Are you planning to start your own self-published magazine or newspaper? Unless you want to write it all by yourself or you plan to hire a full-time writing staff (which might be a heavy strain on your budget when you’re just starting out), you will need to consider carefully the best strategy to get content for your publication, and where to place a call for submissions for finding writers. Depending on the main focus and target readership of your newspaper or magazine, you have 3 courses of action:
- Finding content online.
- Hiring freelance writers.
- Getting people to submit to your publication.
Finding content online is the least advisable option, unless you’re considering a very limited readership. Beyond the copyright problems you might be faced with, why would people want to read your rehashed version of news and articles easily available online? Irrespective of whether you want to focus on general news or more specialized content, you will need a steady supply of fresh articles if you want to keep people’s interest, in an age where we can get all the news and information we wish for (or more than we wish for), only a click away.
Finding writers who create original work for your magazine is a much safer and more interesting route.
Hiring freelance writers is a strategy definitely worth considering if you want to get fresh, original content, but carefully consider the investment, especially if you want your newspaper to be distributed for free. Make sure your call for submissions is highly specific so you do not waste your time or that of writers who might not be a good fit for your journal.
Incentives in Finding Writers
Finding writers to submit to your publication is a great strategy, but, unless your staple content consists of creative writing, (and even then, in some cases) you will need to give them an incentive to do so. Here are some approaches you might use in crafting a strong call for submissions to get pieces for your publication, depending on the kind of content you seek.
1. Offering internships for students
Finding writers at universities and colleges are a great place to start. There will never be a shortage of young talented people, who might be tempted to allot some of their spare time to answer a call for submissions and begin writing for an emerging publication. Gaining valuable writing experience, which they can add to their resume, will be enough of an incentive for many of them.
2. A call to arms to fellow-crusaders
If the main focus of your magazine is raising awareness about causes you are invested in, you can find plenty of like-minded people, who might be keen to contribute to your publication on a volunteer basis. Start spreading your call for submissions on forums and social platforms is a great way for finding writers.
3. The case for experts
Do you intend to focus on providing more specialized content? Start “talent scouting” on LinkedIn and Facebook groups, keeping an eye out for people with relevant expertise, who might be persuaded to submit articles to your publication as a way of boosting their credentials in their field.
For more tips on finding writers, check out this eHow article on the subject.
Also be sure to review our page on magazine printing for more information on how Dazzle Printing can help you with your magazine printing needs.