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If you are interested in submitting material to American Thinker, please read the following guidelines before sending the submission to firstname.lastname@example.org. Because of the number of submissions received, notification of the status of your submission may not be possible.
Note that American Thinker accepts submission of material for publication only via e-mail. We cannot accept manuscripts mailed to us. American Thinker does not pay.
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Blogs and articles
American Thinker is divided into two sections: blogs and articles.
Blogs generally cover breaking news. We prefer to add value to recently published material in the form of analysis, links to related items, and other original input. If you wish to submit a blog post, please keep use of quotations within Fair Use copyright guidelines. In practical terms, this means keeping quoted material under two hundred words per item quoted, and substantially less if the original item is short. We cannot reproduce copyrighted wire service photos.
Respect the intellectual property of those who provide the grist for your own thinking. If you rely on the original reporting of others, credit them by name and include a hyperlink to the source(s) you used.
Articles provide analysis and new information on topics of importance to Americans. We want to advance the national conversation with fresh insight. Polemics for their own sake and recapitulations of what has been published elsewhere are not normally of interest.
Original material only
American Thinker publishes previously unpublished material only. We are not an aggregator of material already available elsewhere, including on a personal blog. Authors are free to specify a deadline by which the manuscript will be sent to other publishers, but please do not send manuscripts that have been submitted to multiple recipients already.
Once American Thinker has published the piece and it resides in our archives, subsequent literary rights become the property of the author, and the author may permit republication. We request that AT be credited as the original publisher and hyperlinked.
In general, we do not publish open letters. Exceptions can be made when the author has special standing in a particular issue -- for example, as a defendant in a legal case.
Parodies and satire
Humor must be witty, and our standards are high. Satire has the highest rate of rejection of any category of submission. We are not interested in parodies, rewrites of historic documents, or alternative words for popular songs. We welcome wit in our serious articles, of course.
Never make up quotations as satire. We deal in facts. The only time to use quotation marks is when quoting someone accurately while providing a hyperlink to the source. The sole exception is when a quote is well-known ("Give me liberty or give me death," for instance).
Please observe the following guidelines for manuscript preparation:
Put SUBMISSION (all caps) in the subject line of your e-mail.
Put the title, your name, your e-mail address, and the date of submission at the top of your manuscript.
A brief note should accompany the e-mail submission. The note should state (in two sentences or fewer) an outline of the content of the submission.
Form for submissions
Submissions in MSWord are preferred -- however, a submission may be sent as text in an e-mail if it conforms to the other requirements for publication.
All text should be aligned left (not justified), with no indentations whatsoever -- not even for block quotations, which will be offset for you. Lines should be single-spaced with a return between paragraphs. Proper formatting for dashes is " -- " (space hyphen hyphen space).
Do not use boldface font or underlines for emphasis. (These may be used for headlines within an article.) Use italics sparingly.
Blogs can vary in length. Articles should be 800 to 1,200 words. (Articles may be longer than 1,200 words at the publisher's discretion and with the editor's permission.)
If you have charts, graphs, pictures, or other visual materials, attach them to your e-mail as .png (preferred), .gif, or .jpg files. Please note that we cannot publish copyrighted material without permission from the owner, so news service photos and the like cannot be used.
Block quotations should be flush left, aligned left, and boldface. Do not place quotation marks around block quotes. Do not use the spacebar to indent text.
Put two spaces after a closing punctuation mark (period, question mark, exclamation point) and one space after all other punctuation marks (including colons and semicolons). Commas and periods always go inside quotation marks; question marks, exclamation points, colons, and semicolons go inside only if they are part of the quotation. We observe and enforce the Oxford comma at American Thinker.
Do not use all caps for emphasis. Capitalize the first and last word of the title, as well as any word that is not a preposition, conjunction, or article (a, an, the). Note: If the title is a complete, punctuated sentence, you may capitalize it as such.
If you have any tables in your work, please use the table function in Microsoft Word. Do not use the spacebar to create tables.
Hyperlinking to a source (rather than using an endnote) is the preferred method for fact verification. Source all your quotes and any important factual contentions. Embed hyperlinks if possible, keeping the number of words used as the link to a minimum (preferably one or two words). If you cannot embed, then the URL of the source should be pasted into the text following the word to serve as the hyperlink:
This link to American Thinker (http://www.americanthinker.com) pastes the URL into the text.
This is a link to American Thinker already embedded in a hyperlink.
If the source is not available as a link, an endnote can be used. The endnote should contain (at a minimum) the title of the work, the author, the date of publication, and the apposite page number. Do not use any word-processing function that connects end notes to the body of your submission; rather, insert the superscript reference characters manually into both the body and the notes. (If you have done this correctly, you will be able to erase the superscript character without also erasing its corresponding end note.)
Hyperlinks need not appear as end notes, but rather should be embedded in the body of the submission.
The writer may include an "author's credit" that will appear at the bottom of the article if the submission is accepted for publication. This credit may include a link to the author's website, blog, or e-mail. The author's credit should be no longer than 25 words.
Writers should source, verify, and then double-check all facts in their submissions. Wikipedia, something you heard on the radio, and nearly all bloggers are not definitive sources. Do not write speculatively about factual information. Do not guess or approximate unless you have expert knowledge.
Write in clear and direct sentences whenever possible. Avoid run-on sentences. Focus on fact and logic more than on your own opinions. Unless otherwise indicated on this page, grammar and punctuation should conform to The Chicago Manual of Style.
Avoid overstatement, clichés, and emotionalism. In general, less is more when it comes to rhetoric. If there is humor, it should be original and witty.
American Thinker will not consider material containing anything which could be construed as a threat or a call to violence, revolution, or any other illegal activity. Our mission is in the realm of civil discussion.
Writers need to avoid the excessive use of pronouns like "this," "it," "that," and "they." Properly affirming all antecedents is an essential element of clear and accessible writing. Whenever possible, synonyms should be used in place of pronouns.
Here is an example of an improperly affirmed antecedent:
"Jane and Mary watched the cars. They were racing." Notice that the reader is left wondering who or what is racing. The writer forces the reader to guess the referent of the pronoun "they."
These sentences would be properly written (assuming the cars -- not Jane and Mary -- are racing): "Jane and Mary watched the cars. The autos were racing."
Avoid use of the personal pronoun "I" as much as possible.
Focus on the reader
Attention to the perspective and information needs of the reader is necessary for writing to be effective. Presume that readers are impatient and have a world of choices a click or two away. With that in mind, get to the point as clearly and economically as possible. Tell the reader what the article is about and why the reader should care in the lead sentences.
Thank you for your interest in being published on American Thinker.