Vision: A Resource for Writers
Lazette Gifford, Editor
Vision@sff.net
Holly Lisle's Vision

Guidelines

Expanded Guidelines

Upcoming Themes


We will happily consider manuscripts from either unpublished or published writers – we prefer to be queried (all queries and manuscript submissions are handled by e-mail). We are interested in all facets of writing, from first- person experience articles to genre-specific how-to’s and informational articles about your area of specialization – whether it be history or science or nursing or long-distance running – and how and where your specialty can be used correctly by writers. Write something that will help other writers write better, and we’ll be interested in taking a look.

We are a non-paying market with a 100% volunteer staff. In return for your work, you get as many copies of the e-zine as you care to download, and our sincere thanks. Your work will make a nice tear-sheet to present when selling other work, but it doesn’t count as a professional market because we can’t afford to pay.

On the other hand, the e-zine is also free.

We use only non-exclusive serial rights; what this means is that you can sell your piece elsewhere before, during, or after you have placed it with us. We don’t mind if it runs simultaneously. However – and this is very important for you to keep in mind – if you place a piece with us that has not been published elsewhere, we will be using your First Serial Rights, which means they will not be available for sale elsewhere. Reprint rights are harder to sell. And back issues will be available from the site (though not from e-zine newsstands) for as long as I can keep them there, as a reference to new people coming into the site.

If you sell a piece elsewhere after we have accepted it but before we have printed it, and you need to have us pull it in order to be able to make your sale, please let us know immediately. We can pull a piece up to a few days before we go to press, but the longer you wait, the more difficult time we’ll have getting another piece copyedited and ready to fill the slot your piece occupied.

We strive to maintain professional standards – manuscripts must be professionally formatted, as free from spelling and grammatical errors as you can make them, and in what you perceive to be final draft form. We will not welcome massive rewrites of a piece after we have accepted it – when we accept it, we consider it pretty close to finished and will only request such edits as will finish it to our standards. If we feel that it need massive rewrites, we won’t accept it.

For feature articles, query Lazette Gifford. For genre- or area-specific articles, query the relevant editor. All e-mail addresses are in the masthead.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Holly Lisle and Lazette Gifford
Publishers, Vision


Expanded Submission Guidelines:

Articles must be at least 500 words, and longer is much better if your subject will handle it.  2000 words is the 'soft' top, and I'm willing to go over it if the article needs it.

Check your spelling and grammar!  Also, if you are from a country that does not use US spelling conventions, let me know in the email.  That will stop me from making several 'corrections' before I realize they aren't mistakes.  

Place your Title AND YOUR NAME at the top of the document.  I hate having to go search through emails, checking attachments, to figure whose article I'm actually looking reading. 

Use one of these fonts: Courier, Courier New, Times New Roman or Arial, 12pt.

Double space 

Do not indent

I would like submissions to be made in either Word Doc files, or .rtf files, and as attachments to the email. (I believe that WordPerfect allows .rtf saves, doesn't it?)  If you use Works, a regular file will do, although (at least in the 4.5 version I have), it also allows for an .rtf file save.  

A plain text copy (.txt) can be sent, but be certain to mark any italics like this: *before and after the section in italics*, and bold likes this: _before and after anything in bold._  If you cannot do attachments, use the body of the letter as the last resort. 

Indicate book titles with italics.  And yes, that means if you are doing a Word doc or rtf that you can use actual italics and not an underline to indicate italics. (This is not common submission procedure, but it's far easier for me since I can cut and paste to my wysiwyg web page editor.) 

Do not use an underline for emphasis.  Underline on websites indicates a link, and people often send emails to say the link is not working.  Use italics or bold. 

NO HTML code except for links, and those written in this fashion:  http://www.whatever.com/this.htm

Provide the ISBN #s for all books reviewed.  Also, if you mention a specific book, and especially if you quote from it, add the title, author and ISBN# at the bottom of the file.  The same is true for articles -- be certain to cite them. 

An additional note to Word users: you should turn off the 'smart quotes' option in Word which can be found under Tools-AutoCorrect and then the tabs AutoFormat while you type AND Autoformat.  Also uncheck the symbol replacement for --.  While these look really neat on the screen, they translate to funny little squares that cannot be taken out with the 'find-replace' feature, but have to be hunted down by hand.  If you are submitting anything electronically, you will very likely hear back from the editor on these.  And remember -- a lot of print publishers are now asking for electronic copy for their end as well.

We've been receiving some very good articles, and I hope that all of you look at the list of upcoming issues and choose something you feel comfortable with.  If you find something you'd like to submit to, make note of which issue it is and let me know what kind of article you would like to write. 

We are also still looking for general genre-related articles.  If you would like to write an article on how to research romantic settings, the proper use of codes in spy thrillers, etc., let us know.  The Genres we like to cover in each issue are: 

  • Fantasy

  • Horror

  • Poetry

  • Romance  

  • RPG

  • Science Fiction

  • Suspense & Mystery

  • Young Adult & Children

  • Young Writer's Scene

And we are always interested in articles about the act and art of writing.

Upcoming Themes for Vision:

Here you will find ideas on what we'd like to see for each of the upcoming themes.  These are not definitive! They're just what we came up with while brainstorming, ideas that we hope will spur your own ideas. We want to see what you come up with; if you want to take something straight from the list, that's great. If the lightbulb goes on and you think of the perfect article for the issue, that's even better. And if you want to write an article that doesn't fit any of our themes, but is about writing, write that, too. Along with the theme articles, we ALWAYS need articles about all aspects of writing.

This is our list of themes and our ideas for what might go in them:

Writing and Editing
(May/June 2002) (Submission Due Date: April 1, 2002)

For this issue, we hope to see something like . . .

How to edit -- nuts and bolts of editors marks, word and style choices, checking continuity; first-person articles from writers who have worked with an editor to sell a difficult piece. How many drafts does it take? Turning rejections into useful info, querying editors, preparing a manuscript to go out the door.

Animals in Fiction
(July/August 2002) (Submission Due Date: June 1, 2002)

For this issue, we hope to see something like . . .

  • Cats and Mysteries

  • Dogs and Romances

  • The Animal Protagonist

  • Avoiding Cute Animals

  • Writing Horses Right

  • Telepathic Horses, Cats with Hands, Talking Dogs; Animals and the Fantastic

Marketing Your Work and Yourself
(September/October 2002) (Submission Due Date: August 1, 2002)

For this issue, we hope to see something like . . .

Putting up a web page, going to conventions, meeting other writers, marketing locally, marketing on the Internet, bookstore signings

Art In Fiction; Art AS Fiction
(November/December 2002) (Submission Due Date: October 1, 2002)

For this issue, we hope to see something like . . .

  • Writers as Protagonists

  • Art as Science

  • When Does It Have to Be Perfect?

  • Fantasy -- How they Dance and Sing in Isk Kahsherei

  • Can Genre Fiction Be Art?

  • Painting with Words