So you want to be a Huff Post blogger?
Maybe you want to reach more readers, impact more lives. Maybe you want to spread your voice farther than you can do alone. Perhaps, you just want the acknowledgment that comes with the title of ‘Huff Post blogger.’
Whatever your motivation, whatever Google search landed you to this page, I’m here to help.
Why? Because in under one hour, I wrote a blog post, decided it was best fit for The Huffington Post, and sent it off. In under 24 hours, my post was accepted and my backstage access granted.
AND YOU CAN DO IT, TOO!
So, here are my five easy steps to publishing on The Huffington Post:
1. Have something important to say.
This first step is the easiest, hardest step on this list. When I say I wrote my post in under one hour, what I mean is, literally, I typed the words on a blank page in that time. Coming up with the idea took a medical school course in cardiology, a lifetime of experience, and a fortuitous thought in the shower. But, when you do come up with that idea that is pushing through your fingers to be heard, give it a voice.
If you are struggling with this step, start with the concept: in one or two sentences, write out a summary pitch of the message you want to share in your article. Keep it simple and focused because, remember, once you are accepted, you can always write more posts!
And, for those of you bloggers out there with an extensive blogging profile, don’t think you have to start from scratch! The Huffington Post DOES publish previously posted articles. So tidy up an old favorite and skip to the next step!
2. Read. Write. Write. Write.
Step 2 is more of the technical aspect of blogging on The Huffington Post. Before delving into your first post, read some of what The Huff Post has published. They like their articles to be reader friendly, something a reader could scroll through and grasp in a two minute work break. Keep it within 1000 words when possible. Write a list. Tell a story. Just make it something you would want to read.
3. Use your voice.
Why? Because it’s yours, and it’s unique. Almost every idea you will have has probably already been done. We all have different life experiences, but there’s something about humanity that makes us not so different after all. BUT . . . nobody else in the entire world has YOUR VOICE. So use it, play with it, indulge it, and share it. Your voice is your commodity, the one thing the Huff Post doesn’t yet have.
We all make mistakes. In an age of multitasking and overlapping thoughts, at a desk surrounded by household clamor and traffic noise, we all lose focus. Our finger slips and where becomes were, past tense merging with present. But, do take pride in your writing. Read it. Share it. Edit it. And then, if there is still a mistake, accept it. Nobody’s perfect.
(And, if it makes you feel any better, I wrote my post at 10 p.m., edited it just before 11, and was too tired to catch a typo or two. That’s what happens as a dental student, and that’s perfectly okay.)
5. Up, up and awaaaaayyyy!
Okay, your heart is pounding, your forehead starting to sweat. You have the article. You can already see it in black pixels on Huff Post’s magical home in the virtual world. The only step remaining: to press submit.
Metaphorically, that is. There is no actual ‘submit’ button in the process of submitting to The Huff Post, but there is a concise, easy-to-read e-mail waiting to be sent. Once you have your article, identify the section where you think it belongs on The Huff Post, and google the contact info for that editor. Or, if you are like me and want to go directly to the source of the magic, e-mail Arianna Huffington herself (yes, you can actually do that!) at firstname.lastname@example.org. In a very brief e-mail, tell her who you are and why your voice and article need to be heard on The Huff Post. For instance, do you have professional background on the subject? Do you have a personal story that offers an unheard point of view? Are you asking questions people want answered? TELL HER! Give her your one to two sentence summary pitch that you crafted up in Step 1, and sign your name with all your contact information.
And remember, you are submitting a blog post, so she needs to actually receive the post! You can attach it to the e-mail or copy/paste it into the body of the e-mail (I did both). The advantage of the copy/paste method is that she can read it easily from any device without having to open an attachment, but it’s your call.
At this point, the process is out of your hands. Arianna will usually respond in a timely fashion during business hours – give it a few days. (For reference, I e-mailed on Saturday and heard back Monday at 9 a.m. Eastern Time.) If she says yes, she’ll forward the article to the appropriate editor who will then provide you log-in credentials for their blog platform. That process takes about two or three days. With your credentials in place, you upload a photo, insert your blog post, and press submit – well, actually, you press ‘save.’ It seems The Huff Post has an aversion to the word ‘submit.’ The Huffington Post will link your Twitter page, but you need to link your own website, Facebook, or other social media pages if you want readers to be able to click in your direction. Once you press submit, you wait a few more days for behind-the-scenes magic to take effect, and soon you will have an e-mail saying your post is live.
And for the best part: once you are accepted for one article, you have access for life! You can keep sharing your voice with the world . . . or at least with the world that reads The Huffington Post.
Now, in my story, one article did the job. For others, eight articles is the magic number. The most important part of this process is YOU. Believe in your voice. Write with your words and your emotions, and keep trying, because YOU HAVE SOMETHING IMPORTANT TO SAY!
For all those readers who contacted me for advice, I hope this helps. If you have questions that I haven’t answered, comment or contact me, and I’ll be happy to answer.
Curious about what I wrote? Check it out here: 5 Life Lessons From the Heart.