Large portions of freelance writers today are working for Internet or business clients writing on a fixed price basis as new work is contracted. The good new is that the best freelancing profits can be found by writing for magazines and publications. The bad news is that getting work as a magazine freelance writer is not as simple as getting freelance work from other clients.
Most magazines do not hire full time to staff to write the articles for their printed publication. This means that they are hiring freelance writers to fill their magazines with amazing content. Many freelance authors make the mistake of assuming that they need experience or connections to succeed at getting published in a magazine. This is not true. Freelance writers just need a better understanding for the process for submitting articles to magazines to be truly successful.
As with marketing any new client, the first priority should be to check out the client’s work and get a feel for what they do. Open the magazines and read the articles, get a good idea of the feel for the magazine, and find out whom their target audiences are. The fastest and easiest way to get a magazine article contract is to understand what the editor of the publication tends to print.
Don’t know which magazines to target? Writer’s Market publishes a book each year and provides an online service that lists the contact information and publication info for most magazines and journals. This is a great resource to use as a starting point in choosing which magazines to submit work to. For almost all of these publications, the freelance writer will be required to submit a query letter before a magazine editor will agree to publish their work.
Query letters are an introduction to an editor. They should demonstrate a writer’s skills and experience, the idea of the article the writer wants to submit, and benefits for the editor for purchasing the work. Editors prefer query letters because it helps them for planning purposes, to be able to affect the purchased work before it is completed and ensuring that the idea fits in with their publication. All query letters begin with a good idea and will end with either a sale or a rejection, but they are necessary parts of the magazine publishing process.