There are plenty of writing opportunities, freelance and on a regular basis, for those interested in writing about raising children and parenting issues in general. You don’t need to be a parent in order to find material or outlets (attention, educators and other youth professionals) but parents and guardians of children of various ages can find many places to pitch their work. And the “doting parent” angle can help.
I have written freelance pieces for both online and print magazines over the years, based on things my two children have done and their interests. In recent years, because they are both enrolled at the same New York City public high school that I attended, this has become even more meaningful for me.
Local news outlets often welcome coverage of events that take place at area schools, and I have sent email queries to their editorial staff with offers to write about these. One popular news source called Sheepshead Bites (a play on the neighborhood named Sheepshead Bay) bought my story about a musical performance called “InterSing” where students from three local high schools competed against each other at my children’s school, and raised money for a charity.
A national news and commentary website accepted a story I wrote, as well as photographs, about a portion of the AIDS Memorial Quilt that was on display at my kids’ school. It was a somber piece but received good comments from readers.
A mothers website took my piece about the hassles faced by New York City middle schoolers who apply for spots at the many high schools in the public school system, and I highlighted how my own daughter navigated through the process. (She was admitted to her second choice school, but first choice of program in that school.)
An online magazine devoted to health issues of teens and adolescents bought a story I wrote about my younger daughter, who suffered a head concussion while at sleep away camp. I wrote about how her schoolwork was impacted and other issues she (and the family) faced.
If you are interested in writing about children, either your own or those you teach or work with, go online and look at the many types of magazines and websites that cater to this field. Read their articles and see what they like. Think about what you can offer them. Send queries with one or a few story ideas. There are many possibilities.
Ellen Levitt is a lifelong resident of Brooklyn, New York. She is the author of The Lost Synagogues of New York City trilogy, published by Avotaynu, and Walking Manhattan, published by Wilderness Press. Her freelance writing and photos have appeared in various in-print and online publications. She is also a veteran NYC public school teacher.
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