Many magazines, newspapers, and media websites ask that you query them before submitting an article you’d like them to publish. When you approach a publication with formal submission guidelines that request queries, don’t try to skip this step by sending a completed article. Instead, compose a query letter like the one below to see if they are interested before you start writing.

To: Kristy Bianchi, Editor, Moms at Work Magazine

Subject: Article Query: Can’t You See I’m Working?

Dear Ms. Bianchi,

For many working mothers, telecommuting or a home business may seem like the answer to their prayers. They want to have more time with their kids and greater flexibility, so they take the leap and set up a computer in the dining room.

But the first thing they discover is that working from home includes many unexpected distractions. Children, the spouse, neighbors, and the family dog come and go. They make loud noises, ask for mom’s help, or interrupt to ask a “quick question,” always just long enough to break the working mom’s concentration.

The way out of this dilemma is to set clear boundaries on space, time, and responsibilities, such as:

  • Establish and enforce “working hours” in the household
  • Create a work space that affords privacy
  • Evaluate when additional child care makes economic sense
  • Communicate with children about new boundaries
  • Get help from the spouse and the kids with housework and errands
  • Hold your boundaries when they get tested

I would like to write a 1000-word article entitled “Can’t You See I’m Working?” for Moms at Work. This article will describe how work-at-home moms can create enough peace and quiet to get their jobs done.

I am the owner of the Happy Days Child Care Center, and hold a degree in early childhood education. For five years, I have helped the clients of our center find a balance between work responsibilities and quality time with their children. I have written two articles for Pacific Parenting. Samples of recent articles are available at [link] and [link].

If you are interested in this article, please contact me at [email] or [phone].

Regards,
Shelley Henning

For more tips on writing and submitting article queries, see Five Steps to Getting Your Writing Published Beyond Your Own Blog or Site.