“. . . publication is not all that it is cracked up to be. But writing is. That thing you had to force yourself to do — the actual act of writing — turns out to be the best part. It’s like discovering that while you thought you needed the tea ceremony for the caffeine, what you really needed was the tea ceremony. The act of writing turns out to be its own reward.”
Dear Women Who Write,
Perhaps you’ve received the form letter, your submissionis not a good fit for our journal. In your head, you realize you are up against a lot of competition—most journals publish about 2% of submissions, and it’s a subjective process. Yet, you want to tuck crawl under a comforter and disappear. Some say rejection gets easier. This writer refers to rejections as “regrets.” As your parents might have said, “You’ll learn from this experience.”
One thing learned—we get more from the writing than the publication! Through the writing process we create, express, gain self-awareness, and build community.
“It’s inspiring to be around other people who are writing, it’s definitely beneficial to receive respectful feedback on your writing, and the information about submission possibilities is great! I’ve gotten 3 rejections since I joined. That might seem negative, but what it says to me is that I have been newly inspired to submit pieces to publications and, one of these days, one of them will bite,” says new member, Janet L. Boyd (and we’re pleased to say Janet is our membership chair).
Another wise woman, Barbara Kingsolver, has this to say—“This manuscript of yours that has just come back from another editor. Don’t consider it rejected. Consider that you’ve addressed ‘to the editor who can appreciate my work,‘ and it has simply come back stamped ‘Not at this address’. Just keep looking for the right address.”
Regardless of the outcome, the submission process benefits writers in specific ways. A plan to submit imposes a deadline on your writing, encourages you to finally finish that story, and requires you to reduce word count. Rejection often inspires revision.
We discover resilience when submitting our work to the distant judgment of journals, magazines, and contests. Submission is part of the writing life. Rejection is universal. Acceptance happens.
We invite members to submit to the Women Who Write blog! Personal essay, poem, fiction all welcome (1500 words maximum). We’ll read your work in advance and offer revision suggestions if needed.
Browse our web blog now! http://womenwhowrite.com/our-blog/
In this month’s newsletter, we invite you to donate to WWW on 9/15. We include a list of upcoming activities, an invitation to submit writing for peer critique at our next meeting, our monthly writing prompt, and opportunities for writers.
Our writing prompt for this month asks the writer to respond to rejection. Scroll down for specific instructions! We hope you’ll take 30-45 minutes to write a first draft of prose or poetry. This is our way of helping members who yearn to start something new, to share, get ideas, develop,and revise. Bring us your new or in-progress manuscripts for peer comments!
“I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands. You need to be able to throw something back.”
– Maya Angelou
Our organization provides education and support that affirms the value of each members’ writing journey. At this challenging time in women’s history, we have a safe place to write poems and stories we need to tell. We learn from each other.
Women Who Write has been the go-to place for women writers since 1992, when playwright and historian, Carrider “Rita” Jones, founded the organization. She understood that we need— A Place. A Space. A Voice.
On Thursday, September 15, WWW will participate in the Louisville Community Foundation’s Give for Good fundraiser from 12 AM to 11:59 PM. During this 24-hour on-line only fundraiser, we’ll invite people who love writing and women who write to donate to our organization. Our goal is to raise a minimum of $2,500 to help finance programs, pay honoraria to presenters, offer scholarships, and gather seed money for new collaborative projects.
Members, please consider sharing our donation link. There are cash prizes for quantity of donations. Members, expect to receive an email from one a WWW leader asking for a donation—small or large, we love them all!
Here is our profile page for the Give for Good fundraiser— Women Who Write.
Mark your calendar.
Tuesday, September 13 is our monthly meeting—beginning 6:30 PM and ending at 8:30 PM, we meet on Zoom and in-person at the South Central Branch— 7300 Jefferson Blvd—of the Louisville Free Public Library. We enjoy lively conversation about the writing life, including peer critiques of short manuscripts—poetry or prose. The strength-based peer critiques affirm each woman’s unique writing style while providing helpful revision suggestions.
Consider submitting one of your works-in-progress for our meeting. as an attachment to an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by noon on the day of the meeting, so we can screenshare with our Zoomers. Limit manuscripts to four pages double-spaced, or three poems
Writers attending in person, also bring 5 copies of your work to our in-person meeting.
The meeting link was included in the September Newsletter, or you may email us at email@example.com for the information.
Non-members are welcome to attend two meetings before membership.
Saturday & Sunday, November 5 and 6—Beginning Saturday at 9 AM and ending on Sunday at 5 PM, Women Who Write will gather at the Kentucky Foundation for Women’s Hopscotch House. Overnight space is limited, so sign up soon! Register for the retreat at on our website.
Write. Read. Eat. Walk. Collaborate. Read aloud. Be inspired!
Saturday, November 12 from 8 AM to 5 PM—Women Who Write will have a table at the exhibitor fair, from 10 AM to 5 PM at the annual Writer’s Block Festival, sponsored by Louisville Literary Arts. We will need volunteers to staff the table for three two hours shifts. Admission is free if you are an LLA member! The festival is at Ivy Tech Community College in Jeffersonville, IN.
This year’s Writer’s Block features six writing workshops led by regional writers and a keynote reading by Claudia Love Mair, novelist and coordinator of the Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative at the Carnegie Center for Literacy & Learning.
The festival builds community and educates writers. It’s always an inspiration!
If you have a book to sell at our table or are willing to volunteer for one two-hour shift, please let Kim know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Persons with books you’d like to sell, please let us know at email@example.com.
MONTHLY WRITING PROMPT
This prompt is inspired by a Brian Doyle essay, “The Way We Do Not Say What We Mean When We Say What We Say,” from his posthumous collection, Long River of Song.
Consider responding to a “rejection” in the way you or your character would have wished. Begin with a list of rejections; prefer the ones from which you’ve recovered. Then, let the muse guide you! Or consider a structure like the one Brenda Miller uses in her essay, “We Regret to Inform You.” Either way, you may finally say what you mean!
WE WANT TO SUPPORT YOUR WRITING LIFE.
Here is our September list of opportunities for writers—
Write for the Women Who Write web blog! Members are invited to submit writing, life, or the writing life. Personal essay, poem, fiction all welcome (1500 words maximum). We’ll read your work in advance and offer revision suggestions if needed.
This provides you a link to share on your social networks. And we’ll accept reprints. Browse our web blog now! http://womenwhowrite.com/our-blog/
Consider attending the annual Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop to be held in Dayton, Ohio and on Zoom, from October 20-22. The in-person conference fee is $499, and the virtual access fee is $79. Learn more about the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop.
They Call Us Eve, a feminist magazine devoted to discussing everyday gender discrimination, is currently accepts free submissions of poetry, prose, art, and photography for their new edition. Find out about submissions here. The word limit is 800.
Brain, Child: The Magazine for Thinking Mothers publishes prose that “treats motherhood as a subject worthy of literature.” This online journal is now part ofCreative Nonfiction journal. Find out how to submit here.
The Keeping Room is an online magazine for women writers, poets, and artists, interested in “Women’s Wisdom, Lessons Learned, Self-care, Bodies, Relationships, and Community.” Find out how to submit here.
The Cauldron Anthology is a literary journal “embracing the wild feminine.” This literary venue publishes poetry and prose writers who prompts featuring a female from classical stories and mythology. Find out how to submit here.
The Quartet Journal features poetry by women fifty and over. Find out how to submit here.
Here are twenty-six paying markets for nonfiction, fiction, and poetry
Poetry, fiction, and nonfiction invited to submit to the Medium.com publication Landslide Lit(erary) . The co-editors are WWW members, Bonnie Omer Johnson, and Kimberly Crum. No need to be a paying Medium subscriber. Bonnie and Kim will provide a Medium.com tutorial and editorial suggestions for submitted manuscripts. See submission guidelines here.
Consider submitting short memoir or personal essay to Herstryblog.com.” The theme for the November 1 deadline is “Rebellious Bodies” Find out more here. HerStry also accepts non-themed memoir-essay year-round and pays for publication.
Funds for writers newsletter—lists paying markets for writing.
Brevity accepts flash nonfiction submissions year-round. Well respected for short creative nonfiction (750 words or less). Hard to get in, but why not try? https://brevitymag.com/submissions/
HERE ARE WAYS YOU CAN SUPPORT OUR WRITING COMMUNITY
Become a member (or re-member)—As a community, WWW strives to nurture your writing life. We hope you choose to join or renew as a member and participate in our monthly meetings, author talks, retreats, and workshops. We will notify persons when they are due to renew. Regular annual membership is $50. Student annual membership is $25. Membership entitles you to discounts on workshops and retreats.
Attend our monthly meetings on the second Tuesday of each month.
We’d love to have you on our leadership team as treasurer. The treasurer oversees finances, keeps records, pays (our few) bills, oversees the budget, files simple reports, balances our bank statements, helps collect membership dues. We want more than your attention to detail. We want your ideas! Nominate yourself or another member. Questions—write to Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit our Facebook Page and stay awhile—@womenwhowriteky. Help us get to 1,000 followers! Don’t forget to like us and follow us. Also, send us links to your published writing. We will include your writing onour Facebook page! Answer polls. See video interviews of WWW meetings with visiting writers.
Members, please email email@example.com with your comments, requests, or suggestions.
Be safe. Be strong. Be peace.
Love your writing life!
Kim, Megan, Alisa, Irene and Janet