Publish electronically: it’s easier than you think

, Beacon Correspondent/strong

The publishing industry is struggling. Printed books sell fewer copies than e-books, while the Kindle, Nook, and iPad continue to charm former print toting readers.

divE-books are allowing for the revitalization of older books, as it is far easier to digitize a book than it is to reprint it. E-books are more often than not cheaper than a paperback, and are slowly putting the printed book out of business according to an article in the Sept. 10 issue of The Economist./div

divShould you need to read Hamlet you can find it for free online or treat yourself to a digital copy of the complete works of William Shakespeare for only 99 cents. A change is being breathed into the life of the literary world through the Internet./div

divJunior writing, literature, and publishing major Taylor Gould has published his work on several different websites.

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“There is an over-saturation in the [online] market now. Because of the way print publishing is going, so many publications are using an online medium,” Gould said./div

divGould now runs his own music blog, “Hot Water Music” and stresses the importance of knowing your style and how it will fit online./div

divVictoria Large, a writing, literature, and publishing professor at Emerson, advises that the best way to start is by researching.

“Reading submission guidelines is huge,” Large said./div

divIt is crucial to look at the website as a whole. After all, you don’t want to submit to a website that you wouldn’t read yourself.

“[You should] really investigate what it’s going to look like, [and the] company you are going to be in,” Large said./div

divLarge is no stranger to the realm of online publishing. She has been published on several online literary magazines including Umbrella Factory Magazine and is a regular contributor to Not Coming to a Theater Near You, a website devoted to enlightening the reader on lesser-known and classic films./div

divThrough experience, Large has found one of the keys to success is proofreading./div

div“You’re submitting it once — you can’t make changes after the fact,” she said./div

divOnce you find websites with guidelines that fit your needs, start sending your writing out there./div

div“Don’t be afraid to have your piece published on a site that no one has ever heard of,” Sonya Larson, the program manager for Grub Street, said in a phone interview./div

divGrub Street is a non-profit in Boston which helps writers hone their skills by offering classes and workshops on anything writing related./div

divOne of the most important things to remember when sending out any piece of writing is to hook the reader from the first page.

“If the work itself isn’t very strong, [it] will be passed over,” Larson said.  Online publications often have small staffs that read an endless amount of submissions each day./div

divOnce your writing has been sent, the waiting game begins. Your story isn’t the only one in the pile — it may take a while to hear back. Some publications don’t respond to every submission./div

divPrepare yourself for whatever comes: rejection, approval, or a request for another piece.

“If you receive a personalized note from the editor saying perhaps this isn’t right for us, but we’d like to see something else, absolutely send them something else,” Large said./div