Thursday, November 12, 2015

Can You Write A Very Short Romance Story?


You've probably seen this magazine at the check-out area of your local grocery store and other places that sell magazines. Did you ever think of submitting a romance story to them? Would you consider it for a payment of $800? 

I bet that got your attention. They pay $800 for a romance fiction story of 800 words. Easy? Not as easy as you might think. For one thing, writing a full story in so few words means you have to write tight. You still have to grab the reader's attention, create a problem and come to a satisfying solution at the end. 

No horror, sci-fi, erotic or historical fiction stories. Just a good contemporary romance. The story can be written from the point of view of either the male or female character. 

I submitted to this magazine once and I received a personal letter from the editor telling me he liked the twist I had in the story, but..... His suggestions for changes would have left the story completely different than what I intended. So, I chose not to rewrite. Maybe I was my own worst enemy in that case. Or maybe I didn't want to see my story radically changed just so that I could make a sale. 

I suggest you read a few of the romance stories in the magazine. Your local library may have back issues, or you can start picking it up at the grocery store until you've read several issues. Then, you'll have a better idea of what kind of story they are looking for. I've found that many of the stories are about the beginning of a relationship, not the development of it. 

Go to Freedom With Writing to read the full guidelines. You may be surprised that they do not take email submissions. Still use snail mail with a SASE enclosed for the reply. No SASE and your submission goes in the circular file below the desk.  Old-fashioned? Yes. But remember, they pay $1 per word.

Remember that they publish one of these romance stories in every issue, so you need to come with something that has not been done again and again. I think I might revise the story they rejected and send it again. Might be a new editor there now who will like it. Won't know if I don't try!

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