Q. What is the MSR Monthly Newsletter?
A. The MSR Monthly Newsletter is a monthly electronic newsletter posted on the MSR website. Its goal is to be a reference for writers, readers and publishers by providing them with limited information and directing them to where they can find details, preferably by linking to a site or email address.
Q. What does it feature?
A. Current features include: Call For Submissions, Contests, and New Releases writing opportunities, Main Street Rag activities and projects, and--in the Two Cents (and some change) section, commentary--often political in nature.
Q. Who can receive the MSR Monthly Newsletter?
A. Anyone who asks for it. It's a free service. BUT WE DO NOT place anyone automatically onto our email list--you must ask to receive an email notification and a direct link when it is posted every month. Privacy is very important to us here at Main Street Rag. That is why the MSR Monthly Newsletter is sent out "blind"-- to protect the privacy of those who subscribe by not broadcasting their email address across the globe.
Q. Can anyone list something in the MSR Monthly Newsletter?
A. Just about. We do have length restrictions. If we have to edit a listing, it probably won't be included. For MSR to be able to compile and distribute this newsletter every month for "free," we must be able to put it together quickly. Editing takes time that we don't have and we believe that anyone who really wants to have their information seen here should be willing to at least invest time into editing.
Also, not all listings are "free." A Services listing is $35 for 3 months and although we don't actually charge for a New Release listing, we would like to see a copy of the magazine or book. Sending a review copy is not required, but it improves the chances of being listed.
Q. When is the MSR Monthly Newsletter distributed?
A. Usually some time during the first week of each month. Since deadline for listings to arrive is the 5th, usually a day or so later.
Q. How do I send a listing for the MSR Monthly Newsletter?
A. First you sign up to receive it. That way you will know how concise to edit your listing. You can request to see a previous month if it's close to deadline, but you still need to be a subscriber to place a listing.
Second, this is an electronic newsletter. It's sent out as an email and we only accept listings that are emailed to us. More detailed guidelines are below.
Q. How do I request the MSR Monthly Newsletter?
A. Just click here and request it. Please remember: Our newsletter goes out internationally and is broken down into regions in case we want to localize a message. If you are in the US, Canada, or Mexico, we need a state/province. Otherwise, we need a country.
Do you want to send something to be listed in our newsletter? Please read the following first:
Once upon a time, I would spend 4-6 hours the 5th of each month compiling the listings in this newsletter and the wee bit of text that I would add to it to be emailed the following day. Then, when I had employees, I'd spend about 4 hours writing the section you are now reading while an employee spent up to 2 days (sometimes) compiling the listings: updating, checking links and adding new listings. Now I'm back to doing this alone again and because it has become more popular than it was when we started 6 years ago, I am getting pummeled by other publications and authors who want their information added to our newsletter. For that reason and because new folks are added all the time, I reiterate the rules of engagement periodically. Please find guidelines below (along with windy explanations for why):
(1) If you don't see a category in our newsletter for what you want listed, it may not be something we post. Please inquire first rather than asking later why it was not included.
(2) A common practice is to bulk mail a "Press Release" to a bunch of folks at once. Please note: about 90% of all things that are sent to MSR Cced never get here. We have a block set up for Cced mails. Only BCced emails will go through. Why? Because it protects the privacy of everyone to whom a BCc is sent and does not endanger those who receive it from viruses that Cced messages may ultimately generate. That is why this newsletter is sent BCc.
(3) That said, we do not include ALL of the information posted on the lovely Press Releases folks take so much time creating. Why? Because it takes a whole bunch of time to dismantle it down to our format-and I don't have that time. I receive a minimum of 100 of these "Press Releases" every month. To best insure your listing will be added to our newsletter, READ the newsletter and match the content and organization of your listing as closely as you can to ours.
(4) EVENTS LISTINGS. We sometimes put snippets of MSR sponsored events or ones in which a representative will be participating in the newsletter, aside from that, it's not something we post in the newsletter. There is a page on our website for regularly scheduled readings, but we do not update featured readers or other such information. We post the reading and a contact email or website. If the reader wants details about whose reading on a particular night, they can contact the source.
(5) NEW RELEASES. We get a lot of emails asking us to add a title to our new releases section. The only ones we add are those that arrive in the mail. If I'm not holding it in my hands, I can't verify that it actual exists and qualifies for a listing (must be a NEW RELEASE: published within 1 calendar year of the date of receipt). That said, it must also have an ISBN # and an email address or website where people can go for details or to purchase. Remember, this is an electronic newsletter.
(6) The Main Street Rag monthly newsletter is only sent to those who subscribe. It is a free subscription, but you must ASK for it to receive it. No one gets SLAMMED onto our mailing list. No personal information is shared with anyone for any reason. We send out the newsletter once a month. If you are in an area where we are participating or sponsoring an event, you may receive an EVENT REMINDER the week of that event. I do not believe in overwhelming our friends' email boxes regardless of whether I (or anyone else) thinks it's something they NEED to know or have. Once a month newsletter, twice a month contact maximum. Having said that, we get a lot of requests to pass on information of all sorts to "everyone on your mailing list." Not going to happen, folks. First, it's disrespectful of other peoples' privacy, it's misuse of our mailing list, and even if those two items were not enough reason not to, I just plain don't have the time. We also get SLAMMED onto other peoples' mailing lists and this is not appreciated, either. We go to great lengths to respect other peoples' privacy. It would be nice if others would reciprocate.
(7) Newsletter distribution. Subscribers must request this newsletter in order to receive it directly from Main Street Rag. BUT it is free and it is fine if readers share their link with others. Just make sure that those you send it to actually want to receive it BEFORE you send it. Rumor has it that this newsletter ultimately reaches about 10,000 readers. I can't verify that, but I can say for sure I don't personally send it to that many. However, over the years, I have had multiple requests to be removed from my mailing list from people who were not on it to begin with. Please be courteous when sharing the newsletter and make sure anyone you send it to knows it's you sending it (not me) and that they want to receive it.
Absolute deadline for receiving is the first of the month in which the listing belongs (we only list 6 weeks in advance of contest deadlines).
BACK ALLEY / BOOKSTORE / CONTESTS / EVENTS / SUBMISSIONS Main Street Rag, PO BOX 690100, Charlotte, NC 28227-7001
704-573-2516, contact us