18 June 2014

NYWM: Day 18

It’s almost the end of National Young Writers Month, but fret not we still have plenty of days to go!

Day 18 is all about pitching your ideas to publications.

If you’re keen to expand your writing skills and get published, then knowing how to pitch your ideas to editors is an absolute must.

Unless it’s for a competition that requires full entries, we recommend always pitching your ideas first before writing about them – after all, there is no point in wasting time writing if the editor ends up disliking it. More often than not, the editor will always choose to publish written pieces that have pitched beforehand, as opposed to the ones that were just randomly submitted.

Generally, pitches are going to be done via email, and since many editors are inundated with them, its important to know how to get their attention.

Firstly, pitches should be short, succinct and straight to the point. No dilly dallying – the first sentence in your pitch should clearly state your idea and what format it is going to be in.Writing extensive paragraphs about your idea at the beginning of your pitch is also out of the question – remember editors have to look through millions everyday!

Try to come up with a title of your pitch if you can – something that is punchy, snappy and alluring. A pun or a play on words that relates to the overall theme of your piece is always a good start. Another idea is a good quote that was said by your sources.

After those, have about 2-3 sentences dedicated to further elaboration about your pitch. These sentences should include what themes/issues you are highlighting, your writing angle, and people you are going to speak to if need be.

To really hook an editor in, have the beginning sentence of your piece at the end of the feature, and then a link to your online portfolio or blog so the editor can get an idea of how you write. This isn’t mandatory, but its something we recommend if you can manage it.

Need more help? Check out these pitching tips from Pitch, Bitch creator Estelle and these do’s and do not’s on pitching from The Guardian.

Opportunities and events

We’re always on the lookout for writers to be featured as part of NYWM. If you’re happy to answer a few questions about you and your writing, please fill out this form.

Ballarat Writers Inc are about to launch their Death in July festival, dedicated to Australian women’s crime writing. Guest writers include Leigh Redhead, Angela Savage, Honey Brown, Ellie Marney, Simmone Howell and many more. See the program below for a full list of authors and events. RSVP here.

Express Media are actually on the hunt for contributors for Buzzcuts, and for the first time ever we will be working alongside the Melbourne International Film Festival. So if you have a knack for writing film reviews and want to get your work out there, this is a great opportunity. More details here.

Looking to expand your writing knowledge to fashion? Then you’re in luck because Style Hunter, one of Australia’s largest online fashion publications, are seeking men’s fashion writers to join their team. This is a nationwide search so anyone can apply! Apply here.

Carclew have just opened their Arts Admin traineeship – a perfect opportunity if you’re looking to branch into arts business and media. More details are here.

“The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes.”

—Andre Gide