Discover The Rewards of Feature Writing

Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality FeaturesFeature writers have inquiring minds. They like to learn new things all the time. Read what avid freelance feature writers like to write about, and hopefully you’ll be inspired to write and publish features for newspapers and magazines.

Recently, I interviewed some feature writers I know. I’ve included their comments below.

I begin by giving my perspective.

Charlotte Digregorio

I enjoy writing features about people involved in interesting careers. I’m able to enter into their work lives and learn what it would have been like had I pursued a different career path. Feature writing allows me to get beyond my immediate world and to dream about other things.

I’ve written about pastry chefs, architects, scientists, foresters, fishermen, real estate developers, judges, restaurant owners, actresses, and pilots–to name a few. Most people are proud of what they do, and their enthusiasm for it is contagious.

Carolyn Sammons

I like learning about new things. But, it’s not like I want to be a student again and go back to school. I like learning to do fun things. That’s why I write how-to features. I especially enjoy the steps in creating a fun project like making a wreath or quilt. I find it rewarding to teach others through my writing. And, it gives me a break from my career as a mom.

Kathryn Hansen

I like writing features about service organizations, and the good things they do for people in need. I’ve written about food banks and job training centers, and I’ve written about groups such as Kiwanis whose members are involved in charitable activities.

I’ve spent my life as an active volunteer, so my writing is an extension of my interest.

Anthony Flores

I like writing informational features, such as those about consumer issues. I write features about where to go to get help with common complaints.I also write about how to find help for addictions, such as gambling, and how to succeed in small claims court.

I find it gratifying when readers of publications write to me and tell me I gave them information on how to solve their problems. This is another aspect I like about being a published writer. I’m a full-time freelancer.

Jay Ford

In my retirement, I pursue my dream of traveling. Writing goes hand-in-hand with that. I write features about domestic and foreign travel spots, both touristy and remote.

I like going new places and experiencing a new way of life. I like talking to people from all walks of life about the area they live in, and about their quality of life. I love exploring landscapes and architecture.

I’ve written about beaches in Brazil, churches in small towns in Italy, and California vineyards. I live the good life now.

Before I retired, in my professional adult life, I managed an accounting firm and sat behind a desk all day. Now, I can be physically and mentally active and use my imagination as a writer.

Ellen Martinson

I like writing about lifestyles, as I like interviewing people. I’ve interviewed homesteaders, beach bums, and homeless people–anyone with a story to tell. I’m amicable, and I can get anyone to talk about anything.

I especially like the psychology behind the writing and reporting activity. I was a social worker for
15 years before I became a freelance writer.

Sue Matson

I like writing features about events. I’ve covered flea markets, farmers markets, rock concerts, and
flower festivals. I like being able to get interesting quotes from a variety of people, from organizers, exhibitors, and performers to attendees. Practically everyone likes to talk about what they do and what they enjoy.

I write on the weekends and during the summer, when I’m not teaching fifth grade.

John Kim

I live in the Midwest where we experience all the seasons. I like writing seasonal features like kayaking, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, fishing, and gardening. I love being in the outdoors, enjoying nature, and writing about people with active lives, just like me.

I retired early from the military, so this suits me just fine.

Mike Clinton

I’m a chef by profession, and my sideline is writing about food. I write features about preparing savory dishes for parties and picnics. I also write features about ethnic cuisine, and how to decorate your space for entertaining–rooms and tables with centerpieces.

You see, anyone can be a feature writer, and they come from all walks of life. You, too, can have fun and find feature writing to be rewarding. As a primer, read my book, “Beginners’ Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features,” a classic that has led thousands to successfully write and market their features for publication.

This simple guide has been a Featured Selection for Writer’s Digest Book Club, and it’s available through libraries. This book will get you published!

And, if you’re already writing and publishing features, please take the time to comment on the type of features you like to write.

Copyright 2011 by Charlotte Digregorio.

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About Charlotte Digregorio

I publish books. I have marketed and/or published 55 titles. These books are sold in 46 countries to bookstores, libraries, universities, professional organizations, government agencies, and book clubs. I am also the author of five non-fiction books: Haiku and Senryu: A Simple Guide for All; Everything You Need to Know About Nursing Homes; You Can Be A Columnist; Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features; and Your Original Personal Ad. The first four books have been adopted as supplemental texts at universities throughout the U.S., Canada, India, Pakistan, and Catalonia. They are sold in 43 countries, and are displayed in major metropolitan cultural centers. These books have been reviewed, recommended, and praised by hundreds of critics, librarians, and professors worldwide. I am also the author of a poetry collection: "Shadows of Seasons: Selected Haiku and Senryu." Two of my books have been Featured Selections of Writer's Digest Book Club. I am regularly interviewed by major print, radio, and television organizations throughout the U.S. I have signed books at libraries, chain bookstores, and university bookstores. I was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize in poetry. I have won thirty-three poetry awards. I have been nominated and listed in "The International Authors and Writers Who's Who" in Cambridge, England and in the "Who's Who In Writers, Editors & Poets U.S./Canada." I am an internationally-published haiku, senryu, tanka, kyoka, haibun, free verse, acrostic, cinquain, etheree, and sestina poet. My poetry has been translated into six languages, and I have done poetry readings at a variety of bookstores, libraries, art centers, cafes, tea houses, and galleries. My poetry has been displayed at supermarkets, art galleries, libraries, apparel and wine shops, banks, botanic gardens, restaurants, and on public transit. I've been interviewed on cable television about my poetry. I also hosted my own radio program, "Poetry Beat," on public broadcasting. My poetry has been featured on several library web sites including those of Shreve Memorial Library in Louisiana and Cornell University's Mann Library. My background includes positions as a feature editor and columnist at daily newspapers and as a magazine editor. I have been a public relations director for a non-profit organization. I was also self-employed as a communications/public relations/marketing consultant with 111 clients in 16 states. In other professional areas, I have been on university faculties, teaching French, Italian, and Writing. I regularly give special lectures and workshops on publishing, journalism, publicity, poetry, and creativity to business and professional groups, and to those at writer's conferences, universities, literary festivals, non-profit organizations, and to libraries. I have been a writer-in-residence at universities. There have been about 400 articles written about me in the media. I have served on the Boards of writers and publishers organizations. My positions have included Board Secretary of the Northwest Association of Book Publishers. I served for five years as Midwest Regional Coordinator of The Haiku Society of America. Currently, I am Second Vice President of the Haiku Society.
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2 Responses to Discover The Rewards of Feature Writing

  1. Have 2 mags published my cartoons. Hope my blog stimulates interest. Coupla poems published in anthologies.

  2. Keep writing! Your comments about writing are on target!

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