Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Face book campaign to bring back fiction in women's mags!

Right! The recent decision by TAB to ditch their weekly magazine fiction slot has grated somewhat. It seems that magazines are getting rid of their fiction slots in favour of more 'true-life' stories and more celeb dross! Now, if you like true life stories and reading about celebs that's fine - we all do to a certain extent. But I feel that these magazines are ignoring the thousands of women who actually quite like to read the fiction too. There has to be a balance and losing the fiction slot upsets this balance!

I'm not just saying all of this because I write short stories and if the market is dwindling it reduces my and all the other short story writers' chances of publication. I'm saying it because I love reading the stories too. I read them long before I even considered trying to write them and I think it's such a shame that there are less stories about.

Stories, for me, are as essential to my well being as breathing is! As a human race we have told stories right from the start of our existence on the planet. It's an ancient art that we cannot let die out. I know the pressure is on for the mags to keep up with the times and, at the moment, the trend is moving towards celebs and true-life stories.

This is why I have set up my new Face Book page to try and Bring Back Fiction to magazines before it's too late and we lose them for good. So, have a look at the page and, if you feel like I do, do join us - tell your friends about us, spread the word! The more names we have the better chance we have of the mag editors listening!

It's worth a shot!

34 comments:

Mike said...

Hi, Julie, I've not blogged for a while, but I support youir campaign. TV has gone in ther same direction, substituting plays, etc. with 'reality' stuff.

Anonymous said...

Hi Julie,

I can't find a link to your Facebook page, or maybe I'm just not seeing it. Can you please post it here?

Thanks,
Claire

Pat Posner said...

Julie
For some reason I can't comment on your new Facebook page. I have shared your details on my page, though, and written my comment there, which is:
I think the magazines that have started leaving out fiction and concentrating on celeb, celeb, celeb, will soon lose a lot of readers. It's quite insulting really when eds think that is all every reader is interested in. Whatever happened to catering for all?

Sylvia said...

Am I blind? I can't see a link to the page you've created.

gaelikaa said...

Great idea Julie! I've tweeted and posted a link to this page on my FB. But I can't find the page on FB. I want to share it with my writing group. Can you post a link?

Julie P said...

Hi, all

I'm really, really sorry but I'm having a bit of trouble with the face book page at the moment (grrrr!) But I'm hopng to get it up to scratch soon.

If you can't find the page, I typed in Bring back fiction and it popped up! I will try and post a link ASAP!

jULIE XX

Julie P said...

I agree, Mike and it's so disappointing isn't it. I mean I don't mind a bit of celeb stuff and some reality TV but it's just getting beyond a joke. There are other people out there who want something else!

Julie xx

Leigh said...

Good plan! Right behind you here; we were moaning about this very thing at a womag-writers' meetup yesterday! Will happily share the link on facebook and twitter when you have it. Good luck!

(p.s. can help with fb page-setup if you need a hand.)

Julie P said...

Hi, Leigh!

Thank you for joining the campaign!
Any help with page set up will be greatly appreciated!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Facebook page all set up now. If you want to join then let me know so I can add you as a member. It's on face book as Bring Back Fiction to Women's Mags.

Julie P said...

e-mail address for the group is

savefictioninwomenmags@groups.facebook.com

Pat Posner said...

Hi, Julie
My comment has appeared on the FB page so I think I'm a member? If I'm not - please add me.

Thanks
Pat

Pat Posner said...

P.S.
Tried sending an email but it was returned by Daemon - saying address doesn't exist

Diane Fordham said...

Excellent! Thanks Julie. I'm off to join that Facebook page x

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, I can't get the group email address to work. Can you please add me to the group, Julie? I'm on Facebook as Claire Baxter (Adelaide, Australia).

Thanks, Claire

Anonymous said...

Can't find your facebook page on Facebook!

Julie P said...

Hi, Pat!

Yes, you are now a member. It looks like you have to be a friend to me for me to add you to the group - anyone know how I can add anyone who wants to join the group without them having to be a friend to me?

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Claire, I tried to add you to the group but it wouldn't let me! At the moment it seems you have to be a 'friend' of mine to be added - but I'm working on trying to sort it out so that non-friends can be added too!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

To anonymous people - at the moment you need to be a friend of mine so I can add you to the group!
I'm on Facebook as Julie Phillips, Telford.

Julie xx

Julie P said...

I can't get the group e-mail to work either! No idea on that one HELP!

Julie xx

Shirley Wells said...

As someone who'd read and written short stories for many, many years, I completely agree. It's a disgrace. It's the same with TV. Instead of good quality drama, we have cheap reality shows.

(I tried find the FB page but it sent me back here when I clicked on it. Will try later...)

Pat Posner said...

Take a Break 'official' has replied to comments:

Take a Break magazine - official Dear everyone,
Thank you so much for your messages.
As you’ve seen we’ve made some changes to Take a Break. We’ve kept lots of your favourite pages and introduced some new ones. In fact, there is even more inside to enjoy. We hope you agree i...t’s a brighter, fresher, more fun read.
At the moment, we are not including fiction/grumps but that doesn’t mean they are gone for good.
In the meantime we hope you continue to enjoy your Take a Break every week.
TAB x

Pleas go and reply to the official comment
https://www.facebook.com/takeabreakmag/posts/216877645013430

Julie P said...

Hi, Shirley and thank you!

As you have probably gathered I'm having problems with setting up the page at the moment. It's weird as I can get on it and there are some others who have located but a lot of people can't find it! I'll keep fiddling with it until everyone can find it! At the moment it looks like you have to be a friend for me to add you as a member. I'm in facebook as Julie Phillips (Telford).

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Pat

That's very interesting, what the TAB official has said. But I think we need more reader pressure! I'll go and comment but we need more readers who don't write or sub stories to TAB for them to take any notice.

Julie xx

Julie P said...

So far I've managed to add 8 people to the Bring Back Fiction in women's mags group. It appears that if you request to become my friend on face book I can add you quite easily to the group! Trying to sort it out and Leigh has very kindly volunteered her help to sort out the teething problems! Bear with us. We shall be fully functional soon (I hope!)

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Thanks to Diane for updating me - she's contacted a couple of mags in Australia/New Zealand who recently ditched their fiction slots and they have agreed to look into it.

Also, all your messages to TAB seem to be gaving an effect too - as they posted an 'official' response on their website!

See Bring Back Fiction in Women's mags face book page for more details - people should be able to find it and join now as Leigh has sorted us out!

Thank you Leigh.

Julie xx

Diane Fordham said...

You are welcome Julie :-) Also have had a response from New Idea Magazine who have submitted the request of the return of fiction to their team! We still need more people voicing their opinion to the mags!

Julie P said...

That's great, Diane!

What we need are readers to request it to. I wonder if it's worth writing to the letters pages of some of these magazines and see if we get any readers agreeing?

Diane Fordham said...

Hi Julie - great idea about writing to the letters pages of the magazines!

Julie P said...

The letters always seem to generate discussion in the mags,Diane, so it might be a way of encourging readers to think about the loss of fiction and write in themselves!

Julie xx

Diane Fordham said...

You are so right Julie. I've started letters to the editors of the mags and did an update post on my blog encouraging this. I've include a list of the mags that I am aware of that have dropped fiction too. Please check it out if you get a chance. Thanks for everything you are doing :-)

Julie P said...

Hi, Diane!

The more letters that go to the mags the better - it'll make the editors sit up and take notice. Though, it's not the editor's fault if they have ditch fiction sometimes - market forces and all that - everyone's feeling the squeeze at the moment. But it's a shame that fiction is usually the first thing to go!

We shall overcome!

Julie xx

Pat Posner said...

If you go here
http://www.goodtoknow.co.uk/family/471247/Woman-s-Weekly-Fiction-Guidelines - you can ask Gaynor or Clare (WW editors) a question or just praise them for the fiction in the weekly and the Fiction Special. You can use your fb account to sign in but I found it easier to register with my name and email (email addy only accepts all lower case).

Julie P said...

Yes, I put the website for good to know on a previous, post, Diane - It's a great site for finding out about some of the mags and leaving comments.

Julie xx