Calling all aspiring writers… We want over 60s with a story to tell

You might have noticed that here at Starts at 60 we love to share the stories of real sixty year
Opinion

You might have noticed that here at Starts at 60 we love to share the stories of real sixty year olds.  Today I want to reach out to you personally and invite you to consider writing for us.  If you have ever craved being published or wondered if your writings could stir an entertained community, now is your chance.  And if its not you, we think everyone knows a writer so we ask you to pass this on…

Since we started Starts at 60 back in 2013, we have sought to share real, honest stories and opinion pieces by over 60s… stories of tenacity, travel, and accomplishment, striving to show people that 60 is not old and in fact is one of the most exciting ages.  We also want to share your opinion pieces on society, lifestyle, politics and current affairs.  We’re going to take it further than we ever had this year, and we want you to be more involved.

At Starts at 60 there are no stars in our eyes… We focus on the reality of life. We here are everyday people looking to live our lives to the fullest and these are the stories we love the most. Stories that make people understand how great life can be, how funny life can be and how inspiring life should be at 60.  We also love to hear how you feel about things, like you would in letters to the editor.

We’re interested in hearing about your exciting times. We’d love you to contemplate writing the uplifting stories you want to read and the rants you think need to be exposed.  We’d love you to tell the funny tales from your big nomad adventures told week by week with people hanging onto your moments. The stories and photos from amazing travel destinations you visited alone or with your friends. We’d like to hear about your diet and fitness regimes, and your funny grandkid stories, a momentous event or milestone, or a great achievement.

In addition to this we’re interested in hearing stories from our Starts at 60 community about the harder times. Stories of tenacity and survival.

Have you survived a terrible illness? The loss of a dear loved one? Losing your home or business? An ugly or bitter divorce? Tell us how you survived and how you made your life better afterwards. Share with other over 60s the advice you would give someone going through something similarly unimaginable?

We’d also like to hear your opinions on current affairs, and current issues.

I’m excited to share that Dymocks will be behind you all the way, and will be providing the best two Starts at 60 published blogs EACH DAY with a $20 voucher to spend instore at Dymocks Stores across Australia, (and online for New Zealanders).

Each day we publish the most compelling article submissions. What a wonderful way to inspire others!

To find out more about what we are looking for, please read on, below.

If you have a story to share, you can submit it online. [Click here to submit an article]

or email it to community [@] startsat60 [dot] com titling it “opinion story” in the subject line along with the date.

Please include your:

  1. Story – about 600-700 words
  2. Name and age
  3. A 100 word blurb about you   (If you wish to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity of the story, we can create a pseudonym for you or publish anonymously.)
  4. A headshot we can include in your writer’s profile
  5. And we’ll need your address to which we can send a voucher if you are the best of the day!
  6. If you have pictures of your own to accompany your story please send them.

Please note that your submissions are subject to Starts at 60s standard terms and conditions, and please, no music if you submit a video, unless it’s an original work you composed and are playing. Thanks!

Thank you for helping us to bring to life the voice of the over 60s. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Thanks

Rebecca

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Things to think about when writing for us…

When considering your article topic, please consider the question: What do I want the reader to learn, feel or connect with in my article?  Do I want to start a discussion, debate or pose a big question?   The articles we publish are designed to educate, inform or drive debate about any of the topics on our site. They should not be advertorial nor should they focus on the big picture trends “about” over 60s… we want to dive deeper, and tell real life, real issue, real education and real entertaining stories people want to read every day and delve into the care, concerns, hobbies and changes facing the over 60s.

We seek articles in the following category areas:

News and current affairs (no political bias)

Lifestyle

Grandparenting

Health and wellbeing

Hobbies

Living

Shopping and fashion

Travel

Money

Nomading

Sex and relationships

We seek articles that are 600-800 words in length and as strong grammatically as possible, however we do have editors who will look over them before publishing.

Here are some simple dos and don’ts to help you when writing for Starts at Sixty.

Some do’s:
1.    Do write in a conversational manner. We’re pretty easy going at Starts at 60 and that’s why our readers love us. Please don’t get too bogged down in stats and figures when writing your article. Academic voice has its place, and it’s at university.

2.  Do feel free to have an opinion or write a strong letter to the editor.
3.    Do be playful. If you want to compare moving house and downsizing to actions that Bruce Willis takes in Die Hard for example, this will just be all the more relevant for our audience who will be able to relate and get a laugh at the same time.
4.    Do use case studies and concrete examples. If you are explaining how a grey nomad should structure their budget to save for a large trip, make sure you take us through the entire real life situation in order that anyone reading the article knows how the topic is relevant in their real life.
5.    Do write using our style. We don’t have double spaces after full stops, we write ‘per cent’ as two words. We don’t write numbers over 10 and we don’t use & or %. We also have engaging headlines, so be creative. We don’t capitalise every word in a headline either!
6.    Do think outside the box. We want the articles to be interesting to our audience. It is difficult if your article is too self promoting as it doesn’t really offer the reader a balanced insight. If you want to talk about a brand of beauty products, do so by comparing a series of eye creams specifically, not just one brand for example.
7.    Do provide us with a bio and image for yourself or your blogger.
8.    Do write using our structure. We have a headline and ‘lead’ (an intro paragraph) at the beginning of every story.
9.    If you have a picture that’s relevant for the story and you’d like to send it through, please do. We can post one picture per story, but please also look at our picture style. It’s engaging, fun and bright. We won’t publish a picture if it doesn’t meet our style.
10.    Think about how you will engage with the reader… ask them to comment on something.

Some don’t’s:
1.     Please don’t expect us to publish blatant PR or advertorial; it is not fair on our readers. Our readers are interested in being informed, having a debate or engaging in discussion not sold to.
2.    Don’t go too far under or over the word count. 600 words is about right for the site as it means readers don’t have to scroll down too far, and it means there’s not too much white space.
3.    Don’t put links all the way through your article going back to the same website. Please also don’t continually reference yourself or your company – we won’t publish anything if it looks like advertorial.
4.    Don’t send us content that has been published anywhere else online. We like exclusive content and want to maintain our site as an exclusive resource for over 60s. Please help us in doing this! Google will penalise you and us if you publish things in two places.
5.    Don’t use excessive jargon. No matter your topic, imagine that you are explaining it to a friend who has no idea what you’re talking about. While they’re all very clever, it’s hard for over 60s owners to stay on top of all the latest acronyms and buzz words.

As editors of the site, we reserve the right to edit any content sent to us as we see fit, so as to ensure it conforms to our style and has been checked for legals but we rarely make noticeable changes.

As we said above we are pretty easy going and we want you to enjoy writing for the site. We look forward to receiving your articles.

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