Beyond the Writer’s Market

Raise Your Freelance Writing Goals

In a previous post, I wrote about the advantages of using The Writer’s Market to find new markets to query. But as my writer-friend Bob Howells recently pointed out on his blog SureFireWriting, The Writer’s Market is only a starting point.

Why? Because many publications prefer not to be listed in this doorstop-sized guide, as they feel they get too many low-quality queries as a result. The Writer’s Market is by no means a comprehensive guide to every writing opportunity out there — It’s a guide to all the publications where an editor was willing to fill out their form and send it back.

In addition, new magazines are created all the time, and it could take a year or three before they appear. There are also whole categories of publications — say, company magazines or alumni magazines — that the Market doesn’t have much information about…lots on consumer mags and trade publications, but it’s weak in some other areas that are great-paying markets.

In today’s economy, publications are also being folded, merged, turned into digital-only pubs and renamed faster than I can keep track. So clearly, if you’re trolling for new publications to pitch, you should think beyond The Writer’s Market.

Where else can you look to find publications to target? Here’s a few places I check:

  • Wooden Horse. They have their own publications guide and collect writer’s guidelines and editorial calendars. Their weekly email about publication changes always stimulates my brain about new markets.
  • Editor & Publisher also notes new publications and editorial changes.
  • Full-time job ads. I browse the job ads on LinkedIn for editor and writer positions sometimes, just to see the publication names. Sometimes they’re new to me and turn out to be of interest.
  • Network. Ask your writer-friends who they’re writing for…you may turn up some local publications you never knew about.
  • Writer’s Weekly. I find Angie Hoy features publications I’ve never heard of on a regular basis.
  • Join associations. Professional writing associations offer their own job ads, networking opportunities, and seminars where editors might be guest speakers.

Where do you look to discover publications that are new to you? Leave a comment and let us know.

This post originally appeared on the WM Freelance Writer’s Connection.

Photo via Flickr user mikebaird’s photostream