Submitting to MR and MRC?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by TruckLover, Nov 26, 2008.

  1. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    Actually, that was a trademark of Art Schmidt photographs. He was a longtime staff photographer for MR, until he retired or something in the '90s. If he was shooting a studio pic of a review loco, or something for Paint Shop, he would always drop one wheel off the rail.

    Kinda nice to know there was a personal side to the mag, I thought.... almost classy. :p
  2. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Josh: If you get your article up to the submission point, I'll offer to proof read it for you. And I even promise to leave in the American spellings. :cry: I can also spot places where you haven't explained something to the point I can understand it.

    It really helps to know the magazine. You get few points if you get its name wrong and you should be able to name the editor or managing editor. (Lots of this available if you read the Model Railroader website.)
    hminky of this space also has had a few articles published in the last couple of years.
  3. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Andrew, can you elaborate on this a little more? So are you saying that if i submit this plan to MR and the deny or reject it, that they can turn around and use it anyways?

    I think i am approaching the wanting critical critiquing lol. If im going to make into MR or RMC, im going to have only the best photographs i can take :mrgreen:

    LOL thats prolly a good idea to do so. But what would i say to them when i approach them and ask them if it would be alright to mention there company name and a model of there building in a Model Railroad Article?

    Thank-you Andrew :mrgreen:
  4. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    That would make perfect sense lol I only have this trackplan posted on this forum, and 2 other smaller forums. Should i really take the plans out of the forums?

    As for the editor's name, the obvious answer would be to look at the magazine itself. If you're not a regular reader it's very difficult to gauge what an editor will be interested in. You can always ask, but no diplomatic editor will ever turn away a submission. An editor would rather look at something he's not interested in and pass on it later than turn off a future author before he ever gets started. You have to watch the magazine with a discerning eye to know what he wants to run.[/quote]

    i am a regular reader, well i just became a regular reader a couple months ago lol. I just signed up for 1 year and will continue to renew my subscription. im also going to subscribe to RMC. Thanks for the tips about looking at the types of articles that have been published before, im going to flip through the issues i have (about 14 of them on hand), hopefully that will give me some of the types of things that he/they like
  5. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Thanks Russ

    I dont quite understand this. But it sounds like you and Andrew are talking about the same thing. What does this mean exactly? That if i submit the plans and proposed article to them and they reject it, that they could choose to still use it in the future?

    Im also going to re-write my inquiry to them. Ill send them that and leave the trackplan out and "float" the idea by them to see if there is any interest. But so your saying, that while i send the article in and they are reviewing it and im waiting to hear back from them, that i should begin writting the article so that if there is an interest i could send it off to them right when i get a reply back from them?
  6. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Thanks Josh, this might be a good option to sorta "get my name out there" for a first time submitter :mrgreen: I could also use some help setting up a article for the first time
  7. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    That would be GREAT David, i will definitely keep you in mind if i make it to the point where i am submitting an article. It always helps to have others read over something you write to make it better :mrgreen:
  8. railohio

    railohio Active Member

    They are just being a bit paranoid. At least with Carstens or Kalmbach you won't get screwed. I can't speak for the smaller publishers, however, but since they probably don't pay it really doesn't matter if what they say and do are contrary.

    Carstens and Kalmbach both pay for one time rights to a photo. I don't remember the fine print for the text since I haven't had as many articles published. Once they run the photo you're free to sell it to someone else. It will be a hard sell, however, given that it's already been published once, and you won't be able to reuse any illustrations the magazine provided for your article without their permission.

    What might happen, and I alluded to this earlier, is you may sell your article but then the editor will sit on on it for a period of time. I know a couple of guys who sold articles years go that haven't seen ink and paper yet. It's one of those things where production schedules get jiggled around and there isn't room to rerun the article soon. As long as you get a check for it, though, it doesn't matter what the editor does with it.

    Another thing to note, you shouldn't send the article to multiple publishers simultaneously. Send it to one, wait for a response, and if necessary send it to another. You do not want to get in a situation where you sell the same article, or even two that are similar, to different magazines. That is the best way to get blacklisted.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I think railohio and Russ have covered it... by accepting that your work will be published (with or without payment) you generally relinquish your right to that work, including photos. The aforementioned Mike Hamer just discovered his layout from MRP 2001 and GMR 2004 has been repackaged, including some photos originally submitted but not used, and published in 102 Track Plans this year. No additional payment, no "heads-up".

    What each publisher will do with the material is dependent on their policies, which you should find out before you submit, either by looking it up, or by asking.

    As for what to say to the companies that you visit - what you wrote is straightforward, to the point, and honest. Can't go wrong with that...! ;) :D

  10. railohio

    railohio Active Member

    That doesn't mean you don't still own your image or text. That just means in the fine print there was a clause for reprinting in a sister publication or special edition. The devil is in the details.

    What I said is that they will buy publication rights. In the case of an article that may include republication rights, too. Your image is still your own. If National Geographic came knocking and said we want that image that we saw in Trains magazine you'd be within your rights to resell it to them. (Unlike another model railroad publication National Geographic is big enough to not care if it's already been published once.)

    If you sold the image itself you'd have to relinquish the right to show it to your friends, keep it on your hard drive, or use it in a slide show. They don't do that. For all practical purposes, however, once you've sold a work to a magazine its dead in the water. There really isn't anything else to do with model railroad material after that. There's nothing to prevent me from using a photo Trains published of mine in my career retrospective book when I'm old and decrepit. I could point to at least three books on my shelf with the same Jim Boyd image in it. Ditto for Dick Steinheimer. The simple fact is that such opportunities don't exist for model railroad material.
  11. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Thanks for the clarification. As you say - the devil is in the details, and then there's the additional layer of real world practicality layered over the fine print...! :rolleyes:

  12. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    I definitely agree with 2 thoughts put forward:

    - If you want to sell an article, drawing, or photo, it can't be sitting on the web. I would expect any paying publications to do a quick Internet search to ensure they are getting what they are paying for - 1st and exclusive publication rights. As others have pointed out, this means pulling your photos and drawings from the Gauge - and even that may not be good enough because it will show up in search engines for a while.

    - If you get to that stage, read the agreement very carefully. Once you sign, or cash the check, it's a legal contract.

    The reality is that you can attempt to get paid for publishing your work. If you do so, you can't share it with others in any other way before or during (and in some cases after). Their profit (from which they pay you) depends on having an "exclusive". OTOH, if you decide to share in forums like the Gauge, you are basically passing up any opportunity to get paid for your work. It's like any creative work - you can share it for free, or you can keep it private and attempt to get paid for having it published. The "sort of" exception is the publications that don't pay - but even then content that is easily available elsewhere doesn't help them cover their costs or secure advertising. It is a tough decision - I learned this when I attempted to write software to be published in computer magazines in the '80s. (And yes, I gave up on commercial publication, and just accepted my work would be given away.)

    The reality is that even the Gauge would rather you only posted with them - so they could boast of exclusive, better content, thereby drawing readers and advertising to help with their costs.

    my thoughts, your choices
  13. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Thank-you guys for the clarifications. I now understand :mrgreen:

    I have to thank everyone who has replied in this thread and given me so much useful information. I will definitely be following this thread through the process of hopefully getting into the Magazine World lol
  14. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Thanks for that, that really would not be good :eek:
  15. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Thank-you Fred

    I am going to work on taking the M&ET threads i have posted here and on the other 2 forums down. I think that would be the best thing to do if i hope to make it into MR or any other magazine
  16. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    While everyone's suggestions are more than "on track"...a close reading of MR will reveal a good number of spelling and grammar mistakes that you did not find a few years back....And references that do not match the text, etc, etc...They really need a GOOD proof reader over there.

    As for the editor, I think they've gone through several over the last coupla' years, so you might want to check the very last issue published before you put a name on paper....
  17. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    LOL thanks Gus, good thing i have last months issue :mrgreen: Actually its Decembers issue and we aren't even in December yet :p sign1
  18. soat204

    soat204 New Member

    I thought about submitting some pictures from our clubs Rail Road, but i eventually ruled it out when i considered other model railroads i had seen at other fairs, for example the Clay County Fair has an excellent layout nearly a third larger than ours, and has alot more moving details, like spinning windmills, magnatized moving cars, and even an airplane spinning circles from a wire in the ceiling.
  19. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    soat204, Don't worry about another club having a larger layout than yours, or about animation. Animation does not show up in still photography, and the magazines are publishing "tight" shots of individual scenes, not over views of layouts where square footage gets more "points."

    Josh, I don't know what Kalmbach's practices are, but a few years ago when Kato came out with their first model of the Sd40, my friend let Bill Schaumberg of RMC know that he had built a dummy Sd40 for less than $10.00. Bill asked him to send him the model. When Bill got the model, he asked Jim to write an article about how he built it. Jim wrote the article, the RMC staff took all of the photos of the model for the article and Jim was paid for the article. The model was sent back to him a couple of months later. A few months after the original article appeared in RMC, Jim's Sd40 model was on the cover shot of RMC, this picture also taken by the RMC staff but not included in the original article. A few weeks after that, Jim received a second check in the mail from RMC for allowing them to use a picture of his model on the cover of the magazine. As Jim told me he spent less than $10.00 on various plastic body shells and styrene to build the frame. He made over $500.00 for the article and the cover picture from RMC. As he told me it was one of the best $10.00 investments he ever made!
  20. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I once was on a layout tour where one of the layouts had had a page in MR. What we found out was that the section that appeared was about the only scenicked section on the layout. As long as it looks good in the picture.
    Publication is not instant. The magazine is looking for balance and they don't want to be known for " a new PRR station plan every month". If they just featured a large UP layout, they may want to wait 6 months, say, before featuring even a small UP layout. (or even a small ATSF layout).
    However, John Allen said that in later years he found it easier to write an article for MR and buy a brass loco than to make one from scratch or modify a kit.

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