Got a Good Story?
Since Adventure Rider Magazine is produced by adventure riders for adventure riders, we encourage submissions by people who are out on their bikes exploring the world. We love ride reports, how-to’s, things that work and don’t work, how to plan for an extended trip, and profiles on places to visit. Of course, every good story needs good pictures to help tell it, so you have a much better chance of getting published if you have great pictures.
We use a variety of stories of different lengths. Typical feature articles can be anywhere between 2,000 to 4,000 words and should be accompanied by 10-40 good pictures (with captions) that help tell the story. We also publish shorter stories of 800-1,500 words. These are typically location reviews, cool places to visit, things to do.
It is important to note that writing for a magazine is different than writing a ride report on advrider.com or similar web site. We love those ride reports, but the format is much different than for a magazine. When writing for Adventure Rider Magazine, the story needs to be strong enough to stand by itself without pictures. It should be entertaining, descriptive, funny and create an urge in the readers to want to take the same trip.
WE LOVE PICTURES! Our favorite pictures are epic in nature, showing the spirit of adventure riding in out of the way, unusual places. Our second favorite pics are the funny ones. You know, your best riding buddy augering in head first into a mud pit full of hippos. Go on, sacrifice your KTM nine-fiddy to the cause!
All pictures need complete, detailed captions. If you are submitting a story with a series of pictures, the pics along with the captions should help enhance the story and even tell the story without the written article. Captions should be no more than 1-3 sentences, but should help tell the story.
The higher the resolution of your pictures, the better we like them and the more likely they are to be published. Anything around 8-10 megapixels or higher is fantastic. We accept JPEGS (please use a low compression setting), TIFF and even RAW files.
The best way to send us pictures is to upload high resolution versions to places such as Phanfare or Photoshelter. Create an album and send us a link. Then allow us to choose the pics and download high resolution versions for the story. Alternatively we can accept CD submissions or even email attachments.
Repeat after me. “Maps are good. Maps are good.” A great map can really improve a story. The best maps are done in a vector drawing program such as Adobe Illustrator. But just about any high resolution map file will work.
Q. What if I have a really good story but I was busy flirting with the hot blonde during English class and I can’t write worth a darn?
A. That certainly hinders the process, but all is not lost. If it is a REALLY good story then hit us up with an email or phone call and tell us how great it is. We might be willing to interview you for the story and write it ourself. But it has to be something pretty darn good.
Q. What if I have a great story but I was having so much fun I forgot to take pictures?
A. That is a no-go unless maybe you rode your bike to the summit of Mt. Everest or roosted the Rose Garden at the White House or some other amazing feat. We must have good pictures to help tell the story. Next time get your buddy to help you with pics.
Q. I already posted my totally awesome ride report to advrider.com. Why don’t you just take that and publish it in the magazine?
A. A good forum post does not necessarily make for a good magazine article. And we know it is really hard to believe, but not everyone spends all their waking moments munching week old Cheetos and reading advrider.com until the wee hours of the morning like some of us do. A good magazine article must have a coherent well written story to keep the reader’s interest. A forum post might be a good place to start, but a magazine article should be able to stand on its own without pictures, and the pics (with captions) for the article should be able to stand alone without the story. Combine them together in a good layout and you have something people enjoy reading while waiting to get their shock repaired after the beating it took on the TAT. Or better yet, a guy at the Harley shop picks it up, reads these cool stories, and ends up trading his Ultra-Glide Classic for an R1200GS Adventure and eating week old Cheetos while reading ride reports on advrider.com at 3:00 am.
Q. Can you take my totally awesome ride report and rewrite it for me into a magazine story?
A. If the story is good enough we might consider it.
Q. I want to do product reviews. That way I can get really cool stuff for free and write about it.
A. We are very picky about product reviews. We don’t trade product review articles for free stuff. After reviewing the products, we either send them back or if we really like the product, we might buy it from the manufacturer or distributor. Our goal is to create trust between our writers and readers and that requires an objective view of the product. Only our most experienced writers who have proven themselves get to do the product reviews. Become a regular trusted contributor and then we might consider it.
Q. Do you pay for stories and pictures? I gotta make a living, you know.
A. We would love to pay like Rolling Stone or Vogue, but unfortunately that is not realistic in this marketplace. Our goal is to pay for quality content, but since this is such a small marketplace we are unable to pay as much as we like or you deserve. We do try to pay our regular contributors, at least enough to buy some gas and Cheetos to eat at 3:00 am while they are browsing advrider.com. As our fame (or notoriety) grows and you see Adventure Rider Magazine edging out Playboy, National Geographic and Esquire at the newstand, we will all be partying like rock stars, buying new bikes every three months and jetting to far off destinations in our corporate toy hauler jet. In the meantime don’t be expecting to quit your day job just yet. But seriously, as circulation and revenue grows we will gladly reward the contributors that helped us grow.