Our Pitching Guidelines

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Take on the Road is actively seeking pitches from new writers. Over the past few months, the site has evolved from a personal food and travel blog into a digital magazine that commissions work from an international group of journalists, writers and bloggers. We’re working to build a high-quality, engaging and meaningful collection of writing about travel, people, food and culture across the globe. Please read the guidelines below before pitching us your story via email.

WHAT WE’RE LOOKING FOR:

News (up to 500 words)

These posts will showcase something worth watching or reading that relates to travel, food, culture or human stories. For example, documentaries by VICE or books like Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson that tell a meaningful non-fiction travel story. While these posts are not reviews (and should not be written in the first person), you should include a description of the material outlining its strengths or appeal.

Trend and issue-based pieces (600-800 words)

Reported, feature-style stories that showcase a new trend or an emerging issue in a particular place. Possible areas of interest include travel, food, culture, development, technology, politics and social justice. The weirder or quirkier the better, and we’re especially interested in under-reported locations.

Character profiles (500 words)

Profiles can be of almost anyone with an interesting story. Journalists, filmmakers, artists, community leaders, changemakers, local personalities. These posts should include quotes from the subject and be written in the style of a mini feature-interview. Again, the weirder or quirkier the better, and we’re especially interested in under-reported locations.

Recipes from the road (400-500 words)

Recipes from around the world! The recipe should be inspired by or found in a particular country, region or city, and have some kind of compelling story around it. You’ll write about these elements in your introduction to the recipe. These posts will not be written first-person.

Travel narratives (600-800 words)

These will be the only form of first person writing that appear on the site. They should be brief glimpses into a writer’s experience of a place, with a wider meaning, message or learning experience. These should not be part of longer works, but standalone pieces designed to tell a brief travel story of this length.

HOW TO PITCH:

  • Email editorial@takeontheroad.com with a pitch of no more than five bullet points about your idea and no more than two sentences about your writing experience.
  • You must have or be able to source images to accompany your piece (photographs or illustrations are fine).
  • If we like your idea, we may ask you to write the piece on spec. We’ll agree a deadline and a flat fee for the post (payable upon publication).
  • You must be a native English speaker, or have the equivalent written fluency of a native speaker to contribute.
  • We would love to work with dedicated and reliable writers who want to work with us regularly. After a few contributions, we are happy to commission multiple posts and discuss pay rate increases.
  • Note that we do make every effort to reply to all pitches, but we only commission a couple of pieces per month. So please bear with us if it takes a little while to get back to you.

PROMOTION:

  • Links to your website, blog or social media profiles will be included in published posts. However, we will not accept any promotional/sponsored links from freelance writers.
  • Your work will be promoted through our Facebook and Twitter pages.
  • We ask all contributors to share their work through their own social media pages, and to encourage people to comment on and share the post.

GUIDELINES:

  • Please bear in mind that Take on the Road will no longer be a lifestyle blog going forward, so don’t base your pitch or your work on older posts that currently appear on the site.
  • Posts should have a professional but conversational tone. Unless you are writing a travel narrative, everything should be written in the third person.
  • Our audience is global, so all posts must be written in a way that is conscious of this. A piece should be just as relevant to somebody in Calcutta or Beijing as it is to someone in London or New York.
  • We prefer not publish or license anything that has already appeared somewhere else, including posts published on your own personal blog.
  • The Guardian has some useful tips on travel writing here. Please consider them when writing your piece.

PUBLICATION, FEEDBACK AND PAYMENT:

  • Payment is upon publication–you get paid after the post gets published.
  • We do not guarantee publication if you have been commissioned on spec. That means that if the post doesn’t get published, you don’t get paid.
  • If we decide not to publish your work, you will receive detailed editorial feedback from two editors outlining why the post was not suitable and how you might improve it. We will be happy to look at a second or sometimes third draft and reconsider the story for publication.
  • When your post is published, you’ll need to email an invoice to editorial@takeontheroad.com. We provide a template for this, but it must include a physical address and your payment information.
  • Invoices will be paid within 30 days of receipt via bank transfer (UK) or TransferWise (international). Payment can also be made via Paypal if TransferWise is not available in your country.
  • Pay rates are agreed on a case-by-case basis and will depend on your experience, the quality of your work and the strength of your story.
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