I’ve sold a number of short stories. Most of them have gone through a few rejections before getting picked up by a magazine or anthology. Some have even become the cover story. I used to hear others talk about writing non-fiction and thought, “But how boring.” A few months ago, I learned better.
In a desire to improve my writing skills and branch into something new, I googled “call for nonfiction submissions.” This site showed up and so I looked it over: http://www.newpages.com/classifieds/calls-for-submissions. I found an educational magazine, focused on homeschooling, with a call that sounded interesting to me. As Ace Jordyn said in her previous article, How to Write Non-Fiction Books for Profit, when you find something you love to talk about then your enthusiasm can be contagious. I’ve done some homeschooling and I’ve had experience with many schools and different teaching programs. So I went to work and gave my take on education with the article Essay Overload. I didn’t expect anything to come of it.
However, just like an article I wrote in high school in my very first creative writing class, my essay submission sold almost immediately. It published this month. (Click on the picture to the right and go to page 27 to see the article.) The magazine’s rates were at least three times higher than ANY fiction short story I had ever sold up to that point. I was amazed, ecstatic, and a bit dumbfounded. Say what? But this is just the fact of fiction. The best part, I was able to use that money to pay for my flight home from the 2016 Superstars Seminar. So, my non-fiction is helping me pay for my fiction endeavors.
On a side note, I also think writing non-fiction helps our ability to write in other areas. I’ve noticed that some of the best writers do both worlds very well. And, in fact, I sold a fiction short story very soon after the non-fiction for almost as much money. My first professional short story sale.
Lesson learned. Writing non-fiction is a good way to write fiction. May not make sense to you, but in my book, the numbers add up just fine.
Colette Black lives in the far outskirts of Phoenix, Arizona with her family, 2 dogs, a mischievous cat and the occasional unwanted scorpion. She loves learning new things, vacations, and the color purple. She writes New Adult and Young Adult sci-fi and fantasy novels with kick-butt characters, lots of action, and always a touch of romance. Find her at www.coletteblack.net