Letters to the Editor


Alright, so you’ve decided to write to the editor of a newspaper.  The general writing tips outlined on my Letter Writing 101 page will get you started, but there are a couple of other things to keep in mind as well.

Keep It Brief & On-Topic

Readers have a short attention span, and editors like to fit in as many letters as they can in each issue.   Short and snappy is best.  Try to stick to one point as much as you can.  Over time you’ll learn what you can get away with in each newspaper, and with practice you’ll be able to squeeze a few different arguments into your letters.  But to start with, keep it simple and to the point.

Reply vs Cold Call

Writing a reply to letter or article that has already been printed increases the odds of your letter being printed.  If you’re writing in “cold” about an issue that isn’t currently in print, your letter will have to be very compelling to make the cut.

Remember the Small Papers

 

Involve the Reader

 

Quoting Statistics

 

Don’t Be a One-Issue Wonder

 

Thank the Paper

 

Sign Your Letter

 

 

Communicating with Politicians

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