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Roger J Carlson
02-19-2005, 09:42 PM
In reading the Submission Guidelines for Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, they state they are anxious to read first-time writer's stories. They ask that you send them to EQMM's Department of First Stories.

Does anyone know if it's a sucker bet? Are they really interested in first-time stories or is this just a way to get gullible writers out of their hair?

I hate to sound cynical, it got me to wondering.

Anybody have some first-hand knowledge of this?

Jamesaritchie
02-19-2005, 11:03 PM
In reading the Submission Guidelines for Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, they state they are anxious to read first-time writer's stories. They ask that you send them to EQMM's Department of First Stories.

Does anyone know if it's a sucker bet? Are they really interested in first-time stories or is this just a way to get gullible writers out of their hair?

I hate to sound cynical, it got me to wondering.

Anybody have some first-hand knowledge of this?

It's for real. Janet Hutchings likes and encourages new writers. It's only good business, and more editors really ought to do this. She buys a number of stories from first time writers each year.

Your story still has to be good, of course, but the Department of First Stories is for real, and does lead to several first time writers being published each year.

katdad
02-20-2005, 03:19 AM
EQMM's First Writer desk is legit. The separate the newbies so that they can pore through the awful junk they get more easily.

But EQMM is a great venue for beginning writers -- they will give you an honest read.

rtilryarms
02-20-2005, 05:25 PM
Hey guys, thanks for the tip. EQ might be a great place for determining the market for a new writer.

I will go look but aren't they like shortish mysteries?

It might be a perfect start.

rt

Jamesaritchie
02-21-2005, 06:51 AM
Hey guys, thanks for the tip. EQ might be a great place for determining the market for a new writer.

I will go look but aren't they like shortish mysteries?

It might be a perfect start.

rt

If you don't read a magazine regularly, it's extremly difficult to write anything the editor will want.

Roger J Carlson
02-21-2005, 06:17 PM
Thanks everyone, for the confirmation. It eases my mind.

Maryn
02-21-2005, 11:25 PM
I've never been a fan of Ellery Queen, so I don't read it. It's not that I don't think it's good, it's just too light for my taste--more like "Murder She Wrote" than "Se7en."

Even so, I made my first national-market sale to their department of first stories. So did one of the people in my critique group.

Of course, they haven't bought anything from either one of us since, but they're the real deal, and one of the very few markets left for the mystery or suspense short story.

Maryn

M.A.Gardener
07-28-2006, 09:40 PM
Anyone know if Janet Hutchings is still at EQMMs Dept. of First Stories? In their submission guidelines it doesn't provide a name, but I've heard it's always good to address someone specifically. What do you think - better to do it this way rather than just general to the dept?

Jamesaritchie
07-30-2006, 11:57 PM
Anyone know if Janet Hutchings is still at EQMMs Dept. of First Stories? In their submission guidelines it doesn't provide a name, but I've heard it's always good to address someone specifically. What do you think - better to do it this way rather than just general to the dept?

Janet is still editor. And Linda Landrigan is editor at Alfred Hitchcock, if you want to try there, as well.

BJ Bourg
08-01-2006, 03:20 PM
I've never been a fan of Ellery Queen, so I don't read it. It's not that I don't think it's good, it's just too light for my taste--more like "Murder She Wrote" than "Se7en."

Even so, I made my first national-market sale to their department of first stories. So did one of the people in my critique group.

Of course, they haven't bought anything from either one of us since, but they're the real deal, and one of the very few markets left for the mystery or suspense short story.

Maryn

Throughout the years of subscribing to EQMM and AHMM, I've only found a few stories that kept me reading through to the end. I let my subscriptions expire about four years ago. Although I don't miss the stories, I do miss submitting to the AHMM Mysterious Photo Contest.

As for the movie "Se7en", that was one of my all-time favorite endings.

bjb

Kate Thornton
08-01-2006, 05:40 PM
I have never submitted to either magazine, but I have read them both voraciously for years (okay, decades). I don't understand why I haven't sent either one anything - I will remedy that this weekend. I have one I think is a winner, but more suited AHMM. Thanks to everyone here for giving me that little shove. Sometimes I just need a push in the right direction. And the editor's name...!

Gillhoughly
08-03-2006, 09:22 AM
You guys take me back!

The very first pro submission I ever made was to EQMM.

I was--hmm--maybe 14 at the time. I carefully typed, double-spaced, wore out a dictionary to check my spelling, and put in a SASE just like I'd read in the books from the 808 section.

Of course the story was perfectly awful, and I got a standard rejection--but they treated me like I was an adult! Even getting turned down was a rush because *someone* (a big time grown-up pro in publishing, wow!) had read my story. (The books in the 808 section had prepared me for rejection slips, too.)

It's been a few decades, and my name is different, I should give it another shot!

With a different story. Yep. Better send 'em something different. Ohhhh, yeah.

Jamesaritchie
08-03-2006, 01:29 PM
You guys take me back!

The very first pro submission I ever made was to EQMM.

I was--hmm--maybe 14 at the time. I carefully typed, double-spaced, wore out a dictionary to check my spelling, and put in a SASE just like I'd read in the books from the 808 section.

Of course the story was perfectly awful, and I got a standard rejection--but they treated me like I was an adult! Even getting turned down was a rush because *someone* (a big time grown-up pro in publishing, wow!) had read my story. (The books in the 808 section had prepared me for rejection slips, too.)

It's been a few decades, and my name is different, I should give it another shot!

With a different story. Yep. Better send 'em something different. Ohhhh, yeah.

I've sold three stories to EQMM, and have never been prouder. A great magazine. But I haven't submitted anything to them in at least four years. Maybe longer. Guess I'd better write something new and send it along, as well.

Kate Thornton
08-03-2006, 05:44 PM
C'mon, Jamesaritchie & Gillhoughly are gonna submit too? No fair! I won't stand a chance!

Too late - already have my SASE and the story just went through the "read it backwards" mill - it's going out Saturday! (But to AHMM, not EQ)

Kate - it's hard to type with your fingers crossed...

M.A.Gardener
08-03-2006, 09:06 PM
Too late - already have my SASE and the story just went through the "read it backwards" mill - it's going out Saturday! (But to AHMM, not EQ)

I sent mine out yesterday! It's my first submission to EQMM, so I sent it to First Stories. At least (this time) I won't have to compete with the big boys!;)
Kate - what's the "read it backwards" mill?
-m.a.

Jamesaritchie
08-03-2006, 11:29 PM
I finsihed a story last night, but I'm going to send it to AHMM simply because I've never sold them a story. I'll write another one aimed at EQMM in the next few days.

Kate Thornton
08-04-2006, 01:16 AM
Kate - what's the "read it backwards" mill?
-m.a.

I read my stories backwards aloud one word at a time to look for typos.

I then read them aloud - forwards - to look for awkward phasing, even pacing and to see if they make sense. Sometimes when I write, I see the action so clearly in my head that I fail to flesh it out enough on the keyboard. I just do these double checks on stuff before it goes out.

Anal, I know. But I've caught a lot of goofs this way.

gp101
08-07-2006, 03:58 PM
I subscribed to both AHMM and EQMM for six months last year to get a feel for the type of stories they each pub (both subscriptions ran out, BTW, without a reminder or nudge to re-subscribe, which I found strange since most mag's hound me for years to re-subscribe--I'm talking to you, New Yorker, leave me alone, already!). I remember reading in nearly every issue a by-line saying "this is so-and-so's first published ss", so I'm thinking the Dept. of First Stories is legit.

I submitted a story to AHMM in early May and still haven't heard back. I read somewhere that AHMM is notoriously slow (up to three months) with replies, so if no word arrives by next week, a gentle nudge will go off.

But can anyone tell me the difference in stories from EQMM to AHMM? I really wasn't quite sure which to submit to first (neither accepts sim-subs, and submitting to one does not mean the other will also consider it though they're both under the Dell Pub moniker and share the same address). They each have very good stories and some not-so-good stories from damn near every sub-genre of mystery. The only difference I've seen is that EQMM sometimes pub's a couple of longer pieces that may be considered more literary than the ones in AHMM. Other than that, I don't know how to determine the difference.

Anyone???

Jamesaritchie
08-08-2006, 03:58 AM
I subscribed to both AHMM and EQMM for six months last year to get a feel for the type of stories they each pub (both subscriptions ran out, BTW, without a reminder or nudge to re-subscribe, which I found strange since most mag's hound me for years to re-subscribe--I'm talking to you, New Yorker, leave me alone, already!). I remember reading in nearly every issue a by-line saying "this is so-and-so's first published ss", so I'm thinking the Dept. of First Stories is legit.

I submitted a story to AHMM in early May and still haven't heard back. I read somewhere that AHMM is notoriously slow (up to three months) with replies, so if no word arrives by next week, a gentle nudge will go off.

But can anyone tell me the difference in stories from EQMM to AHMM? I really wasn't quite sure which to submit to first (neither accepts sim-subs, and submitting to one does not mean the other will also consider it though they're both under the Dell Pub moniker and share the same address). They each have very good stories and some not-so-good stories from damn near every sub-genre of mystery. The only difference I've seen is that EQMM sometimes pub's a couple of longer pieces that may be considered more literary than the ones in AHMM. Other than that, I don't know how to determine the difference.

Anyone???

If you read six month's worth of each, you should know the difference better than most people here. But basically, EQMM usually uses softer, gentler stories, and AHMM tends to use a bit harder stories, and sometimes those with something of a supernatural element. But reading them for yourself is the only real way to know. But they're both looking for well-written crime and mystery stories, and many a story that will fit in one will also fit in the other.

And both want what they don't see fifty times a week in the slush pile. New characters with new professions, new personalities, and stories placed in different, but realistic settings.

Like most magazines, it's often more about what they don't want than what they do want.

As for response time, three months is not notoriously slow. It isn't really slow at all.