Acreage Life is the first Canadian magazine to cater specifically to the needs and interests of acreage owners. Our readers, who are in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia, are primarily "country converts" who maintain jobs in the city while living on properties of 1-25 acres. They have chosen to live in the country for lifestyle reasons.
Our readers are smart, busy, curious and willing to learn. We offer them practical and stimulating stories about gardening, landscaping, home renovations and maintenance, nature and wildlife, caring for pets, growing and preparing food, and more.
We publish five times a year, appearing in February, April, June, September and November. Acreage Life is based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and published by The Western Producer, an 84-year-old newspaper trusted and renowned for its expertise in meeting the needs of rural people.
Each issue includes feature stories ranging from 900 to 1,500 words, as well as 600-word articles for regular departments. Our goal is to inspire country dwellers, assist them in achieving their visions for their properties, and help them solve problems they have encountered. Among our published articles are service stories about building projects (a pond, a woodshed, a dog run) as well as step-by-step instructions for constructing a cedar rail fence, installing a flagstone path, sharpening a chainsaw, and attracting birds and butterflies.
We are keen to tell stories about fascinating aspects of the Acreage Life experience. We highlight an interesting country property in each issue. Among the well-known acreage owners we have profiled are: Salt Spring Island artist Robert Bateman, Guelph-area painter Ken Danby, poets Patrick Lane and Lorna Crozier of Victoria, and Stratford actor Lucy Peacock.
The Acreage Life departments, largely freelance written, include:
Water and utilities
Creature comforts (care of horses, dogs and other pets)
Déjà vu: antiques and collectibles
We have regular columnists for the following topics:
We are eager to purchase, on assignment, freelance writing that is appealing, well-researched, reader-friendly and fresh. We have a particular niche, reflecting and celebrating a lifestyle that is neither farm nor urban. Stories should convey a strong sense of place. Query first, outlining your suggested stories, to:
Acreage Life Managing Editor, Sheila Robertson: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note where you are writing from and include a daytime telephone number in your query. A successful query extends beyond a story idea to include the scope of the article and the resources you intend to use. If you are proposing to write a profile of acreage owners, it is expected that you will have first obtained the permission and co-operation of your proposed subjects.
Editorial decisions are made months in advance of the publication schedule. For seasonal material, it is best to query a year in advance.
All submitted work must be original and unpublished. We reserve the right to edit manuscripts as necessary for Acreage Life.
Writers given assignments will be provided with a contract outlining purchase rights, expenses covered, etc.
Contributors are expected to disclose any special connection they have to individuals or organizations described in their stories. This might include stories about relatives or employers, or writing resulting from travel paid for by a company with an interest in the story. This information may be published with the story.
Payment is 60 cents per published word. There is an additional fee for each photo we use that has been taken and provided by the author. Payment is upon publication.
Lush photography is an essential component of Acreage Life. Magazine staff members meet most of our photographic needs. However, we use some work submitted by freelance photographers, with rates negotiated depending on the assignment.
Photographs should be submitted via e-mail. We require high-resolution photos in TIFF or JPEG format, with minimal compression. For more information, refer to our Photo Guidelines, below.
Thank you for your interest in Acreage Life.
(Updated December 3, 2007)
PHOTO GUIDELINES FOR ACREAGE LIFE MAGAZINE
Shooting with a digital camera allows you to see if you've captured the image you want, but it can pose problems on the page if the final shot doesn't meet our requirements. Here's how you can help:
1. CHECK YOUR CAMERA. If your camera does not have an actual 5 mega-pixel CCD or CMOS chip in it, it's unlikely you can take a photo that has the resolution we need to print it in the magazine. Switch to a regular film camera instead (100 ASA or 200 ASA film preferred.)
2. CHECK YOUR SETTINGS. Be sure to use the maximum resolution settings available (consult your manual) and the lowest ASA or DIN setting.
3. DO NOT ALTER THE IMAGE. We can crop, colour-correct and fix any minor flaws in an image in our production department. Please do not try to brighten, sharpen or otherwise change the original image. Don't convert the image to CMYK; leave it in RGB.
4. PLEASE TURN OFF THE DATE STAMP on your camera when you are taking photos for publication.
5. HOW TO SEND AN IMAGE:
Once you have downloaded the image to your computer, save it as a JPEG (level 10 or "high" setting). This should produce an image with a final size of 500K or greater. If the file size is smaller than this, you know the image is unsuitable for reproduction. BE SURE THE .JPG file extension is on the photo or our mail servers may not accept it.
E-mail the photo to email@example.com. Your ISP may not allow you to send files larger than 5MB total, but sending them in batches is okay. Always call us to confirm we've received your photos: our e-mail servers occasionally reject messages without sending a bounce-back notification. You can contact us at 1-800-667-6978.
DON'T use file compression programs like Stuff-it or DropZip. If you're sending numerous photos, consider burning them onto a CD instead.
Be sure to include full cutline information with each photo. If you're submitting photos that have been taken by someone else, include their full name and contact information.
If you've been assigned to take a full-page photograph, please call our Acreage Life Photo Editor Michael Raine (1-800-667-6978) first before you take the shot. A full-page photo must be at least 9"x11.5" at 300 dpi at final resolution.
Questions? Call us! We are happy to help. You can contact us at 1-800-667-6978.