Knowledge Base > Magazines > How to Write a Magazine Article? 12 Golden Rules
How to Write a Magazine Article? 12 Golden Rules
Although the number of magazines is shrinking in the digital age, many magazines have moved online. Many magazines created by online magazine maker are still popular, and authors enjoy fame and respect. That’s why, for many freelance writers, writing articles in magazines is often a career goal – because the pay can be ten times more per word than writing articles or texts for the local newspaper.
Writing magazine articles requires a different skill set than writing blog posts, screenplays, or advertisements. What’s more, as a magazine writer, more than in any other industry, you need to specialize to succeed. You write articles about history differently, sports differently, and sports history in a different way still.
A talent for writing, a love of meticulous research, and flexibility in creating texts are vital skills you need to master. Therefore, many people are interested in creating and publishing their own magazine need to master this specific style and learn how to write a magazine article.
What is a magazine article?
What is a magazine.
A magazine is a publication that is a collection of articles that appears regularly. The magazine articles can be about any topic, as well as topics that interest a specific group, such as sports fans, music fans, or board game enthusiasts.
A magazine can be published weekly, monthly, bimonthly, or only a few times a year. Most magazines are published once a week or once a month. Most magazine articles do not have a list of sources and are written by regular magazine editors and writers, rarely freelance writers.
Most magazine articles are easy to read and don’t take too long to read. They are often illustrated with photos or other images, and are written with simple but remarkable fonts . Today, magazines are increasingly being replaced by websites, but there are still many magazines on various topics.
A magazine article is a specific text that can be found in a magazine or newspaper. It can be a report, a profile of an important person, an opinion piece, a discussion of a topic or a personal essay. Depending on the topic, a magazine article is usually 1,000 to 5,000 words long.
The magazine usually employs a group of editors who come up with a theme for each issue and relevant article ideas. This way, all the articles and features in the issue will have something in common. A sports magazine might talk about the start of a new season, a political magazine about an upcoming election, and a Valentine’s Day issue might be about romance.
How the format of a magazine article differs from that of a newspaper or other articles? In a newspaper that comes out every day, put the most important parts of the story first. Newspaper articles are usually read once and aren’t supposed to influence anyone. It has to be news, something you want to read.
On the other hand, a good magazine article should often start with a mystery, a question, or a situation that makes the reader want to read on. Daily newspaper articles should be unbiased descriptions of what happened, while magazine articles, often subjective, can cover a particular topic from a certain angle. To learn how to write a magazine article, you need to know what the magazine is about and how to appeal to its readers.
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Types and examples of magazine articles
Magazine editors categorize articles by type and often mention them in publication’s submission guidelines, so knowing these types by name will help you communicate with the editor. These are: First Person Article, Opinion Piece, Information or Service Piece, Personality Profile, and Think Piece. Many news articles, how-to articles, and reviews can also be found in magazines, but they are slightly different, and many of these have moved online, to digital magazines . Articles can also feature essays or humor pieces.
First Person Article
First-person magazine articles are written in the first person because they are based on personal experience. Depending on their length and newsworthiness, they can be sold as feature articles or essays. They are frequently personal accounts, especially interesting if they are written by a well-known magazine writer or celebrity. Typically, the purpose of such an article is stated in the first line or paragraph to hook the magazine’s target audience, such as “I voted for this politician, and now I regret my life choices.” When you write a magazine article like this one, you should present an unpopular or overlooked point of view from a fresh perspective.
This kind of magazine writing piece or opinion essay is less personal than the First-Person Article, but it still requires a narrow focus on a specific topic. The reader’s main question is, “Why are you qualified to render an opinion?” Everyone has an opinion, but why should anyone read yours?
If you’re an expert on this subject, let the reader know right away. Don’t criticize music trends if you’re not a musician! Demonstrate your knowledge, and support your opinion with up-to-date information and credentials.
An informational or service piece expands the reader’s understanding of a particular subject. This can be a guide, a list of important issues. You can either be the expert or interview one. These are extremely pertinent to a specific industry. In a sports magazine article, you can explain a complete history of a sports team and its roster for the upcoming season.
You can expect some in-depth knowledge if the article title contains the phrases like Myths about or Secrets of. Explain everything you know: magazine journalism is different than being a freelance writer in that you should have some industry knowledge already.
This type of magazine article can present a silhouette of an important or relevant person – a politician, a political activist, a sports legend… If you’re writing for a video game magazine you can showcase a famous game designer or even an entire article can be about a game character like Lara Croft or Guybrush Threepwood, if the fictional character is detailed enough! Explain why readers will find this person interesting or noteworthy.
Written in an investigative tone, the think piece frequently shows the downside or less popular ideas of a popular industry aspect. This magazine article could also explain why something is popular or why a political party lost elections. A think piece is more in-depth than most feature articles and necessitates credibility. Confirm your thesis by interviewing analysts and experts. This type of article can be also found in zines , self-published magazines in small circulation, which often focus on niche hobbies, counterculture groups, or subcultures. If you would like to expend your knowledge about interviewing, make sure to check our guide on how to write an interview article .
How to start a magazine article?
Most creative writing professionals would agree that the best way to start writing a magazine article is with a strong opening sentence. A feature article must draw the attention of your target audience, and grab them from the go.
You can start by asking the reader a question which you will answer in the text of the article – for instance “Did you know that most users of Windows never use 80% of their functions – and that’s a good thing?”. In the content of your magazine articles you will be able to answer this question.
Another example of a good magazine article beginning is storytelling – human brains are fascinated by stories. Starting your example with “20 years ago no one in the industry knew what a genitine was, but now their inventor is one of the most influential people” can draw attention and spike up curiosity.
A great example is also a shocking quote – a compelling idea that goes against the grain is sure to capture the reader’s attention.
Most creative magazine article ideas
Even the most experienced journalists can often be looking for ideas for great articles. How to write a magazine article if you don’t have the slightest idea? Here are some of our suggestions:
Take a look at your specialty. If you’re a freelance writer, it’s a good idea to write about what you know. Delve into a topic thoroughly, and you’ll eventually find your niche and you might move from freelance writing jobs to magazine writing! Why? Having a writing specialty will make magazine editors think of you when story ideas in that genre come up.
Check out what’s trending. When browsing popular stories on social networks, many freelancers choose to write about current events. Lists of popular articles can help you understand what to focus your efforts on. Keep in mind that an article for national magazines needs to be well researched, and what’s trending now may change before the magazine finally comes out.
Reach out to the classics. Nostalgia always sells well. You can go back to books or movies that people remember from their youth or, for example, summarize the last year. Lists and numbers always look good!
12 rules on how to write great magazine articles
1. Write what you know about
If your articles are really fascinating and you know what you are writing about, you have a better chance of getting published, whether in a local newspaper or in a major magazine. Writing requires researching your chosen issue thoroughly. Identify perspectives that have not been explored before – describe something from the perspective of a woman, a minority, or a worker.
2. Research how you should write
Check the writing style requirements or guidelines of the magazines to which you want to submit your work. Each magazine has its own set of guidelines on what topics, manner and tone to use. Check out Strunk and White Elements of Style for tips on writing styles, as this is what many magazines draw from.
3. Remember to be flexible
One of the most valuable writing talents a journalist can possess is flexibility. You may find that you discover completely new facts while writing a magazine article and completely change your approach. Maybe you’ll change your mind 180 degrees and instead of attacking someone, you’ll defend them – anything to attract attention.
4. Make connections and meet people
Networking is important in any business, especially for freelance writers who want to make a jump to magazine writing. Editors regularly quit one magazine to work for another. Therefore, remember to know the people first and foremost than the magazine they work for.
5. Prepare a query letter
A query letter tells the editors why your magazine article is important, whether you think someone will want to read it and why you feel obligated to write it. Add to it a text sample and some information about yourself as a writer. Even a local magazine might not be aware of who you are, after all.
6. Prepare an outline
Always before writing a text have an outline that you can use when composing your articles. It must contain the important ideas, the content of the article body and the summary, the points you will include in it. You will find that it is easier to fill such a framework with your own content.
7. Meet the experts
You need to know pundits in your industry. There are several methods of locating experts, from networking to calling organizations or agencies in your field of interest. If you want to meet a police officer, call the police station and ask if someone could talk to a journalist – many people are tempted if you promise them a feature article.
8. Talk to experts
Once you get a contact for an expert, do your best to make the expert look as good as possible. The more prominent the expert, the better your text. Make a list of questions in advance and compare it with the outline to make sure you don’t forget anything. Remember to accurately describe your expert’s achievements and personal data.
9. Create a memorable title
This step can occur at any point in the process of writing an article for a magazine. Sometimes the whole article starts with a good title! However, there is nothing wrong with waiting until the article is finished before coming up with a title. The most important thing is that the title is catchy – editors-in-chief love that!
10. To write, you have to read
You never know where you will come across an inspiring text. It’s your duty as a good writer to read everything that falls into your hands, whether it’s articles on the front pages of major publications or small blog posts. Learn about the various issues that may be useful to your magazine writing skills .
11. Add a strong ending
End with a strong concluding remark that informs or elaborates on the theme of your piece. The last paragraph should make the reader satisfied, but also curious about the future progress of the issue. He must wonder “what’s next?” and answer the important questions himself.
12. Don’t give up
Writers are rejected hundreds of times, especially when they are initially learning how to create articles for magazines. However, even a seasoned freelance writer and professional journalist can get rejected. The most successful authors simply keep writing – being rejected is part of magazine writing. Freelance writing is a good school of writing career – including coping with rejection.
Now you know how to write a magazine article that will be engaging and interesting. Despite the digitalization of the market, writing magazine articles still offers many possibilities to a freelance writer or a seasoned professional. The market of press and magazines is evolving fast, but the basic principles of journalistic integrity stay the same!
You may be also interested in:
How To Publish Digital Magazine? How to Make a Magazine Cover With a Template? 5 Reasons to Start Using a Magazine Maker
Jakub Osiejewski is an experienced freelance writer and editor. He has written for various publications, including magazines, newspapers and websites. He is also a skilled layout graphic designer and knows exactly how to create visually appealing and informative PDFs and flipbooks!
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Writing contests, make money writing, hottest topics, 6 important tips for magazine article writing.
Writing articles for magazines is definitely a dream for a lot of writers. This is because the pay is usually huge. Not only that, it can also offer exposure that can lead to more article writing projects. Below are the things that you need to learn in order to write amazing articles for magazines:
1. Make sure to choose a topic that you’re an expert on or you feel interested in.
You’ll most likely to produce high quality magazine articles if you choose topics that are included in your areas of expertise and areas of interest. Publishers always look for articles that contain in-depth information or those that are very authoritative. I would recommend that you list down all the things that you feel you’re very good at. Then, choose those ones that you can easily sell to different magazines.
2. Choose interesting angles.
You have better chances of getting your articles published if they’re very interesting. Study your chosen topic carefully and figure out the angles that were not yet discussed before and those that will grab your target audience by the throat. Also, make sure that you do not write about general topics. Publishers in general do not like articles that contain too many information that are not really useful or beneficial to their clients.
Even if you think that you know your chosen topic inside out, I am sure it wouldn’t hurt if you conduct research. This will surely allow you to get more useful and fresh information that can make your articles more informative and more valuable to the eyes of your target audience. Read relevant resources and if needed, interview other experts.
4. Create an outline.
Next step is to create a structure that you can follow when writing your articles. This must contain the ideas that you’re going to discuss on your introduction, article body, and conclusion. Decide if you’re going to add images, testimonials, and graphics.
5. Write your articles.
Unlike when writing news articles, you’re not required to follow specific structure or format when writing your magazine articles. You can be as creative as you want to be. To hook your readers, I suggest that you write using their language. It will also help if you strive to sound upbeat and warm all the time. Remember, your readers are reading magazine articles not just to get informed but to be entertained as well.
6. Check out the style sheet or guidelines of the magazines where you would like to submit your articles to.
Every magazine has its own list of instructions about the subjects, approach, and tone that you need to use. If these are not published, I would recommend that you read all the articles that were used by the magazines where you would like to submit your copies to. Doing this will surely give you a clear idea as to what exactly they’re looking for.
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9 Tips for Writing Magazine Articles that Hook Readers from Start to Finish
Do you wish to see your byline adorning the pages of your favorite publication? Do you want to build a reader base that awaits your next article with bated breath? Well, with a little bit of work, you can take your magazine article writing skills to the next level.
The key to writing great magazine articles is to create content that engages from start to finish, and provides value to the reader. Regardless of which magazine you are aiming for, a few tips can help you master your craft and produce articles that any publication in the world would be proud to put out for you.
However, before we delve into our tips on writing magazine articles, let’s take a moment to understand how this particular form of writing differs from other online content writing .
Magazine Article Writing Vs. Other Forms of Writing
Writing an article for a magazine is not the same as writing one for a newspaper or an online directory. Moreover, the pieces you may see in a magazine are inherently different from the content you may find in journals and books as well.
The tone and style of these articles vary with each publication, genre, and topic. However, two things set these pieces apart from other forms of writing – they allow more room for creativity and tend to be more visually appealing.
While article writing and book writing also require creative input and critical thinking, drafting magazine articles allows you to play with different visual aspects. The use of colorful graphics and photographs to capture attention becomes a must.
Furthermore, the length of magazine articles depends on the publication you’re writing for, what you’re writing and who you’re writing for. In most cases, writing content for the internet does not come with word count limitations. And insofar as books are concerned, you’re usually your own boss.
But to give you an idea, an average magazine article can be anywhere between half a page to a dozen pages. Nonetheless, the word count for 12-page pieces is usually not as high as you’d think since they are interspersed with pictures and advertisements.
Tips for Writing Magazine Articles that Connect
Here are some tips on how to create magazine articles that will grab your readers’ attention.
1. Write About Things You Are Interested In
You are more likely to create engaging content if you write about something you find intriguing or exciting.
Your passion for a specific cause or topic will not only show in your work, but it will improve the quality of the output automatically. Articles written with passion are more likely to connect as they give readers a peek into your heart and soul. If you let your words reflect your love and devotion to the subject of your article, it will convince your readers to trust your judgment and authority.
Magazine articles are an excellent medium for talented writers to showcase their skills while playing to their strengths. Moreover, publishers always prefer pieces that have an element of individuality. So, if you are particularly fond of something – be it music, traveling, cooking, or martial arts – make sure to use it as your calling card.
However, just because you think you know a topic inside out doesn’t mean you should cut corners while conducting research. It is essential to scour the internet and see what others are saying. Also, look for the latest stats and back up your claims with valuable insight.
2. Use Compelling Headings and Sub-Headings
Although this tip is not unique to magazine article writing, it requires a special mention.
Your headline is the first thing a reader would see while browsing through the index of their favorite magazine or on the front page of their search engine. It is the focal point of your article, as it draws your readers’ attention and encourages them to click on it.
Many experts compare a well-crafted headline to a beautiful wrapping paper. However, in reality, it is a gift itself. An excellent headline, paired with equally compelling subheadings, will build the interest of your readers. Therefore, you should put in extra effort to create headlines that perfectly capture the essence of your article without giving everything away. Just make sure they are not misleading.
It is also a good practice to include your main keyword in the main heading to make your post easy to discover. We’ll discuss more on this later.
3. Reel In the Audience with a Unique Angle
One of the best ways to make your magazine article appealing is by ensuring it has a unique perspective.
Start by creating a profile for your target audience and figure out where their interests lie. You can also look at the articles published by your competitors and industry giants. Doing so will help you determine which angles have been discussed before and which require more exploration.
Instead of just scratching the surface, dig a little deeper and discover fresh viewpoints that establish you as an expert in the field. Even if you are writing on a mainstream topic, such as a new superhero movie that has recently hit the theatres, focus on the aspects that others have not bothered to explore.
Remember, creating value-added content will keep your readers engaged and the publisher happy.
4. Keep It Short, Sweet, and To the Point
Brevity is the soul of any well-written content. If you want your magazine article to remain engaging from the first sentence to the last, you must make it easy to read and understand.
It is generally good to use short and simple sentences. You should break your information into small chunks without leaving any room for ambiguity. Of course, depending on the nature of your article, you may have to use a few complex sentences. However, using too many complicated terms and long sentences can distract the readers.
Moreover, make sure your readers can follow your train of thought without making much effort. Set the pace to match the article’s tone, and don’t let your message get lost between long sentences. If your audience finds your magazine article writing skills tedious or frustrating, there is a good chance they won’t come back for more.
Apart from using short and concise sentences, ensure your paragraphs don’t exceed six lines. Adding bulleted lists to your content can also make it easy to skim and comprehend, attracting the readers.
5. Include Visual Elements
Break up huge chunks of text with striking pictures, powerful graphics, and well-explained charts.
Including valuable visual elements in your magazine article is a foolproof way to increase audience engagement. They will give your audience a chance to rest their eyes without taking their attention away from the piece.
With the right images, you can explain your idea or perspective without saying a lot.
Additionally, photos and videos can make your content more memorable. They can help your readers interact with the piece, which may also increase their willingness to return to it.
These are among the leading reasons why most publishers and brand owners invest extensively on graphic work to support their written content.
6. Get Your Audience Involved and Invested
Starting your magazine article with a thought-provoking question or a shocking fact can help you grab the interest of your audience from the get-go. If your question is something that your readers can relate to personally, it will undoubtedly compel them to read further.
However, to draw the attention of your readers, you must understand their desires and pain points. You should also know about your audience’s gender, age, and location to choose your article’s right style and tone. After all, the ideas that may intrigue women aged 30 to 45 are not likely to resonate with men aged 50 to 65.
Furthermore, always address your readers directly. Writing in the second person will allow you to use words such as “you,” “your,” and “yours.” Your readers should feel as if you have written the article just for them. Once they build that connection, they’ll stay hooked until the very last page.
Also, make your piece sound like a discussion one would have with their friend. It shouldn’t come across as a lesson or an essay.
This magazine article writing tip will surely help your audience feel like a part of the narrative.
7. Don’t State Facts, Tell a Story
Storytelling is an art. While anyone can share factual information, it takes expertise and a unique thought process to tell a story.
As a writer, your biggest priority should be keeping your readers on their toes as they take in your words and build a world of their own. Whether you are writing about politics or deep-sea diving, your anecdotes and experiences can set your article apart from the rest.
Sharing small stories also allows your audience to connect with you on an emotional level. It makes you and your words more relatable. People may not remember the statistics you’ve shared in your article. But they are most likely to remember the tidbits from your personal life that made their way onto the page.
To create compelling content, take inspiration from your past experiences or create fictitious scenarios to leave your audience spellbound. You can also use analogies, quotes, and pop culture references to breathe a new life into your content.
8. Choose Your Keywords Wisely
Magazines are no longer limited to the print medium. You can now access almost every magazine online, with some charging a small subscription fee and others allowing you to read their content for free.
Now, you may have heard that we should write for people and not the search engines. Our question is, why not write for both? Creating compelling and engaging content is just not enough. You also need to make your articles discoverable.
Search engine optimization or SEO is the most effective way to make sure your audience finds your posts. You need tofind out what people are looking for and incorporate those keywords into your article .
According to the SEO best practices, your main keyword should appear at the article’s beginning, middle, and end. You can also include two to three additional keywords throughout the content. It will increase the chances of your article ranking higher on Google.
9. Wrap It Up Nicely
Don’t let your closing statement go to waste.
As you wrap up your article, utilize the last few lines to include a CTA call to action. It is essentially a way for you to tell your readers what to do next. Whether you are looking for feedback or want your audience to check out your latest video series, make sure to include a relevant link that directs them to your preferred webpage or service.
The next step is to edit your content. You can use services such as Grammarly or Copyscape to ensure your article is free of mistakes and plagiarism. This is also your last opportunity to format the piece and ensure no negative spaces or weird indentations.
Moreover, please use different font sizes for headings, subheadings, and body to increase readability and engagement. You can also use bold words and italicized sentences to make your critical ideas more prominent.
Magazine Article Writing Made Easy
To conclude, there are no set rules to writing a compelling magazine article. However, the tips mentioned above will enable you to break the mold by producing great content. A wisely chosen topic with a unique perspective and great headline can do wonders for your career. Similarly, short and clear sentences sprinkled with personal anecdotes can make your article more fun to read.
If you feel a little lost in how to do go it alone, our article writing service could be the order of the day. Our team of experienced article writers ably supported by our team of expert designers can help you create magazine articles that hit the right note every time.
Dave is Sr. Editor at Content Development Pros. He leads a small army of content writers that help small and large business get results through amazing content.
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How to Write a Magazine Article
Last Updated: October 11, 2023 Fact Checked
This article was co-authored by Gerald Posner . Gerald Posner is an Author & Journalist based in Miami, Florida. With over 35 years of experience, he specializes in investigative journalism, nonfiction books, and editorials. He holds a law degree from UC College of the Law, San Francisco, and a BA in Political Science from the University of California-Berkeley. He’s the author of thirteen books, including several New York Times bestsellers, the winner of the Florida Book Award for General Nonfiction, and has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History. He was also shortlisted for the Best Business Book of 2020 by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 926,315 times.
Magazine articles can be a big boost for seasoned freelance writers or writers who are trying to jump-start their writing careers. In fact, there are no clear qualifications required for writing magazine articles except for a strong writing voice, a passion for research, and the ability to target your article pitches to the right publications. Though it may seem like magazines may be fading in the digital age, national magazines continue to thrive and can pay their writers $1 a word.  X Research source To write a good magazine article, you should focus on generating strong article ideas and crafting and revising the article with high attention to detail.
Generating Article Ideas
- Check if the bylines match the names on the masthead. If the names on the bylines do not match the masthead names, this may be an indication that the publication hires freelance writers to contribute to its issues.
- Look for the names and contact information of editors for specific areas. If you’re interested in writing about pop culture, identify the name and contact information of the arts editor. If you’re more interested in writing about current events, look for the name and contact information of the managing editor or the features editor. You should avoid contacting the executive editor or the editor-in-chief as they are too high up the chain and you will likely not interact with them as a freelance writer.
- Note recent topics or issues covered in the publication and the angle or spin on the topics. Does the publication seem to go for more controversial takes on a topic or a more objective approach? Does the publication seem open to experimentation in form and content or are they more traditional?
- Look at the headlines used by the publication and how the articles begin. Note if the headlines are shocking or vague. Check if the articles start with a quote, a statistic, or an anecdote. This will give you a good sense of the writing style that gets published in that particular publication.
- Note the types of sources quoted in the articles. Are they academic or more laymen? Are there many sources quoted, or many different types of sources quoted?
- Pay attention to how writers wrap up their articles in the publication. Do they end on a poignant quote? An interesting image? Or do they have a bold, concluding thought?
- These inspiring conversations do not need to be about global problems or a large issue. Having conversations with your neighbors, your friends, and your peers can allow you to discuss local topics that could then turn into an article idea for a local magazine.
- You should also look through your local newspaper for human interest stories that may have national relevance. You could then take the local story and pitch it to a magazine. You may come across a local story that feels incomplete or full of unanswered questions. This could then act as a story idea for a magazine article.
- You can also set your Google alerts to notify you if keywords on topics of interest appear online. If you have Twitter or Instagram, you can use the hashtag option to search trending topics or issues that you can turn into article ideas.
- For example, rather than write about the psychological problems of social media on teenagers, which has been done many times in many different magazines, perhaps you can focus on a demographic that is not often discussed about social media: seniors and the elderly. This will give you a fresh approach to the topic and ensure your article is not just regurgitating a familiar angle.
Crafting the Article
- Look for content written by experts in the field that relates to your article idea. If you are doing a magazine article on dying bee populations in California, for example, you should try to read texts written by at least two bee experts and/or a beekeeper who studies bee populations in California.
- You should ensure any texts you use as part of your research are credible and accurate. Be wary of websites online that contain lots of advertisements or those that are not affiliated with a professionally recognized association or field of study. Make sure you check if any of the claims made by an author have been disputed by other experts in the field or have been challenged by other experts. Try to present a well-rounded approach to your research so you do not appear biased or slanted in your research.
- You can also do an online search for individuals who may serve as good expert sources based in your area. If you need a legal source, you may ask other freelance writers who they use or ask for a contact at a police station or in the legal system.
- Prepare a list of questions before the interview. Research the source’s background and level of expertise. Be specific in your questions, as interviewees usually like to see that you have done previous research and are aware of the source’s background.
- Ask open-ended questions, avoid yes or no questions. For example, rather than asking, "Did you witness the test trials of this drug?" You can present an open-ended question, "What can you tell me about the test trials of this drug?" Be an active listener and try to minimize the amount of talking you do during the interview. The interview should be about the subject, not about you.
- Make sure you end the interview with the question: “Is there anything I haven’t asked you about this topic that I should know about?” You can also ask for referrals to other sources by asking, “Who disagrees with you on your stance on this issue?” and “Who else should I talk to about this issue?”
- Don’t be afraid to contact the source with follow-up questions as your research continues. As well, if you have any controversial or possibly offensive questions to ask the subject, save them for last.
- The best way to transcribe your interviews is to sit down with headphones plugged into your tape recorder and set aside a few hours to type out the interviews. There is no short and quick way to transcribe unless you decide to use a transcription service, which will charge you a fee for transcribing your interviews.
- Your outline should include the main point or angle of the article in the introduction, followed by supporting points in the article body, and a restatement or further development of your main point or angle in your conclusion section.
- The structure of your article will depend on the type of article you are writing. If you are writing an article on an interview with a noteworthy individual, your outline may be more straightforward and begin with the start of the interview and move to the end of the interview. But if you are writing an investigative report, you may start with the most relevant statements or statements that relate to recent news and work backward to the least relevant or more big picture statements.  X Research source
- Keep in mind the word count of the article, as specified by your editor. You should keep the first draft within the word count or just above the word count so you do not lose track of your main point. Most editors will be clear about the required word count of the article and will expect you not to go over the word count, for example, 500 words for smaller articles and 2,000-3,000 words for a feature article. Most magazines prefer short and sweet over long and overly detailed, with a maximum of 12 pages, including graphics and images.  X Research source
- You should also decide if you are going to include images or graphics in the article and where these graphics are going to come from. You may contribute your own photography or the publication may provide a photographer. If you are using graphics, you may need to have a graphic designer re create existing graphics or get permission to use the existing graphics.
- Use an interesting or surprising example: This could be a personal experience that relates to the article topic or a key moment in an interview with a source that relates to the article topic. For example, you may start an article on beekeeping in California by using a discussion you had with a source: "Darryl Bernhardt never thought he would end up becoming the foremost expert on beekeeping in California."
- Try a provocative quotation: This could be from a source from your research that raises interesting questions or introduces your angle on the topic. For example, you may quote a source who has a surprising stance on bee populations: "'Bees are more confused than ever,' Darryl Bernhart, the foremost expert in bees in California, tells me."
- Use a vivid anecdote: An anecdote is a short story that carries moral or symbolic weight. Think of an anecdote that might be a poetic or powerful way to open your article. For example, you may relate a short story about coming across abandoned bee hives in California with one of your sources, an expert in bee populations in California.
- Come up with a thought provoking question: Think of a question that will get your reader thinking and engaged in your topic, or that may surprise them. For example, for an article on beekeeping you may start with the question: "What if all the bees in California disappeared one day?"
- You want to avoid leaning too much on quotations to write the article for you. A good rule of thumb is to expand on a quotation once you use it and only use quotations when they feel necessary and impactful. The quotations should support the main angle of your article and back up any claims being made in the article.
- You may want to lean on a strong quote from a source that feels like it points to future developments relating to the topic or the ongoing nature of the topic. Ending the article on a quote may also give the article more credibility, as you are allowing your sources to provide context for the reader.
Revising the Article
- Having a conversation about the article with your editor can offer you a set of professional eyes who can make sure the article fits within the writing style of the publication and reaches its best possible draft. You should be open to editor feedback and work with your editor to improve the draft of the article.
- You should also get a copy of the publication’s style sheet or contributors guidelines and make sure the article follows these rules and guidelines. Your article should adhere to these guidelines to ensure it is ready for publication by your deadline.
- Most publications accept electronic submissions of articles. Talk with your editor to determine the best way to submit the revised article.
You Might Also Like
Thanks for reading our article! If you'd like to learn more about writing an article, check out our in-depth interview with Gerald Posner .
- ↑ http://grammar.yourdictionary.com/grammar-rules-and-tips/tips-on-writing-a-good-feature-for-magazines.html
- ↑ https://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/20-ways-to-generate-article-ideas-in-20-minutes-or-less
- ↑ http://www.writerswrite.com/journal/jun03/eight-tips-for-getting-published-in-magazines-6036
- ↑ http://www.thepenmagazine.net/20-steps-to-write-a-good-article/
- ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0R5f2VV58pw
- ↑ https://www.writersdigest.com/write-better-nonfiction/how-many-different-kinds-of-articles-are-there
- ↑ http://libguides.unf.edu/c.php?g=177086&p=1163719
About This Article
To write a magazine article, start by researching your topic and interviewing experts in the field. Next, create an outline of the main points you want to cover so you don’t go off topic. Then, start the article with a hook that will grab the reader’s attention and keep them reading. As you write, incorporate quotes from your research, but be careful to stick to your editor’s word count, such as 500 words for a small article or 2,000 words for a feature. Finally, conclude with a statement that expands on your topic, but leaves the reader wanting to learn more. For tips on how to smoothly navigate the revision process with an editor, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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10 Simple Ways to Improve Your Magazine Writing Skills
- June 16, 2020
- 11 Comments
How do you write a magazine article? These tips will give you the confidence you need to write for magazines, submit query letters to editors, and get your writing published. Even if your goal isn’t to become a successful freelance writer, you will benefit from these simple ways to improve your magazine writing skills.
These aren’t “secret tips” on how to get your article published in a magazine – because there are no secrets for writing articles and getting published. Writing for magazines is much simpler than you think. Simple, but not easy . These tips worked for me when I started freelance writing over a decade ago, and they still work for me today. In fact, I have an article due to alive magazine in three business days. It’s about brain health and my recent trip to Nepal – which is a perfect start to my new life as a travel blogger. In fact, I just wrote an article about how to write travel articles for magazines .
Let’s start easy, with the foundational tip on how to write a magazine article. “Show, don’t tell.” Why start there? Because nobody does it! Most writers want to express their thoughts and show how much they know (or think they know). If you’re one of those rare writers who simply reports the facts in an interesting, engaging and clear manner then you’re already halfway to getting your magazine article published.
“Never tell your readers what they should think about something. You may write about amazing things, but never tell them that something is going to be amazing,” says William Zinsser in On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction . “Just lay out the facts and let the reader say, ‘Wow! Imagine that!'”
Zinsser’s advice means you shouldn’t add commentary to your articles – especially if you’re writing for a magazine. You can tell readers what you think in blog posts, newsletters, and your Facebook updates. But when you’re writing a magazine article, think “just the facts, ma’am.” Show, don’t tell. Describe, don’t opine.
How to Write a Good Magazine Article
Part of learning how to write a magazine article is decided what type of article you’re writing and who you are writing for. Read 11 Most Popular Types of Magazine Articles – Print & Online . I’ll wait here.
1. Learn the difference between “subject” and “story”
The fact that Anne Lamott or Stephen King both wrote books about writing is a subject . How Anne Lamott and Stephen King fought to get their books published is a story . What’s the difference between subject and story? Conflict. Suspense. Drama. Problems. Growth. Here’s another – better – example: “The cat is lying on her mat” is a fact. The story comes alive when “The dog and the cat both want to lie on the mat.” Knowing the difference between a subject and a story one of the most important tips on how to write a magazine article. Even nonfiction articles contain the threads of a story.
If you’re learning how to write magazine articles because you want to become a freelance writer, train yourself how to find stories. One of the more interesting ways to do this is to find temporary work stints in an office, museum, or coffee shop. You’ll find that being around regular people can will help you see and even write stories that can easily become publishable magazine articles. And, since freelance writing isn’t lucrative for beginners, the extra income will help you cope with the financial insecurities. Successful freelancers are most creative when they get away from their laptops, generate new article ideas, find inspiration, and even plan career moves and pivots. Getting paid to be out of the house is a great way to keep your creative juices flowing!
2. Don’t opine (give your opinion). Just write the article
This is a follow-up to the first tip on how to write a magazine article: don’t tell us what you think because – unless you are Anne Lamott or Stephen King and we’re a bunch of geeky writers – we don’t care. “Unless you are a recognized expert, your opinion is not relevant,” writes author Don McKinney in Magazine Writing That Sells . “To support your points, quote real experts.”
My Reader’s Digest editor also repeatedly gave me this writing advice. This is why I not only mentioned it before my tips on how to get a magazine article published, but am expanding on it now. I myself am still learning how to just tell or write a story instead of trying to explain every nuance to the reader.
How do you know if you’re over-explaining or overwriting? After all, you’re just beginning to learn how to write a magazine article! Here’s a tip: Reread and edit your past work. Don’t let your past articles, blog posts, book chapters, newsletter entries or editorial just sit there. Read them carefully and critically. How can you improve on your writing? What can you do to make it into a publishable magazine article? Challenge yourself. You’ll become a better writer.
3. Do extra research – especially when you’re still learning how to write a magazine article
It’s better to do too much research and have more information than you can include when you write your magazine article. Here are two reasons why:
- Your research will inform your writing even when you don’t include it all in the article (and you should never put all your research in one magazine article)
- You can use your research in a different magazine article. Your excess research won’t be wasted unless you throw it away. Don’t cram everything you learned in your article. Pick out the best information that makes your article better; save the additional information for a different magazine article, blog post, or medial outlet.
The more you practice writing articles for magazines, the better you’ll get at discerning how much information is “too much.”
4. Relax. There is no one “right” way to write a magazine article
While there aren’t any perfect, right or best ways to write good magazine articles, it’s important to remember the first sentence. The beginning of your magazine article can be the most frustrating and time-consuming part of writing. My first paragraphs and headline (article title) take more time that writing the whole article or blog post. This is because the lead or lede – the first sentence of your article or the introduction – is the most important. That, and the ending. Why? Because the lead is what will either hook your reader or leave her cold. If she’s cold, she doesn’t care about reading your work. Then all the time you spent learning how to write a magazine article was wasted! Unless, of course, you’re writing for your teacher or mom.
The best lead or introduction grabs the reader’s attention and forces her to read your whole entire article, start to finish. Here’s the problem with this “simple” writing tip: How do you know what will grab your reader’s attention? What captures my attention may not capture yours.
5. Don’t let rejection stop you from writing your best article
Here’s what I had to learn when I first started freelance writing for magazines: Writers get rejected dozens of times – especially when they’re first learning how to write articles for magazines. But even experienced freelancers and professional journalists get rejected. Not every query letter sells, not every pitch is sold, and not every magazine article is published.
The best writers do not associate rejection with themselves. That is, successful freelance writers know getting rejected is part of the game. And writing is a game! It’s fun to be a writer, so have fun with it. It’s even more fun to be a blogger, so have even more fun with writing blog posts. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Learn how to write good magazine articles, but loosen your collar. Ungrip your hands. Maybe even take them off the steering wheel. Do the best you can to write good articles for magazines and other media outlets, then let your writing go.
Do you want to get an article published in one of the most popular magazines in the world? Read How to Get Your Articles Published in Reader’s Digest .
6. Don’t even think about writer’s block
Jack London said something like, “Writer’s block? Writing inspiration? I see to it that I’m inspired every morning at 9 am.” Now that is a professional freelance writer who knows how to write magazine articles, books, blog posts and feature profiles.
Do you struggle with writer’s block? Here’s a writing tip: Stop writing while the writing is going well. Leave the paragraphs and sentences you know will come easily for tomorrow, or your next writing stint. For example, don’t stop writing when you come to a natural conclusion. Instead, stop writing when you know what’s coming next and you’re eager to continue. Some famous author even advised writers to stop writing in the middle of a
7. Remember who you’re writing for
“Even before writing the query, remember who you’re talking to,” writes McKinney in Magazine Writing That Sells . “At every stage of the process, from query to finished manuscript, remember three little words: Audience. Audience. Audience.” That’s a key tip on how to write a magazine article . Who are your readers? What are their pain points, fascinations, obsessions, yearnings? Knowing who you’re writing for will help you write better.
A great way to learn how to write for different readers is to read print newspapers and magazines. Vancouver-based freelance writer Daniel Wood encouraged writers to clip newspaper articles when they resonate with you. When a piece of writing stands out to you in some way, keep it close. Study it. Analyzing print writing will teach you how to write good magazine and newspaper articles. I enjoy reading the Vancouver Sun newspaper, but I have turned down article assignments from the editors. They don’t pay well. Nevertheless, reading the local paper or any new-to-you magazine or print publication is a great way to keep your writing fresh and remind yourself who your primary readers are.
8. Remember that good magazine articles start with the first sentence (or even the first word!)
Circling back on my fourth tip on how to write a magazine article: If you’re struggling with the introduction or lead, think about how you’d tell your story to a friend. Describe it in your own words, out loud, in your own voice. What are the most impressive things about your story? The one fact or event that stands out may be a good lead.
“If it’s the first thing you’d tell a friend, maybe it should be the first thing you’d tell a reader,” writes McKinney in Magazine Writing That Sells . Start with the most important, compelling, interesting information first. If you struggle with the beginning of your articles, read How to Write the Best Introduction for Your Readers .
9. Use different sentence lengths for different tones and moods
This isn’t just a tip on how to write a magazine article, it’s a general tip for good writing. Your writing should match the tone or mood of your piece. If you’re describing quick or abrupt action, for example, use short, punchy sentences. If you’re describing how the long green grass is swaying in the field, use longer sentences that flow. Also, don’t forget to vary the length of your sentences and type of punctuation you use! I gets boring to read the same style of writing, even if it’s just a 500 word magazine article.
How do you learn how to write better articles? Start a blog! When I first started freelancing I didn’t know if I should create a website. I eventually did, and called it The Adventurous Writer . Do you have a blog or website? Blogging is a fantastic way to learn how to write magazine articles; not only does it give you writing practice, it validates you as a publishable freelance writer. Your own blog or website is where magazine editors, experts you want to interview, and your own readers can learn more about you as a writer. After I created The Adventurous Writer I started my blogs, one right after the other. And, if you learn how to monetize your blog, it can be a good source of passive income.
Your own blog is worth the investment of your time and energy – especially if you’re serious about learning how to write magazine articles, get published, and become a successful freelance writer.
10. Help your interviewees sound good
My final tip on how to write a good magazine article involves interviewing experts or sources. Direct quotes or dialogue is a fantastic way to bring your story to life! Interviewing experts or regular folk is good for at least two reasons:
- You can include dialogue, which breaks up paragraphs or chunks of text
- Dialogue or direct quotes add flavor and color to your article
A word on how to write what an interviewee said to you: “No article has ever been published in which every word spoken is printed exactly as it was said,” writes McKinney. “You can cut. You can rewrite if necessary to make the speaker’s meaning more clear. You can rearrange the order in which the words were spoken – but you can never, never distort the meaning.”
If you want to get published quickly, read The Byline Bible: Get Published in Five Weeks by Susan Shapiro. Shapiro is a writing professor who has taught more than 25,000 students of all ages and backgrounds at schools such as New York University, Columbia, Temple, The New School, and Harvard University. In The Byline Bible she describes her wildly popular “Instant Gratification Takes Too Long” technique that helps writers get their magazine articles published quickly.
Your turn! Why are you looking for tips on how to write a magazine article? Is it a school assignment, or do you want to be a freelance writer?
If you’re hoping to make money writing, know what writers get paid. Read Freelance Writing Pay Rates for Newspaper and Magazine Articles .
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11 thoughts on “10 Simple Ways to Improve Your Magazine Writing Skills”
Here’s another freelance writing tip, from the author of five books and numerous articles:
Recycle, recycle, recycle. Make your articles go farther by reworking them for different publications. For example, I wrote an article on swaddling twin babies for a national magazine for parents of twins. Then I cut down the article and removed the product reviews for an online column I write about twins and multiples. After that, I took out the “twins angle” and generalized the article to include all babies for publication in a pediatric newsletter. I even recorded a podcast about swaddling! With just a little bit of work, I was able to use the same research in four different ways.
– Susan Heim
How to Write an Article for a Magazine: Expert Tips and Tricks
By: Author Paul Jenkins
Posted on Published: June 14, 2023 - Last updated: June 23, 2023
Magazine writing is a unique form of art that requires writers to carefully blend elements of storytelling, informative research, and reader engagement. Crafting an article for a magazine demands a flair for creative writing and an understanding of the submission process and the specific expectations of the magazine’s audience.
With a clear idea of the subject matter and a strong knack for storytelling, anyone can venture into the world of magazine writing and make a lasting impact on the readers.
The journey of writing a magazine article begins with understanding the fundamentals of magazine articles and their unique characteristics. It requires a thorough understanding of the target market, a well-defined topic, and an unmistakable voice to engage readers.
By focusing on these aspects, writers can create articles that resonate with a magazine’s audience, leading to potential ongoing collaborations and publication opportunities.
- Magazine writing involves a blend of storytelling, research, and reader engagement.
- Understanding the target audience and article topic is crucial to success.
- Focusing on writing quality and a unique voice can lead to ongoing publication opportunities.
Understanding Magazine Articles
Types of magazine articles.
Magazine articles can differ significantly from newspaper articles or other forms of writing . Several types of magazine articles include features, profiles, news stories, and opinion pieces. Feature articles are in-depth stories that provide substantial information about a specific subject, often written by freelance writers.
Profiles focus on an individual or organization, showcasing their accomplishments or perspective. News stories are shorter pieces that report timely events and updates, while opinion pieces allow writers to share their viewpoints on relevant matters.
The Purpose of a Magazine Article
The primary purpose of a magazine article is to entertain, inform, or educate its readers in an engaging and visually appealing manner. Magazine writing is crafted with the reader in mind, considering their interests, knowledge level, and preferences.
The tone, structure, and style may vary depending on the target audience and the magazine’s genre. This approach allows for a more flexible, creative, and conversational writing form than news articles or research reports.
Magazine articles are an excellent medium for freelance writers to showcase their writing skills and expertise on specific subjects. Whether they’re writing feature articles, profiles, or opinion pieces, consistency, factual accuracy, and a strong connection with the reader are essential elements of successful magazine writing.
Developing Your Article Idea
Finding a story idea.
Developing a great article idea starts with finding a unique and compelling story. As a freelance writer, you must stay updated on current events, trends, and niche topics that can spark curiosity in the readers.
Browse newspapers, magazine websites, blogs, and social media platforms to stay informed and derive inspiration for your topic. Engage in conversation with others or join online forums and groups that cater to your subject area for fresh insights.
Remember to select a theme familiar to you or one with expertise. This approach strengthens your article’s credibility and offers readers a fresh perspective.
Pitching to Magazine Editors
Once you’ve generated a story idea, the next step is to pitch your concept to magazine editors. Start by researching and building a list of potential magazines or publications suited to your topic. Keep in mind the target audience and interests of each publication.
Instead of submitting a complete article, compose a concise and engaging query letter. This letter should encompass a brief introduction, the main idea of your article, your writing credentials, and any previously published work or relevant experience.
When crafting your pitch, aim for clarity and brevity. Magazine editors often receive numerous submissions, so make sure your pitch stands out.
Tailor the tone of your query letter according to the general style of the target magazine, and consider mentioning specific sections or columns you believe your article would fit.
Patience and persistence are key attributes of successful freelance writers. Always be prepared to pitch your article idea to different magazine editors, and do not hesitate to ask for feedback in case of rejection. Refining and adapting your story ideas will increase your chances of getting published.
Remember to follow the guidelines and protocols established by the magazine or publication when submitting your query letter or article pitches. Also, some magazines may prefer to work with writers with prior experience or published work in their portfolios.
Consider starting with smaller publications or creating a blog to build your credibility and portfolio. With a well-developed article idea and a strong pitch, you’re on the right path to becoming a successful magazine writer.
Writing the Article
The writing process.
The writing process for a magazine article generally involves detailed research, outlining, and drafting before arriving at the final piece. To create a compelling article, identify your target audience and understand their preferences.
This will allow you to tailor your content to suit their needs and expectations. Next, gather relevant information and conduct interviews with experts, if necessary.
Once you have enough material, create an outline, organizing your thoughts and ideas logically. This helps ensure a smooth flow and lets you focus on each section as you write.
Revising your work several times is essential, checking for grammar, punctuation, and clarity. Ensure your language is concise and straightforward, making it accessible to a broad range of readers.
Creating an Engaging Opening
An engaging opening is critical in capturing the reader’s attention and setting the tone for the entire article. Begin your piece with a strong hook, such as an intriguing anecdote, a surprising fact, or a thought-provoking question. This will entice readers to continue reading and maintain their interest throughout the piece.
Remember that different publications may have varying preferences, so tailor your opening accordingly.
Organizing Your Content
Organizing your content is essential in creating a coherent and easy-to-read article. Consider segmenting your piece into sub-sections, using headings to clarify the flow and make the content more digestible. Here are some tips for organizing your content effectively:
- Utilize bullet points or numbered lists to convey information in a simple, organized manner
- Highlight crucial points with bold text to draw readers’ attention
- Use tables to present data or comparisons that may be difficult to express in plain text
As you organize your content, keep your target audience in mind and prioritize readability and comprehension. Avoid making exaggerated or false claims, damaging your credibility and negatively impacting the reader’s experience.
Remember to adhere to the submission guidelines provided by the magazine, as each publication may have different preferences and requirements. Following these steps and maintaining a clear, confident tone can create an engaging and informative magazine article that resonates with your readers.
Polishing Your Article
Proofreading and editing.
Before submitting your article to a magazine, ensure it is polished and error-free. Start by proofreading for grammar, spelling, and punctuation mistakes, making your article look more professional and credible. Using tools like grammar checkers is a good idea, but an experienced writer should also manually review their piece as the software might not detect some mistakes.
Editing your article is crucial, as it helps refine the structure and flow of your writing. Eliminate redundant or unnecessary words and reorganize paragraphs if needed. Consider asking a peer or a mentor to review it for an unbiased perspective.
Keep the magazine’s desired writing style in mind, and adapt your article suitably. For example, a news article may require a concise and informative tone, while a feature in a magazine on pop culture may call for a more conversational and engaging approach.
Using Appropriate Language and Style
To make your article stand out, it is essential to use appropriate language and style. Unlike online publication or social media writing, magazine journalism usually demands a more refined and professional tone. Focus on using a clear, neutral, knowledgeable voice conveying confidence and expertise.
Here are some tips to ensure your article fits the magazine’s desired style:
- Ensure you have a compelling subject line that captures the reader’s attention.
- Depending on the type of article you’re writing, decide if your piece should follow a more scholarly approach, like in a scholarly journal, or a more relaxed, opinion-based style found in lifestyle magazines.
- Use relevant examples to support your points, but avoid making exaggerated or false claims.
- Consider your audience and their interests. Choose the right vocabulary to engage them without making the content too pretentious or complicated.
By carefully proofreading and editing your work and using appropriate language and style, you can ensure your magazine article shines. Remember to stay true to your voice and the magazine’s requirements, and maintain a professional tone.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the key components of a magazine article.
A magazine article typically includes a headline, introduction, body, and conclusion. The headline should be striking and attention-grabbing to capture the reader’s interest. The introduction sets the context and tone of the piece while giving the reader a taste of what to expect.
The body of the article is where the main content and message are conveyed, with vital information, examples, and analysis.
The conclusion summarizes the article by summarizing the main points and often providing a call to action or a thought-provoking question.
What is an effective writing style for a magazine article?
An effective writing style for a magazine article should be clear, concise, and engaging. It is essential to cater to the target audience by using language that resonates with them and addressing relevant topics. Keep sentences and paragraphs short and easily digestible, and avoid jargon unless the publication targets industry professionals.
Adopting a conversational tone while maintaining professionalism usually works well in magazine writing.
How should the introduction be written for a magazine article?
The introduction of a magazine article should engage the reader right from the start by grabbing their attention with a hook. This can be an interesting anecdote, a fascinating fact, or a provocative question. The introduction should also establish the flow of the rest of the article by providing brief context or outlining the piece’s structure.
What are the best practices for structuring a magazine article?
The structure of a magazine article should be well-organized and easy to follow. This often means using subheadings, bullet points, or numbered lists to break up the text and emphasize important content. Start with the most important information, then move on to supporting details and background information. Maintain a logical, coherent flow between paragraphs, ensuring each section builds on the previous one.
How can I make my magazine article engaging and informative?
To make a magazine article engaging and informative, focus on finding the right balance between providing valuable information and keeping the reader entertained. Use anecdotes, personal stories, and real-life examples to make the content relatable and genuine. When applicable, include engaging visuals (such as photos or illustrations), as they aid comprehension and make the article more appealing. Finally, address the reader directly when possible, making them feel more involved in the narrative.
What are some useful tips for editing and proofreading a magazine article?
When editing and proofreading a magazine article, focus on the bigger picture, such as organization and flow. Ensure that the structure is logical and transitions are smooth and seamless. Then, move on to sentence-level editing, examining grammar, punctuation, and style consistency. Ensure that redundancies and jargon are eliminated and that the voice and tone match the target audience and publication. Lastly, proofread for typos and errors, preferably using a fresh pair of eyes or a professional editing tool.