Want to write for our magazine? You're not alone; many of our best ideas come from our freelancers. Before you read our writers' guidelines (and commit them to memory, of course), we'd like to offer these tips on how to get a freelance gig with us.
- Always pitch an actual story idea. Sending an e-mail that simply lets us know you're a freelance writer available to write doesn't really tell us a lot about you, such as what you're interested in writing and how you'd write it.
- Actually read the magazine before you pitch. Get to know the regular columns and departments. In your pitch, explain where in the magazine you think your story would best fit.
- Pitch stories directly connected to our community. If there isn't a specific city connection with local sources, it's unlikely it's the right fit for our magazine.
- Know the tone of the publication. Our writers have informed, authoritative voices that are not overly stuffy. They're respectful of our primarily family-centric audience.
Who's writing and illustrating the magazine?
Most of the magazine is written by the staff. We hire local writers only because they have the best understanding of the city and its vernacular. Our magazine has an editor who's usually remote within the community, an overarching managing editor, and a part-time assistant and web editor. Some story art is assigned to local photographers and illustrators by the art director, but most is photographed by one of our three staff photographers.
WE DO NOT ACCEPT QUERIES OVER THE PHONE.
Queries should be submitted in writing via e-mail and consist of three parts:
- What is the story? A brief synopsis written in the style of your proposed piece.
- How will you tell it? Detail what sources you will use and how you will research the story.
- Why? Answer the "so what?" Why is this story important now? Why should you be the one to tell it? Why is this story right for the magazine? What is the "go-out-and-do" element our community's readers will be left with?
PLEASE ALSO SEND THREE OF YOUR BEST MAGAZINE-STYLE WRITING CLIPS. A resume is optional.
How will I know if you've accepted my query?
Sometimes it takes us months to get around to placing queries. Because of our staff size, it is impossible for us to respond to every query. We will do our best to respond to your query in the timeliest manner possible. We prefer that you follow up with us via e-mail. NO PHONE CALLS, PLEASE.
Sometimes your pitch isn't exactly what we're looking for, but we like your tone, your approach and the way you think. If that happens, we'll usually keep your pitch and clips on file and contact you if a story comes up that we think you might be interested in. You never know; you could hear from us a year after you pitched us for a totally different reason.
If you want the opportunity to sell your story to another publication after we've had a chance to review it, please indicate a time frame (ie. "If I don't hear from you within 30 days, I'll assume you're not interested and will begin to pitch the story to other publications.") We won't take it personally.
If you are to get an assignment from us, style and content, as well as deadline and payment, are negotiated when the assignment is made. The editor will then issue a contract to be signed by both writer and editor.
Freelance writers are paid on or about 120 days after publication. Expenses such as phone calls, mileage, meals and trips are generally not reimbursed. Our magazine purchases exclusive rights. All editorial material is protected by copyright. Local. retains the right to reprint editorial material for promotional use by a Local. publication, with credit given.
Additional writing opportunities with Local.
There are seven monthly or bi-monthly community lifestyle publications in our wheelhouse focusing on specific suburbs or regions: Lake Minnetonka, Edina, Woodbury, Maple Grove, Plymouth, St. Croix Valley and White Bear Lake (access any of these at the bottom of this page).
For questions concerning editorial matters, contact managing editor Hailey Almsted.
We cannot be responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, slides, photographs or other material.
Where to send your query:
PLEASE SEND ALL QUERIES VIA E-MAIL TO Hailey Almsted