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Where can I publish old literary crit essays that are burning a hole in my pocket?
November 1, 2009 8:59 PM   Subscribe

Where can I publish some old literary crit essays that are burning a hole in my pocket?

I was an English minor in college and have no advanced degree to back up my stuff, but a professor who I respected highly remarked at the time that I ought to hang on to the work b/c they were graduate level pieces. I guess he presumed I might go for an MA, but I never made it that far and now feel like the essays have just been wasting away in storage.

Is it possible to get these published somewhere? Moreover, how stupid is it of me to think that I can write new critical essays on other works, on my own, with only a Bachelor's? Please bear with my ignorance. I love critical essay writing and could do it all day long for fun; it would be nice to find a market for such an activity but know almost nothing about the world of academic journals.
posted by duncecap to Education (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Why not start a blog?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:04 PM on November 1, 2009


There are some sites that will let you post pretty much anything and you get paid for how many hits you get. I think associated content works like that.
posted by kylej at 9:10 PM on November 1, 2009


Is it possible to get these published somewhere? Moreover, how stupid is it of me to think that I can write new critical essays on other works, on my own, with only a Bachelor's?

I had a critical essay published when I was an undergraduate. I pursued publication the normal way for this kind of thing: a call for papers in a magazine that happened to be on topic with my paper. You could do this, too, I'm sure, although the age of your essays might be an issue. You should delve into the current research on whatever the topic is to make sure it's not outdated.

There's really no reason why you couldn't write new critical essays, either. The biggest issue might be finding a decent academic library that you have access to, but if there's a college in your area, see if you can use their facilities--often they're available to the public, for a small fee.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 9:20 PM on November 1, 2009


You don't ask, you don't get. Call yourself an independent scholar. Send things off if you like. They get published, great. They don't, the editors are idiots. Either way, you had the fun of writing them.

Repeat above until it's no longer fun.

Really, I don't get the timidity here.
posted by IndigoJones at 4:43 AM on November 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


It might depend on how long you've been sitting on these essays. If you've only been out of school for a couple of years, you should be ok. If you've been out for over 10 years, you're likely going to need substantial revisions to get them up-to-date with current scholarship.

When you send them in, editors will get back to you either with a "no," a "we might publish this if you can do this, this, and this with it," or a "we will publish this, just fix these things." Send them in and see what happens.

Also, you know you don't get paid for these, right? (Your mention of "market" makes it unclear.)

Check out the UPenn cfp site for calls for papers, conferences, and book articles.
posted by pised at 8:02 AM on November 2, 2009


Wow, I can't even mark a "best answer" here b/c I plan in investigating/utilizing all of them. Many thanks!
posted by duncecap at 4:51 PM on November 3, 2009


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