**Information taken from Wiktionary, a wiki-based Open Content dictionary.

Article-A story, report, or opinion piece in a newspaper, magazine, journal, internet etc.
Audience-The readership of a book or other written publication.
Biography or bio-A person’s life story, especially one published.
Byline-A line at the head of a newspaper or magazine article carrying the writer’s name.
Credits-A written title shown with a film or video.
Deadline-A date on or before which something must be completed.
Draft-An early version of a written work; a preliminary sketch, rough outline.
Edit-To change a text, or a document.
Feature article-a special or prominent article in a newspaper or magazine.
Filler-A short article in a newspaper or magazine.
Guideline-A plan or explanation to guide one in setting standards or determining a course of action.
Hook-A brief, punchy opening statement intended to draw the reader or viewer into a book or play.
Imagery-Rhetorical decoration in writing or speaking; vivid descriptions presenting or suggesting images of sensible objects; figures in discourse.
Kill Fee-A negotiated payment on a magazine or newspaper article that is given to the freelancer if their assigned article is “killed” or cancelled.
Manuscript-A single, original copy of a book, article, composition etc, written by hand or even printed, submitted as original for (copy-editing and) reproductive publication.
Narrative Writing-writing about an event in a personal way.
On-spec-With the hope of selling a work, as opposed to on commission (for hire).
Pacing-The act of moving in paces, or their arrangement or timing.
Pays on acceptance-Being paid once a work is accepted or when the contract is signed.
Pays on publication-Being paid after a work is published, usually by the end of the month or pay period.
Prompt-A suggestion for inspiration given to an author.
Proofread-To read copy or proof in order to find errors and mark corrections.
Publishing-The industry of publishing, including the production and distribution of books, magazines, web sites, newspapers, etc.
Query Letter-A query letter is a formal letter sent to magazine editors, literary agents and sometimes publishing houses or companies to propose writing ideas.
Rejection Letter-A letter which informs of the fact that you are rejected, especially one which imparts that your work is not accepted.
Revision-The action or process of reviewing, editing and amending; a changed edition, or new version; a modification.
Reprint-A book, pamphlet or other printed matter that has been published once before but is now being released again.
Rights-how a publisher can use your work.
All rights-giving up any rights to the work.
Electronic rights-the right to publish material on a CD-ROM or other “physical” electronic medium.
First rights-the publication is buying the right to be the first to publish your piece.
Second rights-the right to print the piece a second time.
Sidebar-a short news story printed alongside a larger one; information placed at the side of a webpage.
Simultaneous Submission-the submission of a piece of work to several publishers, magazines, or others at the same time.
Structure-The overall form or organization in writing.
Submission– The act of submitting something for consideration.
Synopsis-A brief summary of the major points of a written work, either as prose or as a table; an abridgment or condensation of a work.
Voice– the author’s style, the quality that makes his or her writing unique, and which conveys the author’s attitude, personality, and character.


ABA-American Booksellers Association
ACFW-American Christian Fiction Writers
ARC–Advanced Reader Copy
BLOG-online diary or journal.
CBA-The Association of Christian Retail
FAQ-frequently asked question
FYI-for your information
GWS–goes without saying
H & H-Hero and Heroine
MC-main character
POV-point of view
RUE–resist the urge to explain
SDT–show, don’t tell
SOTP–seat of the pants; someone who writes without outlining or plotting
TBR–to be read; that pile of books just waiting for you to indulge
TOTW-topic of the week
WIP–work in progress

One thought on “Terminology

  1. It’s really nice to find a glossary of publishing terms. When I first started to pursue publishing, I found the jargon hard to decipher. Some people have used it for so long they forget that newbies don’t know the dialect yet.

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