Media Corps Resources

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Local Newspaper LTE and Op-ed Guidelines

LTEs are Letters to the Editor (General rule one per month);
Op-Eds are Guest Opinion columns (Frequency dependent on editor judgment).

The Writing Corps helps individual interested in writing Letters to the Editor or Guest Columns to the local print media. We help individuals by providing information source and data upon request if we are aware of such, and reviewing drafts to offer suggestions on focus, content accuracy, organization, and clarity.  Those wishing to submit Guest Columns to the Medford Mail Tribune or Ashland Daily Tidings are advised to contact Editorial page editor, Gary Nelson,  first to establish that there is interest in the column:

Some Letter Tips

  1. Do not exceed the word limit by even one word.  Reviewing editors can and do count!  While long submissions might be returned for editing, the possibility also is that such submissions will get lost.
  2. While writing is a little different from speaking, the difference is not that vast.  If you can talk to someone about your point, you can probably write a letter to the editor. If you are not sure how to start or compose a letter to the editor, try simply talking to a friend about the subject and trying to make your point to that person. Make a note of how you did it, and convert that into the written letter.  Sometimes this simply involves checking the grammar and sequence for logic.
  3. Try to confine the content to one or maximally two related ideas.  Letters that ramble over several unconnected topics will probably not maintain reader attention or elicit comprehension.
  4. Try to start with some interesting personal ‘hook’ or other reference that will grab reader attention.
  5. Don’t feel you have to write a complete thesis totally substantiating your point  to justify your conclusion (you won’t be able to do it in 200 words, anyway), focus on one or two arguments / opinions.
  6. Identifying personal stories is always helpful – evidence and data based arguments are valuable but not always the most persuasive; personal accounts and testimonials are more compelling for some readers.
  7. Responses to other articles in a paper are valuable, but should be sent just to the source publishing the original article or letter.  However, if the argument can be generalized for other targets, such an effort is worthwhile because readers of other papers might share the opinion that you are countering.
  8. Letters countering a previous letter that is vitriolic or nonsense will probably not convert that author.  However such letters, if calmly and logically written, can persuade others reading the original and your response that you make a better case.
  9. Notes from Rosebud Media that can be taken as general advice:  All letters must include the writer’s name, address and a phone number for verification of the source although only the name and town are published. Do not send duplicates of letters to the same target. Do not send poetry, “open letters” sent to multiple addressees, or letters copied from websites or chain emails – editors generally will not publish them.  Avoid generalizations, gratuitous insults and personal gripes.  All letters are subject to editing.

Workshops

Upon request, we are happy to schedule workshops on writing and submitting letters and opinion columns.  It is important to appreciate that letters and opinion columns must be the original work of the author submitting them. However, upon request, we can provide  information and data and can assist by reviewing and offering suggestions on drafts.

Sources of information on climate change

Southern Oregon Climate Action Now

Skeptical Science

Ecowatch – Climate Change

The Daily Kos Recommended (occasionally)

Sightline

Climate Clips

Inside Climate News

Letters – Print Media Addresses

Always include your name, address, and telephone number so the editors can contact you if they wish to confirm you as the source.  These will not appear in print.

  • Medford Mail Tribune:  letters@rosebudmedia.com  limit 250 words;  election / candidate advocacy letters – limit 150 words; once per month.
  • Ashland Daily Tidings: See Mail Tribune – Ashland Edition (below)
  • Mail Tribune- Ashland Edition: tidingsopinion@rosebudmedia.com limit 200 words; election / candidate advocacy letters  – limit 150 words; once per month.
    Tribune and Tidings combined instructions: All letters must include the writer’s name, address and a phone number for verification. Only the name and town will be published. Do not send duplicates of letters. Do not send poetry, “open letters” sent to multiple addressees, or letters copied from websites or chain emails – we generally will not publish them. Avoid generalizations, gratuitous insults and personal gripes. All letters are subject to editing. Email is the preferred method for letters; these receive priority.
    The Mail Tribune-Ashland Edition Letters policy: The editors of the restrict letters published in this paper to residents of Ashland and the surrounding area, including Talent.  The exception is if the letter addresses a specifically Ashland topic, such as the redesign of the Plaza. Your letters, of course, are welcome in the Medford Mail Tribune, which circulates throughout the county. But the editors have judged that the climate change issue is more than adequately represented in letters from Ashland residents. This editorial policy goal is to encourage a robust debate in the Ashland community among readers of the Ashland edition.
  • The Applegater: gater@applegater.org  Limit for letters is 400 words, for opinion columns is 700. To be accepted, letters must contain explicit reference to the Applegate Valley or an issue important to residents of the valley.
  • Douglas County News & Review: website. Limit of 300 words, once every 30 days.
  • Rogue River Press: editor@rogueriverpress.com.  Letters limit 300 words; Thirty day frequency limit
  • Upper Rogue Independent [serving Eagle Point, White City, Prospect, Trail, Butte Falls]: dan@illinois-valley-news.com Limit unknown, suggest assuming 200.
  • Grants Pass Daily Currier: letters@thedailycourier.com  limit 250 words; once per month.  This paper seems to have a policy of publishing letters only from residents in their perceived circulation area that includes the Applegate Valley.
  • Illinois Valley News (Cave Junction – weekly) dan@illinois-valley-news.com. Limit unstated – but suggest 200 until / unless we learn it’s different; frequency limit unknown but suspect monthly.
  • Klamath Falls News and Herald: news@heraldandnews.com  limit 250 words; frequency limit unknown but suspect monthly.
  • Curry Coastal Pilot Harbor – Brookings (twice weekly- Wednesday & Saturday) Submit letters via website; Letter limit 300 words; must be original, one every 30 days; opinion columns 300 – 450, though occasional longer pieces may be accepted.
  • Curry County Reporter – Gold Beach currycountyreporter@gmail.com   No information; confines letters to those submitted by area residents.
  • The Coos Bay World and the Bandon Western World (The Bandon Newspaper) seem to be the same paper, via website  limit 400 words.
  • Del Norte Triplicate – Crescent City, CA; limit 300 words,  https://www.triplicate.com/site/forms/online_services/letter_editor/. Assume once per month.
  • Rogue Valley Messenger: info@roguevalleymessenger.com Seem no longer to be publishing letters to the editor  website 
  • Sneak Previews Letters:  Ashland – ashland@sneakpre.com ; Grants Pass – grantspass@sneakpre.com;  Medford – medford@sneakpre.com;  Talent – talent@sneakpre.com;
  • Eugene Register Guard Letters:  rgletters@registerguard.com Letter length limit is 250 words; all letters are subject to condensation. Writers are limited to one letter per calendar month. Because of the volume of mail, not all letters can be printed. Letters must be signed with the writers full name. An address and daytime telephone number are needed for verification purposes; this information will not be published or released.  Guest viewpoints are between 600 and 800 words in length, with 700 being ideal. Opinion Columns: 500 – 700 words (optimally 600) – aglavash@registerguard.com.
  • The Astorian – Letters must be exclusive to The Daily Astorian, and fewer than 250 words.  Opinion columns are limited to 800 – 1,000 words, submit to website
  • The Oregonian: letters@oregonian.com limit 250 words – ‘In My Opinion’ columns are limited to 500 words commentary@oregonian.com
  • The Salem Statesman Journal webpage submission or letters@StatesmanJournal.com Letters 200 words or fewer.
  • Douglas County (Roseburg) News Review webpage submission Letters 250 word limit
  • Bend Bulletin letters@bendbulletin.com Letters 250 word limit, once per 30 days. Requires that submissions are original and uniquely submitted to the Bend Bulletin.  This  does not require a complete rewrite but may take a little reworking of the text to make it unique.
  • Corvallis Gazette Times webpage submission Letters 250 word limit.
  • Albany Democrat Herald webpage submissions Letters 250 word limit.
  • East Oregonian webpage submission Fewer than 400 words. Requires that submissions are original and uniquely submitted to the East Oregonian.  This  does not require a complete rewrite but may take a little reworking of the text to make it unique.
  • Baker City Herald news@bakercityherald.com No limit identified
  • La Grande Observer news@lagrandeobserver.com No limit identified
  • Burns Times Herald editor@btimesherald.com No limit identified
  • Tillamook Headlight Herald website 500 words

The word limit does not include a title if you assign one (but anticipate that may be changed by the editor), greeting or name/signature.

Since the Medford Mail Tribune has the lowest LTE word limit, it would simplify life to target that length and send to the others even if a greater limit exists. But the adventurous author can always augment from the 200 word length to embellish points for the other targets having longer limits if they wish.

Local Op-Ed / Guest Opinion Column Guidelines:

In terms of Op-ed (=Guest Column) policy The Medford Mail Tribune is more restrictive – local authors should focus on local issues; The Ashland Edition accepts Op-eds from local folks on broader issues. Same addresses for the targets works for both LTEs and Op-eds.  The Guest Column / Op Ed limit is 750 words for both the Tidings and Tribune. Those wishing to submit Guest Columns to the Medford Mail Tribune or Ashland Edition are advised to contact Editorial page editor, Gary Nelson, beforehand to establish that there is interest in the column:

If you are interested in guidance with writing or wish more information contact Alan Journet.

Bend Bulletin Guest Columns must be exclusive to that paper and between 550 and 650 words.  Submit to editorial page editor Richard Coe: rcoe@bendbulletin.com

Oregonian Guest Columns are limited to 500 words (see address above).

Eugene Register Guard Guest Viewpoints are 600 – 800 words, optimally 700), (see above).

Good Writing!