Yes, you. We’re always looking for new authors. If you’ve got an idea that will challenge our readers and move our industry forward, we want to hear about it. But you don’t need to wait for an idea that will redefine web design. Just aim to bring readers a fresh perspective on a topic that’s keeping you up at night.
We’ll be honest, though: writing for ALA takes work. We want your article to be at its best, and we’ll push you to get there. Once accepted, you’ll get extensive feedback from our team, and you’ll work closely with an editor on revisions.
It’s also rewarding. Thousands of your peers (and potential employers, clients, or publishers) will read your work, and you’ll also learn a lot in the process—about communicating your ideas, about writing, and even about the topic you thought you already knew so well when you started.
What we’re looking for
You may submit a rough draft, a partial draft, or a short pitch (a paragraph or two summarizing your argument and why it matters to our readers) paired with an outline. The more complete your submission is, the better feedback we can give you. Keep in mind that we only accept original content—we do not publish anything that’s been published elsewhere (including on your blog).
Please don’t send us press releases or sales pitches. They make us feel sad inside.
Before you submit, look at our style guide and recent articles for insight into structuring and formatting your piece, and make sure your submission:
- Has a thesis and offers a clear argument—not just a list of tips and tricks.
- Has a voice. Be bold, interesting, and human.
- Is written for an audience of designers, developers, content strategists, information architects, or similar.
- Is supported with convincing arguments, not just opinions. Fact-check, and cite sources where appropriate.
- Follows our style guide.
For some wise words on the writing process, see “Writing is Thinking”. You should also check out “So You Want to Write an Article?” to learn about common pitfalls we see in submissions and how you can avoid them.
What we publish
We publish articles of anywhere between 600–2,500 words, depending on subject complexity. 1,500 words is about average. Articles often run with a custom illustration. Articles may be casual in tone and content—great for less-intensive tutorials and posts—or rigorously structured and edited. All should be well-considered explorations of current and cutting-edge topics in the web industry.
How to submit (and what happens next)
Email us your submission. We prefer submissions as Google documents so that editors can easily provide feedback and guidance directly within your draft. You may also send us a plaintext file, a Markdown file, or a link to an HTML document. (Please do not send a ZIP file of assets unless requested by an editor.)
Here’s what happens after you hit Send:
- An editor will review your submission and determine whether it’s a potential fit. If so, the whole team will review and discuss it. This happens once a week.
- The editor will collect the team’s feedback and get back to you with notes. (We rarely accept an article the first time around, but we’ll tell you if we’re interested.)
- Once you’ve addressed our comments, send your revised draft back. The team will discuss it again and let you know if we want to accept it.
- If we accept your article, an editor will work closely with you on things like organization, argumentation, and style.
- We’ll schedule you for publication as soon as revisions are complete. We can’t give you a specific publication date until the article is almost ready to go live.