1. Have you selected your intended subject topic and carefully planned out your idea?
2. Have you sent your idea query pitch to magazines or newspapers who may be interested? or will you write "on spec"?
With many magazines and newspapers now accepting material online it is now possible in many instances to email your queries directly to publication. Have you read publishers guidelines carefully to make sure if this method is acceptable?
Before sending your query pitch: - Is it likely to be what publisher needs: have you studied publication?
- Is timing right. Have you checked magazines editorial calendar? If it is a seasonal article is now best time to send your query?
If you have answered yes to these questions then package your idea into an attractive proposal and send it off to editor of your chosen publication.
3. Have you adequately researched your topic?
Read everything you can on topic from all available sources - bookstores, newspapers, libraries, periodical indexes and internet sources. Never discard anything about your subject topic since you don't know until you write it up what you may actually want to use. Tip: Saving magazines, newspapers and clippings for subject matter can save time when researching future writing assignments on same topic or when working to deadlines. Catalogue all your collected material for easy reference. 4. Have you interviewed key person/people you need for your proposed feature?
Now it is time to organize your material into a feature article.
5. Have you discarded everything in your research except for factual information?
Proper research and liberal use of factual material gives an original perspective to your feature article and also avoids possibility of plagiarism.