Sunday, April 22, 2012

Submission Guidelines Update

In September 2010, I decided to create Mouse Tales Press. Mouse was my childhood nickname given to me by my father; he had died recently, so I named it in his honor.

What did I want to gain from the experience? I had two main goals:

1) To help keep my knowledge of web coding fresh in my brain.
2) To encourage emerging writers by publishing their work.

I started by creating a basic page and placing “Submissions Wanted” ads in Craigslist. I figured I would get a trickle of writers sending in their works. Yet by December 2010, I was swamped with submissions.

My initial intent was to send personalized responses to each writer; I was able to keep that up for a few months. However, since running the site was my side job, and the submissions kept coming, I decided it was probably unrealistic to respond to each one personally. Instead I set up an automatic message to be sent to each submitter, asking them to re-send their work if they haven’t heard back within a certain time frame.

I have been known to place a piece inside a “maybe” folder and accidentally overlook it. Sometimes I make mistakes.

Each month, when I put together the new issue for the month, I add in small features to the website as well. I tweak things here and there.

Now I’m tweaking my submission guidelines.

Initially inspired by my daughter's writing talent (she has won numerous awards; you can read a sampling of her work on Storybird), I started Mouse Tales Press with the intention of publishing works for and by children.

However, as writers began sending me their work, I came to realize that I wanted the site to be for adults rather than children. Even so, I didn’t want to have to place a disclaimer on the site warning of “adult” content, such as stories with sexual content. The line is fuzzy. Stories come in that may have mention of the word sex, but are not centered around this theme. In cases such as these, I may be more open to placing the works.

As usual though, please refrain from sending in graphically violent or sexual works. Please feel free to email Mouse Tales Press with any questions.

Happy submitting!


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