Friday, 19 January 2018

Change at The Weekly News

I heard that Jill Finlay was leaving The Weekly News and emailed to check it was true and if she minded me posting the news here. Her reply is -

Yes - it's true! Next week will be my last with TWN, as I've got a new job as Production Editor for Girls' Magazines.

It's been 17 years since I started here - and 15 of that has involved fiction - so it's a bittersweet moment.

I'll miss the fiction and all the writers so much, but hopefully, the new system will keep it pretty much as it has been.
The team from The People's Friend have agreed to supply our stories from now on, so all submissions you would have sent to me need to go to

It's keeping it in-house and means our fiction slot will continue as it always has.

I have loved my time being Fiction Ed on TWN, but it really is such a good opportunity at the magazines that it's time to move on and take on some fresh challenges.

Next Fri will be my last day, so the countdown is on! 

You're very welcome to post on the womagwriter blog - the blogs are the best way to let everybody know about the changes, so thank you.

Goodbye, Jill and best wishes for the future.

UPDATE - The People's Friend editor, Shirley Blair, has blogged about this here. I'm pleased she says that they intend to keep the differences in fiction style between the two publications ad will be continuing to use Jill's guidelines and system of emailed submissions.


  1. This doesn't sound like good news!

    Good luck with the new job, Jill but I really wish you weren't going.

  2. Do you have the latest guidelines for word counts Patsy. I looked up - probably me, duh - and the last ones seem to be 2015? Thanks x

  3. @ Anonymous – I'm hoping for the best and grateful they are keeping the fiction. It could be a lot worse.

    @ Sue - there are some here for 2016 - I believe the only change since then, is that a word count of 1,200 to 1,500 is now preferred.

  4. I wish Jill all the best in her new job. Thanks for publishing my stories and for the PDF copies.

  5. So sorry to hear that you are leaving Weekly News, Jill, but I wish you every success in your new role. I just sent a story in this week, actually, but if the word counts mentioned above are correct, it'll be way too short. Like Sue, I haven't been able to locate guidelines in a while so was working on those from years ago. Will have to try again!

  6. @ Chris, according to Shirley Blair from The People's Friend, they'll be sticking with the old guidelines – and she should know.

  7. Good luck to Jill in her new job - but she will be much missed. TWNs has a distinctive voice so I was pleased to read the update saying its style and guidelines will stay the same.


  8. I'm wondering why if a little more reading is neither here nor there, I've been waiting nearly a year to get a reply for one story I sent in to The Friend and some others have been there over 6 months. A.K.

  9. Shirley, People's Friend29 January 2018 at 10:34

    Anonymous, have you been in touch with us about this? If you contact us direct we'll be more than happy to check our database for your stories. There are any number of possible reasons for the delay, eg seasonality, length, and not least that they didn't reach us.

  10. Shirley, I have been in touch and am just told 'it's under consideration'. Either it's in a pile waiting to be read, or it takes you a month to read each 100 words. Neither scenario seems to fit with 'a little more reading is neither here nor there'.

  11. Anonymous, I’m currently reading November subs. The Friend fiction team and I have read everything arriving before then (barring a few of the infamous 1200-word glut) and your stories might therefore be awaiting final approval, or have been set aside for the right season to come around. But without anything specific to go on here, I can’t offer a definitive explanation. - Shirley

  12. Thanks for your reply, Shirley. I'm sure people will find it helpful to know where you're up to with the reading.


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