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Contributor Guidelines

A publication for bird hunting enthusiasts, The Upland Almanac focuses on the birds, dogs, gear, places, people, and issues that provide and enrich our experiences afield. Our editorial goal is to match that spectrum in the style, substance, targeted audiences, and geographical focus of the materials we publish.

Articles

General: We consider feature articles in several categories: hunting, bird species, how-to, travel, destinations, bird dogs, service journalism, shotguns, nature and habitat, conservation, profiles, news features, and humor. We are very interested in profiles of people making quiet contributions to wildlife and conservation. We also like to see articles highlighting specific places for the traveling upland hunter to visit — not your personal secret hotspots but rather certain areas of the U.S. or world with recommendations for food, lodging, guide services, etc. (See "Road Notes" and "Destinations," below.)

Most feature articles will be 2,000 words long, but we will also consider shorter or longer pieces. Writers should pitch features with the understanding that they will also provide about 10 - 15 digital images (with captions) for illustration.

Please avoid pitching four types of features that have become clichés in outdoor writing:
• Stories with no apparent point or theme other than "I went hunting and had fun"
• Nostalgia – Please develop a primary theme other than personal nostalgia
• Dead Dogs – To be blunt: No dead dog stories, please
• "All About Me!" – If you mention I and me more than you mention anything else, it's an "all about me" story (See highlighted note in "Style" section of these guidelines)

"Day's End": Poetry and brief (750 to 1,000 words) personal essays or mood pieces

"Destinations": Lodge-specific "where-to" pieces

"Landings": Brief, tightly written literary pieces on nature as it applies to upland bird hunting (habitat, insects, flora, fauna, water, etc.) The focus of this department almost insists that these be written about very specific places, as reflected in the details

News features: Articles about specific news-related topics for bird hunters. Reported stories, not opinions

Nonfiction: While we consider fiction, we are more interested in well-crafted creative nonfiction

"New to the Game": Articles developed with new hunters in mind, sometimes age-specific, often not; topic choice is vast

"Point and Shoot": Photo essays or essays about photography

"Road Notes": These emphasize traveling beyond the author's home territory as much as they do the hunting

"Side Dishes": Local color mini-essays to accompany main articles; developed with the editor on an individual basis

"Traditions": Tightly written mood pieces with ample photographic support. These illustrate a single traditional, personal element of the hunt

Photography & Artwork

Articles: 10 to 15 high quality digital images (TIFFS or JPEGS, 300 dpi, minimum), captions, and photo credits (see photo/captions style sheet, below)

Art: High quality digital images of almost any type of artwork (painting, carving, sculpture, etc.) that can be used for the cover, to illustrate articles, and as either illustration or stand alone pieces in the "Day's End" section

Pitches

Before submitting a manuscript, please email a proposal. Unless specified in advance, all submissions are sent on speculation. Please do not submit something that is currently being considered by another market, either printed or electronic.

Rights

The Upland Almanac purchases first North American Rights; also the right to use work for promotion or online for a period of one year. We occasionally consider previously published material.

Payment

Complete Article Package (article/photos/captions/sidebar when appropriate/mug shot; brief bio 2-3 sentences, optional email a/o website)

• Shorts (500 to 1,100 words)

— $100

• 1,200 to 1,500 words

— $200

• 1,500 to 2,000 words

— $325

• 2,000+ published words

— $400

• Additional for published "Side Dish"

— $100

News: 1,200 to 1,500 words

— $200

Personal Essays of any length with little to no photo support: $200

"Day's End" essays: $100

Poems: $25

Photos: Photo essay or individual photos or illustrations: $50/photo
We pay approximately four weeks after publication.

Deadlines – approximately three months before each of four issues per year: Spring (January 10), Summer (April 10), Autumn (July 10), Winter (Oct. 10)
Email article proposals to: Tom Carney, Editor, tom@uplandalmanac.com
Email cover art submissions and "destinations" proposals to: info@uplandalmanac.com

Manuscript Style Sheet

When preparing your manuscripts for The Upland Almanac, please adhere to these style points:

  • Generally speaking, article length is 2,000 words long. Manuscripts should be submitted in Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format.
  • 12-point Times Roman, everything flushed left, double-spaced.
  • Grammar and mechanics should follow current Associated Press guidelines.
  • Let's keep the readers focused on the topics of the articles and not on the writers. Please keep to an absolute minimum any first-person references. Aim for less than 3 percent of the total number of words. Likewise, with the exceptions of how-to articles or colloquialisms, please minimize the use of second-person references.

Caption Sheet/Photo Credits Guidelines

For each article submitted, please provide 10 to 15 high quality, digital images.

  • Supply photo captions in a document separate from the actual article.
  • For clarity sake, please identify each caption and photo with the same label.
    • Please do not label with photo codes like "DMG1470."
    • If the order/sequence of the images is important, please number your labels so we get it right. (Example, a sunrise photo might be labeled as "1. Sunrise at Camp" and the appropriate caption would be introduced by "1. Sunrise at Camp:")
  • Do NOT use an automatic numbering command to match the list of captions with photos. This creates havoc when photos are excluded from consideration.
    • Photos and captions using automatic numbering will be returned with a request to redo them.
  • If you're offering several photos for consideration with a single caption, please list them together and type the caption once.
  • Provide photo credits
    • If you, the author, took all the photos you are offering, then please make your byline at the beginning of the story read like this: "Text and photos by Your Name."
    • If you didn't produce all the photos, then you need to give credit for each individual image, using this style: "(Photo/Photographer's Name)."
    • Photos for which you have received permission to use from companies, agencies, governmental units, etc. should read "(Photo/courtesy of Such and Such Entity)."
  • Make sure you identify any people who are in the photo and their city, state. If a person's job/title is important be sure to give that, too.
  • Avoid captions that read, "Here the author..." or something like that. If you must use a photo of yourself, the simplest thing is to write the caption so that it emphasizes the concept or action rather than the author.

— April 2024