Friday, May 05, 2006

Q&A: Markets

Q: Every book, magazine and article I read about travel writing says "know your markets". But what is a market and where do I find these markets?

-Lindsay, New York, New York

A: It's ironic that most beginning travel writers ask that very question. In fact, it was mine also.

A market is the publication you would like to write for - a travel book, magazine, etc. Knowing your "market" is essential to publishing an article with that particular publication. You should study 3-6 back copies of the magazine to get an idea of focus, style, columns, and departments. This, essentially, will increase your chances of publishing an article because you can tailor your query/article to their exact needs.

To find markets, start at your local bookstore (which is great because you can read the magazines there, take notes and don't have to buy the magazine, if you're strapped for cash).

Next, try the newest edition of the Writer's Market. They list hundreds of magazines seeking a variety articles. A note of caution: the travel writing section of the Writer's Market is underrepresented.

Also, search the internet. Go to your favorite search engine, type 'travel magazines' and a list of magazines will appear. Cross reference the ones you already have and add the new ones.

Lastly, you should never stop searching for markets. New magazines launch and e-zines begin. This process should be a continuous adventure.

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