Want to write for magazines?
It’s the dream for a lot of freelance writers.
Maybe you’ve got your sights set on getting published in a glossy consumer magazine with millions of readers.
You read every issue. You study the headlines, writing style, and topics. And you think about story ideas for your dream magazine…a lot.
That’s a start. But how do you turn your story ideas into an assignment with a contract, your byline in a popular magazine, and a check in the mail?
One freelance writer took the challenge to get published in AARP: The Magazine…a highly-competitive niche magazine that pays $1/word.
At first she didn’t see a clear path to break in. But with a little effort, she discovered a strategy to write for magazines that really works, whether you’re just starting out or a pro.
Want to steal her idea to break into your dream pub? Here’s what you need to know:
Say you’ve got an idea for a magazine article. You write up a query and send it in.
What happens next? Crickets.
I’ve heard this tale from hundreds of writers. They all want to know why.
Usually, the answer is that you don’t know how to analyze the magazine you’re pitching, and use what you learn to create the perfect query — the irresistible one that editor can’t resist.
Everything you need to know to write a hot query can be found by studying the articles in that magazine.
What do you need to look for? Here’s my checklist:
It’s no secret that jobs for stay at home moms can be hard to come by.
Where can you get a job with a wildly flexible schedule that leaves you time for things like:
- Meal prep
- Soccer-mom duties
- And the inevitable “your-kid-just-threw-up” phone call from the school principal?
Some work-around-your-schedule jobs for stay at home moms might be just the right fit to make money.
But if you know anything about diaper duty, local play dates, or how to handle tween-age drama:
Writing Skills + Life Experience = Money.
There’s an entire niche of parenting websites and magazines with writing jobs for stay at home moms.
Check out this list of 36 paying markets, and start pitching…right after that terrible-twos tantrum is over.
Sit back and enjoy the flight…and the magazine. If travel writing is your niche, that standard flight-attendant message should get your attention.
Let me explain.
With the Thanksgiving holiday in the rearview mirror, an estimated 30 million people in the U.S. are back home or back to work after catching a plane to celebrate. Many more travelers will book flights between now and New Year’s.
And for every passenger, there’s a little something for them in the seat pocket in front of them. No, I’m not talking about the barf bag. It’s the in-flight magazine.
It’s a hidden market for travel writing a lot of freelancers overlook. You won’t find many of these custom pubs listed in Writer’s Market (there’s only two listed).
But nearly every airline in the world has one. And most in-flight magazines depend on freelancers for travel writing pieces, profiles, features, and front-of-book content.
Want some of those travel writing assignments? Explore these 20 world-class in-flight magazines and start pitching.
If you want to land more freelance writing jobs, you want to try and throw strikes every time you pitch a market, a magazine, or a niche blog.
Think of it like you’re trying to win the World Series of freelance writing.
It’s a numbers game. The more you practice, the more consistent you’ll be at landing assignments. And the more money you’ll score for the home team.
What should you do before you pitch a story idea? Start with a warm-up.
Study the market. Read back issues. Check the site or publications for the writer’s guidelines playbook. Do a little research or even a pre-interview with a source.
Then wind up and throw a pitch in the strike zone with a great idea for a story or blog post.
Looking for freelance writing jobs? Pitch these 99 markets to move up and earn more:
Are you a writer in search of an article idea? These days, the big-earning article writers have loads of ideas for editors.
But if you’re someone who really finds idea generation tough, there’s another way to earn well. You can do it by getting more mileage out of your short stack of ideas.
Get out of the habit of coming up with one article idea, landing an assignment, and then moving on.
Instead, think in terms of spinning that one little idea straw into a big pile of gold.
How? Here are ten different ways: