Duotrope's Digest Online
by Bonnie R. Schutzman
© 2007, Bonnie R Schutzman
This is the first in a series of reviews covering various online
marketing databases available for fiction writers. Websites to be
covered include: Duotrope's Digest, Ralan's Webstravaganza,
Quintamid, Spicy Green Iguana, and the Literary Magazine Stand. If
you have a favorite site you would like to see covered, please send
the pointer to the Features Editor at
A Word about Using Marketing Databases
Marketing databases can point you to publications that might be
suitable for your fiction, but they won't substitute for your own
research and judgment. Before you submit, be sure to:
Check the publication's website.
Read and follow the submission guidelines.
If at all possible, read at least one issue of the magazine. If
you can't locate or afford sample publications, at least read
online sample stories.
Not all market listings are updated regularly. They may contain
outdated information and pointers to publications that no longer
exist. Large popular listings, on the other hand, may receive
status information from editors before the information reaches the
publication website. Always double check the listing, and when in
Most market listings are operated by one or two individuals who
maintain and share the information at considerable expense and
personal effort. Consider donating towards the expenses of the
listings you use.
Duotrope's Digest (www.duotrope.com)
Duotrope's Digest (duotrope.com) is a free database of markets for
English-language poetry and fiction of all lengths. In addition to
a searchable database of more than 1400 publications, Duotrope
offers a submissions tracker, a calendar of upcoming deadlines, and
detailed statistical information about markets and submissions. All
services are free, though the submissions tracker is available only
to registered users. Registration is also free.
The first thing you see when you enter the Duotrope.com website is
the search form, which is what makes Duotrope such a valuable
marketing research tool. From here, you can search the database for
the fiction markets most suited to your work. The database is
divided into categories for short fiction, novels and collections,
and poetry. Within those divisions, you can search by attributes
such as length, genre, pay scale, theme, submissions requirements,
and publication type.
Duotrope returns a report summarizing the markets that match your
criteria, along with a second report that includes markets that may
be close to what you need. Clicking on the links take you to a more
detailed summary of that publication's needs and requirements,
including a summary of the editorial needs, a reproduction of the
cover of a typical issue (if relevant), and a link to the
publication's website. You also have access to statistics about the
publication's acceptance rates and response times.
Duotrope's database includes all genres, from Westerns to romance to
literary fiction and experimental poetry. Several new titles are
added every week. Markets range from online reviews and tiny poetry
journals that offer no payment or only a token payment, to many
major magazines including the New Yorker and all the major
Duotrope's information is updated frequently and all links are
Registered users of Duotrope's Digest can use the submissions
tracker to monitor where they have submitted manuscripts, how long
the manuscripts have been under consideration, and whether it's time
to send a follow-up query. The list can be sorted by any
attribute. For instance, if you sort by story name, you can see
where each story has been submitted. Sorting by market title lets
you see which markets you submit to regularly, or show you when you
have forgotten to keep up with a promising market that responded
positively to your previous submissions. The submissions tracker
also allows you to mark publications as favorites, put titles on
your ignore list so they will not be displayed in search results,
and track upcoming deadlines for themed issues you would like to
submit to. Registration is free.
You can subscribe to a weekly mailing of updates for short stories,
poetry, or novels/anthologies. The mailing details new markets
added to the database in that area, upcoming deadlines for themed
publications, and markets that have recently opened or closed to
submissions. This last is especially useful for those submitting to
literary journals that often don't read for part of the year.
Duotrope's biggest strength is its
large, searchable database of frequently updated information. The
search cuts research time significantly over scrolling through long
listings. The listings are highly reliable, which reduces the time
you need to spend validating and checking. The submissions and
deadline tracking help you manage your deadlines and keep your
stories out to their appropriate markets.