Spark Magazine Writing Guidelines for Contributors
1. Third person tense – all the way through (no I, me, we, you).
2. Use as few words as possible – aim for 2,400 (this may mean starting with 3,500).
3. Use the “10% problem” and 90% solution format. [“Don’t tell me about the labour pains – show me the baby!”]
4. Ensure there is good natural flow to the article.
5. Eliminate all unnecessary words.
6. No repeat of the same descriptive word in a sentence.
7. No long sentences.
8. Good use of commas.
9. Good use of paragraphs.
10. No slang or profanity.
11. No capitals or bold (it’s like shouting).
12. Spelling, and if possible, grammar checks, using software.
13. Use Australian spelling not US (e.g., “s” not “z”).
14. No unexplained technical or industry specific terms.
15. Abbreviations in full when first used, followed by short form.
16. All claims supported by evidence, attribution, and or examples.
17. Numbers less than 10 spelled out (in words not numbers).
18. Quotes in ” “.
19. No use of the unacknowledged work of others (a major sin).
20. Clear introduction, body and conclusion.
21. Avoid superlatives (e.g., “very,” and “extremely”) and profanity.
22. Avoid all-inclusive statements, e.g., not “all dogs are bad,” but “some dogs are bad.“
23. Avoid words that seem like preaching e.g., “must”, “have to”, etc.
24. Avoid criticism of groups– focus on professional analysisinstead.
25. MS Word. 12 point, Times Roman font, 6 spaces between lines, 1.5 lines line spacing, images in a separate file, not part of MS Word file.
26. Remember to pitch the article at the SME target audience – the article is for them.
27. Make the article informative not advertorial or advertising.
28. Include lots of gems of wisdom and experience – that is what the readers want.
29. Read the article out loud to see how it sounds – especially the flow.
30. Bounce the article off a trusted person for honest feedback.
31. Have the article reviewed (or written) by a professional writer / journalist.
32. End with a short, factual, “about the author” paragraph with contact details (email, LinkedIn, Twitter handle, website, mobile).
© Cupcui Pty Ltd24/12/2019 7:55:24 PM
Posted on December 25, 2019
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