HSM Magazines Writers Guidelines

General Guidelines

  • HSM Magazines does not accept fictional stories or personal opinion pieces.
  • All work must be original, and the author(s) must own the copyright.
  • If you have never written for HSM Magazines, please familiarize yourself with the magazines and the style of articles before contacting us.
  • Our magazines are not scholarly journals; please do not send academic papers.
  • Topics for Feature Articles should revolve around a Michigan history-related subject, and a significant amount of the article’s content should take place within Michigan. We welcome articles about people from Michigan, but again, a significant amount of the content should involve their contributions to the history of Michigan or how their time in Michigan influenced their lives.
  • Feature Articles should approach a subject by finding an interesting angle to explore, rather than just listing its history.
  • Articles need to be written in third-person. First-person viewpoint is allowed in only “Remember the Time,” “History Revealed,” and “Michigan History Educator” Special Sections.
  • HSM Magazines will consider subject matter that takes place in 1982 or earlier. We will not consider topics that have taken place within the last 35 years.
  • Please note: With our quest for diverse subject matter and because we slate our magazines six months before their publication dates, it can take from 6 to 18 months to see your article in print once it is accepted for publication.

HSM Magazines

  • Michigan History has been published since 1917 and is the state’s popular-history magazine. With a subscriber base in the mid-20,000s, it is passed along again and again so that approximately 100,000 people read every issue. Edited for history buffs as well as history professionals, it features stories of all kinds from Michigan’s diverse past and explores the history and heritage of all Michigan’s peoples. Only about 50 manuscripts are accepted for publication in the magazine each year.
  • Chronicle is the membership publication of the Historical Society of Michigan (HSM) and has a total distribution of approximately 5,000 copies. The magazine is a 40-page, full-color publication that is devoted to exploring the history and heritage of all Michigan’s peoples and offers special sections that serve HSM’s membership. Only about 20 manuscripts are accepted for publication in the magazine each year.
  • You may submit your article for a particular magazine, but HSM reserves the right to assign the article to the audience/publication that fits it best.

Query

  • Please first send a query letter about your article idea. This rule applies to ANY section of the magazines listed below. We do not repeat topics and/or subject matter, and this will prevent your writing an article that has already been covered in one of HSM’s magazines.
  • HSM Magazines rarely reprints an article and/or subject matter that was previously published in other publications. If your article and/or subject matter has been previously published, please contact HSM for more information. As a result of this policy, we do not accept simultaneous submissions.
  • Queries should be sent to editor@hsmichigan.org with “HSM Magazines Article Query” in the subject line.
  • Your query should 1) include a synopsis of the proposed article, 2) note your background or credentials for writing the article, and 3) indicate if you want to submit an article for a specific section.
  • Include in your query if high-resolution photos are available to accompany your article. Authors are encouraged to provide illustrations or suggestions for image sources. Please note that the Society is unable to reimburse you for any expenses you incur in obtaining photographs.
  • HSM Magazines may also ask for writing samples for new authors before requesting a manuscript.
  • Your article idea will then go before the Editorial Committee for approval or disapproval. Please allow up to 4 weeks for a response on a query.

Manuscripts

  • If your article idea is approved by our Editorial Committee, you will be asked to send a digital manuscript for review. A request for a manuscript is not a promise that your article will be accepted for publication. Once submitted, your manuscript will be reviewed by the Editorial Committee. Please provide your full contact information, including phone number and e-mail address, and allow up to 8 weeks for a response.
  • Manuscripts should range in length from 1,500 to 2,500 words unless noted.
  • A manuscript submission must be accompanied by a list of sources for fact-checking purposes. Your article should draw upon multiple primary and secondary resources. (This is not necessary for Remember the Time articles.)
  • As the author, you retain the copyright for your article. You are, however, required to sign and return a form giving us permission to publish the article exclusively from the date of signing the permission form up to the date of publication and for one year after publication and nonexclusively thereafter.
  • Articles will be professionally edited for grammar, clarity, and length. Authors will have the chance to review the edited article before publication.

Bylines and Author Blurbs

  • Bylines will consist of only the author’s name. Titles and degrees will be listed in the author blurb.
  • Author blurbs for one-page stories will be the author’s title and affiliation only, due to space limitations.
  • Author blurbs for full-length articles will be limited to 50 words.

Payment for Feature Articles

  • Michigan History: Payment for Feature Articles ranges from $100 to $275, depending on the length of the finished, edited article. You will also receive 5 complimentary copies of the magazine.
  • Chronicle: If you personally are a member of HSM, payment for Feature Articles will be $75 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine. If you are not a member, payment for a published article will be $50, 5 complimentary copies of the magazine, and a complimentary individual membership to the Historical Society of Michigan.
  • Payments for Special Sections are listed below.

Special Sections

Made in Michigan: One-Page Special Section in Michigan History

  • Manuscripts should range in length from 500 to 700 words.
  • Topics need to be a product or service that originated in Michigan. Products or services that have moved out of state or have become defunct are still acceptable.
  • Payment for a published “Made in Michigan” will be $50 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Profiles: One-Page Special Section in Michigan History

  • Manuscripts should range in length from 500 to 700 words.
  • Articles for our “Profiles” section should present people who have made a lasting impression upon the Great Lakes State.
  • The person does not have to be a Michigander but should have affected or altered our state in some way.
  • The person should be a historical figure. We will consider articles about a person still living, but he or she should be at least 70 years old.
  • Payment for a published “Profiles” will be $50 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Remember the Time: One-Page Special Section in Michigan History

  • This essay-like article should range in length from 500 to 700 words.
  • These articles are written from the first-person point of view and focus on a single event in the author’s life, such as an experience or outing from childhood, college, or work.
  • The memory or event must be Michigan-based and should take place before 1982.
  • Payment for a published “Remember the Time” will be $30 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

History Revealed: Article-Length Special Section in Chronicle

  • Stories for our “History Revealed” section should show Michigan’s history from a “behind the scenes” viewpoint. This educational-style article should teach or enlighten the reader.
  • In articles for “History Revealed,” the journey is as important as the destination. In other words, “History Revealed” looks at the research that was done and all the results and surprises along the way.
  • “History Revealed” articles can be from either a first-person or a third-person point of view.
  • Articles can also revolve around how something was done in the past or the lifestyles of our ancestors.
  • If you personally are a member of HSM, payment for a published article will be $75 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine. If you are not a member, payment for a published article will be $50, 5 complimentary copies of the magazine, and a complimentary individual membership to the Historical Society of Michigan.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Michigan History Educator: Article-Length Special Section in Chronicle

  • Articles for “Michigan History Educator” should include suggestions and ideas for historical organizations and/or classrooms.
  • “Michigan History Educator” should revolve around a historical subject or a heritage of a Michigan people, and then offer ways that organizations and classrooms can celebrate, honor, or teach that subject or heritage. Articles can also show how a goal or project was accomplished and how other organizations can do the same.
  • If you personally are a member of HSM, payment for a published article will be $75 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine. If you are not a member, payment for a published article will be $50, 5 complimentary copies of the magazine, and a complimentary individual membership to the Historical Society of Michigan.
  • In rare circumstances, “Michigan History Educator” articles can be written from the first-person point of view.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Historical Tidbits: One-Page Special Section in Chronicle

  • Manuscripts should range in length from 500 to 700 words.
  • Topics should focus on an obscure or unfamiliar historical tangible item or service that would have been found or used in Michigan.
  • Payment for a published “Historical Tidbit” will be $25 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine, regardless of membership.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Cultural Corner: One-Page Special Section in Chronicle

  • The cultural item submitted should be historical and Michigan-based. Cultural items can range from music and literature to food and fashion to architecture and art.
  • Accompanying text should range in length from 500 to 700 words and depict how Michigan’s history has influenced that cultural item.
  • Payment for a published “Cultural Corner” will be $25 and 5 complimentary copies of the magazine, regardless of membership.
  • Sample articles can be e-mailed to you upon request.

Photo-Essays: Either magazine

  • Photo-essays for HSM Magazines should follow the description found in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary: “a group of photographs arranged to explore a theme or tell a story.” Photos submitted should be high-resolution and aesthetically pleasing since they are the driving force of the article. Accompanying text for each photo should be approximately 25 to 100 words and should give readers background information about that image.
  • Like a feature article, a photo-essay should educate readers by telling a story about Michigan’s past or heritage. The payment structure of a photo-essay also parallels that of feature articles. Those who wish to submit a query for a photo-essay should also include a sample photo and accompanying text.

Revised 5/24/2017

 

Historical Society of Michigan 5815 Executive Drive Lansing, MI 48911
Email hsm@hsmichigan.org | Phone (517) 324-1828 | Fax (517) 324-4370

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