What Are Clips in Publishing

Glossary > Clips

💬 Definition of Clips:

"Clips" is another word for writing samples. The term "clips" refer to "clippings," which means a piece of a writer's work "clipped" from a publication (short stories, article, etc.). In the old days of print journalism, reporters clipped out their articles and placed them in a portfolio to show to employers. Today, clips can be digital too.

Related questions about clips:

What can be considered a writer's clip?

Writer's clips, aka "tear sheets," suggest pages torn from publications with a writer's work. Of course, you can easily photocopy them if the work in question is printed. This term was used when talking about printed clips. Nowadays, they can be online versions, too. This is because writers can publish ebooks or articles in online magazines. 

Why does someone ask to see writing clips?

When an editor or a publisher wants to know one's writing style, preferred topics, or genre, they can ask for writing samples (or writing clips). They can ask for physical writing clips, which you can send via snail mail, or they may prefer emails. In this case, you can send them a link to your online articles or short stories or scan them if they were published in print.

Is there a difference between "writing clips" and "published clips"?

Both are writing samples you can send to an editor or publisher. But a writing sample can be a draft you keep in your Google Drive or drawer, while a published writing clip is part of, or an entire article or short story, for example.

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