For Writers

We occasionally consider unsolicited submissions for OtherWords pieces. Contact us at otherwords@ips-dc.org if you’d like to submit an op-ed for consideration after reading the basic guidelines listed here.

Topics

We’re interested in a broad array of subjects of general political or social concern, particularly those that relate to stories in the news. (However, even timely news items should have a shelf life of at least a week.)

We especially encourage subjects that authors can relate to with first-hand experience or storytelling, or where a specific story about one state or community can be relayed as a bigger story for the whole country. Where you can, tell stories about real people and places, but tell them so they make sense to people beyond those places.

Length

The op-eds we run typically are between 450 and 650 words long. Please aim for 600 words.

Copyrights

OtherWords licenses its content through Creative Commons, using an “Attribution-No Derivatives Work” license. This allows others to share the content but requires attribution and does not allow for derivative works (others may not alter, transform, or build upon the work). We believe this protects the interests of our writers while allowing for the maximum flexibility in distributing content.

Distribution

After publication on OtherWords, pieces are distributed to lists of hundreds of U.S. newspapers and news media outlets, all of which have full permission to republish it. You’re also welcome to republish your own submission after it’s run on OtherWords, with a simple attribution to OtherWords.org.

Audience

Many of our readers live in America’s heartland and aren’t activists or policy experts. So please express yourself in clear, jargon-free language, and give readers the context they need to understand your point of view.

Uniqueness

We don’t consider any op-eds that have run previously other major newspaper syndicates. We’ll consider on a case-by-case basis commentaries that have run previously on the web.

Edits

We edit contributions to ensure consistency with our editorial style and mission, but we make every effort to discuss any changes collaboratively with authors prior to publication.

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