Magazine Query Letter

Last week I posted a query for pitching a novel.  Today I’m picking up that thread and posting a query for a magazine article. 

NOTE:  A couple of folks have asked if you need to query a short story, and the answer is definitely “no”.  Just submit.   

For queries, there are a lot of different formats, but here are the ones I’ve used successfully over the last few decades.  The first is a standard SNAIL MAIL query, which leads with a thematic hook; the other is an EMAIL query that leads with credentials/platform.   

  *****************************************   

EMAIL VERSION 

Mary Smith, Editor  / KidStuff 

I am the author of 20 nonfiction books and over 1100 articles, many of them about safety awareness for families.  I’m also a martial arts instructor with forty-five years experience, and have taught thousands of classes and workshops on safety for children and families.

 Kids don’t need to learn how to fight…they need to learn how not to.  Martial arts classes don’t teach kids how to get into fights, they teach them courage, self-respect, and confidence.  These are qualities that help children steer clear of violence. This is the primary focus of the modern martial arts school, and it’s a healthy, positive, and very powerful method that is working wonders with today’s kids. 

My article, Happy, Safe and Strong: Martial Arts for Today’s Kids, discusses how martial arts such as karate, judo, taekwondo and other ostensibly combative systems have been modified to meet the real needs of growing kids.  Instead of violence, the kids are taught values; instead of aggression they’re taught discipline; and instead of fear they are taught to understand and appreciate the differences  –and similarities– between themselves and their classmates. 

The article features interviews with parents and kids, and discussions with martial arts instructors who are on the cutting edge of this new way of teaching health, fitness, values, and strength to kids. 

The article runs 2000 words and would be ready for mailing within two weeks of your request to look it over.  The piece is illustrated with wonderful color photos, and model releases are available. I look forward to working with you on this entertaining project.    

Kindest Regards

Jonathan Maberry

PO Box 84

Warrington PA 18966

Home: (215) 555-1234

Cell: (215) 808-0945

Email: jonathan_maberry@yahooc.com

Website: http://www.jonathanmaberry.com   

******************************************

SNAIL MAIL VERSION

 Jonathan Maberry

PO Box 84

Warrington PA 18966

Home: (215) 555-1234

Cell: (215) 808-0945

Email: jonathan_maberry@yahoo.com

Website: http://www.jonathanmaberry.com

November 25, 2003

 Mary Smith, EditorKidStuff
123
Play Ave.
New York  NY  10017-5514
 

Dear Ms. Smith, 

Kids don’t need to learn how to fight…they need to learn how not to.  Martial arts classes don’t teach kids how to get into fights, they teach them courage, self-respect, and confidence.  These are qualities that help children steer clear of violence. This is the primary focus of the modern martial arts school, and it’s a healthy, positive, and very powerful method that is working wonders with today’s kids. 

My article, Happy, Safe and Strong: Martial Arts for Today’s Kids, discusses how martial arts such as karate, judo, taekwondo and other ostensibly combative systems have been modified to meet the real needs of growing kids.  Instead of violence, the kids are taught values; instead of aggression they’re taught discipline; and instead of fear they are taught to understand and appreciate the differences  –and similarities– between themselves and their classmates. 

The article features interviews with parents and kids, and discussions with martial arts instructors who are on the cutting edge of this new way of teaching health, fitness, values, and strength to kids. 

The article runs 2000 words and would be ready for mailing within two weeks of your request to look it over.  The piece is illustrated with wonderful color photos, and model releases are available. 

Since 1979 I’ve sold 1100 articles and short stories and am the author of sixteen nonfiction books and three novels.  I’m a founding partner in The Writers Center USA in Doylestown, PA and regularly teach at writers’ conferences.  I’m also a martial arts instructor myself and have taught the art to adults and kids for 45 years.

 I look forward to working with you on this entertaining project.  Please respond via email to info@jonathanmaberry.com.     

 Kindest Regards 

 Jonathan Maberry 

  ********************************   

Keep queries to one page, get to the point, and make sure you deliver what you promise.  Hope this helps.  If you don’t want to post a comment or question, feel free to hit me via email at jonathan_maberry@yahoo.com 

Happy writing! 

Jonathan Maberry

www.jonathanmaberry.com 

Editorial services    www.careerdoctorforwriters.com 

Writers Corner USA   www.writerscornerusa.com   

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