Letters to the editor and opinion pieces are very powerful advocacy tools.
How to Write a Letter
In a letter to the editor or opinion piece, you can bring up information not addressed in a news article, and can create the impression of widespread support or opposition to an issue. When you write a letter to the editor, be sure to do the following. Adhere to word count requirements. This information can usually be found, online and in print, on the same page as the letters that are published.
Generally, as few as words are the maximum. Open with a strong statement, and be sure to place the most important information at the beginning.
Often, letters and pieces are edited to fit the space available in that issue of the newspaper -- most often they are cut from the bottom up, so placing the important information anywhere but at the top could result in its being omitted. Use a personal story or illustration to make your point in plain language. If at all possible, tie your letter to a recent piece of news, editorial, or a prior letter to the editor, and, if you do so, reference the title and date of the article in your letter.
If you are referring to a newspaper article, send your letter as soon as possible after an article has been published in the paper. Use email to submit your letter.
Editors like email because they will not have to re-key your letter for print. Send your letter or opinion piece to weekly and community newspapers as well.
Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper. The physical heft of a letter gives the communication a psychological weight that email and texts just don’t have. Take out your pad and paper today!. What would you say if you could send a letter to the future? Write a letter to yourself, and schedule when you want to receive it. Write a letter to Santa; Get a letter from Santa! Safe, free reply fast as reindeer fly! No email, street address or phone needed!.
In your signature line include your name, daytime and evening telephone numbers, email address, and mailing address so the paper can verify that you wrote the letter.
Some editors may write or call to confirm your information. Only your name and city will be published. If your letter or opinion piece does run in the newspaper, please send us a link to the letter: All rights reserved in all media.
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