Speaking of pitching your ideas, as we were in an article earlier this week, here’s a whole ‘nuther POV of the subject.
by Meghan Moravcik
Over the course of my career, from my newspaper reporting days to my freelance writing days, I have pitched a lot of stories.
In my role as writer and editor of Lifehacker’s Offspring vertical, I still pitch ideas to my own bosses basically every day. But I also field a lot of pitches from freelance writers—even more so since I put out a call last week seeking new voices.
As those pitches started rolling in en masse, it became clear to me that some writers are inexperienced with the Art of Pitching and could benefit from a little guidance from someone who has been there and done that countless times. So before you pitch an editor your next story idea, read these tips.
DO YOUR RESEARCH
You’d think this would be obvious, but my inbox indicates it is not: Know the publication you are pitching before you pitch. A good chunk of the freelance pitches I receive either aren’t parenting related at all, or don’t match the tone or purpose of Lifehacker. Before you can write for an outlet, you have to read that outlet. You cannot skip this step.
I know writers spend a lot of (unpaid) time writing pitches, and it can be tempting to craft one standard pitch to send around to multiple editors. But you’re much more likely to land an assignment if you’ve done the work to hone the angle and tone of your pitch to best fit that particular publication. I can usually tell by the second sentence of an email whether a writer has ever actually read Offspring….