Letter to the Editor
Writing an Effective Letter to the Editor
The letter section of a newspaper provides a great opportunity to advocate and share your opinions and ideas about tobacco issues that are of public interest. Letters to the editor are read by decision-makers, government officials, legislators, activists and many community members.
To increase your chances of getting published:
- Check the newspaper’s guidelines for submitting a letter to the editor on the editorial page of the print version or on the newspaper’s web site. Some newspapers have online submission forms which you can use.
- Type your letter and double-space the sentences.
- Keep your letter concise and focused on an important point or theme like point-of-sale tobacco marketing to youth, tobacco imagery on screen (computer, smart phone, television or movie), the health effects of second-hand smoke exposure in multi-unit dwellings, or the need for tobacco free policies at local parks, recreation areas, colleges and worksites.
- Localize and personalize your letter by explaining how you, your family, your friends, youth and adults in your neighborhood, and/or businesses and worksites in your community are affected by tobacco issues.
- Add further credibility to your letter by indicating your professional experiences in the community if appropriate.
- Be positive when you can. Thank an elected official or a community member for being a tobacco-free champion in your village, town, county or state. Express your appreciation (when appropriate) for a newspaper’s coverage of tobacco issues and efforts to promote New York’s tobacco-free norm.
- Follow the guidelines and word count limit of the target publication.
- In general, limit your letter to 200 – 300 words. 250 words is equal to about 3 paragraphs.
- Edit your letter to remove all non-essential words.
- Do not submit more than one letter per month to the same newspaper outlet.
- Remember to include your full name, address and daytime phone number so that editors can verify the letter was truly written by the person whose name is on it. Your address and phone number will not be published.
Be aware that:
- Letters to the editor are subject to editing by the newspaper staff for length, style, accuracy, clarity, grammar and fairness.
- Publications reserve the right to withhold letters which are abusive, malicious or potentially libelous.
- Some newspapers require that a letter to the editor be written exclusively to them.
Consider submitting a letter to the editor to one of the following media outlets covering the Delaware, Otsego and Schoharie region:
Catskill Mountain News www.catskillmountainnews.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Cooperstown Crier www.coopercrier.com email@example.com
Delaware County Times (Delhi, NY) firstname.lastname@example.org
Hancock Herald www.hancockherald.com email@example.com
Hometown Oneonta & The Otsego-Delaware Dispatch www.allotsego.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Register Star www.registerstar.com email@example.com
The Daily Gazette www.dailygazette.com firstname.lastname@example.org
The Daily Star www.thedailystar.com email@example.com
The Deposit Courier firstname.lastname@example.org
The Evening Sun www.evesun.com email@example.com
The Mountain Eagle www.columbiagreenemedia.com/the_mountain_eagle/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The Times Journal www.timejournalonline.com email@example.com
The Walton Reporter www.waltonreporter.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Tri-Town News www.tritownnews.com email@example.com
Watershed Post firstname.lastname@example.org
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