Saturday, 28 January 2017

Find Your Focus

It's been a while since I posted here and it's been a while since I've pitched or written an article, bar those for my Writing Magazine column. It's not that I haven't been writing. I've just been writing different things.

Recently, however, I've been thinking of dipping my toes back into the waters of article writing. The problem I'm having, though, is that I'm finding it difficult to focus.

There are so many magazines out there and so many potential topics to cover that it's quite difficult to pinpoint which magazine to target and what to pitch.

So what I've done is buy a couple of magazines and read them cover to cover. I've then noted down who their target reader is, what the magazine has already covered and what I think might interest them.

Standing in front of a newsagent's magazine section can be very daunting, though. There is a fantastic array of different magazines to choose from but you just have to be brave and just choose two to begin with.

If you let it, indecision will get the better of you and you'll end up not writing a thing. So tackling one magazine at a time and pitching to that editor helps you to focus with more chance of understanding what that editor wants and gaining a commission.

Once you've cracked one magazine you can look to getting your foot in the door of another. It's far better to be sending one or two, well researched, targeted article pitches to an editor than sending several I'll researched, off target pitches to several editors and gaining no commissions.

So next time your in your local newsagents, instead if being blinded by indecision just grab two magazines that catch your eye and interest you.

It's a good idea to discount those magazines that you know don't take freelance submissions. That information can be found online or by a phonecall or email to the publication or by asking other freelancers. You can then concentrate on those magazines that welcome ideas from you.

Good luck and let us know how you get on.