By Charlotte Bennardo

photo courtesy of Philosophical Disquisitions

The July theme is freedom- from writing habits. Therefore, I declare my independence from writing magazines.

Don't get me wrong, I like perusing through Publishers Weekly, and checking out articles in Writer's Digest. I had subscriptions to numerous writing magazines. When the last issue of my Publishers Weekly arrives though, I won't be renewing.


Because these magazines tend to be about the 'big' stars of writing. Oh sure, they have the occasional breakout debut author, but still the focus is on 'big success.' Most writers are midlist, and we are generally ignored. Is our writing less worthy? Not that I can see, yet we're  invisible. "Everyone loves a winner" seems to be the theme, and while I'm not one to hand out participation trophies, as a midlist author, these magazines depress me. If they were revealing the secret of how to sell a million copies, hook a top agent, or reel in that Big 5 editor, that would be different. Yes, they offer this advice, but it's all generic and we midlist authors have heard it over and over. And I wonder if these mega selling authors subscribe to these writing magazines, or is it just us, lower on the ladder of success writers who subscribe, wanting to see our names on the bestseller list?

Either way, I'm freeing up my mailbox, my desk, my credit card, and my recycle bin. If I get the urge, I'll read the copy in the library. 


  1. Great food for thought...I may have to rethink my own commitment to the time I spend reading these tomes. The small successes I've had in this crazy field have had little to do with what I read about in magazines...

  2. I came to a similar conclusion in recent years. Rather than being inspired and encouraged by stories of people doing things with their lives that I am not, I more often felt inadequate and depressed. I let my subscriptions lapse and only buy a copy when something on the cover draws me. That seems to work much better, and my engagement with the writing community continues to be nurturing and supportive. :-)


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