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In amongst last Friday's 'Interesting posts' collection, was one about non-paying markets, by my friend, aalford. in which, he lists some of the non-paying sites that he enjoys reading.
The question of why many writers look down on these types of publications also came up, as well as one about whether or not his readers would ever submit to one.  I gave him my answer (for me, some form of cashy-money payment, however small, is a matter of principal), but it got me thinking about this from the other side. 

Assuming the publication or e-zine is attempting to make money - even if it's just to cover costs - I'd say they darned well ought to pay their writers, just as they no doubt pay their printer/site designer/web-host etc.  I really can't see the downside of offering (say) $5 per story as opposed to a big fat zero.  Unless writers don't care if they get paid or not, in which case, why bother offering, right?

There's certainly all manner of non-paying markets, so maybe it's just me.  Maybe most other writers submit to paying and non-paying markets alike.  If they don't, then I'd say the non-payers are making a mistake, 'cause their paying competitors are getting first dibs on all the good stories.

How about you?

Is asking for free materiel a good business strategy for a publication?

Do you ever submit your work to non-paying markets?

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Nov. 4th, 2009 09:27 pm (UTC)
I gave a story to a convention program book. I would be willing to consider giving away a story for a charitable project. And under very special circumstances, I would consider subbing/selling a story to a market paying royalties only -- but there would have to be a good reason.

Other than that, I generally stay away from the no-pay markets.
Nov. 4th, 2009 09:54 pm (UTC)
'...I would consider subbing/selling a story to a market paying royalties only ...'

I think that's how GUD works, isn't it?
Nov. 4th, 2009 10:59 pm (UTC)
I think GUD pays a standard rate for the story, then depending on how well that story sales, you can earn more if it pays out.

They also have a variety of ways for readers to purchase stories. I think they have one of the more interesting approaches and it may become more feasible once e-Reader popularity expands.

Here's what they say on their site:

"Who can say? GUD is breaking new ground here. We're selling content, not media. If people want to buy just one story, they'll get it. If they want a PDF magazine, they'll get the whole issue. If they want a beautifully bound paper mag, they'll pay a little extra, but they'll get it. And you? You get a cut. When we publish your story, we pay you. Every time your story sells, we pay you. If we include it in an anthology, we pay you. If an issue does particularly well, you're looking at pro rates plus. If not—well, it may mean we've lost some money, but you've got your semi-pro in hand. This is an adventure, an exploration of something new. If you're brave enough, take our hand and step out into the abyss; what have you got to lose?"

I don't see anything that states an exact payment per word, but I think it's still interesting.
Nov. 5th, 2009 10:17 am (UTC)
Thanks, Aaron. I do think it's an interesting idea :)

Things What I Wrote and Other Stuff

No longer in print but there are still some copies floating around out there

No longer in print but there are still some copies floating around out there



Books by my writer friends - compressed

NJ Writing groups - compressed

NJ writing conference - compressed

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