WRITING TIP: Some publishers pay pennies or even dollars per word, others by flat fee, some are on a sliding scale, and some publishers “pay on acceptance”. Be aware that most magazines will pay when the article is published (which may be 3-6 months away) but a few will pay when they accept the article. Of course, the latter is preferable, but it’s also harder to get. That’s why writing for newspapers is the beginning point for most writers. Newsletters accept immediately and pay quickly. You can expect to earn about $15 per article and $5 extra for a good picture. This is a great way to build your clippings and get experience.

Even writers who want to make a living at fiction should begin by writing NON-fiction. The reasons are numerous but at the top of the list is that newspaper editors are more willing to work with individuals and writing non-fiction requires less skill – notably the technique called “Show, Don’t Tell” which isn’t that easy to learn. We’ll discuss that in a separate post.

Seek the easiest places to be published and realize that learning the craft of writing is a long-term goal. As long as you keep putting one foot in front of the other, you’ll make it.

NOTE: AMATEUR SHORT STORY WRITING CONTEST ends NOV. 20. Cash prize. No fee. Hurry!!! Enter today! See guidelines at http://www.creativewritinginstitute.com.

For more great writing tips, sign up for The Writer’s Choice Newsletter at the same link… and don’t worry – we won’t sell your address. Why not write a brief comment while you’re here?


2 thoughts on “WRITING TIP

  1. Most magazines I’ve written for pay on publication. Pay on acceptance is nicer, as then you aren’t waiting for the money. As an editor, however, of a magazine that pays on publication, I can see advantages to that. We book submissions up to a year ahead, so that would be a lot of money out of pocket. It’s also easy to write a batch of cheques with each issue, and to send them with the contributor copy, instead of issueing one cheque at a time when an article is accepted.


    1. Exactly. I can see it both ways. As an editor I would prefer to pay on publication but as a writer I’d like to be paid up front.

      Funny little story. My 13-year old granddaughter wrote a story and sent it to a magazine. They didn’t even acknowledge receipt of it. Fifteen months later they sent her a check for $125! I thought it strange that they didn’t ask if the article was still on the market.


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