When the members of the Gettysburg Writers Brigade talk about markets where we can publish our work. Around the Gettysburg area, the local magazines pay 10 cents to 50 cents a word.
I also write for magazines all over the country and have worked with some that pay $1 a word. Those markets are highly competitive.
I often look at the annual Writer’s Market to hunt for new markets and to also look at their writing pay rates chart. Writer’s Market is a great annual and a great place to start looking for markets, but I have two problems with it.
No. 1 – Writer’s Market has thousands of potential markets, but it’s not comprehensive. I realize that now, but when I was first starting out, I did not. It was only after having been published in dozens of magazines that I started realizing most of them weren’t listed in Writer’s Market, and some of them were very good paying markets.
No. 2 – I’m not sure how they compile their pay rate charts, but they seem too high from my experience. For instance, who pays $600 for a local newspaper column and what is the column about? How often does it run? How about $1,040 for a newspaper feature article? Maybe those are New York market area rates. Even if you look at the markets listed in Writer’s Market, you would be hard-pressed to reach the levels in the rate chart. For more realistic pay rates, check out this post by Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen. She had put together an excellent selection of different types of writing and realistic pay expectations.
As you start to consider markets where you might want to submit a query, take a look at Laurie’s chart to see whether you’re getting offered a good paycheck. You might not be able to negotiate a higher rate, but you will discover that your writing might be worth more than you think.