With a little work, you can write a great
letter to your local paper Just like these:
Vickie Sandell Stangl — OK to speak at church but can’t electioneer
Abby Raphael — The Potential Effects of Repealing the Johnson Amendment
Writing a Letter to the Editor
Be brief. A short letter stands a better chance of being published, and any newspapers limit letters to 250 words or less.
Be direct. Sincere, personal observations and concise points are more powerful and will be remembered better than lengthy arguments.
Be respectful. Don’t engage in name-calling or abusive language. The newspaper may not publish your letter, and even if it does, readers will be less likely support your cause.
Be accurate. Editors may seek clarification or proof of your claims, so be prepared to back up any facts you present.
Be engaging. Newspapers are more likely to publish a letter if it has a local angle or is in response to a piece that has already been published.
Submitting a Letter to the Editor
Follow the paper’s guidelines for length, content and submission. Most newspapers have a letters policy that is printed in their editorial section and/or on their website. Read some examples of letters that have appeared in the newspaper you’re submitting to for reference.
Include your name, hometown, and contact information. Newspapers will use your contact information to confirm your identity, not for publication. Most newspapers will not print anonymous letters.
Send your letter promptly. The longer you wait, the less timely your comments become and the less likely it is the newspaper will print it.
Most newspapers expect letters to the editor to be sent via email or through an online submission form. This information is usually listed on the newspaper’s website.