Writers Guidelines

We welcome your submissions. Here are some tips you can use to improve your chances of getting published in Heartwarmers, Petwarmers or Gardenwarmers:

Your story should be an original story, written by you. We favor stories that have not appeared elsewhere.
Stories should be 700 words or less. On occasion we'll take up to 900 words.
We apologize that we are unable to respond, pro or con, to submissions. It can take anywhere from a day or two to several weeks for us to use your story (if it is selected.)

By submitting a Heartwarmers4u story, you automatically give us permission to use it. We don't claim copyright privileges to it, but we have authorization by you to publish it. If this presents a problem, it's best not to send your story along.

We can't pay you anything for your story, but we can make you famous! Many of our writers have gone on to sign book and magazine contracts. We have many publishers who subscribe to our service and they are always looking for new talent, so Heartwarmers is a great place to launch a writing career. We appreciate your interest.

Thank you and we look forward to hearing from you.

Submit your story or poem here:

Your name 
Brief bio, including your location 
Your email address 
Suggested title 
Your story or poem 

Frequently Asked Questions
Answers from Lee Simonson, Publisher of Heartwarmers

Q. Do you read all the submitted stories?
A. Yes

Q. Do you need to be an established writer to get in your publications?
A. Not at all. We're always looking for new talent. This is great place to start.

Q. How to do choose your stories?
A. Outside of some good writing, and proper formatting, the most important element we look for is topicality. In other words, it's the subject matter. A story may not be well written, but if it has a powerful subject and message, we'll use it. Of all the criteria we use, originality is at the top. Come in with a new point of view, or a subject we haven't covered, and we take notice.

Q. What is the desired story format?
A. Very simply, it's proper grammar and spelling, two spaces between sentences, and keeping within our 700 word limit. The easier a writer makes it to edit a story, the higher the chance the writer will have of getting published. We simply don't have time to rewrite entire stories.

Q. Why don't you acknowledge submissions?
A. This is just a two-person operation, and we aren't set up for it. We don't have time to correspond with our writers as much as we would like to. Writers are very important to us, however, we lack the opportunity to communicate back and forth.

Q. Who selects the stories?
A. I do. Many times, my associate publisher, Laurie Patterson, selects stories for "theme" weeks, like holiday celebrations. For example, we may have saved 30 or 40 stories that have been submitted for Father's Day, and Laurie will go through them all again and recommend the 4 that we will use. We usually agree on what stories to use. Laurie is the one who chooses the Gardenwarmer stories.

Q. How many stories do you have filed for future use?
A. We have hundreds of backlogged stories that are worthy of publication. However, that should not discourage anyone from sending in a story. Sometimes timing has a lot to do with it too. For example, if we are looking for a certain type of story and it luckily pops up in our mailbox, we can use it the next day. Sometimes a good story can take months to publish, sometimes a day, and sometimes never. You'll notice we favor some writers. That's not just because they are good, but also because they submit more stories too.

Q. How can a writer enhance their chances of being published?
A. Here are some important hints. First, we love "third person" stories where the writer is not in the story. We get way too many first person stories. Second, we love good conversation. Don't be afraid of using quotes. Third, we need more humorous stories. Our published stories have a tendency to be too serious. Fourth, remember that we are looking for original topics. And fifth, be yourself. Be simple. Write like you talk. If you get too fancy and think you're writing for some kind of sophisticated literary journal, you won't make it in our publications. We are not as concerned about the words you use, as much as we are about the hearts you touch. Speak from your heart.

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