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Aneya Fernando

Pitch Smart Ideas to the Pub for the Unapologetic Metrosexual

DetailsDetails magazine isn’t for the type of guy who considers sweatpants reasonable restaurant attire. This pub is all about the sophisticated, stylish man who isn’t afraid of a little grooming and tailoring every now and then.

The pub has recently expanded its front-of-book and is open to freelance pitches on a variety of “smart” topics. Deputy editor Candice Rainey suggests that new-to-Details writers should stick to a few key topics for optimal pitching success:

“Culture” encompasses a variety of topics related to, well, culture, and “Body” is the health-and-fitness guide that addresses how fitness affects men’s lifestyles, while also covering the latest trends in staying in shape (“It’s really important that we’re covering it first,” says Rainey. “We don’t want to be covering something that’s a year old or two years old.”). The “Know and Tell” section is a roll call of the up-and-coming in travel, drinks and more. And then there is, of course, the “Style” section. Rainey notes that a solid in-house fashion team makes this section a bit tougher to crack, but “if the idea’s right and smart and something we can see running in the pages of the magazine, by all means.”

To learn more about this mag, including details on proper etiquette when sending a submission, read: How To Pitch: Details.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Mother Jones is on the Lookout for Fearless Reporters

MotherJonesMother Jones, the independent, nonprofit newsmagazine, has always been about holding those in power accountable for their actions. Since its inception in 1976, this fearless pub has done just that. Remember Mitt Romney’s infamous ‘47 percent‘ video? That was uncovered by David Corn, MoJo’s Washington D.C. bureau chief.

So how can freelancers get their foot in the door at this National Magazine Award-winning pub? Well, it helps to know what the editors are (and aren’t) looking for:

The mag prides itself on strong reporting, so those sending a query need to demonstrate the reporting opportunities and highlight any reporting that has already been done for the story. “I can’t emphasize the reporting bit enough,” explained [senior editor Nick Baumann]. Freelancers should also keep in mind that the editors will judge how well you write based on the pitch — so make sure you nail the voice of the piece in your query. “Just like you want to surprise the reader, you want to surprise us. Surprise the editors,” said Baumann.

To hear more about Mother Jones, including what mistakes to avoid when creating your submission, read: How To Pitch: Mother Jones.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

YouBeauty.com Seeks Strong Writers and Reporters

YouBeautyYouBeauty.com is about a lot more than makeup. Although the site does discuss the latest lipstick trends, they’re focused on beauty as a harbinger of health.

The site is 75 percent freelance written and writers can land up to $1 a word. But where should you start?

With research and science at the core of YouBeauty’s content, high-quality reporting and writing is paramount. As such, editors generally work with writers who have previous experience covering topics on one of the site’s existing channels. “We really want people who specialize in their different segments because we get in depth,” said editor-in-chief Laura Kenney. “So it helps for someone to come in who has a [specialty] that they’re very confident in writing about and then pitching us in-depth stories for that vertical.” The key here is to be uber-specific when pitching.

For more pitching tips, including editors’ contact info, read: How To Pitch: YouBeauty.com.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

When To Decline A Job As A Freelancer

specializingSaying ‘no’ to any paying gig seems like a dumb idea, especially if you’re a strapped-for-cash freelancer. But there’s a method to this madness.

Veteran freelancers agree that in order to cultivate your career, you need to be choosy — to an extent. Obviously try not to turn down every opportunity you get. But do weed out what works and what doesn’t for your schedule and your career:

If the pay is too low, the amount of work too demanding or the subject is outside of your area of interest, don’t be afraid to say no. A former client connected me with a man who needed help getting his mystery novel published, and when I read his email it seemed that what he really needed was a literary agent. I could have given him advice, working as a sort of consultant. But he seemed a little too proud and inflexible, and I wasn’t sure I would enjoy working with someone like that. Additionally, this type of work wasn’t in line with the direction I wanted my career to follow, so I politely declined.

To hear more tips on how to enhance your writing career by narrowing your focus, read: Growing Your Writing Career By Becoming A Specialist.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Shirley Halperin, Music Editor For THR, On Interviewing Bieber

ShirleyHalperinShirley Halperin has interviewed plenty of artists throughout her career. As the sole music editor for The Hollywood Reporter, she’s gotten backstage access to some of the most famous people in the world. But it was Justin Bieber who proved especially hard to get a hold of. Halperin had already interviewed the Beebs in 2011 (she recalls when he was “just this sweet little kid”).

In the latest installment of Mediabistro’s So What Do You Do?, Halperin dishes on all things Bieber:

How did the interview come about?
This is a story I had been chasing for a long time, five or six months. [His PR team] finally gave us the opportunity, and I think a lot of that is a testament to The Hollywood Reporter. It’s really such a huge get. I did the interview with him in person, just before he left for South America, where all the craziness has happened. It was definitely a matter of convincing the Bieber camp that this would be a good forum for him, where he could not necessarily defend his actions, but defend his art.

To read more about Halperin’s impressions of Bieber and her thoughts on working with Janice Min, read: So What Do You Do, Shirley Halperin, Music Editor For The Hollywood Reporter?

How To Get Published In Real Simple

RealSimpleReal Simple, the monthly women’s lifestyle mag, is on the lookout for fresh new writers. The pub covers a broad range of topics, everything from health and beauty to parenting, food and fashion, among others.

The mag is 60 percent freelance written and pays $2 a word. So what section is right for new pitches? Deputy editor Noelle Howey has some advice for writers looking to break in:

Though most of Real Simple is pitchable, the FOB is particularly freelancer friendly. Naturally, Howey advises new freelancers to start there. For “Health,” editors are looking for a wide range of topics: Nutrition, fitness, hygiene, metabolism, weight loss, skincare and more are all covered here and, if you can weave a pitch that tackles multiple health-related subjects at once, even better.

For editors contact info and more pitching advice, read: How To Pitch: Real Simple.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

MAD Senior Editor On Spoofing Celebrities

JoeRaiolaJoe Raiola is juggling several jobs at the moment. There’s his stand up comedy up act (The First Amendment, a one man show), his radio work (he appears every Sunday on The Woodstock Roundtable) and his upcoming John Lennon tribute concert (with Yoko Ono‘s blessing, of course). Then there’s his day job as senior editor of MAD magazine. Raiola has been with MAD for 28 years, and says in a lot of ways, nothing has changed. “The thing you have to keep in mind about MAD is: If you mature, you get fired. It’s a place where you stay perpetually young or silly or both.”

In the latest installment of Mediabistro’s So What Do You Do?, Raiola talks about his connection to the Beatles, the atmosphere in the MAD offices and how celebrities react after being spoofed:

Do you ever hear from any of the people you lampoon?
Probably the most famous example of a show or person that loved being spoofed was L.A. Law. When MAD spoofed L.A. Law, with the entire cast on the cover, Stephen Bochco and the cast loved it so much that they actually recreated the illustration in a photo and sent us the photo of them posed, as they were drawn on the cover. It used to be people didn’t want to be spoofed. Now people want to be spoofed, even politicians. When I first started working at MAD, movies didn’t want to cooperate with us. That’s all changed. Today, they want to be on the cover.

To hear more from Raiola, including how to pitch the freelance-written pub, read: So What Do You Do, Joe Raiola, MAD Senior Editor and John Lennon Tribute Executive Producer?

This Southern Literary Pub is on the Hunt for New Writers

OxfordAmericanThe Oxford American is not your average Southern magazine. The pub isn’t chock full of tips on how to create the perfect barbecue, but is instead filled with poetry, fiction, memoirs and essays on the idiosyncrasies of Southern living.

The mag is is 100 percent freelance written and every section is open for pitches. Assistant editor Maxwell George has some tips for freelancers looking to break in:

If eds could orchestrate the perfect pitch, George says, it would consist of a few short paragraphs, preferably including the lede or some passage that shows the intended tone and style of the piece, followed by an explanation of how the story would be technically executed. Freelancers don’t have to be from the South to spin stories about the states down under, but they do need to have a strong grasp of their subject matter and focus on the regional angle.

For more tips of how to get published plus editors contact info, read: How To Pitch: Oxford American.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.