Want to get paid to write about entertainment?
Remember the days before COVID-19? Entertainment content absorbed plenty of space in the universe back then.
But now, people are home a lot more. They’re hungrier than ever for ways to cure boredom, ward off worry, and be entertained. And that’s actually good news for freelance writers.
With the world seeking more to keep them busy and distracted, you can get get paid to write in the entertainment niche.
For instance, TV, movies, books, sports, music, games, wherever people spend time and money looking for an escape.
However, with the fast pace of consumers devouring content, there’s always a need for more. If you want to get paid to write, now is a great time to pitch niche pubs and markets in entertainment.
Where do you start? Writing a book, TV, movie, or game review can be an easy way to break into some of these markets. However, there’s bigger opportunities to get paid to write in the entertainment niche, too.
Check out this list of entertainment markets and start pitching:
1. American Theatre
The only general-circulation pub for the theatre, this magazine was founded in 1984 by the Theatre Communications Group.
You can get paid to write for American Theatre covering stage artists, theatrical events and trends, and the impact of financial and legal issues on the arts. FYI, the mag’s main audience is professional, not-for-profit theatres including notable international venues.
Contact: Rob Weinert-Kendt, editor-in-chief.
Rate: $0.25 a word
2. Atlantic Books Today
Run by the Atlantic Publishers Marketing Association Atlantic Books Today publishes content on everything readers want to know about the books and authors of eastern Canada.
The magazine is published bi-annually in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. Check out the digital version of the mag here.
Contact: Chris Benjamin, editor-in-chief.
Rate: $0.15 a word
3. The A.V. Club
The A.V. Club is owned by the media group that puts out The Onion.
However, you can get paid to write for The A.V. Club about true entertainment content. Pitch ideas including:
- Other entertainment-related articles
They accept freelance submissions and occasionally have staff writing positions.
Contact: Editor-in-Chief Patrick Gomez on LinkedIn.
Rate: Average $0.21 a word
A casting service for entertainment professionals, Backstage has over 100,000 members and has been a resource for performing artists for over half a century.
Contact: Briana Rodriguez, editor-in-chief, on LinkedIn.
Rate: $0.14 a word
Bustle is looking for timely entertainment pieces as a subcategory in their magazine. There are multiple editors to pitch to depending on topic.
Contact: Editor-in-Chief Emma Rosenblum on Twitter
Rate: $0.25 a word
6. C Magazine
A forum for the exploration of contemporary art, each issue of C Magazine explores a theme through writing, criticism, and projects.
Your best bet to get paid to write for C Magazine, pitch a feature story idea on a Canadian artists, with particular focus on equity-seeking communities (Black, Indigenous, diasporic) and international perspectives.
Contact: Send your pitch to Editor Jaclyn Bruneau via email.
Rate: $0.23 a word
7. Chicago Reader
The Chicago Reader publishes freelance contributions in the form of narrative features, neighborhood news stories, criticism, videos, and audio.
The pub has a group of dedicated freelancers but accepts pitches on an ongoing basis from new writers. Pitches highlighting underrepresented communities and stories are especially encouraged from women, nonbinary writers, and contributors of color in the Chicago area.
Contact: Chicago Reader has multiple editors to pitch to depending on the section. Editor email addresses can be found here.
Rate: $0.23 a word
Cineaste readers love the cinema for its beauty, and social and political statements. Get paid to write for this quarterly mag by pitching story ideas on old and new films from around the world. Deadlines are posted in the guidelines.
Contact: Cineaste has multiple section editors. Find the list here, and then submit via email to email@example.com.
Rate: $18 for short reviews, $36 for book or DVD reviews, $45 for film reviews or short articles, $90 for features.
9. Culture Eater
You can get paid to write for Culture Eater by pitching feature story ideas on: the arts, gaming, film and TV, literature, fashion, and podcasts. Also accepts personal essays on art/culture topics.
Contact: Editor Ezekiel Rodofili on Twitter or by email.
Rate: $25-$100 per assignment
Current’s readership is made up mostly of people in the public media industry. So if your skill set includes critical, in-depth reporting on issues relevant to public radio and television stations, networks, and production companies send a pitch their way.
Contact: Digital Editor Mike Janssen on Twitter.
Rate: $0.75 a word
Sports fans, get cracking to get paid to write for Deadspin, one of our favorite sports writing jobs out there. This pub offers in-depth guidance on how to pitch them with real examples from writers they published.
They even consider non-sports stories with relevance to their readers, like this example of Native American lacrosse players who were suspended after reporting racial abuse. Entertainment ideas considered, too.
Contact: Managing Editor Chris Baud on LinkedIn.
Rate: $0.11 to $0.17 a word
12. Entertainment Weekly
From TV and movies, to gaming and celebrity interviews, EW does it all. One of the Meredith Corporations pubs, EW shifted from a weekly to a monthly magazine in 2019.
Contact: Executive Editor Sarah Rodman on LinkedIn.
Rate: As much as $0.40 a word
13. Esquire Magazine
You can get paid to write for Esquire about “the interests, the curiosity, the passions, of men.” It’s actually been around for 70 years. Their entertainment section covers TV, movies, books, music, food and drinks, and more.
Contact: Managing Editor John Kenney at firstname.lastname@example.org; Literary Editor Amy Grace Loyd on Twitter; Food & Drinks Editor Jeff Gordinier by email.
Rate: Up to $0.15 a word
This pub focuses on video games, but you can also get paid to write for FanByteMedia by pitching ideas about TV, movies, anime, manga, comics, and even wrestling!
Contact: Head of FanByte John Warren on Twitter.
Rate: $100-150 per assignment
15. Hollywood Reporter
This pub reports on the influence of Hollywood on all aspects of U.S. society from business, style, and tech, to politics.
Contact: Kim Masters, editor-at-large, on Twitter. Or check out the masthead to find the right editor to pitch.
Rate: $0.33 a word
You can get paid to write for this feminist-focused website about culture, books. Believe it or not, there’s even a section entirely devoted to The Bachelorette.
Contact: Editor-in-Chief Julianne Escobedo Shepherd via email .
Rate: $0.20 a word
17. Literary Hub
Write about literary life and culture and get paid to write for this pub dedicated to “all things books.” In addition, you can pitch reviews, essays, criticism and craft pieces. Literary Hub puts a literary spin on every lifestyle, human interest, and news vertical imaginable.
Contact: Editor-in-Chief Jonny Diamond on Twitter.
Rate: $0.13 a word
18. The New York Times Book Review
While there are no staff writers assigned to the weekend Book Review, it’s no easy feat to land this gig with the New York Times.
However, the six editors who sort through the 50-60 books submitted weekly, assign reviews to writers, most of whom are not Times reporters, up to six months ahead of publication.
Contact: Editor Pamela Paul on LinkedIn.
Rate: $0.80 a word
19. Paper Magazine
Freelancers can get paid to write for Paper by pitching ideas on the latest on film, music, celebrities, internet culture, and nightlife for the entertainment section.
Contact: Features Editor Kat Gillespie is on Twitter or by email.
Rate: $0.25 a word
20. Paste Magazine
Paste Magazine focuses on a variety of topics in the entertainment world. For example, TV, games, comedy, and even travel. They like to focus on independent artists and go a little deeper into the industry.
Contact: Introduce yourself with an LOI (letter of introduction) or story idea to any of the editors on the masthead.
Rate: Average $.08 a word
21. The Root
If you want to get paid to write “meaningful stories that move the needle on issues surrounding race,” consider pitching to The Root.
Content reflects original thought on the intersection of blackness and society. The It’s Lit! section explores books by African American and Black authors, and The Glow Up covers lifestyle and entertainment.
Contact: Editor-in-Chief Danielle Belton on Twitter.
Rate: $0.20 a word
Slate is known for its unique voice and sharp wit. You can get paid to write for the culture section by pitching ideas on movies, music, TV, and books.
Contact: Send well-researched pitches to Slate’s culture editors: Forrest Wickman (movies, music); Sam Adams (tv); Marissa Martinelli (books, fiction); Seth Maxon (books, non-fiction).
Rate: $0.24 a word
23. The Smart Set
The Smart Set covers a ton of lifestyle topics including the arts, literature, sports, shopping, and food. Freelance submissions are considered in the form of:
- Critical essays
- Cultural critiques and analyses
- Scholarly articles
- Food and travel writing
- Personal essays and memoirs
- Television reviews and unpublished excerpts
Contact: Email pitches to Editor Melinda Lewis at email@example.com.
Rate: $0.20 a word reported
24. Star Trek
Does everything that happens make you think of a Star Trek episode?
Star Trek publishes personal essays, reported pieces, or features that deeply examine an issue presented in the show. In addition, you can also get paid to write interviews with Star Trek one-off guest stars. Know anyone who’s been on the show you can connect with?
Contact: Managing Editor Kendra James at StarTrekPitches@cbs.com or LinkedIn.
Rate: $0.20 a word
25. SyFy Wire
Write about science fiction, fantasy, and supernatural horror for Syfy Wire. Pitch an idea for an original news story related to books, movies, tv, games, or genre figures.
Contact: Managing Editor Cher Martinetti on Twitter.
Rate: $0.14 a word
26. TV Guide
Even if you aren’t from the generation that relied on the printed version of TV Guide to know “what’s on”, you can still pitch your ideas for content for the TV obsessed to this iconic digital media brand.
Contact: Senior Editor Mandi Bierly on LinkedIn.
Rate: $0.19 a word
Variety publishes entertainment business news for a readership of affluent influencers. Got an expert take on the business side of film, TV, music, or theater to offer? Pitch your idea.
Contact: Find the right editor here and send your pitch by email. Or try Managing Editor Lesley McKenzie on Twitter.
Rate: $0.31 a word
28. The Verge
Got a fresh perspective on interactive entertainment or industry trends? The Verge is looking for freelance submissions on tv and film, games, and art & illustrations. Email pitches to the appropriate section editor.
Contact: Editor-in-chief Nilay Patel on Twitter.
Rate: $0.51 a word
Vox covers a vast array of topics, including culture. They are looking for candid pieces that stand out from typical coverage.
Contact: Culture Editor Jen Trolio via email.
Rate: $0.50 a word
Vulture is New York Magazine’s entertainment pub. They cover a wide range of topics, from TV and movies to podcasts and books.
Contact: Editor Neil Janowitz on LinkedIn or send your pitch to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rate: $0.32 a word reported
Write about the intersection of technology and culture for Wired. Freelance submissions are used for long-form print features, long-form online features, and online essays.
Contact: See Wired’s How to Pitch page for editors’ email addresses and this page for guidelines on submitting an op-ed piece. Editor Michael Calore is on LinkedIn.
Rate: $1 to $1.31 a word
Bonus Market: Film School Rejects
Founder Neil Miller describes his site as “a movie blog for the people.” And while these film-making aficionados are not currently accepting freelance pitches for stand-alone pieces, they are accepting pitches for recurring columns and limited series.
Contact: Film School Rejects Founder Neil Miller on Twitter.
Rate: $0.05 a word reported
Get paid to write about entertainment
Want to write about entertainment? Find a website, magazine or market you want to write for. Study the guidelines, and pitch an editor directly. And make sure you have fresh ideas and offer something they haven’t seen before.
That’s how you audition and get paid to write about entertainment.
What entertainment markets do you recommend? Share in the comments below.
Kathie Bullard Harris is a freelance health and wellness writer living in the Southern United States. When she isn’t writing copy, she’s working on her forever-in-progress first novel.