This note is meant for professional journalists who would like to freelance for Citizen Matters. Our engagement with freelancers depends on the budget at any particular point in time; so do check with us first.
Please introduce yourself and your interest in the material you are submitting. Also include some background on the material if it is not entirely self-explanatory. Please send us samples of your writing, preferably news reports or features. (if not already sent)
Submit a brief resume that includes all the following information: (a) your current occupation, (b) current employer’s name and address unless self-employed or freelancing, (c) if you or your organisation are funded through grants/fellowships/donations, names of organisations providing funds this year, and (d) your current contact information. Remember to include references, so that we can contact people who know your work.
We discourage authors from using pseudonyms.
What to write
We normally publish three types of stories…brief reports (700 words), longer depth or analysis stories (1200 words) and pic features. We pay per article. All payments are done through online transfers. Please send your bank account details to us with the subject “Bank details of ”
Trial Process: We work with writers on a two article trial. After that we agree on a frequency that works for both of us.
Register on Citizen Matters
Update your author byline in your profile and see the “about yourself” field. Add a line describing yourself — e.g. “X is a resident of JP Nagar and loves animals”. Do add your mugshot/profile picture!
Read our style guide
Writing by professional writers should conform to this. We also encourage all citizen journalists to use this styleguide. Make sure you set your word processor’s dictionary to UK-style English and not US English.
Submitting your work:
Unless it is absolutely unavoidable please submit your material in the broadest possible format. We recommend TEXT format for written material and JPG for images. Adhering to the recommended format will also speed up the process of evaluating your work.
Please send all stories to email@example.com and pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org. Do send at least two relevant, good quality pictures related to your submission.
Follow up on reader questions:
We expect our authors to respond to reasonable questions from readers seeking information or clarification. This can happen by way of comments or emails. When email is used, we ask that you cc email@example.com so that we may follow conversations and/or provide additional input.
Follow up with citizens post-publication:
After publication of your article, writers must contact key subjects (citizens who may have flagged us on an issue or contributed their experience or insight to the writer for the piece) to let them know that an article was published in print or online. Otherwise citizens feel they are left out of the loop and complain to other writers who may call them later for other stories, wasting valuable time. Contacting can be done via email or phone.
With every story, send contacts of all leads you spoke to, both quoted and unofficial/confidential sources, along with the story. This will be filed internally and accessible only by editors.