- Try to avoid starting your sentences with: So, Of course, Obviously, and similar words.
- Don’t use quotes unless they’re necessary. Air quotes shouldn’t appear in your piece. Actual quotes are fine.
- Lose the qualifiers. We are writing about passionate topics to give concrete options for action and change. There are very few times when the word possibly or its friends are powerful additions to a piece.
- Same with the rhetorical questions. If your point is hiding behind too many rhetorical questions, it loses some value. Consider writing: “People are visibly uncomfortable to know that these sweet faces are the descendants of slaves.” Instead of: “Does it make people uncomfortable to know that these sweet faces are the descendants of slaves?” (This is an edit from my own piece.)
- Think about clarity. How well does your piece flow? If your sentences are clunky and require too much navigation to read, a reader will skip over your piece. Streamline your phrasing, cut out extra words, and don’t make these more complicated than necessary.
- This is not a conversation. While some level of comfort with the readers is appreciated, an overly conversational tone directly contradicts with our format. You might feel inclined to write like you talk, but this is not the best way to convey information to readers.
- Always use the Oxford comma when needed. We (editor Selena, the readers, and I) will thank you.
- Use examples. If you are writing to inform or guide parental interactions, please try to include some appropriate examples of your points.
- Send your best work. Make sure to read your piece in its entirety before submitting. Is your point clear? Will a diverse group of readers be able to keep up? Do you need to add more facts? Less facts? Is your article organized?
- Keep in mind: Hold the Line is a high-quality digital magazine with valuable concrete information that has been carefully collected to provide the best insight available on parenthood and social justice. We will only published work that is well-planned out and professionally written.
Race + Culture will always be a major part of every issue, but we’ll also broaden our focus with each issue to come.
First Issue (November/December 2017): Parenthood & Racism
Second Issue: Parenthood & LGBTQIA+
Third Issue: Parenthood & Gender Bias