BECOME THE NEXT GREAT WRITE R...
By Christian D . Malesic, MBA, IOM Editor-in-Chief, At Home in Ber ks
not the best place to start. Consider magazine, journal, newspaper, or newsletter authorship.
There are two common ways to proceed. The first, and most common, is to find a need and fill it. Talk to the editor of the publication for which you wish to write to find out what content they need. A little known fact is that most magazines and journals theme each issue and often make available their Editorial Calendars, outlining the themes for the upcoming issues. If your expertise corresponds with an upcoming theme, contact the editor to see if they will allow you to try your hand at a piece for consideration.
Write it down! Tell the world. Accomplished authors, whether known worldwide or only in smaller professional circles, are able to reach every dream faster... and then some. Want to grow your business - write. Be offered the next promotion - write. Get a job, or a new job - write. People look up to the successful among us. They affiliate themselves with the accomplished. They hire, promote, or buy from the expert who has demonstrated they are a mover and shaker in their field. Are you?
What to Write You are an expert. There is something, maybe many things, which you do exceptionally well or know much about. Putting your wisdom to the page provides credibility to your work, helps your fellow man in an area with which they want to learn or improve, and gives you a strong 22
AT HOME IN BERKs february 2013
sense of self-satisfaction when your work is published. Focus less on becoming the next multimillion dollar author of Harry Potter and more on being you. If you are not a storyteller, fiction may not be your area. Plus, unless you want to change careers to become a full time author, it will do little to help your current career. Write non-fiction; that is, how-to, why-it-works, knowledge, and educational pieces that will help others know what you know. Don’t worry about writing yourself out of a job, thinking if you write it down they won’t need you anymore. On the contrary, you will become THE source for your clients and coworkers alike.
How to Get Published
“You should write a book” is a common phrase in American lexicon that we hear, or say, often. Maybe a book is in your future. But, if you are not a writer now, and have never been published before, it is probably
The second, less common approach is to just write. Find a topic to which you bring passion, expertise, and experience and write an outstanding article. Work it and rework it. You are on your own time – you have no deadline. Revisit it in subsequent days or weeks to lay “fresh eyes” on it. When you have it almost where you want it, share it with a trusted advisor for their input and feedback. Rework it some more. Only after it is perfect – shop it around. Send it to editors of journals, magazines, newspapers, and newsletters to see if they will accept it. Don’t just send it to any editor of any publication. Research them first and make an honest judgment call on if your article would fit well in their publication. I have personally had much more success with the latter method; though, fellow authors tell me it is the path less travelled and much more difficult to find success. With over a dozen articles published in national publications and dozens more in state and local print, I have not found this, however, to be the case.
How Long Publications differ. In broadly speaking terms, there are three different article lengths – think of them as small, medium, and large. The common measuring tool is in number of words, as opposed to characters, found with some social media (such as Twitter); or, column inches, found predominantly in the newspaper world. A small article, then, is 600 to 800 words. Anything smaller is not really an article