"Write An Article – Get Noticed!"

Last year someone suggested I write an article. Who me?
What do I write about, I’m a ‘newbie’ for heaven’s sake!
How do you write an article? Why should I write an
article?
Let me try to answer these questions. There are lots of
reasons to write an article:
1. Get your name and your business noticed
2. To help others
3. To teach others
4. To share experiences
5. Free advertising for your business
What do I write about? First, I write whatever thoughts
come into my head on a sheet of paper. I make a list,
then put it into some sort of order. Then I expand on
each thought. Where do ideas come from? I don’t know.
When I try to think of a subject for an article – nothing
happens! Just a bunch of unrelated thoughts – then all
of a sudden an idea pops into my head and voila! the
words come pouring forth faster than I can write them
down! It’s a fascinating experience!
Usually I wake up sometime during the night with ideas
running through my head. I write them down as they come –
in the dark – try reading THAT in the morning! It’s no
use trying to go to sleep, it won’t let me alone. If I
didn’t write these thoughts down as they occur – they
would be gone in the morning – lost forever. My best
ideas seem to come after lights out! This article was
no exception! So far, my articles have all come from my
own experiences. I guess that’s what I know best.
How do I write an article? Once I have my thoughts on
paper, I organize them so the ideas flow naturally.
Next, I type a rough draft in TextPad. I never submit
the first draft, I rewrite, recheck, retype, spell check,
then proofread a zillion times.
When it’s finally the way I want it, I count the words.
I usually try to stay around 500 words and format to 60
characters per line. It’s easier to get published if
the article is not too long and is correctly formatted.
Also, more people will read a shorter article than a
much longer one.
After I’m satisfied with the final draft, I’ll write a
short cover letter to each editor, personalized with
their name. I tell them the title, word count, and a
short two to three sentence description of the article.
I then copy and paste it into the email below the cover
letter. I do NOT send it as an attachment. Attachments
do not get opened due to all the viruses we have. I
always send as plain text, never HTML format.
Next, I get my list of editors that I submit to and
start submitting to them individually, according to
their guidelines. Some editors prefer you to request
to submit an article, and when I do, I tell them the
title, word count and brief description of the article.
Most will let you submit the article at once with
“Article” in the subject line of the email. I usually
receive an acknowledgement from the editors with a
personal comment on my article, and the date they
expect to publish it.
And that’s all there is to it! I’m always surprised to
see myself in print. I never thought of myself as a
writer, (except email!) And now I’ve received several
requests for weekly or monthly articles.
Guess I’d better get busy!

 
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