What Is Your Publishing Agenda?
By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin
In the early days of my writing life, I wanted to be published in as many magazines and other places as I could publish. I met editors, studied their guidelines and wrote for their readers. I didn't always succeed and get published but it happened frequently and I grew as a writer (still learning). I wasn't focused on the financial rewards from publishing back then but I was focused on writing credits and getting into many different publications.
Through the years, I've seen many magazines begin and many magazines close their doors. There is still great opportunity for writers to publish in magazines. It is a stance that I encourage others to do and something I actively do as well.
At a recent conference, I picked up some of the free magazines and took them home to study them. As I looked at these magazines, I was thinking about their audience and focus. Did they use freelance material? What information was included in the author bio? Did they even mention any details about the author such as a new book or point to an author's website?
As you ask and answer these specific questions, you will learn more about the focus of the publication and their agenda. I noticed several of these publications had material that I “could” be a possible writer. Yet as I studied the author bio section, I noticed several didn't even have a single line about the author. Others included some information but nothing about an author's book or website. I figured out the agenda of the publication (which the editor's establish) was not a match for my own publishing agenda. My agenda is to reach new readers and point toward my recent books or a website. Your agenda has to match the agenda of the publication otherwise you are wasting your limited writing time and energy.
One local editor has been teasing me about writing for her publication. At my encouragement, she sent me a few issues of the magazine. I studied it and noticed this differing agenda (the magazine's agenda and my goals). Instead of blindly crossing them off my writing possibilities, I wrote this friend about what I observed. She can correct my misunderstanding or confirm it. It's the type of communication work we need to do as writers and something I've not written about in these articles. I hope it helps you.
In the comments below, let me know if you have a publishing agenda? What steps to you take to see if your agenda matches a new publication for your work? I look forward to your thoughts.
Do you have a publishing agenda for your writing? Get some ideas from this prolific writer. (ClickToTweet)