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Monday, February 9, 2009

You Can Sell More Books! - Print Magazines Going Digital - What That Means for Authors

Print Magazines Going Digital - What That Means for Authors

Posted: 09 Feb 2009 03:29 AM CST

More and more magazines are being discontinued. And we're not just talking about those niche magazines you can only find online. Some of my favorites, including Simple Scrapbooking and Quick and Simple (do you see a theme there for my life's ambitions? Simple. Ha!) are a couple of the five that I've faithfully read who have announced their demise in the last couple of months.
As the editor of my own magazine, HopeKeepers, I am deeply in debt from my last print job. With trouble getting advertisers to commit, plus print and postage increases, printing another is not a feasible idea or a wise one. We are going digital and I am planning to print digitally using Yudu.com.
And although it's sad that April 20th will be LIFE magazine's last print issue, it pleases me as an editor to see that readers will still be able to read LIFE online. [Time started publishing the magazine in 1936, but this isn't the first time it was shut down. It closed its doors in 1972, but came back in 1978, before shutting down again in 2000.]
Selfishly, if I ever had to say, "My magazine isn't making it," I am in very good company!
But what does this mean to you as authors:
As an editor who has read everything I can get my hands on about digital magazines here's what I have to offer:
  1. Digital "clips" of your writing carry as much weight now as print clips. Even just 2 years ago this wasn't so. Depending on where your clips appear (and even the comments about them below it) they can even be significantly more impressive.
  2. Magazines will no longer have the restraints be so defining of their publications when it comes to size, page count, etc. Use this to your advantage, and keep submit more queries than you have in the past, especially to lesser known magazines. Some of the more popular magazines like LIFE will still get just as many queries and submissions. Smaller magazines will be more likely to have their regular writers say, "See ya!" and go look for work at print publications. This opens up the door for you!
  3. Ask about ad prices. While it may have been inconceivalbe to have a full-page ad in a magazine just last year, now the price may be in your budget! Magazines still want advertisers. They make us look credible! Plus we want to bring our readers good resources and products.
  4. And lastly, according to Wow - "Women on Writing":
Good news for the future [for freelance writers]. With magazines moving to online and advertising rates rising, in turn, writers should be better paid and have more opportunities. Reasonably, it should create more openings, since online content needs to stay fresh and be constantly updated in real time. It may not be as glamorous for die-hard print fans out there, but online clips will be easier to buzz.
So get out there and discover the possibilties and be one of the first to do so! Two great web sites to keep updated on what magazines are going from print to digital are Mr. Magazine and The Wooden Horse.
Keep me posted on your success!

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