Write for Us

We’d love for you to contribute to the voice of Detroitisit

Why? We’re a forward thinking, media platform for all things Detroit filled with in-house and contributing writers, videographers, photographers, and illustrators sharing their love of creativity and new ideas for, from, and about Detroit. We strive to engage and stimulate our audience through digital content and discussion about urban development, smart cities, education, culture, civic, non-profit, education, ecology, sports, youth, food, events, careers, business – all the topics that encompass a city, it’s citizens, its visitors and its communities.

Did you know we have 24K Facebook friends? Our writers come from some of the most reputable publications while our editorial and business teams have earned awards and recognition from the industry and our peers. Although a newbie, contributing to Detroitisit puts you and your idea in good company, allows your creativity to shine and provides you a chance to make a difference in this world. That makes up for the pay, which is modest, i.e. you won’t get rich, but you will get read which can be a pretty satisfying experience to see your name and work in lights!

General submissions guidelines:

How do I pitch written work to Detroitisit?
Please send a draft of an unpublished piece, one that it hasn’t run in other publications or on your personal blog or website, or an introduction to the piece. Your email should include a brief, clear, specific summary of your main idea.

We invite to submit stories that lead with an idea–an argument to think about something in a new way. Such stories can be the product of research, reporting, personal experience, professional expertise, or a combination. They can take the form of opinion or commentary. Most importantly, tell us something we don’t know, or something new about a thing we already know. That’s the first step to writing for Detroitisit. 

Send us a pitch: a paragraph or two, describing what you intend to say. If we think you can deliver, we’ll usually ask to see a draft. And if we have any thoughts about your idea, we may offer some feedback designed to help you shape your story, so that it has a better chance of being published.

DII covers new ways of discovering cities, citizens and community, so we’re interested in stories that have some aspect of education, welfare, economics, technology, policy, health, business, culture, sports, and specific to Detroit, automotive. We’re also interested in stories that originate from or discuss national and international issues because we believe a global footprint is a successful and informative one. We’re very interested in the intersection between community and personal stories, and how one informs the other.

If you’re interested in submitting a written piece, know we focus on great stories that lead with a main idea. And the best stories often start as a single sentence–a line that stops you in your tracks. That’s probably your headline, or at least your starting point. Always write what you know. We’re looking for your experiences and expertise, the things you’ve lived have changed the way you see the world. So, please, share them with us.

Many of our stories take the form of a personal narrative, the best ones are often built on a foundation of facts, not meandering stories. Include a clear thesis that provides an anchor for the story and ask yourself: Which components advance the story you are trying to tell in the most effective way? Discard the ones that don’t. And feel free to include reporting, interviews, research, data, charts, graphics.

Our core editorial rules of thumb:

  • We are for the 99%, not the 1%
  • Be imaginative, inspirational and cultivate new thinking
  • Don’t be afraid to be opinionated, informative with a distinct perspective
  • Utilize a universal and timeless voice…. Relaying stories that could take place anywhere, not only in Detroit
  • Take the reader “there”

How to submit your creative work?

Videos: Please only send video submissions that have not already been published online—this includes YouTube, Vimeo, etc. (if you’re using one of these platforms, please send us private or password-protected links).  Generally, videos should be shorter than 3 minutes long. We can’t publish or use videos that include unlicensed music or images, so if your video has other people’s work in it (music, visual art/graphics, sound effects), without their permission to publish it.

What kinds of photos do we accept?
Pretty much everything except photos that include drugs and/or nudity. 

Are you in a band? A musician? We’d love to hear from you. How to submit your music?
To submit your music or band, please email us a link to your Bandcamp/Soundcloud/Facebook page, or attach the song to an email with info about the music and its originator.

What happens if my written or visual submission is accepted?

We’re looking for perfection from all work we publish and will ask for changes and work with you on making your submission perfect. Most of our editorial calendar is planned far in advance of when pieces are published, so there’s a chance it will still take quite some time to receive edits—feel free to follow-up if we accept something and you haven’t heard back after two weeks!

We’ll then send you a contributor’s agreement, which you’ll need to sign to grant us permission to publish your work. If you’re under 18, we’ll also need a parent or guardian’s signature.

You’ll work with an editor to fact check your article, ask you questions, give you notes on changes, and possibly work with you to rewrite some of the piece, in order to make it as clear as possible. Your editor has a responsibility to DII and our readers, to make sure everything we publish is accurate, fair, well-written, and not carrying an agenda other than the one clearly laid out in the story itself. When the editing process is complete, you’ll get a last look at any changes. We publish only when the writer and editor are in complete agreement on every word of the story.

Our editors do, however, control the headline, and the photo or illustration that runs with your story.

Do we pay contributors?
Yes. Our rates vary depending on the format of a given piece.

Legal policy

Articles are published on this website only on the condition that the author agrees to the terms of the Policy of Detroitisit found on the web site.

We respond to emails sent to hi@detroitisit.com. Follow our editorial and formatting guidelines and give us a few days to respond.

Don’t hold back

We’d love to hear from you!