This week, our theme is writing for magazines, and for online publications.
You may be wondering why you should write for magazines. Aren’t they dying? NO. They’re hale and hearty, although they’re changing.
The entire publishing industry – books, magazines and newspapers – has been undergoing huge changes for many years. Magazines are making the challenging transition from paper to digital publication. New magazines are being created solely for digital publication – sometimes just for tablet computers.
This means that magazine writing is changing too, and this change has been happening for a decade. These days, when we say that a writer is “writing for magazines”, that magazine may well be an online publication… AND that “magazine” may have been created solely as an online publication.
Not to worry, we’ll sort it out this week.
Today, we’ll just look at the basic process of writing for magazines, online and offline. In a real sense, you’re just writing content – you’re a freelance Web writer. However, when you’re writing for a publication, the publication and its readers come first, rather than the search engines.
If the publication you’re writing for is an online publication, keywords count, however they’re not your primary concern.
Writing for Publications: a Simple Process
Here’s the very simple process:
Get the spark of an idea;
Research and find sources;
Slant the idea, and structure/ organize your material;
Write up the idea into a story for a specific publication.
We’ll have more to say about that process this week.
Before we do, please remember one important thing…
Important: Never Write the Story Before Selling It
You don’t sell a magazine article, you pitch and sell an idea. You get a contract before you start writing.
We’ve talked about pitching. If you haven’t read the two articles on pitching, please do that, because you never sell a completely written article to a magazine, you SELL IDEAS. You pitch your ideas, and your editor will help you to shape your idea so that it’s perfect for her publication.
If you’re a new writer, the world of publications can be confusing. Not to worry, you’ll find your way.
On the other hand, if you’ve written for magazines before, you may be unaware of the many online-only publications which have emerged over the past couple of years. You may also be unaware of the world of custom publishing online.
Many companies you’d never think would be publishers are creating their own custom publications. Here’s why. Content sells. Publishing their own content is a cheap form of advertising.
All this means that the world of writing for magazines is HUGE, and it’s full of opportunities for you, whether you’re a new writer or are an experienced pro.
We’ll have lots of fun this week. Subscribe to the blog, or to our writing tips ezine. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover.