So you’d like to submit your short story or poem to Books ‘N Pieces Magazine? We’d love to see it.  Yes, we do pay for the material we accept: see the SUBMIT page for details.

Our guidelines are simple:

Have a great story. Don’t tell a sliver of a story, don’t tease a story (especially if you are using the short story to promote a novel), no excerpts (unless otherwise approved), and no stolen work.

•Your story MUST HAVE a beginning, middle and end, to what you are trying to convey; the character must CHANGE throughout the story.

Show DON’T tell. Narration is all well and good if it serves a purpose. Readers want to SEE the story, not be told it.

Don’t get too creative with post dialog attributes––he said, she said, is just fine. You don’t need,  “This stinks,” he spat. Unless he really spits, don’t say it.  “I don’t like the curtains,” she said leisurely. Unless it took her a very long and comfortable time, do not use that word.

Avoid stupid words that do not exist, are overused, or misused:

And while “he said,” and “she said,” are all fine, when you have two people talking, you can quickly figure out who is talking. Just use that the first time and intermittently, but not after every sentence.”

Proper dialog format is as follows: “I really like the curtains,” he said. (Punctuation goes INSIDE the quote marks, not outside.). It is NOT, “I really like the curtains!” He said. By the way, exclamation marks are for exclaiming––you know, vibrantly emphatic!!!!! And you only need ONE!

Please prood proof your work before you submit it. If you care that little about your work to submit it without having gone through it, what response are you expecting from me? Excellent proofing methods include reading it aloud, having someone read it to you, record it and play it back, and other methods. You will be amazed at the mistakes you find.


IMPORTANT: Please make sure that any quotations, citations, selections from other materials you use, are not copyrighted. While you are allowed to use “fair use” selections, you need to be familiar with the laws that protect these works. This includes songs and quotes. When in doubt, ask.

Please do not submit formatted work. Text is best. Your fancy font that made you feel good, will only irritate us as we have to strip it back to text before I use it. No offense.

Please do not TAB indent. Just use a RETURN key. Indents happen on OUR end. I know it looks weird to you, but we prefer it that way.

Should your work be accepted for publication, it will pass through an editing process. While we endeavor to retain your work as closely as possible, editing may require us to adjust your work for reader clarity, in addition to grammatical corrections. We may elect to change the title of your work, however, we will contact you and work with you on that.

TIPS: Learn how your writing can be powerful. Below are two links to short stories that you should read. Each offers a different style and you can use them as an example of what makes a powerful story.

• Here is a link to a short story by Ernest Hemingway. It is an excellent example of the power of a short story, without being overt in explanation. I hope you will find it useful. Http://bit.ly/HemingwayHills
• Another excellent short story “Mrs. Dutta Writes a Letter” is available online to read as well.Http://bit.ly/MrsDuttaWrites
And finally, here is a link to a FREE novel by bestselling author, Mike Wells. Mostly, I want you to read the PROLOGUE so you can see how he has turned the first five pages into a powerhouse piece of writing.

If you have other questions, please contact info@Booksnpieces.com and include B&P in the subject line.  I look forward to reading your submissions.


William Gensburger