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The Metaphysical Market – Find Your New-Age Niche
by S.A. Watkins

Hobbies and interests that some might consider out of the norm can lead to money making opportunities. Arts and crafts hobbyists have for years had access to magazines dedicated specifically to their passion. And many writers have used periodicals of this type to break into print.

Another popular topic is gaining steam with each passing year. Magazines, books, and web sites addressing New Age topics are popping up more and more at your local pharmacy, bookstore and on your desktop. Readers with an interest in paranormal, mystical and otherworldly resources have many more options than they did just five years ago.

And if you are a writer, New Age topics could turn into your bread and butter.

Are you an astrologer or a tarot reader? Or perhaps you just have an uncanny ability to see ghosts or commune with spirits from the great beyond. If so, the growing New Age market could be a place for you to showcase your knowledge.

My interest in astrology led to my first published article. After that success, I put my knowledge of the stars to the test, crafting and submitting more articles on this specialty market. Over time, my New Age clip file grew. And so did my confidence. In fact, I loved writing about astrology so much, that I landed a column on the subject. "Eye On The Stars" is featured in a business monthly read by thousands of people.

But as with any specialty subject, there are pitfalls to writing for metaphysical publications. For instance, I met another writer who writes for computer magazines. After I told her my specialty, she laughed quite openly. "Do you really believe that hogwash?" was the crux of her response. When I answered in the affirmative, our email correspondence ended abruptly.

The issue of pay is also one to consider. When I first began my search for appropriate markets for my writing, many of the publications that I contacted paid only in contributors copies, bylines or not at all. At the time, I was just happy to see my name in print. But there comes a time when you'll want to be compensated for your work. Thankfully, the new millennium ushered in a growing interest in metaphysical topics; more publications are offering standard pay and contracts.

The following are quick tips to get New Age writers started.

1. Professionalism

Editors of New Age periodicals expect the same professionalism and attention to detail that their more well known counterparts require. Query with your topic, outline your article and explain why you are qualified to write the piece. If you are asked to submit your manuscript, make sure you follow standard manuscript format. Don't use pretty fonts, colored paper or fancy language in an attempt to impress.

2. Know Your Subject

When I began writing for the New Age market, I chose astrology as my focus. But I was only able to do so after years of reading and studying this subject. Because you write about ghosts, astral projection and crop circles does not mean your work is taken less seriously by a publication's readership. Sloppy work and inaccurate reporting is unacceptable. And believe me, the editor will know.

I once wrote an article that focused on astrology's effect on the way we perceived celebrity. I was mortified when the editor I queried contacted me to say she'd found an inaccuracy in one of my profiles. This taught me to check and double check my facts like I would any other topic.

3. What's Your Experience?

In your query, be sure to include information on who you are and why you are the best candidate to write the article. If you're part of a Neo-Pagan organization, include that information. If you run a tarot shop or are an experienced yoga practitioner, make sure the editor sees that in your query.

4. Be Prepared To Back It Up

I recently had an article accepted in a widely read New Age magazine. When I looked at the contract, I was surprised to be greeted by a notary form! That's right, you may be called upon to verify the facts of your article or story. In this particular case, the magazine requested correct dates, locations and the names of the people who had played a part in my story. This was to ensure the integrity of my submission and for the ongoing respectability of the publication.

5. Keep Up To Date

I know a ghost hunter who complained recently about his field's changing technology. He's a writer who documents his paranormal experiences in metaphysical journals and magazines; keeping up with the latest gadgets and techniques is necessary for his practice and for his credibility.

Whatever your chosen New Age specialty, make sure to stay on top of changing trends. Attend workshops, read the latest books on your field and cultivate knowledgeable contacts.

Mystical subjects are becoming more and more popular; and now there is a burgeoning marketplace in which you can market your wares. Whether your New Age interest is business related, a spiritual journey or simply a hobby, writing about these topics can be profitable, stimulating and fun.

NEW AGE MARKETS

New Witch

P.O. Box 641

Point Arena, CA 95468

Phone: (707) 882-2052

Fax: 707-882-2793

Contact: Managing Editor, Dagonet Dewr

Email: dagonet_dewr@gmx.net

URL: http://www.newwitch.com

Pays .01 per word

Excepts e-queries and submissions

From the web site: New Witch gladly accepts essays, factual articles, fiction, poetry, column ideas, artwork, photographs, personal experiences, and ranting feedback relevant to our subject matter, goals, and readership.

*NOTE-New Witch is a new print magazine set to launch Fall 2002-any day now) I've just finished working with the managing editor on a feature article, and I liked my experience with them.

Fate

PO Box 460

Lakeville MN 55044-0460

Contact: Phyllis Galde, Editor

http://fatemag.com

Email fate@fatemag.com

Pays $25 for departments; more for features

No e-queries

*NOTE-Fate is well known among the metaphysically inclined; it's been around for over 50 years. It's run by one of the foremost New Age book publishers, Llewellyn.

Star IQ

Contact: Jeff Jawer, Publisher

Email: jjawer@stariq.com

http://www.stariq.com

Accepts astrology articles on various topics from 100-800 words

*NOTE-Star IQ is a general astrology site that seeks to teach and entertain its visitors. General interest and mid-level articles are best.

© Copyright 2003, S.A. Watkins

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