Have you noticed how popular list articles are in the American culture? For instance, browsing recently through sites of several national magazines, I counted six list articles at Good Housekeeping, and eight at Travel and Leisure. But, the winner was Cosmopolitan, where I found twenty of them! Are there reasons for this trend?
“People are attracted to lists because we live in an era of overstimulation, especially in terms of information,” explained David Wallechinsky (a co-author of “Book of Lists”). John Mankievicz (an American television and film executive producer and screenwriter) made a simple but persuasive statement, “Enough organization, enough lists, and we think we can control the uncontrollable.”
How true! I always make numerous lists to organize my thoughts, prioritize my writing projects, and keep track of my queries and submissions. This is my natural tendency of “being organized.” I also have written several list articles, such as “CHECKLIST: 13 Ongoing Marketing Tasks for Successful Freelancers” and “8 Paying Spiritual Markets for Writers!”
According to psychological research, lists are especially popular for several reasons: they relieve stress (because information overload is reduced), bring order to chaos, help us to remember things, and help us avoid procrastination by focusing on main tasks. Also, there is the “top-10 effect.” People are naturally inclined to put things and occurrences into round-number groups.
Fortified with this knowledge, we writers should use this psychological phenomenon to our advantage! We should write more list articles because our readers want to read them and editors are more likely to buy them. Although list articles can be written for numerous publications, there are some that specialize in lists of items, or markets for writers. I started to write and sell articles listing various writing markets this January, and that’s when I “stumbled” into list writing.
In the process of marketing my manuscripts, I accumulated lots of writers’ markets listings. Although I focus on travel articles and mystery stories, I plan to diversify my writing, and then my “hidden treasures” of writers’ markets will come in handy.
As a result of my research, I now sell “lists of writers’ markets” to publications in the form of how-articles, including to WritersWeekly.com! They are always in the market for lists of paying markets for writers.
Paying Markets for List Articles:
1. WritersWeekly.com is a very popular, free online publication for writers and authors, which offers freelance jobs and paying market for writers every week, along with advice about the writing and publishing industries. Payment is $60 on acceptance for lists of 8-10 genre-specific paying writers’ markets (i.e. how-to, romance, parenting, human interest, essays, fiction, etc.), with accompanying how-to instructions. Each short feature runs around 600 words. A sample is RIGHT HERE.
2. Freedom with Writing is an online publication for writers.
Payment is $30-$100 for lists of 7-50 paying writers’ markets.
3. Earn a Living Writing is Carol Tice’s award-winning blog for writers. Payment is $75-$150 for lists of 10-20 (or more) paying online markets on a specific theme.
4. Listverse.com is a web site that publishes lists that “intrigue and educate, specializing in the bizarre or lesser-known trivia.” Payment is $100 for a list of 10 items.
5. Cracked.com is “one of the most popular comedy sites on planet Earth,” publishing the list-style feature articles. Payment is $150 for each of a writer’s first four articles and $250 for each article after.
(You need to register for free to view detailed guidelines and instructions in the Forums section.)
6. Themysteriousworld.com is a travel site publishing list posts that include 10 items. Payment is $25-$50.
To find even more writer’s markets and freelance opportunities, see:
- “Where can I find a list of writing contests?”
- Archived Market Listings on WritersWeekly
- Scaring for Pay: 10 Paying Horror Markets for Writers! – By Alex J. Coyne
- 10 Paying Human Interest Markets for Writers! by Alex J. Coyne
- 8 Paying Spiritual Markets for Writers! by Tatiana Claudy
Tatiana Claudy is a freelance writer from Indiana. Her bylines appeared in Creation Illustrated, Mystery Weekly Magazine, TRAVEL THRU HISTORY, My Itchy Travel Feet, Go Overseas, Writing-World.com, and FundsforWriters e-publications.
How Many Copies Of Your Book Would You Have To Sell In Order To Break Even?