Contributing to Bethesda Magazine

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Contributing to Bethesda Magazine

Bethesda Magazine is an intensely local, bi-monthly publication, covering Bethesda, Chevy Chase, Gaithersburg, Kensington, Silver Spring, Potomac, Rockville and a small section of Upper NW D.C. (primarily 20015 and 20016 ZIP codes). We’re looking for stories about the many interesting people who live, work and/or come from this area. We also publish Health and Home sections in each issue of the magazine, again, with a focus on local people and their stories as they relate to those subjects.

We ask that pitches be as specific as possible, including the “why” of the story, any background that would make it especially appealing, the local connection and a general idea of sources you plan to seek out.

Because the magazine is bi-monthly, we works months in advance, and often are largely planned out through the year. So if you’re pitching a story for summer, you should probably do so sometime in January or February. We prefer that pitches be made by email ( or

We do publish first-person—both reported first-person long-form pieces, and a regular 1,000-word essay called Story of My Life. First-person pieces are, for the most part, the only stories we accept that come in complete; others are assigned. And the majority of our stories are third-person.
Style and formatting Standards for Contributors

  1. Contributors should put their contact information (phone numbers, email addresses) at the top of the first page of their stories.

  2. All copy should be submitted as an MS Word attachment, not Word Perfect and not as email.

  3. Do not indent paragraphs. The first line of every paragraph should remain flush left.

  4. Single-space the body of your story. But use 2 hard returns after every paragraph (putting in an extra line of space between paragraphs).

  5. Do not double-space after periods or colons. Only use single spaces. These are time-consuming and tedious to delete, and the missed ones affect the spacing on the finished page.

  6. An M-dash—a long, solid line—has no spaces around it, and can be formatted automatically with MS Word by typing 2 hypens. When you hit the space bar, the hyphens beome an M-dash.

  7. We use AP Style (with some exceptions) and Merriam-Webster online for spelling.

  8. For fact-checking and/or photography purposes, contributors should put contact information for their sources at the bottom of the last page. And do please let sources know that they may be contacted to be photographed

  9. Contributors should write a one- to two-sentence bio at the end of their stories.

  10. Contributors should send an invoice after their stories are completely edited (through both the line editor and copy editor). Include your mailing address, Social Security number, the name of the story, the publication date, the final word count (minus bylines, headlines, etc.) and the agreed-upon total.

If you have any questions, please contact Lisa Shroder, Editor, at

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