Monday, 3 January 2011

The Weekly News - email subs only now

I'm sure you all use email where possible anyway, but please be aware that Jill Finlay at The Weekly News will only take emailed submissions now.

Email address is jfinlay@dcthomson.co.uk

11 comments:

Queenie said...

Hurrah for Jill! Let's hope all the others follow suit very soon. Stamps and envelopes are so 20th century!

penandpaints said...

Happy New Year, glad you enjoyed your holiday!
I do so prefer to e-mail, cheaper too!

Anonymous said...

Would that be to her hotmail address or her dc thomson one though?

Happy New Year!

Old Kitty said...

I may be the most technophobe of people but even I cheer email submissions!!! No more missed deadlines!!

Take care
x

eleanorpatrick said...

Would that be attachments or in the body? But three cheers for her sensible decision anyway. I mean, no one sends in a paper pitch for an article nowadays (do they??). We could even pitch short stories if editors thought they didn't want to read the whole thing on screen. Then they could invite submissions from the ones they like the sound of. Gosh, progress!

womagwriter said...

Anon - send to her dcthomson address as in my post.

Eleanorpatrick - send your story as a Word attachment, formatted exactly as you would if you were sending it snailmail, and don't forget to put contact details both in the attachment and in the email. Personally I doubt editors would ever buy a story from a pitch - it's not the idea but the way it's written which will sell it.

Anonymous said...

I'm never sure whether to email to her other email address jkfinlay@hotmail.co.uk , as if you email to the DCthomson one, it always says it autoforwards it to the above one.

Anyway, has anyone ever nudged Jill? If so, after how long? 3 months? or best not to...?

Thanks, and Happy New Year all.

Sam

Karen said...

So much easier, I wish they'd all accept email submissions only!

Anonymous said...

Does she come back on the submissions strictly by email too? (That would suit me) Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I hope I'm doing this properly . . .!
Please find below a copy of the latest guidelines for TWN.
They're a bit more detailed than before so, hopefully, a bit more helpful!
Many thanks for the continued interest in the paper, and the supply of quality fiction for me to read.
Things stalled a little over November/December thanks to Christmas and a technical hitch, but I'm just about back on top of thing now.
Please do nudge if you're bored waiting - nudging is good!
Best Wishes,
Jill.
Here come the guidelines . . .

Weekly News Short Story Guidelines

Thank you for your interest in The Weekly News fiction section. I hope you find these guidelines useful.

The Weekly News has a largely older readership which is evenly split between the sexes, so we are looking for general interest tales — crime, humour (especially), ghost stories (although we’ve had plenty of these recently), or “coffee break” dramas which wouldn’t be out of place in any popular TV soap.

At the moment, I’m also interested in stories with a bit more “edge” that are slightly darker.

Although an old-fashioned love story may occasionally be appropriate, I’m not looking for “slushy” romantic fiction, or anything “twee”. And although it’s a popular style, I don’t generally take “chick-lit”.
Similarly, I don’t want anything too racy or gory. As The Weekly News is a family paper, I wouldn’t use anything with any sexual content.

Many stories we publish have an interesting twist to surprise the reader, as these seem to be popular. But if your twist is “it was all a dream” or “he/she/it was a ghost”, or the main character is actually a pet, it won’t get through!
• Aim for something light-hearted, perhaps centred around family life or a recognisable situation.
• If your main character is strong enough, you can have them carry the whole story.
• A positive outcome is favoured, but this can be reached by a good bit of double-crossing, or the comeuppance of the “baddie”.
• Be playful – have some fun with your characters at their expense ie in embarrassing social situations.
• I also like sensitive stories which may involve a death, an illness a fear etc. If the situation doesn’t come across as too dark and depressing and has an uplifting end, then it may make it through.

Stories can vary in length from about 750 to 2000 words at most, though we reserve the right to edit them as appropriate.

Also, I rarely accept stories written in the first person or present tense.

Please note that, at present, I use three fiction items at each week and, even if an item is accepted, it could be some time before it is published.
I always have plenty of stories to read through, so it could be six to eight weeks before I can respond to submissions.
I’m acutely aware there is always someone waiting to hear from me, so thank you for your continued patience – I will always get back to you!

Here are some DOs:
• Use strong, identifiable characters – but remember they don’t always have to be likeable.
• Use natural-sounding speech. I tend to avoid dialect, as we like to be a bit “geographically vague” to add to the universality of the stories.
• Check your historical facts fit your time-frame and characters.
• Be thought-provoking if you want – be topical.
• Read and check your punctuation and paragraphing. The easier your work is on the eye, the easier it is to make an informed decision.
• Work within reality – this is fiction, but it does have to be believable.
• Do include your email address, postal address and phone number on your story.
• Full stories, please. I can’t get enough detail or “feel” for a piece from a pitch or synopsis.

And some specific DON’Ts:
• No murdered spouses, dreams, ghosts or pet twists.
• No first person or present-tense stories.
• No relationship-centred stories.
• No hard copy.


E-mail is now our only method of delivery. Please send to: jfinlay@dcthomson.co.uk
You’ll receive an auto-reply from this address, so you know I’ve definitely received your email.

Thanks,
Jill.

womagwriter said...

Thank you Jill!

I'll copy your message and the new guidelines into a new post so we can be sure everyone sees it.