Places to submit

Mystery Writing Magazines

Since The Write Spot Blog has been featuring Agatha Christie this past week, it seems right to post ideas where you can submit your mystery writing. At the end of this post, link to the writing style of Agatha Christie. Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine welcomes submissions from both new and established writers. They publish “every kind of mystery short story: the psychological suspense tale, the deductive puzzle, the private eye case—the gamut of crime and detection from the realistic (including the policeman’s lot and stories of police procedure) to the more imaginative (including ‘locked rooms’ and ‘impossible crimes’). We need hardboiled stories as well as ‘cozies,’ but we are not interested in explicit sex or violence. We do not want true detective or crime stories.” With the exception of a regular book-review column and a mystery crossword, EQMM publishes only fiction. EQMM is especially happy to review first stories by…


Agatha’s Disappearance . . . Prompt #220

Today’s writing prompt is inspired by Agatha Christie’s mysterious disappearance. On a chilly December evening in 1926, 36-year-old Christie vanished from her English estate. While the famed author reportedly left a note that she had gone on vacation, the discovery of her car suggested otherwise. The vehicle was found at the edge of a quarry not far from her home, abandoned with its hood up and lights on. Inside sat Christie’s fur coat, her old driver’s license, and a bag of clothes. News of Christie’s disappearance spread quickly, and a massive manhunt commenced. Over a thousand officers and 15,000 volunteers combed the countryside while dredge teams scoured the surrounding lakes and streams. A fleet of biplanes searched from the skies – the first in England’s history for a missing person case. By the end of the week, Christie’s disappearance had become a national obsession. Who could have murdered the Queen…

Guest Bloggers

Agatha Christie’s notebook method of mystery writing

Agatha Christie was president of The Detection Club from 1957 to 1976. Formed in 1930, The  Club was a group of British mystery writers who helped one another with technical aspects of their writing and wrote a number of works together. Aha . . . an early writing club, or writing group, showing the value of writing with others. I was curious about the popularity of Agatha’s books, so headed to my computer chair to research, where answers were clicks away, unlike the “good old days” of thumbing through drawers of cards in the library. The following is excerpted from New Yorker Magazine. Here’s how the typical mystery novel starts: Eight or nine people are assembled in a small place: a snowbound train, a girls’ school, an English country house. Then—oh no! A body drops. Who did this? And why, and how? Among those gathered, or soon summoned, is a…

Just Write

Take a step. Start the journey.

Hey there. . . Hi!        If you are a first-time visitor, Welcome! I’m glad you are browsing The Write Spot Blog. Welcome to all readers and subscribers. I’m always happy to have readers and contributors participate in The Write Spot Blog. “We” is me — a one-woman show. It’s just me, Marlene, offering inspiration and writing prompts to spark your writing. Prompts are posted on Wednesdays and Fridays. Use these prompts however they best work for you. One suggestion is to set your timer for 15-20 minutes. Sometimes the best writing gets done with the pressure of a deadline. Write fast and furious. Do not expect “perfect” writing. No one will read your freewrite, unless you invite them to. Freewrites come from within you and burst out during this time of writing freely. Sometimes when we’re writing freely, our mind takes a 90 degree turn and pretty soon we’re off,…


Behind the shutters. . . Prompt #218

You can respond to this prompt, using your personal experience, or write from your fictional character’s point of view. Writing Prompt:  Behind the shutters. I would love to see your writing, using this prompt. Posting is kinda simple:  If you aren’t registered on The Write Spot Blog. . . go ahead and register. Wait for a password.  Then Log-on and post your writing. Photo Credit: Pro_Deluxe Photography by Jeff Cullen

Book Reviews

Talent by B. Lynn Goodwin

Lynn B. Goodwin’s Talent reviewed by Judy Williams Talent, by B. Lynn Goodwin, is a wonderful read. It is a coming of age story that will bring older readers back to their teenage years and will give younger readers a positive and very real heroine. Sandee copes with challenges as diverse as auditioning for the drama department production of “Oklahoma” and the pain and uncertainty of Sandee’s older brother, missing in Afghanistan. A little chunky, Sandee eats M & M’s to cope. The other people who inhabit Sandee’s world — her parents, her next door neighbor and former boyfriend, her brother’s best friend, drama department students, the Oklahoma director Mrs. G., and others who have family and friends in the military – all are part of Sandee’s journey, but also have their own joys and sorrows. Insightful, and alternately funny and sad, Talent is for Young Adults and Adults. It…

Places to submit

Alaska Quarterly Review encourages new and emerging writers

Alaska Quarterly Review is a literary journal devoted to contemporary literary art, publishing fiction, short plays, poetry, photo essays, and literary non-fiction in traditional and experimental styles. The editors encourage new and emerging writers, while continuing to publish award winning and established writers. Guidelines FICTION: Short stories and novel excerpts (generally not exceeding 50 pages). POETRY: Poems (up to 20 pages). DRAMA: Short plays (generally not exceeding 50 pages). PROSE: Literary nonfiction (generally not exceeding 50 pages). PHOTO ESSAYS: Query before submitting. All manuscripts must be typed and accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope (SASE). Unsolicited manuscripts are read between August 15 and May 15. AQR responds to e-mail queries, but cannot review electronic submissions. Identify simultaneous submissions in cover letter.