I've been doing this for more than 25 years... from working with editors at Vogue Italia to the Detroit Free Press, I have in some way or fashion had to pitch an idea to them or be gifted enough to come to mind when they have an article that needs to be written. It's a privilege to say that I've lived as a freelance magazine and newspaper, now digital journalist and have lots of war wounds to prove it.
I had a recent bad experience with an editor that was too busy to respond to me and I quickly decided that I didn't want to work with moving forward. It's a freelancers own decision to say yes or no to an assignment and on this assignment I said no. Not because I didn't want to tell the story, because I did but I just chose not to work with people that make me feel horrible and that's what this editor did. She made me feel bad, and she disregarded all of the work that I'd put into writing that sorry. On that note, God gifted me this weekend and two editors that Id' been trying to reach for weeks got back to me and I'd like to share their messages because they are perfect examples of what a GREAT EDITOR looks like.
One was from an editor that I'd written for at madamenoire and hellobeautiful who had just started working at Essence. She responded to me via IG direct messenger.
Hey there, I’m not currently taking pitches as I have a full plate of contributors and things I’m working on, but if I have some travel and leisure pitches that I think fit your style of writing, I’ll hit you up!
The other was an editor at Travel and Leisure's Print edition.
I hope you had a restful weekend! Attached you’ll find our current print pitch guidelines, including what we want from a pitch and information about the types of stories we run in each section. I mostly edit our Discoveries section, which is focused on focused on travel trends, hotel openings, product launches, and other newsy stuff.
For the sake of transparency: I’ve received a large number of pitches recently and am not able to commission as many as I would like to. I’m always happy to look at ideas, but the best I’ve been able to do recently is say whether or not I’m interested, keep it in my back pocket, and hopefully pitch it somewhere down the line when the time comes. Which I know is annoying, but such is print, alas!
Thanks so much and let me know if you have any questions.