Backdrop magazine, in case you’re on the site for the first time, is a student-run magazine that covers Ohio University and the surrounding area. Our articles touch on topics such as student issues, sex and health, food, sports and almost anything else you can think of.
And it just so happens that we are looking for pitches.
We are looking for stories that, as our name implies, showcase the “backdrop” of Ohio University and the Athens area. This means we are interested in features, non-fiction essays and some reviews. If you are looking to write breaking news stories or cover a beat on a day-to-day basis, we are probably not the publication for you. Here are a few notes about what we are looking for:
1. We’re looking for pitches, or a brief explanation of the article summed up in 150-300 words, which offer a different angle on a story than what you’ll read from The Post, The Athens News, The Athens Messenger or WOUB. That isn’t to say we won’t take fully-formed stories — if you send one and the idea intrigues us, we will take a look – but we’d prefer to work with you from beginning to end on any story ideas.
2. When pitching, please include your name and write something along these lines:
Dear Backdrop Online team,
My name is [Your Name} and I have a pitch for Backdrop magazine regarding [your topic]. Here are two or three sentences more about my topic.
Here are another two or three sentences about my idea.
My work has previously appeared at publications such as [list publications you have work for, if any]. If you have any questions regarding my pitch and/or my work experience, feel free to email me at this address or contact me at xxx-xxx-xxxx.
I hope to hear back from you soon and thank you for your consideration,
[Your name goes here]
3. To be clear: prior writing experience is not necessary for pitching. But if this is your first time writing in this form, don’t be shy. We can help you learn to write in our voice and get you involved with our writing workshops. You are not required to provide us with your phone number, but it is recommended unless you frequently check and respond to emails.
4. We accept pitches from all majors, so if you’re a business major who has something you’d like to write about and are willing to put in the work to make it a reality, we’re all ears.
5. Unfortunately, we’re not able to pay writers. But if you work with us and get an article (or more) published, we will share those article(s) on our Twitter account, and we’ll help you gain the skills necessary to improve as a writer, whether you are just writing for fun or are pursuing a career in writing.
If you’ve made it this far and are still interested in writing for Backdrop magazine, or if you just have a question about our pitch guidelines, drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We promise we don’t bite.