Relix - Music for the Mind
 

WRITERS GUIDELINES - 2005
REQUIRED READING FOR ALL RELIX MAGAZINE CONTRIBUTORS

(Artists and Photographers, see notes at end of guide.)

Welcome to Relix Magazine. If you've gotten this far, it means you're curious—or serious—about contributing to Relix. Before putting your idea to paper and submitting it for our consideration, please take a few minutes to read through our guidelines. We also encourage you to look at a recent issue of the magazine. We're in a period of fairly rapid change, and the better you understand who and what we are, the better chance your great piece has of reaching publication!

A BIT ABOUT RELIX

Relix Magazine was launched in 1974 under the name Dead Relix . In its earliest incarnation, this hand-stapled, homegrown newsletter was an outlet for Grateful Dead tape traders—avid concertgoers who taped and traded Grateful Dead concerts. The first issues were small (less than 20 pages), had hand-drawn black-and-white covers, and focused on taping tips and Grateful Dead news. It also provided a forum for tape traders and music fanatics to communicate with each other.

Even as early as the second issue, non-Dead editorial found its way into Dead Relix's pages and, with the addition of an editor, the young magazine expanded its scope to cover the music of the Bay Area psychedelic scene. By 1978, Dead Relix contained reviews, essays, short features and artwork, and had dropped the “Dead” from its title. In a world that was moving away from hippy culture, Relix managed to remain relevant, by expanding its scope of coverage beyond “Bay Area psychedelic rock” to cover genres as diverse as reggae and heavy metal, with varying degrees of success.

After some years of struggling with its direction, Relix regained its voice. It revived its focus on the Grateful Dead, but also found room to cover genres as divergent as blues, reggae, bluegrass and jazz, and non-music issues such as mandatory minimum drug laws. It was during the late ‘80s to mid-'90s that Relix established its reputation as a magazine that broke new acts. Many new and emerging bands made their debut in Relix columns such as “Independents Daze” and “On the Edge.”

For a magazine with its roots in Grateful Dead coverage, the passing of Jerry Garcia on August 15, 1995 , could have tolled its death knell. Instead, Relix served as a rallying point for the community, and, in the years since, has slowly moved its emphasis away from the Grateful Dead to coverage of jambands that have filled the void, as well as other, non-mainstream types of music.

Today, Relix delivers coverage of music across genre divides; a single issue might contain articles on artists as diverse as Ben Harper, Bob Marley, Wilco, Warren Haynes, and the Grateful Dead. In short, Relix is “deadicated” to not only entertaining its readership, but providing a true community for lovers of Music for the Mind.

A BIT ABOUT FREELANCING for RELIX

We want to expand our coverage of new artists who might be of interest to our readers, so we are always looking for ideas. We also deal with environmental, cultural and lifestyle issues of concern to our audience.

We are happy to welcome new contributors, so if you have story ideas, please feel free to drop us a note, preferably by email, to the appropriate editor.

 

A BIT ABOUT QUERIES

Please pay close attention to the following “do”s and “don't”s when submitting a query to Relix.

•  DO submit a query first, to the appropriate editor (see below).

•  Relix has a strong, unique voice in the music community. Please DON'T simultaneously submit the same material to another publication.

•  DON'T expect an immediate response; you can expect to hear back from us within 2-6 weeks.

A BIT ABOUT ACCEPTANCE

If your material is accepted for publication, you will receive an Assignment form from us which will confirm terms, deadline, word count and fees.

We also accept material “on spec.” If published, you will receive a byline and compensation.

Payment is made four weeks after publication.

WHAT WE'RE LOOKING FOR

Behind-the-scenes stories: straight-ahead interviews and live show reviews are fine (they've long been our stock in trade), but we'd like to see more intimate stories about the people who work out of sight—and the places in which they work.

In addition to running features and interviews in each issue, Relix has many regular columns. Some of those are delegated to regular columnists. What follows below are the areas in which we do accept submissions, the guidelines, the editor to contact, and payment. Please pay close attention to these details—a properly drafted and addressed query stands a much greater chance of being accepted!

OUR REGULAR COLUMNS

The Beat
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: Tour/Fest—up to 600 words; FanFare—up to 300 words; Man/Woman at Work—up to 300 words; On the Road—up to 300 words; Off the Wall—up to 300 words. Contact: aeve@relix.com

Book/DVD/Film/Game Reviews
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 50-150 words. Contact: tyson@relix.com

CD Reviews
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: approximately 150 words. Pay: $15/published review. Contact josh@relix.com

Controversy
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 1500-2500 words. Pay: varies. Contact wes@relix.com

The Core
No freelance submissions accepted.

Deadicated
No freelance submissions accepted.

Exposed
No freelance submissions accepted.

Features & Interviews
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: varies. Pay: varies. Please submit detailed query. Contact: wes@relix.com

Fragments
No freelance submissions accepted.

Interview
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 1000-1500 words. Please send short query. Pay: varies. Contact: wes@relix.com

Livin'
No freelance submissions accepted.

On the Verge
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 150 words. Please send short query. Pay: $50. Contact: aeve@relix.com

Rearviewmirror
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 500 words. Please send short query. Pay: varies. Contact: wes@relix.com

Spotlight
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 800, including one sidebar. Please send short query. Pay: varies. Contact: wes@relix.com

ReelTime
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 600. Please send short query. Pay: varies. Contact: josh@relix.com

Spotlight
Freelance submissions accepted. Word count: 800, including one sidebar. Please send short query. Pay: varies. Contact: wes@relix.com

Soundcheck
Freelance submissions accepted. Live show reviews: up to 250 words. Pay: $25/published review. Contact: dean@relix.com

Tour Diary
No freelance submissions accepted.

 

GUIDELINES & STYLE NOTES

This Writer's Guide will help Relix contributors with our format, punctuation, and spelling consistencies. We urge you to adhere to these guidelines as they apply to ALL material that is submitted to Relix .

IMPORTANT NOTE: Solicitation of record labels, promoters, artists, and publicists on behalf of Relix Magazine must be done directly through this office. If you want to pursue a story or review a concert and need to use the name of our publication for access, please authorize it with Wes Orshoski (wes@relix.com) directly.

Story and Editorial Style Guide
You, as a writer, are an artist. We don't want to change your landscape. Please use this guide to insure that changes to your work will be minimal once it reaches us.

Personal Style
Develop a voice. Don't be afraid to have an opinion, but be sure you make it clear that it is your own opinion. Speaking in your own unique, authoritative voice will connect you strongly with readers and convey your information more effectively.

Fact Checking
If you are unsure of a fact (date, name, spelling, title, circumstance, etc.), please advise us AT THE BEGINNING OF THE ARTICLE under a note heading. We can then try to qualify what you have written. If it is an isolated fact that would be hard to prove, avoid using it at all. If an interviewee makes some outrageous statements in an interview, please supply us with a dubbed copy of the tape from which you transcribed your interview. This will protect us, and we can, in turn, stand by you in the event of any future problems. NEVER DO AN INTERVIEW WITHOUT A TAPE RECORDER... IT'S THE NAUGHTIES! (We reserve the right to request interview tapes and notes at any time.)

STYLE NOTES

Quotations
Quote marks are used to indicate song titles, chapters in a book, article titles and conversation. Punctuation goes INSIDE the quotation marks (e.g., the band played “Touch of Grey , ” “Bertha” and “Loser . ”)

Italics
Italics are used as album titles, names of television shows, book and magazine titles, etc. The punctuation at the end of the italicized item should be in regular type, unless part of the phrase.

Numbers
Write out any number ten and under. For any number above ten, use numerals, but write out a number that begins a sentence. Try not to begin a sentence with a number.

Decades
Do not write them out. Also, it's 1960s. Not 1960's. That's the first time you mention it in an article. After that, it's ‘60s. The exception is when the decade is at the start of a sentence, in which case it should be written out.

Percentage
The word “percent” is always spelled out, not given as “%.”

State Abbreviations
In a sentence, don't abbreviate the name of a state unless you are giving an address. Use postal abbreviations (NY, NJ, OH, IA, etc.) only with the whole ZIP number. Otherwise, write the entire name of the state out in full.

Songs
Try to write out the complete, accurate title of a song. In an article, a song title may be abbreviated after it's been written out in full. It is common usage to credit a songwriter rather than a given performer when referring to a song. It's not Janis Joplin's “Me and Bobby McGee,” even though her rendition of the song may be the best-known one. The song was written by Kris Kristofferson, so if it's anyone's, it's his.

“Its” Versus “Theirs”
Even though band names, like The Disco Biscuits, are singular and neuter nouns that should be referred to as “it,” we allow ourselves to regard them as plural people when it seems appropriate. Our guideline is the context of the story. For example, when referring to the Biscuits as a corporate organization, “it” may be appropriate: “The Disco Biscuits gives its support to the preservation of the rainforest.” But in a more personal, concert setting, “their” may be more appropriate: “the Biscuits played their hearts out.” It is also possible to grammatically work out this situation using extra nouns, i.e. “the members played their hearts out.”

Sex & Drugs & Rock ‘n' Roll
Given what we write about in Relix , there may be flexibility on an individual basis, but these are the guidelines when it comes to S&D&R&R:

Try to avoid using vulgar language, either in your writing or in quotations from the subjects of your articles. True, it's the way people talk in our society, but the way we talk is not the way we should write. Relix has the dual task of trying to cover a specific scene and be responsive to its members, and also try to appeal to a more general audience that, while more tolerant than most, still doesn't need to have its nose pushed into, uh, excrement every few words. Use discretion.

Relix is a magazine primarily concerned with music, art and culture. It is not primarily concerned with sex, drugs or politics. Authors should avoid discussing their states of inebriation/stonedness in relation to shows. If mentioning an alleged drug problem of a musician being written about, make sure that it is relevant and provable before you mention it. The laws regarding libel are complicated, and we can't afford to be involved in a lawsuit.

ARTIST GUIDELINES

Submissions: Unfortunately, we're not accepting art submissions at this time as Relix currently outsources all its design needs.

PHOTOGRAPHER GUIDELINES

When submitting photos to Relix , keep our format in mind. If you're submitting prints, make sure your name is on the back of all photos, and include the names of the people in it along with the venue and the date the photo was taken. Be careful that the ink is dry and write close to the edges to avoid smudging the image areas of stacked photos.

If you submit work that we think may be of future use, we will maintain it on file. If photos are unacceptable for some reason, we will return them with an explanation if you have included a SASE.

Photo Size
3x5 inch photos are acceptable, but we prefer 5x7 photos so they can be reproduced at a larger size when appropriate.

Digital Photos
Images intended for the web are not acceptable for print publication. Digital images must be 300 dpi PLUS appropriate size for print (see above).

We encourage photographers to provide us with lo-res samples of their work, either by email or on disc. If we're interested in publishing any of your photos, we will contact you to request a high-res image and make payment arrangements.

We look forward to working with you in the future. Please contact us with any ideas, comments or suggestions.

Aeve Baldwin, Editor-in-Chief
Relix Magazine, 104 W. 29th Street, 11th Floor , New York , NY 10001
Tel: 646-230-0100 fax: 646-230-0200

 



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Relix Magazine - WideSpread Panic
September/October 2006
(on newsstands 9/5)

Click here to view a sample of the new Relix digital edition!
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Also in this issue:
SCENE & HEARD
Mindful music from around the globe: The Beat, Soundcheck and Fragments

GLOBAL BEAT
The Brazilian Girls

PARTING SHOTS
Soul legend Sam Moore

Full Table of Contents  ]

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