The Brighton Seagull's Pitch Guide

The Brighton Seagull's Pitch Guide

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The Brighton Seagull is looking for talented writers and photographers to pitch stories about Brighton and Hove. (If you have an idea for something that isn’t traditional words or pictures—a video, or something else, please still get in touch; we’d love to hear about it!)

We care about two things: engaging stories and good craft. You don’t have to live here to write for Seagull, but your story does need to be about Brighton and Hove in some way. We want our readers to take something away from every piece they read, for the human-interest to shine through, and for new perspectives and angles to be brought to their attention.

Our readers span a range of ages, backgrounds and professions but they’re almost all civically engaged (so a local angle is a must) and interested in a wide range of topics (so don’t worry if your story is “too specific”).

We want stories about:

  • interesting people or organisations (e.g. an in-depth look at The Real Junk Food Project, or a profile of the bird whistle man.)
  • the city’s history, or its future  (e.g. an oral history of the Marlborough pub and its role in the community, or a look at how a new development is affecting a neighbourhood.)
  • fresh perspectives on issues or events of local importance (e.g. the effects of nearly 20 years of 'no overall control' councils on the city, or the commercialisation of Pride.)

We want our stories to be:

  • well-researched
  • people-focused
  • relevant to our readership

We don’t want our stories to be:

  • rewritten press-releases or corporate puff-pieces
  • rehashing issues that have already been covered extensively elsewhere.
  • listicles

All pitches should be emailed to [email protected], with the subject ‘PITCH: [Title] from [Name]. Please allow up to two weeks for us to reply - we will reply to every pitch. Please include in your pitch:

  • What the idea is (this doesn’t need to be long, a few sentences is absolutely fine.)
  • Why our readers would be interested
  • Who you’re planning on interviewing, if applicable
  • Why you are the best person to pitch this
  • Two or three links to previous writing

We would prefer you not pitch fully complete pieces—we’re eager to work with you on your pitch—and please don’t pitch anything published elsewhere.

Features should ideally range from 600 to 1,500 words. Snappy, tight news reports will be less, long-form features will be longer. All pitches will be worked on with our NQJ-qualified editorial team who can support writers in developing their craft.

The Brighton Seagull, being a fledgling publication, pays a maximum £100 per article. This will increase as we continue to grow the publication. We will also be open to investing in longer, more deeply-reported pieces in future, but at the moment our resources are limited.

We especially want to hear from people looking to start out in journalism, and are keen to give opportunities and training to those wanting to learn. We’d like to develop ongoing relationships with our contributors, and successful pitches are likely to lead to more commissions. That said, if your pitches are unsuccessful please feel free to submit again—we’ll try and give you some feedback on your ideas so you’re more likely to be successful in future!

We're also going to arrange some in-person events in the coming year to give you a chance to meet the team, ask further questions, and talk to fellow writers.


If your article is accepted

What should I do before submitting my article?
Make sure that your article conforms to the Style Guide and that you have thoroughly proofread your work. The better this is done, the quicker your article will be published. If you’re able to provide images to which you have the rights to accompany the article, please do, if not we’re happy to source some appropriate images.

My article hasn’t been published yet. Why?
We’ll usually let you know on receipt of completed article (if not sooner) when we’re planning to publish, but events could get in the way and things might have to be moved around. If this does happen to be the case, it’ll most likely be published shortly following that. We won’t have forgotten about you—but if it’s been longer than a week and we’ve not been in touch, drop us a line.

What should I do after my article has been published?
Share it for the world to see! We will be up to date with what’s being published each day and share it on our official social media channels, but taking the initiative to share it yourself on your own personal accounts is also a good idea - just remember to tag us in the posts (@seagullbtn across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook).

If you use relevant hashtags and tag in official accounts, you can also increase the readership of your article - and maybe even get special attention from the official accounts themselves.