listings added to the databases in December:

New Magazine Listing

Publishes: Fiction; Poetry;
Areas include: Short Stories; Suspense;
Markets: Adult;
Preferred styles: Dark; Literary

Submit up to 6 poems or up to 2 pieces of fiction up to two and a half pages each. Shorter pieces stand a better chance of publication. Looking for edgy, dark, suspense, and anything on the paranormal or after life. Topics include depression, mental illness, loss, sorrow, addiction, recovery, abuse, survival, daily existence, self struggles and discovery through words. No stories by or for children. Submissions by email only. See website for full submission guidelines.


New Literary Agency Listing

Handles: Fiction;
Areas: Adventure; Crime; Drama; Fantasy; Historical; Horror; Mystery; Romance; Science; Sci-Fi; Suspense; Thrillers;
Markets: Adult; Children's; Family; Youth;
Treatments: Commercial; Contemporary; Dark; Light; Literary; Mainstream; Satirical

I only accept email queries. No queries by regular mail, please. Please include a full synopsis of the novel, first sample chapter, and please let me know if the novel is complete and if any other agent/Editor/Publisher/Movie Producer has read the book (This will not stop me from reading a project I am interested in). 


New Magazine Listing

Publishes: Fiction; Poetry;
Areas include: Short Stories;
Markets: Adult;
Preferred styles: Literary

Accepts submissions of fiction and flash fiction or 3-5 poems, by email, during the reading period that runs from July 1 to January 31. Maximum one submission per reading period. Accepts simultaneous submissions, but no previously published work. See website for full details.



Articles from around the web this month

Amazon Publishing Launches Short Fiction Imprint 

Amazon Publishing has launched StoryFront, a new imprint devoted to short fiction across all genres that will serve as home to the digital literary journal Day One, which Amazon announced in October. StoryFront will publish a variety of works exclusive to Kindle, including stories originally published in Day One, available for purchase a la carte. There are no plans for print editions.  



Showcase Your Writing Skills at This Freelancer-Friendly Digital Mag

The Magazine, the iOS-native pub, is looking for writers. The mag, which is 100 percent freelance written, focuses on an array of “stuff that people with [a geeky mind] find interesting,” said executive editor Glenn Fleishman.



World's oldest erotic novelist dies aged 105 – and she was still writing racy bodice-rippers up until her death

She may not have been as famous as Barbara Cartland.

But on the longevity front, Mills & Boon writer Ida Pollock has earned her place in history.

The world’s oldest author, she has died aged 105 – just weeks before the publication of her 125th novel. 


Writing To Discard: An Essential Habit For Writers

So wrote programming instructor and game developer Kathy Sierra on Twitter the other day, a tweet that really resonated with me because it’s not just programmers who are either not given the time or don’t take the time to simply practice. In writing too, and especially with the spectre of self-publishing hanging over us, it can be hard to write something that you know will be thrown away. 


The modern writer has to be a hustler too

It's a rum business, writing novels. You spend years building internal worlds and filling them with characters and then just when you think you are beginning to know them, like some crackpot dictator drunk on his own ego you find yourself doing something to destroy all that you have built. Then you walk away from it.


Writing Is Like Sex

As a writing coach, I often hear people say that they want to begin working on the book they've been thinking about for a long time.

They think that if they "take time off from work," they might be able to get started. Sometimes they do this -- and yet the book never really gets rolling.

You don't need time off. All you need is a change of mind and mood.

The following four methods come from writers whose work I really admire, and all of them, interestingly, also apply to questions of "getting in the mood" for that other activity we often fantasize about – sex. 


Resources for writers at

Go to for the following invaluable resources for writers:

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