Monday, June 21, 2010

Six Questions for Lisa Swerling & Ralph Lazar, Editors, Smories.com

Smories.com publishes stories no longer than 750 words and poetry appropriate for children from three to eight years old. The top fives stories for each month (based on number of times viewed) are awarded a stipend. Read the complete guidelines here.


SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

RL:  Partly for fun, partly as an experiment, and partly as a potential business. If the site becomes popular, there are a number of different ways we could develop it. We love the way the internet creates new opportunities, and would love to see a great new resource for kids and writers alike.


SQF: What are the top three things you look for in a story and why?

RL: Narrative arc. Must have a beginning, middle and end. The stories we are interested in need to be under 750 words, and very tight because they get narrated online. Essentially, they need to read as 3-panel cartoon strips. The stronger the pay-off at the end, the better.


SQF: What are the top three reasons a story is rejected, other than not fitting into your answers to question one and why?

RL:
  • Confusing narrative.
  • Bad spelling & syntax.
  • Weak (or absent) ending.

SQF: What is it about the characters in a story that makes them pop off the page and grab hold of you?

RL: This is a very simple equation: Kids need to be able to relate to them.


SQF: Will you publish a story an author posted on a personal blog?

RL: We publish stories that are submitted to our site. Whether they are also published on personal blogs is irrelevant.


SQF: What one question on this topic do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?

RL: n/a

Thank you, Lisa & Ralph. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.

NEXT POST: 6/23--Six Questions for Eirik Gumeny, Editor, Jersey Devil Press

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