How To Find Freelance Magazine Writing Jobs?


Magazine writing gigs are some of the most lucrative (around $0.2-0.5 per word in trade publications, and $0.5-1 in custom ones), but to get them you will need to do a bit of your own research first.

  • - Choose which publications to target.
  • Large national presses do not often buy from unknown authors. You can boost your chances if you pitch to smaller media, such as trade magazines or custom publications. Look for those specialized in an area where you have a strong background, either educational or practical. If you have worked as a nurse, it will be appreciated by publications that cover health topics. There are lots of trade magazines covering almost every imaginable issue, so whatever your background, you can find something relevant to it.

  • - Study the publication.
  • Get several recent issues of the magazine you are going to pitch to. Read them closely to get feeling of the tone and voice they use. What sections do they have? What is the typical length of an article in those sections? You will stand a much greater chance if you offer a story that fits exactly into the word count of an existing section.

  • - Start small.
  • Few publications would take the risk of buying a 3,000 word article from the writer with whom they have never worked before. However, most small media would gladly try their luck with a 300 or 500 word piece from a new author. When choosing an idea for your story, keep it under this word count and relevant to a particular section.

  • - Pitch to the relevant editor.
  • Do not write your story in advance. First, you should pitch your story idea to the editor and, only after it gets approved, do you deliver the actual article. Many publications would not even consider unsolicited pieces. Study the magazine’s staff information to find out which editor is responsible for the section you are going to write for. If in doubt, pitch an associate editor – they are usually less busy than their senior colleagues and more receptive of new writers.

  • - Follow up on your query.
  • If you don’t get a response to your pitch, within two weeks, write a follow-up letter. If there is still no response, wait one more week, then write that if they don’t reply within a week that you will assume they are not interested, and offer the story to another publication. Note that you can pitch to several magazines at the same time, just don’t forget to change the editor’s name.

  • - Deliver on time.
  • When your story idea gets approved, you’ll need to do a great job on your article and deliver it on time. Most magazines have strict rules concerning deadlines, and they wouldn’t buy again from an author who misses one.

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