Surefire Ways to Get Your Magazine Article Queries Accepted

Written by Kathy Burns


One of my writing discussion groups recently had a topic thread going aboutrepparttar success rate of pitching magazine article ideas. It seems thatrepparttar 129569 standard acceptance rate is about 30% - 40%. In my own experience though, Iíve had about a 90% acceptance rate and I mentioned that inrepparttar 129570 group. This inevitably led to a nuts and bolts discussion, and I thought Iíd share these tips with you.

1. Never send a query without first looking atrepparttar 129571 magazineís editorial calendar. By looking atrepparttar 129572 editorial calendar, you can see immediately what topicsrepparttar 129573 editor will be most interested in, and when. Not all magazines publish an editorial calendar and some require that you request it via email. If you cannot find one onrepparttar 129574 publicationís website, and you find nothing that states they do not publish one, then send a short note torepparttar 129575 Editor asking if it is available and if so will they please send it to you.

2. Pay attention torepparttar 129576 publicationís lead time. Most editorial calendars or writersí guidelines will tell you what their particular lead time is. Lead time is simplyrepparttar 129577 amount of advanced time that advertisements or articles must be submitted in order to be ready for publication in a particular issue.

So, if a magazine states their lead time is 3 months and you were looking for ideas to pitch to them in May, you would want to look at what topics they will be covering in September, October or November. You can pitch ideas that are further ahead onrepparttar 129578 calendar as well, just remember thatrepparttar 129579 farther ahead you pitch,repparttar 129580 longer you may have to wait for payment.

3. Readrepparttar 129581 publication. Most publications can be read partially or completely online now days, so there is no excuse for skipping this step. By reading several of their most recently published materials, youíll gain two critical advantages: A. You will not send in an idea that was recently covered Ė doing so is an almost guaranteed way to have your query rejected. B. You will get a solid feel forrepparttar 129582 publicationís style. Crafting your query and article to their particular style is essential to getting published.

As a side effect, readingrepparttar 129583 magazine may also help you to generate some great topic ideas for your own queries.

When Clients Don't Pay, Pay Late...and Other Anomalies of Freelancing

Written by Melissa Brewer


It's something that freelance writers don't like to talk about or hear about, but it happens more often than we like to admit.

The Scenario: The perfect project --repparttar one with a decent budget, and a wonderful project manager or editor, has finally been completed. You send an invoice torepparttar 129566 person in charge, who promises to forward it torepparttar 129567 accounting department. The contract stated "payment on acceptance/ completion", and you have their signature on file, so you're pretty sure there is nothing to worry about. Besides, they sent you a deposit. Of course they'll want to send yourepparttar 129568 remaining balance as soon as possible.

A week goes by andrepparttar 129569 check hasn't arrived. You hearrepparttar 129570 sirens going off in your head, but you decide to give your clientrepparttar 129571 benefit ofrepparttar 129572 doubt. The check is inrepparttar 129573 mail, you're sure, andrepparttar 129574 new Anthrax-prevention equipment atrepparttar 129575 post office sure has slowed repparttar 129576 mail down.

Week two sets in. Your bills are arriving on time inrepparttar 129577 mail, so you decide that your client may have cutrepparttar 129578 checks late. You promise yourself that atrepparttar 129579 beginning of next week, you'll make sure you give a friendly reminder call -- ifrepparttar 129580 check isn't here. When you call, your contact person isn't there to take it. You leave a message for them to call you -- you don't want to sound like a collection agency!

Days go by with no return call. You send an email that goes unanswered. Alarm bells are going off in your head. Did you do something wrong? Are they going out of business?

How can you retain your client relationship AND get paid?

1. First Things First: An Ounce of Prevention

We all like to thinkrepparttar 129581 best of our clients and new projects, and sometimes, in earnest, we gloss over some ofrepparttar 129582 fine details.

It's important to "check out" our clients before we begin working for them. Retailers and goods suppliers always do a credit check before taking on a customer. Most freelancers can't affordrepparttar 129583 time or money to do this. However, ifrepparttar 129584 company is publicly traded you can always look them up onrepparttar 129585 web. In fact, always do a quick check onrepparttar 129586 search engines for any press releasesrepparttar 129587 client has put out, bad publicity, etc. If your client is a day away from bankruptcy and you're their last hope, they're not going to tell you that! If something looks unstable, go with your gut and ask for a larger deposit or pass onrepparttar 129588 job. It will save you much frustration atrepparttar 129589 end!

You can also checkrepparttar 129590 following warning reports for writers and consumers to see if other writers have had problems with your client inrepparttar 129591 past. If they're listed, steer clear!

Writer's Weekly Warnings Report http://www.writersweekly.com/warnings/iaq.html

The Rip-Off Report http://www.ripoffreport.com

Writers Alerts http://www.sfwa.org/beware/general.html

National Writer's Union Alerts http://www.nwu.org/alerts/alrthome.htm

A legally binding contract is an essential MUST for any freelancer. You can changerepparttar 129592 contract to reflectrepparttar 129593 time allotted, deposit, and completion date. I always includerepparttar 129594 number of allowed revisions, a "kill fee", and a statement explaining thatrepparttar 129595 copyright forrepparttar 129596 project transfers AFTER I receiverepparttar 129597 final payment. Here are a few links to contract resources you can use when "sealingrepparttar 129598 deal":

Sample Contract http://freelancebank.com/resource.asp?id=14114

When is a Contract a Contract? http://freeagent.com/advice/legal/makesacontract.asp

2. Whenrepparttar 129599 "Pay by" Date Comes and Goes: Nudge Them!

Nothing makes me, as a freelancer, want to panic more than an unpaid invoice from a company. The thought of Ramen noodles and Tang are terrifying - or, at least, humbling - and I must admit my cash flow is still somewhat limited some months!

Approaching your client about a delinquent account, initially, isn't too difficult; you can send a "thank you forrepparttar 129600 project" email and a short note saying, "Byrepparttar 129601 way,repparttar 129602 check hasn't arrived inrepparttar 129603 mail yet, I was wondering when you mailed it?" If you don't get a response, callrepparttar 129604 main office phone number and ask forrepparttar 129605 fax number torepparttar 129606 Accounts Payable department. Send a polite note torepparttar 129607 AP office explaining that, "I'm afraid that this invoice may have been lost inrepparttar 129608 shuffle. It's several days past due. Please update me onrepparttar 129609 status when you have time." Usually, this will dorepparttar 129610 trick, and you'll get a polite phone call or email with a notation aboutrepparttar 129611 "paid" status. Make sure you note all ofrepparttar 129612 dates and times you've called and keep copies of all of your correspondence.

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