My writing tip for you this week is a reminder about the importance of:
When you first start writing, you know you need to analyse your target market carefully in terms of readership so you know who you’re writing for, the length of articles/stories the publication uses, the type of article/story the editor is likely to accept, the style you need to write in etc. Perhaps you make a careful record of everything you need to know, or you make mental notes as you study the market carefully.
Fast forward a few months/years and it might be the recorded research notes that go out the window first and soon you find yourself just quickly flicking through a publication to get the general gist of what they’re looking for. You might even dispense with that. Perhaps you’ve been published by them before and feel certain you know exactly what they’re looking for. But, even if you have, if you don’t look at your market carefully, how will you know that the slot you wrote for last time has been replaced by another? Or that the magazine no longer publishes stories shorter than 1500 words? Send in an article aimed at an old slot in the magazine or a story of 1000 words and the editor will know you haven’t bothered to take look at the magazine. It doesn’t look very professional, does it?
Thorough market research is a must.