These might be some of the best stories I’ve ever written – even if I do say so myself.
Malcom Gladwell has a theory – it takes 10,000 hours to perfect one’s craft. Well, I think, perhaps I’ve hit 50,000, maybe 100,000.
Beyond that – one learns, one grows wiser with age; hopefully, that is what you’ll read in these stories. Wisdom. Empathy. Healing.
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I sincerely understand when print journals ask for a reading fee of a few dollars. Print journals do not sell well, they have a staff, and some of the ones on the “best literary journals” get many more submissions than they can use. As well, if they are using submittable, the larger print journals have to pay a fee to use the service.
Submission fees can range from $1 to $10. I’ve seen some as high as $20 or $25 for a submission of a short story. I call bullshit.
I understand a reading fee of $5.00 or under. $10.00 is questionable. But then – more than that – No. No. And no.
Especially for an online literary journal run by one or two people. I’m not saying they don’t deserve to earn money. I am saying I don’t think they should be charging writers that much to read their fiction, poetry, or memoir.
There’s one website run by a single person – I won’t publically shame them – who has “contests” nearly every month. This person charges between $7.00 and $10.00 for each contest and offers minimal feedback; however, I have yet to see one print journal even though her copy says, winners will be published in the journal.
I have no idea how many people fall for that.
Research the journal carefully and ask yourself what you’re supporting. If you believe in what they are doing – then by all means pay the fee. Don’t pay a fee in desperation of being published. If you’re good, publication will come.
I hear a number of writer’s ask about how to get inspired or keep inspiration. I think they’re confusing inspiration with motivation.
We are inspired by the things around us, an odd phrase, a beautiful scene, a great idea. The motivation comes to write it down. You must keep motivated long after the inspiration abates.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is where dedication comes in.
With dedication to the craft, even when motivation and/or inspiration fail you – you will not fail.
Inspiration is just the beginning! Stay dedicated. Motivation will follow.