A guide for writers pitching ideas to whynow magazine
What is whynow?
whynow is a digital magazine and radio station founded in 2019 that features the best stories in British arts, music and culture. We are a culture first, feature based channel that is fuelled by a passion and belief in British arts and the stories of the individuals who are creating it.
It was set up with one goal in mind — to celebrate the peerless creative talents of everybody that calls this island home from all corners of the UK. From John O’Groats to Land’s End, every story matters. We care about many things, but chiefly our passion is for promoting excellence, regardless of whom or what we are profiling.
We are not isolationists. We want to tell extraordinary stories from around the world, but with an angle of how it relates to Britain. We’re a national magazine who are always thinking of readers living in the UK. We cover many areas of journalism: history, film and television, photography, fine art, music, and gaming. We are always looking for beauty and magnificence in unexpected places.
We take great care to produce articles that are illuminating to read, but also look stunning, and so we’re always eager to commission photographers alongside writers to capture the most exciting emerging characters in art and culture, up and down the country, as well as eminent heavyweights whose legacies have helped shape Britain’s post-war cultural landscape.
Why write for whynow?
We offer unrivalled freedom in style and format. Because we try as often as possible to avoid division and incendiary politics, our canvas is largely broad and open for the prospective writer. We pride ourselves on being a platform where everybody can find a home, irrespective of race, age, religion, or gender. Because of this, we publish articles that focus on positivity in their storytelling, that always look for examples of overcoming adversity through strength.
Writers who pitch to whynow should do so in comfort, knowing that we offer worthwhile and fair rates that more often than not best any set by our competitors. Everyone has to eat, including storytellers, and we want you to keep coming back to us with your best stories, knowing full well you will be valued and respected. Rates are dependent on how long the piece will take you to write and the lengths you go to for the story.
WHAT ARE WE LOOKING FOR IN A PITCH?
Please ensure you pitch a story and not just a subject. We want an angle and won’t commission a story just because a topic is interesting. If a band, visual artist, or entrepreneur has a good look and talent, this won’t be enough, we need to know if their story will be rich enough to draw readers in. When you pitch, you should have an idea of a narrative, characters, or groups of characters you want to help bring to life through scenes of real-life cultural events to anecdotes that make up the stepping-stones in an interviewees life story.
We will only commission reviews of a new release or one which is celebrating a ‘significant anniversary’ if there’s a story behind it, ideally with a new angle or development. By significant we mean that enough time has elapsed that the artwork, whether it be an album, novel, or film, can be revisited in a fresh and interesting way.
Email all pitches to Editor-in-Chief Harvey Solomon-Brady (email@example.com).
We’re looking for strong stories that boast compelling characters and resonate across the culture: like this human interest piece on the post-Covid explosion in popularity of roller skating; the time we went to the darts and witnessed first hand the riotous capability of Brits to amplify drama; and our London heritage caffs odyssey to all the capital’s best greasy spoons. The ways art can influence our live is on our radar too, like this piece about how films can become relationship red flags, or questions about how we consume live entertainment and who’s behind it, like this piece that puts Secret Cinema’s extortionate pricing model under the microscope.
We like pieces that hone in on inspirational stories of human achievement, like how one-legged marathon runner and cancer patient Terry Fox raised millions for cancer research and admiring London artists’ perseverance despite facing eviction from their studios.
We also can’t get enough of original takes on arts events, such as Jake Denton’s ‘Royal Correspondent’ coverage of an exhibition in Bethnal Green and Mae Losasso’s brilliant investigation into the ‘hipster-fication’ of the Church of England.
Have a look around and see if you can add something to our insightful and eye-opening archive.
Is there a band, artist, photographer, painter, sculptor, charity activist, athlete, community leader, war hero, designer, or even cafe owner on your radar or making waves? If the answer’s yes and they fit the bill as someone with an interesting story, we want to publish it.
SIX OF THE BEST
Six of the Best is one of two original whynow photography series, along with Far-Flung, that gives photographers a platform to talk about six of their own photos, sharing the story behind them. Highlights so far have included an intimate chronology of the late Tish Murtha’s work by her daughter Ella, Rob Bremner’s social reportage of Liverpool and Scotland in the 80s and 90s, and Dazed & Confused and AnOther Man founder Rankin’s selected six.
Please note that because these interviews are formulaic in their structure and words are primarily provided by the photographer, the rates for Six of the Best are lower than for other features.
Our other photography series, Far-Flung, features long-form interviews and explorations of photographers from all over the world who have documented jaw-dropping phenomena. Whether it be a petrol-choked and perilous ‘Well of Death’ in Bangladesh, chasing tornadoes across Oklahoma, or photographing 600m deep into the crater of an active volcano, if it takes your breath away, we want to share it with our readers.
Our newest series is a deep dive into the finest moments of British cultural brilliance. So far we’ve covered the importance of coming-of-age dramas, from Skins to Inbetweeners, to the inimitable realism and emotion of Shane Meadows’ films. Our country has produced countless examples of world class talent across film and music, art and culture, invention and adventurism, and we want to tell the world how it happened.
After you’ve filed…
Filing isn’t the final stage. Please be prepared to act on any feedback or editing requests from our editors. You must be responsive and open to instruction just as much at this stage as at the very beginning. Remember that we’ll be thinking about how your piece will appear on our website, on both mobile and desktop view, so be on standby to assist with sourcing photos and embeddable videos or playlists.
Once we’re happy with your submission, we will give you the green light to send off your invoice to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please Cc in email@example.com to all of these invoice emails.