Thinking about an article for SPT Magazine?

Please let us know. We welcome new contributors: bloggers, feature writers, book reviewers and more.

Before emailing our Editor-in-Chief, Nancy Eichhorn with your ideas, it will help if you have a sense of our publication first.

Here are some guidelines for submitting a query letter to our magazine and to any magazine for that matter.

1.  Know the magazine’s header and title format and duplicate it in your query letter. Do they have long/short headers? Long titles with subtitles? Are they pithy? Catchy? True to the content?

2.  Read the first paragraph of many articles, get a feel for their pattern. Do they start with questions? Stories? Personal opinion? Pure data?

3.  Look where they place their nut graf (a journalistic term for the paragraph that contains all the necessary information about the article’s content). They are usually three paragraphs into an article. Duplicate the pattern.

4.  Let the editor know exactly what the outcome will be after reading your article: In my article (headline or title here), readers will learn__

5.  Look at acceptable sources to cite (professionals? People on the street? Clients? and note their reference formatting (APA for SPT Magazine).

6.  Quote people if you are doing an interview or find appropriate sources if you are writing about current trends, research, your theory or methodology (peer reviewed literature etc.). If you are making a claim, back it up with recent literature citations, within the past 5 years is best) and/or interviews.

7.  Look at the layout. Consider artwork, graphics, charts, lists, drawings. Do they use more graphics to share data or weave data into the article then have artwork to accompany?

8.  Look at how they end their articles. Again, look for patterns.

9.  Notice their word choices, word usage. Is it an academic tone? A first person familiar? Jargon? Simple common words?

10.  Know what they recently published. If they just ran an article about depression and stretching, don’t offer the same topic.

11.  Imagine the reader, have a sense of who your audience is and write for that audience. Note, in your query letter you are pitching their editor or editorial team. They are focused on their audience and will look for articles that fit what they have already published.

When you submit your query, please include:

  • Your proposed headline.
  • The lede (a journalistic term for opening paragraph). It needs to be something catchy, or profound, or dramatic, or emotional, or a revelation etc. Offer something relevant enough to create an impact, to grab a reader’s attention and engage the reader in your content.
  • Your nut graf.
  • Ideally a bit of your article, maybe some data (literature) or interviews (or share who you will interview and why) if part of the article.
  • One biographical line. Be specific, succinct.
    • I’m a Sacramento-based magazine writer/editor.
    • Or, I’m a Carmichael-based somatic psychotherapist/psychology writer.
  • Contact information
    • Name and credentials (if applicable)
    • Email address
    • Website (if applicable)
    • Any social media (if applicable)

MAIL SUBMISSIONS TO:  [email protected]

Images provided by Unsplash: Andrew Neel and Courtney Corlew