If you would like to write for Of Opinions, here are some of the things you need to acquaint yourself with, to know how to go about it:
1. Have a look around if you haven’t been reading this blog for long (or at all), to get a feel of the kind of subjects I deal with here. Your style and thoughts will be completely your own, but it will be good for the blog and for you to have some continuity on it. You would be trying something new if these aren’t the type of things you write about, and the blog will benefit from having your point of view that is different from the same old views I have!
2. The kind of things I usually talk about here fall into the categories of Art, Philosophy, Psychology, writing and blogging. I may sometimes try something different, like film reviews, humour and poetry, but usually, these are the ones that make this blog what it is thematically.
3. The kind of things I won’t publish are anything on religion, politics or anything topical or controversial, however subtly they may be referenced in the post. I’ve worked very hard to keep this blog a safe, neutral and controversy-free zone for anyone to visit, and as much as I’d love to have fresh perspectives, these subjects are off limits.
As are opinions that are ageist, sexist, weightist, racist etc. I would say anything ending with an –ist, but humanist opinions are very much encouraged! Sweeping generalisations about men, women and the third sex are also unacceptable, though some may not see them as sexist.
4. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t encourage posts on anything outside of what I know and do! I’d be thrilled to receive posts on the psychology of football fans, the social effects of lesser known diseases (though, again, refrain from making any political references to things like funding etc.) and lipsticks with formulae that generate endorphins. In short, I’d very much like to publish posts here on things I know nothing about it.
5. In keeping with the safe, positive place this blog has always been, I would ask you to refrain from using expletives in your post. Having said that, I have used the following sparsely, and on rare occasions: *beep*, sh*t, and f***. If you must, you can use these, but please do so sparingly, and if there is an absolute necessity to. Any use or variation of the c-word, including calling it the “c-word”, will not be accepted.
6. Try to keep your posts within 800 words. Of course, you don’t have to write essays. I’d love to have poetry, photography, drawings, even haiku. But, as you all are aware of the rather elusive attention span of the internet, 800-900 words are usually what I prefer to keep my posts to, to get any attention.
7. I myself can’t guarantee you much attention. If you wish to write a guest post to get a host of new followers, I am sorry but I may disappoint you. My blog goes up and down in that department, and even a post that does very well gets about 50 views and 30 likes. However, if you would like to find a different kind of audience, one that may potentially turn into a new, interested readership for you, why not give it a try?
8. Though I will be publishing your work, you retain full rights to it. If you wish to have it removed, I will do so. I have researched copyright laws for blogging, and though they are not standardized, most laws state that copyright is inherent in a blog. That is, because this is my – Amrita Sarkar’s – blog, I own everything I write here. In future, if I use any material from your post, say a quote, I will accordingly refer to it. I will very much suggest you re-blog your post when I publish it.
9. I would prefer you pitch me your post instead of sending it to me first. Even it’s a haiku, I don’t want you to waste your time writing for my blog, when I may find it unpublishable given some of the rather strict conditions above. I might make minor proofreading adjustments to your post before I publish it, if I do spot them. I will not, however, interfere with your content in any way.
10. Lastly, I will not be able to pay you for your post.
Please send your pitches to firstname.lastname@example.org . If you would like me to clarify something for you, please leave a comment below.