Magazine Writing: Getting Started

Tuesday’s Writing Tips: 

Portable MFA in Creative Writing: Magazine Writing

Getting started: 

First determine what kind of information you’ll need and how much. It’s important to obtain research, but over-research will bog you down. Be careful.

There are several ways to research an article. I personally use, individual websites and I use interviews to gain valuable information and quotes.

Here are a few that the MFA notes:

  1. LexisNexis is an online service that has a comprehensive databank of almost any subject in major magazines and newspapers. Unfortunately, you have to subscribe to this service.
  2. The internet is a great tool.,, and are great resources. I have only used Google for my research.
  3. Individual websites are also helpful. I finished an article for Radish this week. I wrote about Quarry Hill Nature Center in Rochester. Their website was chock-full of great information.
  4. The library is a great resource, along with the old standby. The Readers’ Guide to Periodical Literature offers a comprehensive list of articles written on virtually every subject.
  5. Going through the press relations department is a good start and can point you toward other information you might need.
  6. Six degrees of separation. Yep, tell everyone you know, and someone may have information about the subject. I write for an animal/pet magazine and my sister-in-law is a dog trainer who knows a lot of other animal people. She has provided me with information in the past.

If you want to be a writer, WRITE. And, above all, believe you can write.

Next week is formulating a research plan.


Today, I put myself in a position to write several more articles for a magazine because I recommended doing a series of articles on a certain topic (the one I sent in today). Since I have worked with this editor in the past, I didn’t have to write a query. It also helps to deliver work on-time, or several days ahead of time like I did today, and, I do my best to deliver a thoughtful, engaging article.

Why did this happen to me? Because I believed in myself. I spent lots of time writing and attending networking events. I have worked hard to get here and I will continue to work hard and stay positive.

you are what you think haiku Norman Vincent Peale



Today’s Haiku:

bonsai bougainvillea haiku

Haiku of the day:

bougainvillea blooms
shows beauty despite its size—
one thought at a time

Start small. Give yourself time to dream for five minutes today. Write down your dreams.


2 thoughts on “Magazine Writing: Getting Started

  1. This is a great tip especially to those fresh to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very precise info… Many thanks for sharing this
    one. A must read article!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.