To Make Your Voice Heard

Write a letter to the editor

Note: The following talking points have been provided by one of Delaware's finest senators, Senator Bryant Richardson.

 

Three points for writing compelling Letters to the Editor:

  1. Focus on one topic. If you have two issues, write a second letter.

  2. Obey the newspaper word count limits. If your letter gets long, write a second letter.

  3. Be clear and concise. You don’t need to write like an academic or a policy expert.

Letter writing format

  1. Your name

  2. Address

  3. Email address

  4. Phone number (preferably cell phone) 

  5. Subject Line: The shorter the better (six words max)

  6. Greeting (editor’s name good here) 

  7. Letter (three to six paragraphs)

  8. Your signature

How to submit your letter 

  1. Find your local newspaper's Letters to the Editor email submission procedure on their website. 

  2.  Be sure to check that you are obeying your newspaper's word limit, sometimes as low as 150-200 words. 

  3. Write your letter. The shorter the letter, the better. The fewer words, the greater the readership. Editors often need shorter letters to finish composing a page.

  4. Paste your letter into the body of your email. 

  5.  Note that many newspapers will require that letter writers submit contact information with their letter. Phone numbers won't be published. This is just to verify your identity.

  6.  Submit to local papers, not just the daily papers. You’ll have a better chance of getting published locally.

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Pencil and notepad

Partial Publication List