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FAQs

How do I submit articles or photos?

Email articles and photos as attachments. Don’t embed photos in the body of your email or Word document.

When will I hear from you?

We try to respond to submissions in a timely manner. If you haven't heard in three weeks, please contact us.

How long should my article be?

Write enough to tell the entire story. During the editing process, we may request additional information or cut to fit the available space.

Do you pay?

No, but we do send contributor copies upon request.

Any final words of wisdom?

Keep the reader in mind. Ask why someone would want to read your article, and write or revise accordingly. Double-check the spelling of names and other proper nouns. Use concrete language with strong action verbs and clear subjects.

What if I’m still unsure?

Email us with questions about submissions. Let us help you get your name in print.

Download a PDF of the writers guideDownload PDF

Writers Guide

USPS publications can’t exist without you. Your articles and photos bring The Ensign magazine to life. Many contributors have gone on to publish books in the marine field. USPS published articles have also won Boating Writers International writing awards, including two $5,000 grand prizes.

Even if you don’t like to write or doubt your writing skills, your passion and knowledge will shine through. You’ll also have the support of a professional editorial staff to polish your prose until it sparkles.

Articles: Use minimal formatting in Word, WordPerfect or a plain-text editor. Don’t forget to include your name and squadron.

Photos: Send original digital files in jpeg format. Photos should be taken at high resolution; the print size should be at least 3x5 inches at 300 pixels per inch. Please do not alter photos. Please identify people, places and objects pictured in captions at the end of your article or in a separate document.

Artwork: Please send native-format digital files, high-resolution scans or original artwork.

We accept all types of articles, but here are a few ideas to get you started.

How-to articles: Maintenance, repair, safety, seamanship and boat handling tips for both beginners and seasoned boaters as well as cautionary tales of boating blunders

Squadron stories: Civic service projects, educational and social activities, with photos if possible

Feature articles: Exciting boating adventures and in-depth technical articles

Fun stuff: Articles about how your boat got its name, the history behind your squadron burgee, short humor, nautical expressions, quotes, recipes and more

Boating news: Legislative issues, product information, uncharted hazards and other news

USPS news: Articles about USPS projects and programs that explain the subject’s impact and importance to readers

Other: Submit a Last Horizon report or email a reader letter.

 
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