Green Writer Marketplace: The Final Four

Susan W. Clark By Susan W. Clark

I’ve discovered an avalanche of related publications while researching this year’s column. Selecting this final one for 2007 has been torture. Do I tell you about the online green zines, niche, and regional magazines or the scholarly and juried ones? How about those that are put out on a shoestring by dedicated activists?

Rather than a full profile on just one, I want to mention four inspiring magazines that I read regularly: Sojourner’s, Sustainable Industries, Yes! and World Watch. They have limitations as freelance markets, but might offer inspiration or help you discover a perfect spot for just the right article.

Sojourner’s is green with a Christian slant, subtitled “progressive Christian commentary.” They take their faith out into the world and put it in the trenches. The editor is Jim Rice, submission guidelines are online, and payment may range from $50 to $400. I take their free newsletter to spark ideas. See their Web site.

Sustainable Industries is a terrific West Coast publication covering emerging trends in business. You also get short tidbits from around the world about the latest great ideas, and committed green businesses worth watching. Their tag line is “The independent source for green business leaders,” and Managing Editor Celeste LeCompte selects features profiling companies making progress in every area of business, from waste reduction to green sourcing. She responded very quickly to my request for guidelines, but noted that Sustainable Industries doesn’t use much material from freelancers.

Yes! is also published in the Northwest, takes no advertising, and consequently pays with a subscription or maybe an honorarium. This beautifully-done magazine hits the ecological issues just right for me. I don’t see “eco-over-consumption” being promoted, they don’t use overly scholarly language, and I don’t think the term “smart growth” is one Yes! has adopted. Look at www.yesmagazine.org for style and topics. Please note they only take snail mail submissions at the following address:

Submissions Editor
YES! Magazine
P.O. Box 10818
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110

World Watch is also inspiring, with its strong emphasis on research, data, and international content. Its photos are breathtaking. While World Watch is open to freelance queries, the magazine requires meaty ideas that haven’t been done repeatedly and that are relevant to its far-flung readership. Editor Tom Prugh and senior editor Linda Mastny earned my appreciation for the prompt, courteous response to my query. E-mail worldwatch@worldwatch.org for submission guidelines.

No single publication will be able to use all of your creative green ideas, so if you haven’t done it already, start building your own list of publications. Brainstorm ideas for each that seem to fit particularly well and use that list to help direct your querying. Start now, and be sure to carry a notebook with you always to catch those ideas that surface like treasures when you least expect them.

Photographer, editor, and award-winning writer, Susan W. Clark is an ardent advocate for sustainability. The Utne Reader applauded her article “Sustainable Revolution” from In Good Tilth magazine as “world-changing.” She is a regular contributor to In Good Tilth and Touch the Soil. Her work has appeared in the Capitol Press, Portland Tribune, Small Farmer’s Journal, and Permaculture Activist. She edits Salt of the Earth, the quarterly journal of Oregon Sustainable Agriculture Land Trust. Her observations about living within our ecological means are posted at http://susanwclark.wordpress.com.

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