Do You Know Your Reader?

Do You Know Your Reader? | Be a Pro Writer

One of the main reasons I reject story pitches I receive as editor of a regional lifestyle publication is that the story would not interest our readers.

The clue is in the word regional. Our magazine covers a certain region of the country. I regularly receive pitches for articles about places to go and people to see outside of our region. Um, hello? If you don’t know your geography, look at a map.

Likewise, one of the most frequent edits I make in stories I receive is vocabulary. If I, a college-educated, middle-aged woman who studied three foreign languages and worked vocabulary workbooks for fun as a kid doesn’t know what a word means, surely my average reader won’t either. (FYI, the average American reads on a seventh-grade level.)

Know your reader, folks. That is the best way to break in, and stay in, the magazine writing market.

Who is your reader?

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