Go to Content
Columbia College Chicago
Pick of the Month
Print this PageEmail this Page

Pick of the Month


Welcome to our "Pick of the Month" series. Every month we will enlighten you with our absolute favorites in the publishing world that you may not have heard of. April is National Poetry Month, so get ready for a whole lot of poetry coming your way!


2014 Norman Mailer College Poetry Contest
Deadline: April 31st
10 page maximum, but as many poems as you'd like.
Prize: $2,500 plus travel and lodging to attend the award cermony.


Spry: Literary Journal

This bright magazines accepts poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and even flash. With only their third issue published, this new magazine is a great place for emerging writers to get their toes wet in the pool of publishing. 


A Writer's Bucket List

This blog focuses on successful freelancing, but really is a gem for writers of all trades. Just reading the titles of the blog posts, you can immediately see how infinitely insightful this blog is: "How to Talk to an Artist," "4 Unrealistic Expectations You May Have About Being a Freelance Writer," "How to Set Professional Boundaries with Freelance Clients." It also doesn't hurt that this web site has some serious style!

"we live in a society where thoughts run rampant and we feel the need to constantly over-sharewhat's on our mind."

Writing Spot

Grant Park, downtown Chicago

I don't know about you guys, but I'm ready to go outside. In a matter of weeks I have no doubt that all of Chicago's parks will be back to their former glory of green fields and breathtaking gardens. There is nothing like sitting on a bench in Grant Park, writing. You're always surrounded with readers, photographers, and other writers. There is that artistic connectedness when working outdoors. But on that note, be sure to bring your notebook, there's always something a little unsettling about a laptop in the midst of nature.

Lit Event

The College of Complexes is presenting a very important lecture this month that I don't think anyone should miss: The Coming Collapse of Russia and the Ukranian Crisis. Politics are a touchy subject, but being informed about the world is important job for us writers. Don't shut your eyes to what's going on in the world. 


The lit event is pretty heavy, so we'll keep the article for this month light. Matt Seidel of The Millions is a word wizard in his article, "There Are Two Kinds of Novelists..." In it we learn that there are not two kinds of novelists, but a countless amount--the robust and the insinuating, the seasonal and the perennial, the one who pees standing up and the one who pees in some other manner, to name a few. This is a thoughtful and hilarious article.

Publishing Tip:

Keep it concise. Shorter is better, when it needs to be. Of course, there is nothing wrong with a good 600 page novel every now and then, but those are the stories that can only be told in 600 pages (theoretically). A story should never be pushed to be longer and should always be condensed whenever possible. There is no point in adding in unecessary details or dialogue tags, for that matter. When submitting your work, publishers have a limited amount of time and appreciate it if you don't waste it with pieces of story that could be cut. This, of course, is all done in the revision process; showing us, once again, how important revision is.

Check out our most recent Opportunity Knocks newsletter for more markets and contests.