General Information for Chess Life and Chess Life Online contributors
P.O. Box 3967, Crossville TN 38557. (931)787-1234. Fax: (931)787-1200. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: www.uschess.org. Contact: John Hartmann, editor. 40% freelance written. Works with a small number of new/unpublished writers/year.
Print: Monthly magazine. “Chess Life is the official publication of the United States Chess Federation, covering news of most major chess events, both here and abroad, with special emphasis on the triumphs and exploits of American players.” Estab. 1939. Circ. 85,000. Byline given. Pays on publication. Publishes ms an average of 6 months after acceptance. Submit seasonal material 6 months in advance. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Responds in 3 months to mss. Sample copy via PDF is available.
Nonfiction: Needs general interest, historical, humor, interview, photo feature, technical. No stories about personal experiences with chess. Buys 30-40 mss/year. Query with samples if new to publication. 3,000 words maximum. Payment varies; minimum $100/800 words.
Fillers: Submit with samples and clips. Buys first or negotiable rights to cartoons and puzzles. Pays $25 upon acceptance.
Website: “Chess Life Online is the official online news outlet of the United States Chess Federation, working to cover news and events for an American chess audience while furthering the mission and goals of US Chess.” Byline given. Buys 20-30 mss/year. Query with samples if new to publication. Pay on monthly schedule; may not be immediately after publication.
Nonfiction: Needs general interest, historical, humor, interview, technical. No stories about personal experiences with chess. Query with samples if new to publication. Flat fee; payment varies.
Regarding press releases: we will generally (although not universally) run press releases for our partners. For others, the event / item must, in our judgment, be of interest to a national membership audience.
Queries / pitches: Email us with well-considered ideas and timelines, and show us that you’re familiar with our content before submitting. The ideal reader for the magazine is a club player, although we stretch to both beginner and master levels. The ideal reader for the website is the interested amateur.
Generally speaking, unless you clear a submission with the editor before you submit, do not expect us to publish your work, press release, etc.
Editing: Submissions can (and will) be edited for any reason, including space, voice, etc. We may ask for a rewrite if the initial (or subsequent) draft does not meet expectations.
Kill fee: Kill fees of 50% are paid in the rare cases that we, for whatever reason, do not run agreed articles, and the author has made good-faith efforts to meet editorial expectations, including revision(s).
Art: If you provide art we will ask for proof of your rights to use that art.
For more detailed information, please consult our Writers' and Photographers' Guidelines. (offline - being updated)