Digital Marketing

How to write your opinion piece

Opinion pieces, also known as editorial/opinion pieces, are a great way for aspiring writers to get their work noticed and, in return, receive an incredible amount of publicity for free. You can write an opinion piece and publish it as long as you follow these simple rules.

Before you start writing, you need to select which newspaper you want your article to appear in. You are more likely to be featured in your local paper than in a national publication like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal or USA Today. Still, if one of the national publications appeals to you, give it a try.

1. Follow the rules. Each newspaper has guidelines on what their specific requirements are. Please familiarize yourself with these guidelines and strictly adhere to their requirements. If you don’t, you will be rejected.

2. Write accurately. Newspapers don’t like verbose writers, unless it’s for a featured article and a high-profile publication, like washington post. Short, crisp, direct sentences are the order of the day.

3. Write persuasively. Whatever your point of view, write persuasively. Don’t muddy the waters by giving vague answers. If you are discussing a problem, count on offering the solution. Expect your article to take up half of the opinion page; the other half can present a rebuttal or opposing point of view.

4. Double space. As with any submitted writing, you must double space your text. hope that the editors work your magic in your piece, including removing entire paragraphs to make it all fit.

5. Send a cover letter. Yes, you will most likely have to mail your letter, so send it with a cover letter to the right contact person.

6. Your contact information. Your name, address, city, state, country, zip code, contact numbers, and email address are needed. Chances are none of this will be included in the piece, but they need a way to communicate with you.

7. Resource box. Unlike ezine sites where you can write a long speech about who you are and have links to your site, there will likely only be a one- or two-word sentence about “who you are.” So consider writing your own resource box and hope you like it. [You can count on it being changed if they do not.] You could write something like this:


John Doe is a Detroit-based freelance writer affiliated with
Writer writing.

Yes, it can be all the information they want to share about you with their readers.

You will most likely know within two weeks if your article will be published. Some newspapers will contact you to let you know if you have been approved or rejected, while others will simply publish your article. Don’t harass them, as you may want to become a regular contributor.

What is the next step?

1. If you are approved, you can expect letters to the editor (from readers) in response to your article to start appearing in later editions of the paper. Don’t be surprised if letters start arriving at your home or workplace as well. Expect phone calls from people who want to discuss your point of view further, or invite you to speak in front of their group, etc.

two. If you are rejected, consider modifying and resubmitting your article or resubmitting it to another publication. Accept criticism of your writing style, if offered.

3. Opinion pieces are sometimes picked up by syndicators like Reuters Prayed google news; his piece may have a life far beyond the local newspaper. If it makes it to the national press, you can count on your article getting wide coverage. Do a search on Google a few days after publication and you may discover just how wide a net your article has cast. If that’s the case, good for you!

Above all, an opinion piece can help shape local or national opinion, so think about the great good you can do it as well as the publicity you can receive when writing your article. Although newspaper circulation continues to decline, the online versions of these same newspapers continue to grow, giving you exposure far beyond your intended market.

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