Oct 17 2011

Recycled stories

I have an early reader that was published in 2003 and is still in print. I didn’t sell all rights to it. Can I now resubmit it as a short story to a magazine? – Elizabeth, Michigan

Thanks for the question. The answer is: it depends.
It depends on the new publication’s acceptance policy and what rights the previous publisher retains. Every publication is different.
Some want ‘First Rights,’ which means they only accept stories that have not previously been published.
Others get more specific than that. They may only want stories that have never appeared anywhere, in print or online, even if it was only on your website or Facebook page. Some don’t care if the story has appeared online only, but don’t want it to have appeared in print previously. I’ve seen some magazines specify that the story can’t have appeared in a print publication with more than x,000 circulation or distribution.
Other publications don’t care if it has previously appeared in print. The key here is to make sure the rights to the story have reverted back to you, the author.
If you previously sold/authorized rights to another publication, you’ll need to check to see what rights you sold, if there is a set amount of time that they retain those rights, and if those rights have reverted to you or not. Usually that’s not a long period of time if it was published originally in a magazine. However, you mention that the story is in an ‘early reader’ publication or book that is still in print. That might mean the original publisher still retains some rights to it for a set period of time. You’ll need to check with them or check your original contract when you sold the story.
Some publications will want a credit if you republish the story elsewhere (‘This story first appeared in ‘Title of Publication’ by Such-And-Such Publishers in 2003′). Others don’t care.
So you’ll need to check with the publication to which you want to submit to find out their policies for acceptance and what rights they require, and if they accept previously published works. Then you’ll need to check with whoever first published your story to make sure the rights have reverted to you. If your story is in a book that is still in print, that might make it more difficult. Be upfront with the new publication that the story was previously published, when, and by whom.
A previously published story can reduce your options, but you should still be able to find a publication that accepts previously published stories as long as you retain the rights to that story.

Windows 7 key
buy Windows 7 Ulitmate key
windows 7 pro key
windows8 product key
windows 8 key
windows 8.1 pro key
windows8.1 ultimate Key
Office 2010 product key
Windows office 2013 key
office 2013 Product key
Windows 10 home key
Windows 10 Product Key
Windows 10 pro Key

Windows 7 key
buy Windows 7 Ulitmate key
windows 7 pro key
windows8 product key
windows 8 key
windows 8.1 pro key
windows8.1 ultimate Key
Office 2010 product key
Windows office 2013 key
office 2013 Product key
Windows 10 home key
Windows 10 Product Key
Windows 10 pro Key

Windows 7 key
buy Windows 7 Ulitmate key
windows 7 pro key
windows8 product key
windows 8 key
windows 8.1 pro key
windows8.1 ultimate Key
Office 2010 product key
Windows office 2013 key
office 2013 Product key
Windows 10 home key
Windows 10 Product Key
Windows 10 pro Key

Windows 7 key
buy Windows 7 Ulitmate key
windows 7 pro key
windows8 product key
windows 8 key
windows 8.1 pro key
windows8.1 ultimate Key
Office 2010 product key
Windows office 2013 key
office 2013 Product key
Windows 10 home key
Windows 10 Product Key
Windows 10 pro Key

Or, you could dust off your computer and write a new story. You’re a better writer today than you were eight years ago.
At the very least, go through your previously published story to see how you could improve it.

2 Responses to “Recycled stories”

  • Gary Ponzo Says:

    There are so many versions of rights out there, but most of these revert back to the author once the story has been printed. Especially short stories. Just check with the publication to be certain. I agree with Robb, though. Look forward, not backward. The future is bright for writers these days.

  • Robb Says:

    True, Gary. Didn’t even get into electronic rights, archival rights, and the rest of them.