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Writer’s Guidelines

Write For Us & Get Paid!

If you would like to write for us and get paid, here are some guidelines and information which will help you out.

What We’re Looking For:

We are primarily looking for tips for our e-mail newsletter, WorldStart’s Computer Tips. This is published daily to 300,000 readers and focuses on tips and tricks the average computer user can utilize.¬†We are also seeking feature articles for our website covering any and all aspects of computing.

Types of Articles & Payment:

We prefer to pay through PayPal, but checks can be cut for US residents only. However, you will be responsible for any PayPal fees. Checks will be mailed within 30 days of publication.

We are looking for general Windows, internet, and e-mail tips and all submissions must include any relevant screenshots.

~Payment varies widely depending on the quality of the submission, length, and usefulness of the tip or topic.

Approximately 250 words-$25.00
Approximately 400 words-$40.00
Approximately 600 words-$45.00
Maximum length is approximately 800 words-$50.00

Writing

All submissions should be written at a level anyone can understand. Our goal is to show the average user how to use his or her computer. Most tech manuals and books assume the user is already computer literate, but our publication / web site is designed to help everyone learn their computer, not just techies.

For example, let’s say you write a tip that involves opening the Mouse properties under the control panel. Most publications would simply tell the user to open the Mouse icon under the Control Panel. We are looking for more detail than that. We tell our readers EXACTLY how it’s done and which operating system is being used – Hit the Start Button, Settings, Control Panel. Then double-click the Mouse icon.

That’s what we’re looking for.

Submissions should be well written, require a minimum of editing, include relevant screen shots, and be presented in a lighthearted style. We like to entertain while we teach. If you submit a tip that reads like a high school biology textbook, it’s going to get rejected.

It’s also a good idea to become familiar with our site and our style. Any article preparation should include a search of past tips to ensure that what you’re offering hasn’t already been covered. Familiarity with the site will also offer opportunities to link to earlier tips. For example, if uninstalling a program is required to explain a procedure, a link to an earlier tip that has already explained uninstalling programs, can save effort and space.

Writing must be clear and concise. Our tiered payments are based on word count, because that seems the fairest method. However, writers occasionally abuse that policy by padding articles to guarantee a certain level of payment. So, in addition to word count, payment for articles will be subject to review based on quality as well as quantity. For example, in school, when an 800 word essay is assigned, one that’s poorly written or padded won’t be given the same grade as one that’s clear and to the point. That will also apply to writing for WorldStart.

An excessively long article, in addition to possibly earning less than full rate, will likely be bypassed in favor of another, that’s more suited to our needs. Articles that meet our guidelines and need a minimum of editing will be moved to the front of the line and paid the full rate (assuming all other criteria are met). Others may be paid on a sliding scale, depending on the amount of editing necessary.

Images

Screenshots provide readers a visual counterpoint to the text in articles and are a great help in understanding the process described. For us, they also provide evidence that the process described actually works. Whenever possible (which is 99% of the time), tips should be tested by the writer, and the steps recorded with images. It’s not enough to read what someone else has written, and assume that will work. If it appears the process is untested by the writer, it becomes necessary for us to perform the tests ourselves, in which case our own images may be inserted. Again, the number of images that require editing, or that need to be added, will likely affect payment.

Screenshots should be clear detail shots, wherever details are needed, rather than full screenshots. Of course, an occasional full screenshot is necessary. If so, please highlight the critical elements in the image. Be careful to avoid pixelation (see images below).

The examples below illustrate Start>Control Panel. Our preference would be the clear detail shot.

Full screenshot

Pixelated shot

Clear detail shot

Publication Rights:

We generally buy all rights to any piece that we purchase (although we are willing to negotiate). The reason for this is we may also publish your piece in syndicated and co-branded versions of our newsletter and that it may appear on other websites / paper publications with either our permission or via a syndication system. We also reserve the right to re-run any tips at our discretion.

We may, at a future date and at our discretion, include your submission in a book project and pay you a percentage of the royalty.

How to Submit:

Send us your idea before you write the piece. We have an extensive tip archive in place already, so we don’t want you to write something we’ve already covered. Use our search engine (top right of any page on the site) to see if the topic is already on the site.


Use this form to send us your idea. If we like it, we’ll contact you within 2-3 business days and have you write the article / tip for us.

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