“What Editors Are Looking For”
- February 16, 2022
Richard Peabody offers some tips on getting your work noticed!
Ever wonder how to get out of the slush pile? Or what makes a compelling query letter? Find out during the “What Editors Are Looking For” panel at the 2022 Washington Writers Conference on May 13-14 in Rockville, MD!
The panel will feature Gargoyle Magazine’s Richard Peabody, the Washington Post’s deputy Travel and Local Living editor, Elizabeth Chang, and Arlington Magazine’s editor, Jenny Sullivan. Bestselling author Nicole Chung (All You Can Ever Know) will moderate.
Here’s a sneak peek from Peabody at what Gargoyle — the 75th issue of which comes out next month — hopes to see in a submission.
What do you look for in the stories you publish?
Your work should amaze us. We’re looking for work we can read 10 to 15 times and still get a kick out of during our proofing and desk-topping processes.
What’s going on behind the scenes that can help writers better understand how to work with you?
Don’t wait until a few days before the deadline [to pitch something]. This is because we both accept and reject submissions from day one. We close when we’re full, and that’s frequently before the deadline.
What makes a good cover letter?
Tell the truth. Don’t brag. Don’t write 20 sentences where three or four will do. Also, don’t send a résumé. Do tell us whom you’ve studied with and where. Do steer us to your previous publications and books.
What are your submission guidelines?
We have never had submission guidelines and have never believed in them. If you haven’t seen an issue, buy a used copy of Gargoyle or look for some of the work we’ve printed online. If you have a question, feel free to ask. Also, take a look at our website.
Don’t miss your chance to hear from Peabody and dozens of other publishing pros during this year’s conference! Attendance is capped at 150, and we’re over 75 percent sold out, so register NOW! (Note: Proof of vaccination against covid-19 is required to attend.)