Tuesday, 15 December 2009

An early Merry Christmas!

I'm going to be away next week, skiing in France. The week after we have hundreds of relatives turning up for New Year. So I'll wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and a happy and prosperous 2010. May Santa bring you everything you've asked for! I'll be back blogging in January.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Woman's Weekly latest guidelines

Writer Geri forwarded me the following updated guidelines for Woman's Weekly. Apparently Clare Cooper of Woman's Weekly specifically asked her to forward them to me to post here! Which makes this blog kind of official, don't you think?!


We regret we can’t accept stories by email. Please include an sae in case we have to return your manuscript.

Fiction is a vital ingredient of Woman’s Weekly, the place where readers can escape and switch off. This doesn’t mean predictable plots or old-fashioned
romances. Escapism means getting involved in a really gripping tale with believable characters. Above all, we are looking for originality and a wide variety of themes and moods, such as mystery, humour, relationships and family issues, with warmth still an important factor. Try to be subtle in your writing and remember the maxim: “Show don’t tell”. We recommend you read several issues of Woman’s Weekly and Woman’s Weekly Fiction Special to get a feel for our audience.

Unfortunately, we can’t offer criticism, but if your writing shows promise, we will contact you.


For the weekly magazine:
Short stories of 1,000 and 2,000 words
Serials in 3 parts of 3,800 words each

For Fiction Special (At least 20 stories 10 times a year):
Stories of 1,000 to 8,000 words


- We read only typescripts. Handwritten work or disks can’t be considered.
- Double line spacing on one side of the paper only and wide margins.
- Number each page and make sure your name is at the top of each page.
- If sending stories from abroad, please enclose an international reply coupon.
- If you would like us to acknowledge receipt of your manuscript, enclose a stamped, addressed postcard.
- Please note that it can take up to sixteen weeks for manuscripts to be considered, and that we are unable to enter into any correspondence by email.

Please send stories/serials to:
Fiction Department, Woman’s Weekly, IPC Media, Blue Fin Building,
110 Southwark Street, London, SE1 0SU.

Note the maximum word length for the fiction specials - up to 8000 words, which would be a pretty meaty story! And it's great to see a fiction market which is prospering, and actually wanting writers' guidelines to be widely circulated.

Good luck with your submissions. It's not a market I've had much luck with. Maybe I should specifically target it in 2010.

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Cover Girl

Cally Taylor, who lives on Cloud Nine these days, is on the cover of the latest Writers' Forum magazine, now out. She's had an amazing year, and is interviewed in WF by fellow blogger Helen.

Also in WF is a feature by Olivia Ryan about writing under a psuedonym. She should know, that's hers!

Add the start of a new series by Della Galton on novel writing, Sally Q's regular competitions column and the back page 'where I write' feature with Australian womag writer Glynis Scrivens and you've got a brilliant edition of the mag. One of my favourite regular features which I haven't gushed about before is Hugh Scott's quirky Tales of my Guru. I'll be off to bed early tonight to read it cover to cover.

Ask for a subscription for Christmas!

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

This isn't good news...

Thanks to LilyS for passing this on. New writers asking for My Weekly's writers' guidelines are being sent the following email:

Dear Contributor,

Thank you for your interest in our current guidelines.

I am very sorry to disappoint you but unfortunately due to the volume of short stories currently flooding into our offices, I am, for the foreseeable future, unable to read and therefore accept unsolicited stories from authors who have not already had an acceptance from My Weekly.

If you have contributed to My Weekly in the past I thank you for your submissions, if not, I’m sorry I can’t offer you, at this time, the opportunity to have your work published with us.

The very best of luck with your writing.

Yours sincerely,

Liz Smith
Commissioning Fiction Editor.

What a shame. My Weekly, in the days when they had more staff dealing with fiction, were one of the nicest and most helpful magazines to submit to. It seems those days have gone.