Skip to main content

Duotrope VS The Grinder

If you're a writer without an agent, you're probably spending way too much time searching for potential publishers. I search on google, I log on MS Excel. I have the skills to do it myself, but I have not been writing all summer. Why? Because I'm juggling the submissions of 1 novel, 3 short stories, multiple poems and a novella. It doesn't seem like much, but when you factor in the searching, the rejections and re-submissions, it can become quite time consuming.

The second issue with google searches is the results are saturated with outdated calls for submissions. I read, I get excited and then buried somewhere in the text is the end date of the call. I have seen some that are five years old.

I need to write - not spend so much time submitting. So the question is:

  • Should I try an agent who will take approximately 14% of my royalties and might not even search and submit for me (not all agents perform those tasks)? 
  • Or should I move to a query database online to refine my searches?
I decided to try the query database. I looked at quite a few and settled on Duotrope because of the following:
  • a database of current fiction, non-fiction and poetry markets
  • a search feature for those markets
  • a deadline calendar
  • a way for writers to track and log their submissions
  • useful stats on each market

Just as I was cringing at the thought of spending $50 US (couldn't find any online coupons), I did a last search and found The Submission Grinder.

The Submission Grinder is also a database of current markets that offers a search function and an opportunity for writers to log and track their submitted writing. And it's free. 

Is it valid?
  • 2252 listed markets (1039 open)
  • 1372 users
The search feature is wonderfully complex. Writers can search markets by story genre, style, subject and length AND market pay scale, submission type (electronic/postal), response time OR market name. Writers can also request the search only return markets that allow simultaneous submissions or reprints. Or select only anthologies or contests in the returns. However, you can only search Fiction markets.

Another interesting feature is the option to log your submissions and report on response times. This collection information creates a database on each market that can provide reports. You can use the reports to compare your response results with the average market responses. (Sign up for the next blog, which will focus on this topic).

I'm going with The Submission Grinder. It's free. I can't lose. I spent a hour on it yesterday. I searched markets for a number of my submit-ready writings. Out of the search results I'm getting a 75% success rate, which means 75% of the returns are valid, current markets who could potentially publish my work. In google I was finding approximately 1 potential market per 4 pages of returned results. That's a lot of wasted time and effort. 

Here's hoping The Submission Grinder improves my efficiency. Let me know if you've tried it and what you think in the comment section.


Popular posts from this blog

How to Use MS OneNote to Organize Writing Research and Novel Outlines for Writers

Let’s Get Organized  Writers take a gazillion notes.   I don’t have to tell you this, because you know all about it. You also know how difficult it is to organize notes, search through paper notes, and sometimes even find all the notes you've written.  In this day and age, going digital is the best way to keep track of your notes. If organized properly, digital notes are sortable, searchable, editable, accessible from anywhere, and light as a feather to carry around. In this blog, I'm going to show you how to be note-efficient. ____________________________________________________ The following is an excerpt from "Technology #WritingTips for Writers". First 100 subscribers at get a free copy at book launch. _____________________________________________________ The first step in getting note-efficient is finding the right software. For writers, finding a software that will meet all of our needs is like trying to pick

Netgalley Comparison Review - Is it Worth an Author's Money and Time?

NetGalley has over 175,000 reviewers, media, booksellers, bloggers and librarians!  NetGalley is a conduit for authors to get their books noticed, read and reviewed. Many years ago, I was a reader for NetGalley. I thought it was a great deal - getting free ARCs in exchange for honest reviews. However, what I found was that I would load up too many ARCs and then eventually lose interest in writing reviews. I'm sure there are many readers on NetGalley who have experienced the same initial enthusiasm followed by a decline in activity. That's why if you're going to invest in NetGalley, you will want to have control in choosing your own reviewers. Reviewers are rated on their activity, so you can sort through those who don't follow through using the NetGalley dashboard. NetGalley offers an incredible dashboard that allows you to control who gets your books, which also ensures the readers getting your novel are interested in your genre. Readers who aren't might

How teaching is more than just handing out home lessons - Corona Virus Education

HOW TEACHING HAPPENS IN MY CLASS I’ve been teaching for twelve years at an alternative school, working with students who are at risk. Ever heard that old saying, “Those who can’t, teach”? Well before teaching, I was a Social Worker, a Newspaper Journalist, an Internet Business Consultant, Web Designer, eMarketer and Published Author. Now, I teach. I love teaching. I love bringing all my skills from life to the classroom. And I love being challenged by the changes in society and technology that encourage me to step it up in the classroom, each year. But I also love all the new skills teaching has given me.  If you are in a situation where you are delivering lessons because of COVID-19, here are a few insights on how I deliver learning that might make your journey easier. Let's start with some universal tips. Tip #1: Always remember what you are teaching. Do you want them to learn how to reflect on their cooking? Then you aren't marking spelling in their written ref