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appropriate writing sample for Cobblestone

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Hi everyone,
I want to submit an article proposal for an upcoming themed issue of Cobblestone, the American history-focused magazine in the Carus group of magazines. They ask for a writing sample as part of the submission package. For those of you who've submitted to magazines like this before, I have a question: do they want a previously published writing sample, an example of how I would write about the subject I'm proposing, or something else?

I have published magazine articles and essays for adults, but not for kids, so could send an example of my work for adults. I could also send a sample of a book-in-progress I'm writing for teens that's more closely related to the topic I'm proposing to the magazine.

What do you think would be most appropriate? The deadline is July 1, and I have everything prepared except for choosing the sample. Your thoughts would be great!

Best,
Carrie
#1 - June 16, 2016, 07:10 AM

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Carrie, a writing sample is something that you've written that would give the editor a sense of your writing style. It can be published or unpublished. A chapter from your book sounds like a good idea. If book idea and article are on the same topic, note that the Carus group buys all rights so you'll want to make sure you can include that chapter in your book (ask for nonexclusive and let them know why).

I've written a lot for Odyssey and the first time for samples, I submitted an article I wanted to write for them (which I later learned from a wise mentor NOT to do because it's much easier to reject a developed piece than a working outline), plus a couple of adult pieces (that weren't suitable for the audience), and then I had the audacity to tell them that if I can write for Ladybug I could write for Odyssey :faint But I got to write nearly half the issue so it all turned out well :grin3

Good luck, Vijaya

#2 - June 16, 2016, 08:44 AM
BOUND (Bodach Books, 2018)
TEN EASTER EGGS (Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces

What an awesome story, Vijaya! Here's to audacity! As usual, you have just the answer I'm looking for. So do you recommend sending more than one piece? Sounds as if that's how you approached it and it worked out well for you. I think I'd submit a chapter from my book and a short article or two for adults.

The piece I'm writing for them wouldn't fit in my book, though it's on a related topic, so no worries there. But your point about nonexclusivity is good to keep in mind for future projects.

Thank you!
Carrie
#3 - June 16, 2016, 03:03 PM

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Thanks Carrie. I think I can only be brave while writing. In person, I am a mouse.

And yes, your choice of 2-3 samples sounds excellent.

Good luck, V
#4 - June 16, 2016, 03:37 PM
BOUND (Bodach Books, 2018)
TEN EASTER EGGS (Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces

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Carrie:  Best wishes for great success! 
#5 - June 16, 2016, 04:04 PM

 :thanx
#6 - July 01, 2016, 08:15 AM

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