Q: What is the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses?
A: The Council of Literary Magazines and Presses, or CLMP, is a service organization for independent literary presses and magazines. Please read on for more details about our present programs.
Q: How does a literary publisher differ from other publishers?
A: Literary publishers are those that produce books or magazines that focus on creative writing: fiction, poetry, literary nonfiction. In the United States, it is very difficult to support a publishing enterprise on literature alone. In the commercial realm, publishers with literary lists or content support that component with more financially viable projects (e.g., cookbooks, fashion spreads). A strong contingent of literary publishers have found that becoming not-for-profit is a better option for supporting their work.
Q: What's the difference between an independent press and a small press?
A: For most presses that call themselves "independent," there is little practical difference. However, for most publishers who are small in size, their raison d'etre is not to be small. Rather, they are here to publish quality books from a particular point of view, and the cultural and, at times, even the financial impact of their work is far from small in today's publishing climate, which is dominated by a few gigantic houses.
Q: Why do independent literary publishers need a service organization?
A: Independent publishers benefit from participating in a national service organization because while being independent serves your artistic mission, sharing information and resources can often serve your business goals. The collective spirit of independent publishing comes together through CLMP; from posting resources on this very website to participating in the listservs to working with a CLMP peer consultant. Becoming a CLMP member is clearly a choice that each independent literary publisher needs to make for themselves, but CLMP firmly believes that with each member the community itself gets stronger.
Q: What does CLMP membership mean?
A: Being a member of CLMP means that you are part of a national network of committed, passionate, and knowledgeable literary publishers. Many new members' first reaction on joining is "It's so wonderful to realize I'm not alone!" CLMP membership also means access to the many resources and programs of technical assistance that CLMP offers. Being a CLMP member also means that you are a strong supporter of a vibrant literary culture in this country.
Q: How do I become a member of CLMP?
A: Visit the membership area of our website for an application and eligibility guidelines.
Q: How much does CLMP membership cost?
A: Annual membership dues are calculated on a graduated scale depending on your organization's yearly budget. Dues range from $45 to $600. Visit our membership area to see what your dues scale would be.
Q: How many literary magazines are there out there?
A: The number of literary magazines is a difficult one to pin down. A literary magazine may be an ephemeral thing, publishing once or twice, printing a handful of copies, and fading away before coming to the notice of any of the organizations, indices, or directories that keep up with this world.
The best we can do is approximate: there are approximately 600 active literary magazines in the United States. Active is defined as publishing at least once a year for more than one year. There are perhaps another 400 to 700 magazines that publish irregularly and/or in miniscule quantities. These numbers do not include the many high school and undergraduate journals of writing, nor the burgeoning field of on-line magazines.
Q: I'm looking for a specific magazine or press. Can you help me find it?
A: You can search for CLMP member publishers in our Member Directory. Print resources that may help are the Directory of Literary Magazines and Presses, which contains comprehensive listings of almost 600 literary magazines. Also, Dustbooks publishes The International Directory of Little Magazines and Small Presses.
Q: Can CLMP assist writers?
A: CLMP is a service organization exclusively dedicated to serving and supporting literary publishers. We do not have the resources to directly assist writers, though we have taken advantage of on-line technologies to compile a list of links and resources of use to writers. Two valuable organizations for writers are Poets & Writers and The Authors Guild.
Q: Does CLMP sell a directory of literary magazines?
A: Every year, CLMP compiles a directory of literary magazines and presses, including but not limited to our membership, called The Directory of Literary Magazines and Presses. The directory is useful for writers who want to submit their work to literary magazines, librarians and bookstore buyers looking to add magazines to their collections, and publishers who wish to advertise their books and magazines to an audience of avid readers. Read on for ordering information.
Q: I need funding for my publishing projects -- can CLMP help me?
A: Although CLMP has a long history of serving as a regranter for several national funders, we do not have any regranting programs at this time. However, our ongoing technical assistance program, NYTAP, offers fundraising workshops, one-on-one consulting opportunities, and travel stipend funds for New York State publishers. Also, please take a look at our fundraising links for more ideas.
Q: How does CLMP receive its funding?
A: Because such a large percentage of CLMP's members are very small organizations and because CLMP tries to keep its dues affordable, only about 5 percent of CLMP's budget is supported by dues income. This means that CLMP needs to raise a large portion of its budget from individuals, foundations and governmental agencies. Because such a large portion of our budget is grant dependent, CLMP's programs are often influenced by funding trends. CLMP regularly receives support from the New York State Council of the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Wendling Foundation and a dedicated group of individuals, corporations and family foundations. CLMP has also received very generous programmatic support from The Wallace Foundation.
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