SASE (SAS) – Self Addressed Stamped Envelope —When asked to include an SASE with a submission, make sure you use the proper postage. There are different rates for outside the U.S., so check with your post office. Never send money for someone to read your work.
SASP – Self Addressed Stamped Postcard —When asked to include an SASP with a submission, make sure you use the proper postage. There are different rates for outside the U.S., so check with your post office. Never send money for someone to read your work.
second person – Writing that has the “you” viewpoint by addressing the reader. This is common in how-to articles–pieces that give advice or information.
second serial rights – The rights, granted in a contract, that permit the publisher to sell an article to another publication after it has appeared in the first one. These rights are also referred to as reprint rights.
secondary magazine – A medium-sized consumer magazine that focuses on a specific niche, or area of interest, and therefore covers a secondary market. Secondary magazines usually fill the gaps left by large magazines, which try to address the needs of many different kinds of readers.
section editor – An editor in charge of one section of a publication, such as health or books.
serial – A magazine or journal published at regular intervals such as weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Also called periodical.
Self Addressed Stamped Envelope – When asked to include an SASE with a submission, make sure you use the proper postage. There are different rates for outside the U.S., so check with your post office. Never send money for someone to read your work.
Self Addressed Stamped Postcard – When asked to include an SASP with a submission, make sure you use the proper postage. There are different rates for outside the U.S., so check with your post office. Never send money for someone to read your work.
service piece – A consumer-oriented third-person article that falls into the how-to category, but goes further than just explaining how to do something by informing, educating, and advising the audience about an important issue or life skill like investing, working, or making a purchase. A service piece generally runs 500 words in length or more.
sidebar – A short piece that accompanies an article and provides helpful hints, resources, or a summary of the article’s main points. These boxes of information are set apart from the main article and are usually less than 200 words in length.
simultaneous submission – The practice of sending out one article to more than one publication at the same time. This is also called a multiple submission.
slander – A spoken statement that damages a person’s reputation, character, or good name. See also defamation; libel.
slant – The defined approach taken in an article by the writer. Also called an angle, this is one facet of the larger topic on which the writer has chosen to focus.
slush pile – The term used to describe the stack of unsolicited articles–articles that were not requested by an editor. Articles in the slush pile are usually read by an editorial assistant.
solicited (Requested) – A solicited article has been requested by an editor, usually in response to a query letter sent by a freelance writer.
source list – The list of sources used by a writer in researching an article. The list should include contact information for all interview subjects, as well as bibliographic data for each website, book, newspaper, or other publication from which the writer gleaned information for the article. This list is often submitted to the publication’s fact checker so that he can verify all information.
staff reporter – A writer hired by a newspaper to cover a particular beat. In the early days of newspapers, this person was sometimes called a “stringer.”
style sheet – A sheet that details the style and format preferred by a publication. Academic publications usually use either MLA style or APA style. Consumer and trade publications usually prefer either AP style or Chicago style.
submission guidelines – The set of rules for submitting articles to a particular publication. Sometimes referred to as submission guidelines, they provide specific information about formatting, grammar, and style, and also provide payment information and contract terms. It is important to always study a publication’s guidelines before submitting. By writing in the style prescribed by the publication, you can increase your chances of acceptance. Writer’s guidelines can be obtained by directly contacting the publication itself, and in some cases may also be found on the publication’s website or the website of Writer’s Market. See also writers guidelines.
submission package – A package that is sent by a freelance writer to a publication for the purpose of selling an already-written article to the publication. Generally, this package includes a cover letter; a copy of the article; published clips, if any; and, in the case of an academic article, a curriculum vitae. See also query package.
syndicate – An agency that sells the same article simultaneously to different newspaper outlets. These articles are then printed in numerous publications throughout the country. Most syndicate writers are established experts who have built up years of experience in their chosen area of focus.