Coffee Break Fiction for Women’s Magazines

Last week I was a guest blogger for the Writers’ Bureau. I chose to do my post about writing sub-1000 word stories for the womag market, in particular The Weekly News, My Weekly and Take a Break/Fiction Feast.

If you’re interested in writing for these magazines then read the full post by clicking here.  

Anyone who is a student (or a temporarily lapsed student like me!) of the Writers’ Bureau is eligible to apply to be a guest blogger – just log in to the student community section of the Writers’ Bureau website for details. If chosen you will get a link back to your own blog – so if you’ve got something to say, it’s worth having a go.

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  1. #1 by Bev Morley on June 13, 2011 - 11:37 am

    Hi Sally

    Thanks for the update on viable markets. Although I have to ask, have you heard anything on the Take a Break front recently – my understanding is that they are no longer running short stories in their mag. I’m still waiting for confirmation of whether or not this is a temporary thing.

    Love the Ten Shiort Story Tips – will make sure I keep those to hand!


    • #2 by Sally Jenkins on June 13, 2011 - 12:14 pm

      Hi Bev – I didn’t know TAB were no longer running short stories, the issues I’ve flicked through in Tesco’s recently still contained the 1 page story. However I’ve just checked on womag’s blog and you are right – fiction is going from the weekly mag. That really doesn’t leave us many openings does it?

  2. #3 by Bev Morley on June 13, 2011 - 1:07 pm

    No, the markets are thinning down far too rapidly. I feel the need to come up with a cunning plan…

  3. #4 by susanjanejones on June 13, 2011 - 5:07 pm

    Hi Sally,
    Good advice here, thanks for sharing your article with us. Will make a note of the Weekly News criteria. I haven’t sent anything there yet, but I do love reading those stories. Always have a neat ending. Must remember that as well.

    • #5 by Sally Jenkins on June 13, 2011 - 7:21 pm

      Bev – I suppose my cunning plan will have to be diversify. There are far more openings for articles than stories.

      Susan – Good Luck with The Weekly News – at least they are still using 3 stories a week. Long may it continue!

  4. #6 by Patsy Collins on June 14, 2011 - 7:02 am

    Good advice in that article, Sally.

    Regarding the cunning plan … quite a few of us have been posting messages on magazine’s facebook pages saying we like the fiction (if they have any) or asking them to include some if they don’t. Please do comment or ‘like someone else’s comment. There are links on my blog and on Diane Fordham’s.

    • #7 by Sally Jenkins on June 14, 2011 - 9:02 am

      Patsy – I like your facebook plan. I’m not on facebook but if anyone else out there is, please register your feelings via the magazine’s facebook pages! Alternatively, there may be feed back/contact forms on the mags’ websites.

  5. #8 by Mel H on June 14, 2011 - 9:25 am

    Very handy tips Sally – thank you – and I might see if I can think of anything to post on their blog – I need to give mine a bit of TLC first though!!! I am finally through the non-fiction section of the course and about to start the fiction side so have a new lease of life with my bureau course (she said, hopefully!)

    • #9 by Sally Jenkins on June 14, 2011 - 12:04 pm

      Mel – Well done on getting half way through the WB course! I haven’t done anything on the course for about a year (I’m a couple of modules into the fiction part and, I hate to admit it, I skipped the last non-fiction assignment).

  6. #10 by Tracy Fells on June 15, 2011 - 10:31 am

    Great article with spot on tips. Particularly liked the tip on removing useless words like quite/just etc. these somehow always slip in! Need a block on the keyboard which prevents us typing these I think.
    Also liked your letter in Writing Magazine – again sound advice on reading aloud all text. This does work.

    • #11 by Sally Jenkins on June 15, 2011 - 1:45 pm

      Tracey – I would like a buzzer to sound on my computer every time I type ‘very’ and ‘even’ ! Reading aloud slowly (& if possible to someone else) really shows up errors or awkward word combination – I need to do more of it myself.

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