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Writer's Digest Handbook of Magazine Article Writing Paperback – December 26, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-1582973340 ISBN-10: 1582973342 Edition: Second Edition

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Writer's Digest Books; Second Edition edition (December 26, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582973342
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582973340
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #98,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Michelle Ruberg is an editor for Writer's Digest Books. She has had many articles published and has done much editorial work.

Customer Reviews

This has a lot of great information in it, and it's easy to understand.
D. L. Cummings
The handbook offers some excellent tips on magazine article writing specifically and general tips for a new writer.
Robert Gillies
I would recommend this book for anyone interested in writing better and getting published.
Stephanie A. Breen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

135 of 135 people found the following review helpful By H. Grove (errantdreams) TOP 500 REVIEWER on July 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
The "Writer's Digest Handbook of Magazine Article Writing" takes information from a wide variety of highly successful freelance writers and edits it together into a seamless instructional manual. It starts off with a discussion of finding ideas that addresses more than inspiration--it delves into methods to find topics that will sell. "Querying" and "Finding Markets" teach you to pick markets for your work and get assignments from them. "Selling Reprints and Rewrites" and "Business and Rights-Related Issues" help you to understand what your work is worth to whom, and how to make sure it remains worth as much as possible to you.

"Researching" and "Interviewing" get you through the information-gathering phase, which can take longer than the actual writing. "Avoiding Problems" helps you to avoid accidental plagiarism and similar legal problems. "Writing Techniques and Revision" deals with general issues of writing magazine articles, while "How to Write Common Articles" delves into specifics on article types such as profiles, roundups, how-to articles, service journalism, art-of-living articles, and even pieces for children's magazines. "Working With an Editor" shepherds you through the relationships that will make or break your career.

Because the book gets into so many specifics (there's even a sidebar on writing book reviews!) regarding particular article types and so on, you're likely to find it useful even if you've already done some magazine freelancing. It's so helpful to know all the little rules of thumb and instructions regarding different types of articles, not to mention what editors are looking for and get the least of in their submission piles.
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57 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Tom Bruce on January 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I have developed a life-long habit of taking notes of every book I read. My bookmark is a blank piece of paper on which I write things of interest that strike me as I read along. Within a couple of pages of "The Handbook" I stopped taking notes. If I had continued, I would have had as many pages of notes as the book is long. This book is jam packed with very useful information for those thinking of a career as a magazine writer. I have just begun working in this field, and I must say that there is not an area not covered by the 56 contributors to this work. This is like a college course that instructs you on how to find ideas for articles, how to write a great query letter, the dollars and cents of running your own free-lance business, researching, interviewing, developing a style, it is all-inclusive. If you have thoughts of becoming a magazine writer, you can cut out a lot of the uncertainty, stress, waste motions, and rejections of this business by studying this book. I daresay I'll be turning to this handbook on at least a weekly basis. Thank you to the editor and contributors for a job very well done.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Liz It Is on February 17, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to purchase this for an online writing course. I didn't expect much. I have read about half a dozen other books on magazine writing that weren't required reading. But this book is really solid and doesn't meander aimlessly, like a couple others I've read. I'd first recommend Jenna Glatzer's book, but this is a good addition to your writing reference shelf.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Amy Henry TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 11, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Granted, this is a few years old, but it was likely out of date even then. The information in this paperback is readily accessible online virtually anywhere-you aren't getting anything exceptionally helpful or detailed. The information is so general that one would suspect it of fitting in more with a high school English class than for a freelancer. Additionally, you aren't given the contact information as Writer's Market supplies.

A few things: plagiarism is covered in 2 or 3 pages. Not only is it very basic knowledge, but it doesn't even explain the different styles of citation. "Editor" tips are also basic...a little bit of time on Google and you'd likely yield more precise information from better sources.

Save your money....
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By D. Parris on June 11, 2008
Format: Paperback
The information covers the entire non-fiction magazine market, not just journalism. Includes the best ways to break into freelancing, and compares small and large markets. Creating a niche for yourself versus generalizing is also covered. Some writing tips are offered, as well, but the focus is on selling your work.

I am very pleased with this book, and I recommend it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jill on March 19, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is good if you already know how to write magazine articles. It gives a lot of information on the business side and getting them published. The actual writing section is not detailed enough, though and gives generic advice, such as to review it the next day with a fresh set of eyes.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By D. Lahat on September 1, 2009
Format: Paperback
I am established in my professional field and am looking into publishing articles in trade magazines, and Rubgerg's book makes an excellent primer. Every industry has its own habits and expectations, and that includes magazine publishers. I considered just picking up the phone and chatting editors up, and in hindsight, I realize how clueless (or borderline dumb) that would've been.

Handbook of Magazine Article Writing delivers on what its title promises, covering everything from brainstorming and finding markets to reprints and tax deductions. At the same time (and unlike most books in the field), it keeps its focus on magazines, not books and not prose. If this is what you're after, definitely give it a shot.
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