Did you know that you can receive cash or a prize simply for writing letters to magazines? Most magazines reward the writers of the letters that they print – often with gifts and sometimes with quite a bit of money. Very few readers actually write in so it’s not hard to make money from it.
- Why should you send a letter to a magazines?
- How to make money by writing a letter to a magazine
- How much money could you make?
- Our list of magazines
Magazines really need letters and true life stories from readers and you would be surprised at how few people actually write in. Some magazines get so few letters and life stories that they have to ask their journalists to make some up. Why not have a go yourself?
Once you have read some of the letters in magazines you will see that you really don’t have to come up with anything amazing. Many of the letters are surprisingly bland. In fact, if you write in with something really extraordinary or salacious you might get a call from one of the journalists who will write your story for you and give you even more money for it.
It is not time consuming and it could mean regular money if you write often and for different magazines.
Magazine freelance journalist Mel Fallowfield spoke to one of our team and stressed that few people actually write letters or true life stories to magazines. She is responsible for publishing the true life stories of people who have contacted her with an interesting life story.
Mel encourages more and more people to get in contact with magazine journalists as you could be looking at earning £1000 for doing virtually nothing.
Mel explains that the process of selling your true story can be very simple. You simply contact the features team or a freelance magazine journalist and tell them briefly your story. If it’s successful you could be looking at making £1000 in two weeks.
Mel reassures her clients by contacting them before the story is published and reading it out to them, to make sure there happy with it.
She emphasises the importance of including photos when selling your true story. This can increase your pay out considerably and is interesting for the reader. For eg- a weight loss story should include pictures to highlight the massive weight loss and change.
She reported that for selling true life stories you can earn at least £200-£300. More popular and sensational life stories can earn up to £1000, with extra money for photos.
Are you keen on selling your own true life story? Contact Mel Fallowfield on: 07710 357 110 or email her directly – [email protected]
Step 1: Choose the reward you want
Flick through some magazines in your local newsagent and take a look at the different sections that pay for contributions.
Pick out those that offer money or prizes that you would like. Check if the magazine only rewards one letter per month; you have a better chance if you write to a magazine which rewards all letters printed.
Once you’ve decided which magazines you’re going to write to, get a copy of them. Read through the letters sections and try to work out what sort of letters get printed.
Funny stories are popular. Has your child done anything that made you laugh? Did your pet get into a bit of a scrape recently?
Serious stories are also in demand. Think of a distressing experience that you have had. Some magazines like to print tips, too. Maybe you have some clever cooking advice or an easy way to save time with household chores.
If you read the magazine regularly, why not comment on an article? You could talk about an experience you have had which was similar to the author’s, or about how the article inspired you. Letters that compliment articles appear regularly.
Step 3: Write your letters and email or post them in
For extra measure, and even for extra money in most cases, your letter will be even better if it’s accompanied by a photo of the event/tip/story. It not only shows the magazines you’re telling the truth, but readers are drawn to stories by the pictures as well.
Make sure you only send copies of photos in the post, not the originals, because they won’t be sent back.
You only get paid if your letter gets printed so there is no guarantee that the letters you send in will earn you money. On the other hand, it’s great to show off to your friends when you get something printed.
Get your pen and paper at the ready and contact the following magazines with your stories.
Sums generally range from £10-£50 per letter. Most magazines have a star letter each month which receives a greater reward than the other letters. Some examples of the money on offer: Bella pays £50 for star letters. All these rewards are for letters about 50 -100 words in length.
The rewards can be, and more often are, prizes. These include things such as jewellery, flowers, cosmetics and spirits. Recent prizes include: a crate of Tuborg lager, £176 worth of Perricone MD products, a £50 bouquet and a £400 car warranty.
If you fancy writing something a bit shorter, magazines such as Take a Break offer up to £60 for tips to other readers. These are usually only about 20 – 50 words long.
If you’ve got an exceptional story, magazines like Pick Me Up and That’s Life will pay up to £1,000 per story. There are usually forms within the magazines to fill in the basic details and then the magazine will contact you if they’re interested.
Following is a selection of magazines carrying some of the better awards but there are many more out there. Please reply with your suggestions
That’s Life! – Up to £1,000 for each story published, £50 for a star letters and tips, £25 for other stories and pictures used. Make money with That’s Life! here.
Bella – Prizes of up to £200 for crossword and quizzes, up to £1,000 for real life stories and £50 for the star letter. Sell your story and earn up to £1000 here!
Take a Break – Up to £2,000 for your story, £60 for a tip and photo, £30 for a tip. Their Facebook page has a weekly question competition with a prize of £60.
Take a Break (My Favourite Recipes magazine) – Offers £25 for each recipe published and entry into a £500 Facebook competition. Send your recipe here and make money
The Story People – This includes the magazines Take a Break, That’s Life, Bella and Fate and Fortune. You can earn up to £2000 for selling your true stories. You simply fill out the form on their website, summarising your story and within a few days you will know if you have been successful or not. The Story People prides itself on reading the story back to the person who has submitted it before it goes to print, to make sure that they’re happy with it.
FHM – Star letter or true story receives a prize, e.g. currently offering a Sony LCD TV (there keen on hilarious stories/letters) Send a star letter now to win cool prizes
Zoo – Star letter receives a prize, e.g. DVD of film Goon and Alpha 5.7 stereo. See their facebook page regularly for opportunities to win prizes
Prima – Winning story receives £200 and £25 goes for ‘Words of Wisdom’. Check out their facebook page for info on submitting your own short story for cash
Chat – Offer prizes of up to £50 for puzzles. You can also sell your true life stories to Chat and receive payment. Bear in mind if your story is published it takes 8-10 weeks to receive payment. You can also send in funny photos, letters and tips for some form of payment such as cash or prizes. Chat does not specify on their website how much you will earn, you will have to negotiate payment when selling your true story. Find out how here.
Real People – Pay up to £2,000 if they use your story, £25 for tips with photos, and £100 for their mum-to-mum section. Make money with Real People here
Glamour magazine- Is another magazine to keep an eye out for, for it’s big competitions.
Woman’s Day magazine – has a whole true life stories section in it’s magazine. One story titled ‘I stole my best friend’s cat’ was particularly popular (don’t worry yours doesn’t have to be as strange!) You can make a good sum of money by contacting the editors and telling them your story.
Reveal – also publishes life stories and you can earn £200-300 at least for your confessions. For more details on selling your true story see their website or facebook page
Cosmopolitan – looks for inspirational, moving stories and funny ones to. Contact the features team by email for free with a brief description of your life story and negotiate a good price!
Closer – also want to hear from you. They publish life stories for a good price, so make sure to contact the features team here.
If you’re a new mum or have queries during your pregnancy, writing letters to baby magazines is a great way to get a few extra pounds towards all that expensive baby gear.
Pregnancy and Birth, Prima Baby and Pregnancy and Practical Parenting all shower star letter prize winners with loads of baby goodies.
Make sure you constantly keep an eye out for competitions and opportunities to make extra money via magazines.