There are a couple of changes taking place to some of the popular freelance markets here in the UK, I thought I'd bring to your attention.
The first is The Lady. It was revamped about six months ago when the new editor, Rachel Johnson took over. I've heard that the circulation figures have dropped, so over recent weeks it has undergone another 'tweak' as the editor continues to make changes. Following a major revamp a magazine can take up to a year to 'settle down' into its new format, so this is nothing out of the ordinary, but for us writers, it does keep us on our toes! If you take a look at the website (click the link earlier) you'll see that this has undergone a major change too. Interestingly for overseas readers, or anyone who can't get hold of a copy here in the UK, some of the features can now be found and read online, so some basic market analysis can be carried out here (although this is no substitution for actually buying a copy of the magazine).
It appears that the editor has begun some regular columns with 'big name' writers, so this does cut down the number of freelance written pages, but there are still opportunities. A flick through the current issue demonstrates at least five freelance written articles (and remember, The Lady is a weekly). So, check out the revamped issue. If you haven't looked in a while, you are in for a shock.
Some better news comes in the form of Best of British magazine. With effect from the March 2010 issue (out on February 27th) the magazine is increasing in size ... to 96 pages in total! So, with more pages, it will need more content! Again, the magazine is undergoing a slight revamp, although I'm sure it will only be a slight 'tweaking' as opposed to a a radical revamp like The Lady. If this is a market that you've written for before, or wondered whether you could produce something, then take a look at the new March issue when it comes out. This has always been a good market for my students!
And finally, to finish off this 'changes afoot' posting, here's a wonderful, overheard conversation that I listened to at the Royal Shrewsbury hospital last week, between two old ladies:
Old Lady 1: Ooh, I'm pushing to have one of those walk-in showers fitted. You know the ones I mean, not one of those contraptions hanging over the bath.
Old Lady 2: What? A wet room?
Old Lady 1: No! Not a wet room. I couldn't afford a permanently wet room. I'm on a water meter!