Writers News - To resubscribe or Not to resubscribe, that is the question...

edited May 2009 in - WM and WN
....but what is the answer?

In another thread on this forum several people seem to indicate that the content is just not there, which I have to say was one of the reasons I gave up subscribing. That and I was moving country and needed the dosh.

So, now that I have some spare dosh, spare as in I have yet to spend it, should I resubscribe or should I look for - gasp - an alternative?

Your views please.


  • RG, this has been posted on a day when I am asking myself the same question, well, mine is whether to drop it or not. Been a long, long time since I got anything out of it but then I am in a different position now than I was back when I began writing. I don't subscribe or buy any other magazine so I can't compare.
  • I have thought about unsubscribing often (in fact I did, for a few years); but recently I have had some useful info from WN so I have decided to keep going for now. I have to say I usually end up just flicking through them both though - apart from leads and new markets and the odd author interview there's not much I read in there. But I do love the letters and queries pages.
  • Have to say that WM is slowly changing. I notice differences each month now.
    I had my first set of questions from the WM/WN Readers Panel this week. So it will be interesting to see what changes occur over the next six months.
    WN has the advantage of lots of market news which WF doesn't have. Plus you can't buy WN in the shop.
    The only other one I've seen that is a similar style is (I think) an American one and I know Waterstones have it in their magazine section- sorry can't remember what it's called.
  • Spooooky - mine lapsed by accident just after Christmas, which always happens as they never seem to be able to use my card.. or it won't give them any money or something... I wonder why? But I digress.. this year I didn't hotfoot it to the phone to re-join. I've been humming and hawing ever since...
  • I love it's a funny old world.
  • Good question RG and I'm in the same boat as Dorothy in that I'm thinking whether to continue with the subscription. Not because I think I know it all or I'm has experienced as Dorothy but a lot of the tips etc I'm picking up from the books I'm reading, most of the authors I've never read and poetry and children's books I don't write. I beginning to wonder how useful it really is. I do find WN quite informative about competitions and publishers and magazines accepting submissions so far now I think I'll carry on Maybe it would be best if you could pick up WM in WH Smiths or somewhere and see if it is still relevant to you before you subscribe.
  • I didn't renew my subscription - simply because I never seemed to read it, just flick through.

    However, I changed my mind and just opted for the magazine. I still flick without reading.

    I shan't renew next time and I shan't change my mind. Or will I?
  • Well you can always subscribe to WN, then have a look at WM in Smiths and see if it has anything interesting.
  • I quit my subscription last year for the reasons that many others have mentioned. I found I wasn't reading it anymore and I've got enough magazines from years past hanging about without cluttering up my office with more that I don't read.
  • It is specifically Writers News that I am tempted to renew again... WM I fell out with a long time ago with the Carol whatever her name interviews.
  • WN is worth its cost.
  • Some months I only flick through the magazines because I have so much to keep me busy. I like the Funny Old World and the letters and help pages.
  • I enjoy reading both magazines. I've tried WF occasionally when I feel there is something of interest but not really impressed with it, although the May issue is very good. I will stay with WM and WN until I stop enjoying them.
  • so you can subscribe to WN without WM?
  • I thought that the two magazines came as one package.
  • They do, a pity WN doesn't come out here much unless you subscribe to WM. One time they both came in the one packet, I was very pleased.
  • You can choose to have just WN on its own.


    That's the deal I would be interested in as WM was stacking up unread last time I subscribed...
  • I see a TBer in the letters page of the WN that arrived yesterday.
  • For or against?
  • Details?
  • I've seen writing group fold due to lack of structure - they degenerate into a social meeting of non-writing chat. The keen members then get bored and leave.

    But the comment about strong characters is true: they will monopolise the meeting and the shy person doesn't get a look in.

    What is really needed to keep everyone happy is a motivated, fair-mained person in the chair who ensures everyone gets their moment of glory at every meeting. Someone who is able to tactfully get the monopolisers to shut up when it's someone else's turn.
  • I would say stick with just Writers News. The magazine is nice, but not necessary unless you're a complete, or almost complete, beginner and need lots of hints and reasons for writing.
  • Sorry folks - yes my comment above went in the wrong thread. (Senior moment I think, or perhaps I'll blame the computer - it was intended for the writing group discussion).
  • I have always enjoy reading both magazine for over ten years now. I find WN great for knowing what is going on in the world of publishing. Tt gives you information for competitions and publishers from around the world and not just what's on your doorstep.

    I think it all down to what you want from a magazine and it's far easier than carrying a laptop around just to find out what is going on in the world of publishing. With a magazine you can fold it in half and take if off to the doctor or dentist waiting room to read. By far it's hell of alot better than some of the magazines you find in the waiting rooms I visit.
  • I am in the lucky or unlucky position of never having to resubscribe to them (3 years plus and still going strong), maybe that is the beauty of direct debit I don't know.

    I like WN for the reasons given above and I tend to skim read WM, always interested in the winner to see what appeals to the judges for my own research purposes and to read the short story article.

    Must admit I have never thought about unsubscribing.
  • Hello robin
  • Hello StaN
  • Are you robin? You look like DoRa!
  • Stop peeking you.
  • RG have you made a decision yet?
  • I wish this forum software had a "POLL" option then perhaps it would be clearer if people were for or against. Mostly it seems to be "maybe"...

    I'll take a look at my bank account today (had a heavy weekend - bought a DAB radion so I can hear radio 4 in the kitchen) and if I think I can afford it, I might try it again for another year.
  • I'm not a great lover of WN. Sometimes when I check out web sites they suggest I can't find them. Perhaps it's me!
  • not entirely you, Kateyanne, I've found that a few times too.
    Still deciding, RG, very much still deciding. If I make some money this year from writing, it will stay as a direct debit, otherwise, if it is crunch time, it is one thing that can go without breaking my heart.
  • I stopped my subscription, for credit crunch reasons. I occasionally buy WM in WHS.
  • No problem deciding for me - I will certainly be resubscribing. The WN and WM competitions are a great spur to my writing and I have enough success with them to fund my subscriptions ;-)
    WN is useful for the leads and opportunities it provides, while I always find WM an interesting if not always useful read. I think WM does overdo the 'author profile' content of the magazine (but aren't these the people we are hoping to emulate?) but overall, for a magazine on writing aimed at general readers as well as writers, I think it does a pretty good job.
  • I hope not too many people cancel their subscriptions - the magazines might fold and it would be the end of Talkback!
  • Jeepers Jenny, now I feel I MUST re-subscribe ;)

    [quote=kateyanne]I'm not a great lover of WN. Sometimes when I check out web sites they suggest I can't find them. Perhaps it's me! [/quote]

    Yeah, I remember that problem too... I know that the staff on WN aren't the most technically minded, but you would think they had discovered by now how to add a TINYURL to their copy.

    The other thing I hated was competitions with incorrect and sometimes nonexistent details!
  • I recently stopped my subs to both WM and WN. I was trying to save a bit of money and after reading WM for several years I felt I'd seen all the content before in one form or another. But now I've made the decision just to have WN, as I find I miss those snippets of market info or competition details. I keep most of my old copies of the magazine anyway and if I did want to read the latest issue I can always buy it in Smith's.

    On a different note, Marie Claire has an offer of big savings on its subscription this month - £12 for 12 issues! (It's usually £3.30 an issue if you buy it in the shops.) Does this suggest they are desperate?
  • Possibly, as they had a free gift of body shop body butter, worth something like £6. Sounds like they're trying to get as many readers as possible.
  • edited May 2009
    I would feel definatly resubscribe. WM is not always a perfect read from cover to cover, but to be fair there is usually something of interest. For the price of a poor bottle of plonk it is pretty good value.Throw WN into the subscription equation and that is not a bad deal even if we only enjoy or have a use for around half the articles, it is still money well spent I would say.
  • Depends where you buy your blonk I suppose, but rarely would I spend 25 quid on anything with a cork in it.

    Still, the arguments for subscribing to WN only are compelling....
  • but then again, I don't drink ...and it costs me money to pass the magazines on!
  • RG I suspect Aegean was referring to the price of an issue, not the entire subscription rate.
  • Hmmm. So Aldi plonk then ;)
  • ;)
    Perhaps we should look at this again next year to see if it has improved.
    Did anyone else here volunteer for the WN/WM Readers Panel?
  • edited May 2009
    I did.
  • yep I meant per issue in comparison to bottle of plonk , Aldi or Lidl , we are not fussy :-)
  • Nope. Just gerrit down your neck.

    Did you volunteer Carol?
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