Rock n Roll Bride blog and magazine relies heavily on the awesome submissions I receive for real weddings, photo shoots, vendor profiles and freelance articles. Without them I wouldn’t have enough content to keep updating as often as I do!
I have written about how to submit your wedding or a photo shoot on numerous occasions (you can read them here, here and here!) so today I want to talk specifically about freelance article contributions for the magazine.
Have you ever dreamt of seeing something you’ve penned in print? Well this could be your chance! Obviously I’m writing from my own experiences as an editor here, but I think my tips could very easily be applied to any blog or magazine that you might want to pitch to.
Most of the freelance articles I publish are actually written by people I’m already friends with. That’s not to say you have to be my mate to write for me, but if I don’t know you, I’m probably never going to think of you when I need a freelancer!
When we first announced the magazine I was literally flooded with emails from people wanting to write or create DIY projects for us. It was lovely and very flattering, but do I remember anything specific about any of them? Nope…not a sausage.
Charm goes a long way. If you seem upbeat, friendly and enthusiastic then you’re more likely to get ahead of someone who’s email reads like a generic CV. Ask yourself, what can you specifically bring to the magazine? What makes you different? Why should I call on you over someone else? What is your speciality and what do you know that no-one else does!? You don’t have to be an expert on something to research and write about it, but it helps!
Check and double check your spelling and punctuation
Seriously! I’m no grammar Nazi and we’re all guilty of the odd spelling error slipping through now and again, but if you’re gunning for a writing gig, please make sure you demonstrate in your email that you know how to string a sentence together! Think of your initial email as your first audition. You need to make a solid first impression and no editor is going to want to hire someone whose writing is all over the place.
Be concise and friendly (but not over-familiar)
There’s a lot to be said for being a bit charismatic when you send that initial email, but don’t be creepy! It might just be me, but I cringe to high heaven when someone I don’t know calls me “babe” or “hun” or “love”. That fine line between professional and personal is the sweet spot when it comes to getting on an editor’s good side!
Also, don’t fan-girl. It’s lovely to be told something you do is awesome, but don’t make it uncomfortable. Demonstrate that you know and love the magazine, drop in some references to things I’ve spoken about online, but don’t expect to be going out to dinner, holding hands and braiding my hair by the end of the night. Always remain professional, you’re not trying to make a new best friend here!
Have an idea
Most of the time, coming up with a unique idea for a magazine article is the hardest part. Once I have that, in all honestly, I can pull something together relatively quickly myself. So instead of just vaguely offering yourself up as someone that can write (join the queue!) get ahead of the competition by actually having a killer idea to pitch. Better still, write it in advance and then submit it. Editors LOVE getting articles that are relevant and ready to go because it saves us a job!