HOW TO ASK MARTHA:
The last time I sent in a question to the Ask Martha column was in the early 2000s. My question wasn't selected but this past spring I thought I would give it another go. Sure enough, one of my two questions was chosen! I have a few tips on how to get your questions noticed out of the hundreds that I'm sure the magazine receives each month.
- I suggest sending your questions via post, rather than by email. It's just a hunch, but I feel as though the editors will take more notice if you've taken the time to sit down and pen your queries on pretty stationery, as I did.
- Ask more than one question. I sent in two, but you could send three or four or five: it gives the editors more to choose from.
- Ask very specific questions. Don't be vague. A question like, "Are apples healthy?" is far too broad for the editors to respond with a succinct reply. An alternative question might be, "Do the skins of apples contain any added health benefits?"
- This may seem obvious, but keep your questions in the realm of home, health and lifestyle: food, cooking, cleaning, organizing, collecting, gardening, repairing, mending and crafting are all topics the magazine deals with, so start with that footprint.
- Think a season or two ahead: submit a question in July about a Christmas quandary, or a question about gardening in January. This gives the editors time to plan out the publishing of your question to fit seasonal themes well in advance.
- Be patient. I sent in my question last May and it was only published in the November issue. Don't be discouraged if you don't see your question in the pages of the issue immediately following.
c/o Letters Department
Martha Stewart Living
225 Liberty Street
New York, New York
The other alternative is email: Ask.Martha@meredith.com