Knowing exactly what an editor wants.
Unfortunately, many new writers struggle with finding ideas and when they do get one, don't know exactly what to do with it.
New writers turn their ideas into articles and send them to newspapers and magazines hoping editors will buy them. In some cases, articles are published without writers knowing they have been accepted. And, payment is never received.
This is definitely not the right way to become a well-published freelance writer. How can you write an article if you don't know what the publication wants? That's just a waste of time.
Research is the key.
Research the publication first. Find out what type of articles it is accepting and dissect the articles thoroughly. You need to know everything about the magazine and its articles. Who the editors are, how to submit articles, whether queries are required, article word count, style, tone, number of quotes used. There's an art to publication research, but it isn't difficult.
Articles must fit a particular magazine's house style if you want to be published -- It's that simple.
If you write articles and submit them to publications without having done this research, you will more than likely receive a rejection. Editors are quick to pick up whether you have done this basic research. Editors want to work with writers who understand their needs and can come up with a continuous flow of good ideas.
You can write on numerous subjects or specialise in just a few. If you have in-depth knowledge in a specific subject, then, research publications in that field, editors may be desperate for well-written articles.
Publication research is fundamental to a writer's success and is one of the first things you should do.
Barb Clews is an award winning journalist with nearly 1,000 published articles to her credit. She has been a writer and editor for 15 years and is the author of "Article Writing for Freelancers" and "20 Tips to Increase Writing Skills" Visit http://www.bcabooks.com to subscribe to "Words that Work", Barb's monthly ezine packed with tips for writers.