I don't know if I've mentioned Bull Spec here before, though I have on my blogspot blog. It's a (SFWA pro!) spec fic magazine based out of Durham (the Bull City; you may recognize it from the film Bull Durham
) run by this guy Sam, who's a little mad, and he's backed it out of his own pocket, except for ad sales, so far.
Sam recognized the huge spec fic writers' community in the Triangle (and throughout the state) about 3 years ago, and he basically organized us into a unit, single-handedly. In every issue of Bull Spec, there's a flyer listing local goings-on, from book releases to readings and signings. He's a good guy. (He's also the reason I got to read and review Germline
, which I can't stop saying good things about to anyone who'll listen.)
If you want to help support the magazine, he's running a kickstarter
to get some of the pressure off his own pocket. Pledge rewards range from a t-shirt to short story critiques to a novel submission packet critique to original art. Right now, he's got $645/1000 pledged, and the project closes 9/30.
After thought and angst (because, uh, no income), I decided to pledge at the $100 level for the novel sub packet critique (at the "encouragement" level) from Gray Rinehart, chief slush-wader at Baen. Two main reasons: a) it'll get me off my ass to get the synopsis done & a query/cover letter, and b) he's a pro. I definitely don't think he'll read it and go, "revise XYZ and send it to us." (It's not a Baen book for a couple reasons.) Hiring an editor to give it a developmental edit (the overarching look at the thing) costs 2-3X that, or more, so it's still somewhat economical, and it helps out my buddy Sam. It's not exactly the same as having someone edit your entire work, but a synopsis can also show your plot holes, and the first 20-odd pages can show your style/voice.
Consider supporting Bull Spec, which helps support a vibrant writers' community here in NC.