Writing Seasonally For ‘The People’s Friend’

Shutterstock / Bogdan Sonjachnyj © Easter image - blossom and eggs on a sky-blue background.

The Fiction Team hope you all had a very Happy Easter.

Easter was early this year – and it is still chilly here in Dundee. Spring flowers are out, but there’s still snow on the hills.

With Easter just past, I thought now might be a nice time to talk about writing seasonally, for the ‘Friend’.

Seasonally-Set Stories

Here at the ‘Friend’, we’ve been following the pattern of the seasons in our fiction for 155 years.

Our very first issue, dated 13th January 1869, featured a story set around the Christmas period.

All our present-day publications – weekly, specials, annuals and bookazines – carry seasonal stories.

Seasonal poetry is popular, too.

Writing About Easter

Whenever your story is set, keep your reader in mind.

For many of our readers, Easter is a time based around family and friends, with traditional activities, church-going, and lots of seasonal food on the go.

Just keep thinking about what would appeal to the reader and you’ll stay on the right road.

We have seven stories in each weekly issue, so there’s plenty room for traditional stories, as well as stories which reflect modern life, and some which have a ‘grittier’ feel.

Not every story in our little annual is set seasonally, but the stories follow the rhythm of the year, beginning in January and ending at Christmas.

File Names, And When To Submit

Setting your story seasonally can be a helpful starting point.

Seasonal dates which we feature include New Year, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Easter, Father’s Day, End Of Term, Summer, Back To School, Harvest, Hallowe’en, Remembrance, Advent and Christmas.

Seasonal stories sit well in a mix with stories suitable for ‘any time’.

Please submit seasonal stories six months in advance of publication, and include the season or date on your file name, so they’re not missed.

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 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!