Why Was My Work Edited Before Publication?

Our contributors tell us there’s nothing like the excitement of seeing their work in print!

Occasionally, changes are made, prior to publication. Here are some of the reasons why:

Spelling And Grammar

Our Production Team work hard to get our stories into their best possible shape before publication.  That means firstly making sure all spelling and grammar is accurate. It also means looking at every contribution as just one part of an issue, and making sure it all fits together, like a jigsaw.

Why We Change Titles And Characters’ Names

Perhaps your character’s name is similar to one in another of the stories or serials that issue, or maybe we’ve had similarly-named characters in recent issues. Generally speaking, titles are changed to make sure all seven stories in an issue are distinct, or to fit available space.

Why Story Lengths Are Changed

If you take a look through the magazine, you’ll see that our stories fit templates of 1200, 1800, 2000 or 3000 words. So we need to make sure each story fits one of these templates.

Why We Edit Poetry

Similarly, we have half a page to give to each poem. That usually means three verses of four lines, plus an illustration. So if the title is long, it may need to be cut to fit, and the poem itself many need to be shortened.

Although it’s clear in our Contributor’s Contract that we reserve the right to edit once work has been purchased, we know how much effort goes into every submission. So if your work appears differently on the page to how you’d expected, it’s usually for one of the reasons above. It’s never our intention to offend or hurt, so if you do have a query, please get in touch. We want your “Friend” experience to be a happy one!

Make sure your fiction is “Friend”- ready with our handy tick list.

Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 150 years of 'Friend' fiction!