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Research and Then Write

Wondering why your short story keeps getting rejected?

Or maybe what you thought was the perfect idea for a publication still got a no, not for us response?

It could be that you’re writing before you research.

This was huge mistake I made and had I known about this easy to remember tip, I know I would have gotten published a lot sooner.

I’d sit down, write what I thought was a great short story, submit it, but then get rejection after rejection.

That was until I figured out that although my story might have been good, it was the wrong one for the particular market I’d submitted it to.

There was one magazine I dreamed about having my short stories published in and after the rejections piled up, I decided to go into full research mode to try and figure out why they’d chosen the stories they had, and what the authors were doing that I wasn’t.

I read the magazine for a few weeks but then decided to take it one step further and purchased a six month subscription.

I not only read the stories over and over again, I looked at the cover, the ads, the letters to the editor. You need to figure out who is their audience. What is their age and interests? What do the letters say about what they like and dislike…things they want to see more of.

If you write first and then submit you’re likely to submit your wonderful romance story to a market that caters to people who don’t like that genre or maybe a ghost story whose readers hate anything paranormal.

The same goes for pitching non-fiction articles. Do your homework to see what they do and do not publish. Who is their main audience? What sort of companies buy ad space? Even look at the front cover and figure out who they want to buy the magazine.

With all the information in hand, it’s much easier to write something that you know is going to appeal to the editor and therefore increase your odds of getting a yes as opposed to a no. It also saves you a lot of time by not submitting work and having to wait for a response from a market that doesn’t even publish something you’ve submitted.

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