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Why Write for Periodicals — by Andy Scheer

They’re too good an opportunity to overlook.

Writing for magazines, newspapers, and websites won’t make you rich, famous, or the target of autograph-seekers. But neither will you need to write a detailed proposal, wait months for a response, then wait another year for publication. And the opportunities are almost limitless.

Even better, you’ll find almost-immediate ways to reach many people with your message.

Compared to writing book-length manuscripts, articles are:

• quicker to write
• easier to write
• easier to sell

And periodicals reach a larger, more diverse audience. That includes people for whom your material meets a real need, though they’re not yet ready to buy a book on the topic.

Writing articles can boost your career as an author.

Writing articles can also boost your career as an author of books. The discipline of writing short pieces builds your writing skills. As you meet a larger audience through articles, you build your platform. You not only raise awareness of your topic, but you also build your brand as an expert in that field. And through articles (with your bio), you help publicize your books.

How many opportunities are there? I couldn’t begin to count them. But I do know a few places to start, besides the periodicals you already know. If you’re a Christian writer, check the hundreds of publications, ministries, and organizations that belong to the Evangelical Press Association. Then also check the listings, especially the topical listings, in the 2017 Christian Writer’s Market Guide.

With any eye toward the audience of each periodical, consider how you can take a slice from your book (or work in progress) and package it for that publication’s length and style. You’ll soon find yourself reaching new readers, spreading your message, and growing your writing career.

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