Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Take A Break latest guidelines

In the September edition of Writers' Forum there is a page giving the latest fiction guidelines for Fiction Feast. In general the guidelines haven't changed much from the old ones on this blog, but do note:
  • there is no longer a fiction slot in the weekly magazine
  • 750-3000 words, though once you've sold them a few they'll consider longer stories as well
  • postal submissions only
  • response should be in 12 weeks, but if you haven't heard, email Norah McGrath (the fiction editor) stating the name of the story, date submitted and a 2-line plot outline and she'll get back to you
  • all stories are read by Norah McGrath. Promising stories are then read by other members of the department including the editor of FF, whose word is final. If you get a rejection and 'SR' is pencilled in the corner, you know it got to the second read stage.
  • but a rejection is a rejection, not an invitation to tweak and re-sub it.
  • No feedback is given.
  • Pay remains at £200 for 1 page rising to £400 for 3000 worders
  • Send seasonal stories six months in advance
Submission address: Norah McGrath, Fiction Editor, Fiction Feast, 24-28 Oval Road, London NW1 7DT.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank, Womag. Just had another two rejections off Norah today (to go with the ever increasing pile!) I think I've tried just about every possibility to achieve success with TAB. Any good ideas out there? Good wishes KH

LittleMe said...

I just have a little comment. Any reason why so many magazines only accept postal submissions? Noticed it on the Woman's Weekly guidelines too.

Maggie May said...

I have also just received another rejection from TAB. Some advise to re-jig and send elsewhere, but I hate doing that. I have the same problem undoing my knitting to make something else. I shall get my thinking cap on and come up with something original, and keep hoping.

Alice said...

Thanks for this information, Womag. I shall now check all my TAB FF rejections carefully before chucking them into the recycling!

Rena George said...

Thanks for this, Womag. I'm lucky enough to have had some success with TAB FF, but sadly not this week - two rejections!
I'll be following these new guidelines CLOSELY!
Rena x

Snuggie said...

@LittleMe postal submissions are cheaper to deal with. It means no email account is clogged up nor do they have to print it out (saving on paper and printing toner). Which does add up if you think of how many submissions they get. So for a small team it's easier to manage. They may change but I doubt it.

Chanel said...

Just want to say it's really comforting to read these comments as I sent my first ever short story to TAB FF and have just received a rejection. There was no advice so I don't know what was wrong, I'll fix it up and try sending it somewhere else though. Thanks a lot for the guidelines.

Anonymous said...

Hi All, just thought I'd mention especially for Maggie May and Chanel that many of my rejections from TAB have been slightly rejigged and have found homes elsewhere including: Woman's Weekly, Best, Chat (when they were taking fiction), My Weekly, People's Friend and Australian That's Life. So a rejection from TAB doesn't mean a story is a bad one. TAB stories do seem to have a particular style though, that some writers obviously feel comfortable with. Being able to adapt the way you right rather than what you write may be the answer to publication with them. I haven't cracked it yet though! Good wishes

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Hi All, just thought I'd mention especially for Maggie May and Chanel that many of my rejections from TAB have been slightly rejigged and have found homes elsewhere including: Woman's Weekly, Best, Chat (when they were taking fiction), My Weekly, People's Friend and Australian That's Life. So a rejection from TAB doesn't mean a story is a bad one. TAB stories do seem to have a particular style though, that some writers obviously feel comfortable with. Being able to adapt the way you write rather than what you write may be the answer to publication with them. I haven't cracked it yet though! Good wishes

Fay Knowles said...

Womag, many thanks for the latest TAB guidelines.
I agree with LittleMe's concern about some magazines only accepting postal submissions. I live in the Bahamas and it's so much easier to submit by email. "International Reply Paid Coupons" are no longer available at our local post offices. This makes it difficult for writers here who don't have friends or relatives in the U.K. who can send British stamps to them. Of course, I also understand what Snuggie says about the costs publications incur, having to print out submissions. I guess they find it too tedious to read them on their monitor.

Tickle said...

Another reason they ask for postal subs is that they like to pass the stories around the office and they find it easier to do that if there is a hard copy.

Fay Knowles said...

Good point, Tickle

Wendy's Writing said...

My first short story acceptance a few weeks ago was with TAB FF. I must now see if I can repeat it!

Laura said...

Hi all, congrats to those who've been successful & commiserations to those who missed out this time around for TAB.
I submitted two short stories for TAB, it's now nearing the 12 week mark and I haven't heard anything...is this normal or should I email (after the 12 weeks have passed)? Also does anyone have the email address for N. McGrath (as stated in the guidelines).

Thanking you, L

Charlotte said...

Hi All

I'm currently in same position as laura was. Did you get acceptance Laura? I have a story which has been with Norah at TABFF for 14 weeks now and still heard nothing. Did ring and check last week all was told Norah still has it but will get a decision to me soon. I too would prefer an email address for Norah as did not get to speak with her directly. So anyone got any advice be good to hear...

Thanks

jane sanderson said...

Hi, I have submitted lots of stories over the years to Fiction Feast and have had no luck-UNTIL last week, when I recieved an e mail offering payment for a short story I submitted in January.I was ecstatic, and floated all day on a cloud the size of a London Bus! I have just submitted another one,(Norah has 3 others of mine, but I have not heard anything about these yet. So-just keep trying-sometimes it takes time-and good luck.

Fay Knowles said...

Many congratulations, Jane! And thanks for your encouraging words :-)

charlotte said...

Fantastic News Jane - Well Done! And still no news about my story submitted in January so still hoping - but did get a rejection from the story I submitted in Febuary so hope that a good sign - only time will tell, will keep you updated...And maybe I can join you on your cloud, I know I will probarly scream alot!!!
Thanks

Morgen With An E said...

Hi Womag. I have a second-person romance story I'd like to send to TaB. Do you think they'd consider it or should I re-write it in third person?

womagwriter said...

Hi Morgen, I don't think I've ever seen a 2nd person story in TAB so to maximise your chances it might be worth re-writing in 3rd person. Or Woman's Weekly are perhaps more open to unusual formats like 2nd person.

Morgen With An E said...

Thank you, Womag. I know few places / people like second-person so will play it safe with TaB and if they reject it I can always try 2ppov with WW. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

I know this post was ages ago, but I was wondering if anyone has Norah McGrath's email address? In the guidelines it says to email her after 12 weeks, but no address given... many thanks for your help :) Helen x

womagwriter said...

I can't really put her private email address (it's not a work one) on a public blog, Helen, but email me using the link above.

Anonymous said...

My apologies, I thought it was public and I was just unobservant! :) Many thanks for getting back to me, I'll drop you an email. Helen x

Bubble said...

In this month's magazine the editor is down as Margaret Nichols. Has Norah gone or is Margaret the chief editor? It's very difficult finding any info for authors on this magazine.

womagwriter said...

Norah is the fiction editor and is still there as far as I am aware.

Anonymous said...

Hi all, are there any costs to consider when submitting a piece? Or is it just the postage?

This is my first piece and I am new to this process.

Thank you for any advice.

womagwriter said...

No, there are no costs beyond printing and postage.

Golden rule of writing: money should always flow towards the author.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much. I think I'll need all the luck I can get.

Julie Lees said...

Hi, Womag! I've been waiting 14 weeks to hear back from TAB FF re a story I submitted. Dropped them a line, almost two weeks ago, but still not heard anything. Would Norah have got to see my note, do you think? Or should I try to contact her via email? Thanks for taking the time to read this. Julie L.

womagwriter said...

I'd hang on a little while longer, Julie. TAB tend to send out piles of rejections at once, followed by a spate of acceptances, as they prepare each issue. 14 weeks isn't out of the ordinary to wait. If you've heard nothing after another 4 weeks then perhaps chase, or better still, resend with a covering letter explaining you'd sent it before but hadn't had a response in 5 months.

Julie Lees said...

Okay, will do! Thanks for the advice.

SecretBlogger said...

Hi, Today I received a rejection from TAB. As well as the date stamped on the manuscript, the word-count was scribbled in pencil at the top. The word-count wasn't written on my previous rejection. Should I read anything into it, or am I just clutching at straws?

womagwriter said...

It might mean it got closer - the stories get passed around the office (I believe) if they are being considered. So I would be encouraged by it - and keep submitting!