call for writing: eaten magazine no. 21

Jun. 14, 2024
Artistic fields:

Hello lovely contributors! I’m starting to work on Eaten no. 21 and am looking for articles from you all! The theme for this volume is "baking."

For those interested in submitting an idea, there’s no need to send a very long pitch - a well thought out paragraph or two will do the trick - but ultimately I am looking for stories that will be between 1000 and 1500 words in their final form, are historical in nature, and can be tied to the theme in some way (puns and unusual takes are always welcome). In your pitch, please make sure to include a general outline of the history you wish to tell and the angle through which you will present it.

I can offer a rate of $400 per story and the deadline for submissions for pitches is next Friday, June 14th. First drafts will likely be due 3ish weeks after that but I am flexible.

This bit is the same from calls for pitches past but for the new people on this list, I realize history is not generally something that journalists regularly write so I wanted to add a few pointers to help everyone with pitching. Fundamentally this “historical in nature” is what I look for above all else. I am not interested in stories of contemporary journalism that mention history in passing (this includes personal histories as well as nutrition/recipe oriented pieces); I am looking for pieces that primarily focus on something that happened in the past that may or may not have a tie into the present. In the best stories, this relevance to the present will be evident in the history in and of itself, but this modern relevance it not at all necessary.

Historical essays are fundamentally arguments and keeping this in mind will help you to shape both a stronger pitch and ultimately a more interesting story. Your piece should aim to answer the question: why was the past like this and what evidence do we have to prove this interpretation?

Along these lines, I almost never choose pieces that are simply “the history of cheese” or “the history of grapefruit.” (If your piece is primarily a collection of fun facts and lacks an overarching argument, unfortunately it will fall into this category!) That’s not to say single ingredients don’t have fascinating backgrounds, but the more interesting historical pieces tend to have another layer on top of that. The history of cheese in a broad sense is just not as interesting to me as why Samuel Pepys buried his cheese during the London Fire and what this said about that era in England; the story of a grapefruit variety that was developed after being pounded by radiation is much more catching and allows us to delve deeper into other parts of agricultural history than the general history of that fruit.

Hopefully these guidelines are helpful for developing ideas. If you want concrete examples of what I am talking about, a few sample articles can be found at the Dropbox link provided and a full list of all the pieces Eaten has published can be found at the Google Drive Link provided. If you’re worried your topic has already been covered, please check that second link!!

And I won’t be reading any pitches until the weekend (June 15-16) after the deadline so no need to rush submissions before then. I am happy to receive multiple pitches from one person but I receive too many pitch emails to be able to give feedback on ideas before the deadline so please no “taster emails” to gauge my interest in an idea before its fully fleshed out. But I promise to respond to all pitches within a few days of the deadline, even the ones I don’t ultimately choose.

I look forward to reading your pitches!

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Call for Writing: Eaten Magazine No. 21

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