Getting started in garden writing

willameadowsJuly 22, 2006

If anyone out there has good advice for a horticulture professional who would like to "expand her horizons" into garden writing, I would love to correspond with you. I know plants - I am a propagation manager at a large wholesale nursery - and I know the mechanics of writing. I believe I could be a good writer, but I don't know how to get started. Any suggestions?

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With what you already know I suggest you go ahead and pick a few topics for yourself and write some articles. After you have two or three articles written up you can go to the next step of deciding who to submit them to. I would start at the top with submissions to Fine Gardening and like magazines. Garden writing is fun but don't look for it to be lucrative. You also need to start now taking photographs of whatever topic you may write about in the future. Pay is usually for the article based on length with some extra for usuable quality photographs. Is this the kind of help you were looking for?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2006 at 7:54AM
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clfo(z7 with luck)

Join the Garden Writers Association and come to the annual can network with people who are garden communicators and they are a generous, friendly bunch. You'll learn a great deal, and have a great time too.

GWA has regional meetings as well as the national one, and their magazine that goes out to members has useful articles.

My own advice to you would be to start on a regional level - it's easier to get published in regional magazines or newspapers, and regional books almost sell themselves. (Not that I think Eddie's advice to start at the top is bad, because anything can happen, but it's usually hard to break into writing for the national magazines.)

Hope to see you at a GWA meeting!

Here is a link that might be useful: Garden Writers Association

    Bookmark   July 23, 2006 at 8:42PM
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fredw10(z8 AL)

Eddie gives good advice. The larger garden magazines use only staff writers. I find articles by "lay writers" usually more interesting. Write a plant profile, a garden profile, or a how-to piece and submit it to some of the smaller magazines that indicate they do accept unsolicited writing. Pay is a small, flat rate, extra for feature articles or pictures used on the cover. From my experience articles are 700 to 1000 words. check out the type of articles that appear in each magazine and tailor yours accordingly.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2006 at 12:58PM
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Eddie has a great idea... start at the top. But also try writing for local news papers, garden clubs, nurserys newsletters. These are also good starting points also.

Try writing your own newsletter, I put on my web page. I usually have one done 4 x's a year on my web site.
Except I still have christmas stuff up there now?? better get a moving before it is christmas again.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2006 at 4:47PM
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