What We’re Looking For:
We seek profile stories with interviews of the region’s most prominent or notable figures. Immediate attention will be paid to queries aiming to spotlight the individual in a way that is current and relevant to the region. Feature stories most likely to get our attention will present new information on topics making headlines or a story yet to be published anywhere else in the metro DC area. The pitch should answer the the question: “Why should Northern Virginians care?”
Depending on the subject matter, we expect narrative treatment for most feature and profile stories over 1,000 words. Imaginative lede sentences, story progression, lush detail, and character development and description are expected. Stories should both inform and delight readers.
Other types of stories we seek are:
• Getaways – exploring rarely chartered regional ground
• Home – spotlighting the region’s designers and trends in home décor
• Entertainment – news and discoveries in fine and performing arts within the region.
• Business – analysis and news on business trends, closures and openings in the region, as well as business-owner spotlights.
Prospective writers should do their homework. Pick up recent issues of the magazine and identify our style, as well as the kinds of stories we typically publish. Search the website to see if it’s a topic we have already covered.
We uphold journalistic integrity. Research, thorough reporting, and ethical presentation are always expected from each of our writers.
What We Avoid:
We are not a local newspaper. As such, stories about high school plays or church bake sales will not get our attention. Additionally, neither will overtly promotional or marketing-driven pitches.
How We Work:
Interested writers who would like to contribute to Northern Virginia Magazine should come to us with an idea. Pitches that stand out take the form of a formal query detailing: story direction, research entailed, relevance to the time and region, and potential sources you would use. If we accept your query and publish your story, you will be added to our distribution list. From that point, we will periodically make calls for pitches and if we have a story available that we believe suits your writing style, we will contact you.
We work approximately three and a half months in advance of the issue month. Writers get two- to three-month deadlines depending on story length and complexity. Deadline extensions are granted only with careful consideration.
We purchase exclusive rights of work submitted and exclusive worldwide electronic rights to cover posting on our website and inclusion in electronic archives and databases.
What We Pay:
Fees for freelance contributions vary depending on story length and complexity. We do not reimburse expenses, travel, or otherwise.
How to Reach Us:
Submit queries, along with three samples of previous work, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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