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Writing for Huffington Post | My experience

Since April, I had been throwing around the idea of Freelance writing. I loved writing here on the blog, but I felt as if I could do a whole lot more with my skills. I almost minored in English in college after all. 

After applying for sites like The Mix, and not hearing anything back, I felt discouraged. Regaining my composure, I took to Google. A lot of bloggers and writers talked about Huffington Post being a starting point, so that's where I set my sights. After researching "how to get published on HuffPo" & "writing for Huffington Post", I began an whirlwind experience that ended with my first published Huff Post article: Four things I wish someone would have told me about Grad School.


A lot of research on Pinterest lead me to tutorial blog posts detailing on what to send to Huffing Post, along with who to e-mail it to, and what to include in my e-mails. Honestly, the posts surprised me on how easy it was to contact someone and get published. I had always thought that to be published, I had to write a brand spankin' new post and submit it. I never thought that I could "recycle" an old blog post an submit it. Good thing I was wrong.

In thinking of what to submit for publication, I thought about my personal posts. Why? Because everyone likes a personal post that they can identify with, right? In looking through my old blog posts, I couldn't find anything that actually stuck out to me. Sure, I had posts about depression, motherhood, being a parent to a child with ADHD, diy, and so on, but nothing that would make me WANT TO read it.

After some searching, I came across HuffPost College: a section of Huffington Post for articles about college. Finally it dawned on me: I had written a post about Grad School that had had success, so why not try and get it to go viral?

I sat down and thought about it. I copy & pasted my post in a word document and edited it. I drafted an e-mail to Arianna Huffington. I clicked send. 


My exact e-mail to Arianna:

Hello!

I wrote this blog post about the four things I wish someone would have told me about grad school. I think it would be a great fit for HuffPost College readers!


Thank you for your consideration. 

Tabitha R.



Along with my email, I pasted the complete article at the bottom and  attached a word document with it. 

After I sent my e-mail, I also sent this tweet to Arianna and Huffington Post:

Fingers crossed... I just sent a pitch email to @ariannahuff of @HuffingtonPost!

Less than three hours later, I received this response from Arianna at 5:59pm:

Dear Tabitha, many thanks for thinking of us and for sending me your post. We would love to feature your voice on HuffPost. I'm ccing our blog editor Madeline Wahl to send you a password so you can start blogging on the site. All the best, Arianna

Honestly, I was fan-girling and floored. I mean, I sent the email after 3p, on a Monday. I know that Arianna probably didn't send the response, but still. I recieved a response via email from Arianna F'ing Huffington!

It took a couple of days for Madeline to get back to me, and "invite" me to join their new contributor platform: Athena. But on the same day, after I had signed up for the platform, I did my research to write the perfect post & hit publish on my first article


I am happy that I tried and succeeded at publishing an article on Huffington Post. It gave me the confidence to try more Freelance writing, and try to submit an original post for an actual paying site. It also gave me the experience. Plus it's another thing that I can mark off my Blogging Bucket List.


-Things to consider if you are wanting to write for Huffington Post-

Don't use the Blogger Submission Form.
Pitch to Arianna Huffington directly, like I did. I have heard that using the submission form will inhibit response time, and your submission may get lost in the shuffle. So just don't use it. Arianna's email is arianna {at} huffingtonpost.com

You can use published work.
Huff Post allows for republished work, but they do ask that you change the post up a bit, so it's not exactly the same. 

Response time is varied.
To be honest, for most people, they either receive a response 1) within 24 hours, 2) within a week, or 3) not at all. If you don't receive a response, revamp your submission, and try try again.

Huffington Post does not pay writers.
Some writers & bloggers are discouraged by the fact that Huffington Post does not pay, but I wasn't. To me, it was like guest posting on a rather large site. And it provided a starting point, so when other sites that actually pay ask for links to articles, I can share my HuffPo piece.

Blog traffic may or MAY NOT increase.
If you link your blog in your profile (why wouldn't you?), don't think that writing for Huffington Post will increase your traffic from your article alone. You have to promote your Huffington Post piece EVERYWHERE! Yes, now would be the time to be a sales man woman. 


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