Want to contribute to 53 North or -- starting in November -- to Voices of Labrador?
This information will help you decide if your story idea or image is right for either of our publications.
WHO WE ARE
53 North Magazine is a weekly news and features publication serving, primarily, the residents of Labrador City, Wabush, and Churchill Falls. It appears on Sunday and, in addition to all the news in Labrador West, includes business, arts and entertainment, hobby and leisure, health, community, youth, and other well-defined sections. 53 North is available across Labrador, either in local stores or by subscription, and at International News (Upper Level, Avalon Mall) in St. John's, for those outside the area who enjoy a peek into this corner of the region.
Voices of Labrador begins as a monthly, full-colour publication in November of 2006. Voices will be available to all communities in Labrador, capturing the beautiful places and interesting faces throughout our region -- it's a sort of "Up-homer" for Labrador. Unlike 53 North, Voices of Labrador's focus isn't hard news, but the features that catch some part of the spirit of our people and communities. Stories for Voices of Labrador are generally planned much further in advance than a weekly paper.
Reading our publications should give you a firm understanding of what type of content we're looking for each week or month. Although Voices of Labrador is still in production for its first issue, a "sampler" of the magazine was distributed around the region and can be sent out to interested contributors.
WHAT WE HOPE TO SEE ON OUR DESKS
We hope to see submissions that are enthusiastic and knowledgeable about our area. Experienced writers will find a group of dedicated colleagues with whom to work; new writers will find a supportive environment in which to hone their craft. The ability to use a camera to help illustrate your pieces is definitely an asset. In general, whether for 53 North or Voices of Labrador, your best bet is to call -- or drop us an email -- with your story idea or news item before going to the effort of writing it. In addition to ensuring we don't have two people tackling the same item, a chat with us will usually help the writer refine their idea and ensure the finished piece will conform to our space available and other technical issues.
News pieces for 53 North should be tightly written and accompanied by contact information for the people interviewed. Features for either publication should offer the reader value. Ask if the piece will inspire, give a giggle, or provide useful information -- and don't lose track of that goal as you write.
We'll need short pieces and fiction/poetry for Voices of Labrador, so don't be afraid to pitch us something other than news or features.
Ultimately, a piece for either publication should give the reader a taste of the region or the event, or provide insight into a life lived. Articles for 53 North or Voices of Labrador must, also, have a tight connection to the area. Whenever a reader flips our pages, they should see our people, hear their voices and opinions, or be taken away to a corner of our region. Think specifically, and locally. That's not to say that the outside world doesn't affect Labradorians, just find the Labradorian connection before suggesting the story. Tell us what Labradorians are accomplishing elsewhere, how world events play out here, and how Labradorians are affected by -- or create solutions to! -- broader problems.
If you have a great story, but aren't sure how to approach it, don't worry. We've had stories told to us over the phone and then assigned an experienced writer to work with the source to help complete the final article, with credit to both "writers." The important thing, to us, is that you have something you're passionate about when you talk to us.
To smooth the editorial path, remember that we do use Canadian spelling. "Colour" instead of "color," and we don't use "lite" for "light!"
WHAT WE OFFER CONTRIBUTORS
We pay for first Canadian Publishing Rights in most cases, but speak to us if you've published a particular piece elsewhere. If the previous publication is not a similar market, we may still be interested in it. We offer $0.10/word for features and longer pieces. Number of words is determined from the edited text and includes any sidebars, recipes, or other add-ons we've approved for the piece. In general, we pay $10/photo used. If we bump it up to a cover shot, we may well pay more. We also supply contributors with a complimentary copy of the issue in which their work appears. Fiction pays at $0.07/word. We try to respond promptly to ideas submitted. If you haven't heard from us in a couple of weeks, feel free to call and see where we are with your query. Payment is issued in the same week/month as the piece appears.
We prefer electronic submissions for words and images. If you don't have an internet connection, we suggest you fax us your submission for text. Depending on the time frame, we'll pay for ExpressPost/Registered Mail for photographs and/or slides to be sent to us. Never send your only copy of anything in the mail!
Different word processing programs can return
different number of "words" in an article. At our offices, we recognize
that words vary in length from "a" to "antidisestablishmentarianism." In
the industry, a "word" is a five-character unit. On a regular 8.5x11"
sheet of paper, double-spaced, with an inch margin all the way around, there are
approximately 25 lines, with 10 words per line. You can estimate about 250
words per double-spaced page if you're using a standard-sized font.
HOW TO CONTACT US
Phone: 709-944-5353 (business hours) or 709-944-0106 (after hours)
Snail Mail: 53 North / Voices of
219 Humber, Suite A
Labrador City, NL A2V 2Y3
We look forward to hearing from you!