Any time a writer queries an editor, agent, or publishing house they should include a bio. Bios usually include publishing credits. But what do you do if you’re unpublished? Short answer: write for magazines, anthologies and/or enter contests. Short stories, articles, and placing in (or winning) contests can help writers earn publishing credentials.
I’m currently working on a short story The Killing Tree, which I plan to submit to horror/supernatural magazines and anthologies. So how do I plan to find a publisher? Writer’s Market Guide is a great resource. But I’ll most likely start with Duotrope.com. They’ve been a long time favorite of mine when searching for a place to submit my novels, short stories or finding a contest.
My short story is still in first draft stage, but that’s not going to stop me from looking for places to submit it. I even have a contest in mind already, which encourages me to finish this piece quick.
I’ll keep you posted on progress, but for now here’s a small taste from The Killing Tree:
It hangs from the strongest branch. A blue and black tattered thing. Yet, the taut rope holds steadfast – twisting when it twists, unraveling when it stops. They go after it with a baseball bat. Loud thuds carry across the meadow. Small animals long ago scurried into the brush. Only the people surrounding the tree stand witness.
And the fire. It too has a feast. Deadwood. It devours what the people offer and gives in return what they want. Warmth. Light. Smoke curls up from the flames and drifts toward the thick branch and the rope and the tattered thing.
After my writer’s group has a chance to critique this story, I’ll post more. Maybe…