Fanbyte has an open pitch policy. Any and all potential freelancers are more than welcome to send ideas to email@example.com for consideration! Because of this, however, we receive a metric truckload of pitches every week. While we read them all, and try to give specific feedback to as many as possible, Fanbyte’s editorial team is quite small — not to mention we have a limited budget. We can’t accept every article idea that comes our way. Nor is every idea a good fit for Fanbyte. This page is meant to be a publicly available set of guidelines for new freelancers to get an idea of what we’re looking for, how to get it to us, and even what not to do.
Fanbyte is first and foremost a video game website. Our focus, for the time being, is primarily on games. But we’re also open to topics like manga and anime for the time being! It often just takes the right pitch. Here’s a look at what this means.
Things we basically don’t cover via freelancers at all:
- Traditional novels, books, and poetry
- Traditional sports
- Dark Souls. Every Dark Souls essay has already been written. Stop it.
The overwhelming majority of pitches we receive are for features and op-eds. We also reject the overwhelming majority of those. These are really tricky articles that not a ton of websites run en masse. So we try to be open to them. But coming up with good theses is difficult.
A good Fanbyte op-ed and/or feature idea should:
- Have a clear ARGUMENT you mean to convince the reader of, or an interesting interview source to talk about their experience
- Try to be timely, or be so wildly interesting that it doesn’t matter
- Focus on boosting positive aspects of a work (usually); other types of articles are often better suited for calling out what a game, movie, show, etc. does wrong
- Be personality-driven and, if not funny, at least not dry
A good Fanbyte op-ed and/or feature pitch should NOT:
- Be too similar to something we already published
- Be too similar to something that has been published at multiple, similar websites
- Be a simple observation; this is a tweet, or part of a larger piece, not the basis for an entire piece itself
- Be a simple recap of events or a story (unless you were part of those events yourself)
Besides features and essays, we accept pitches for a lot of other article types. These are often much easier to get through the door! They require a lighter lift from our small team of editors, and can establish working relationships that will help us trust you to write bigger items.
Other article types we need:
- Guides (always)
- Previews (depending on the game)
- Community reporting
Some article types we’re not looking for at all right now:
- Traditional reviews
- Pure parody and satire (Fanbyte is often humorous, but the comedy is meant to come from heightened takes on real opinions or events, and usually not outright fiction)
When sending us an email, you should:
- Write more than a sentence, but less than half a novel (a single, short paragraph that sums up the idea is usually about the right length)
- Try to clearly express the argument you want people to engage with; imagine what the headline might be, and if it would be interesting, and go from there
Pay rates vary based on the type of article and the degree of legwork, but:
- Simple, fun listicles usually start around $150
- Essays and op-eds usually go for around $200
- Features (anything that requires greater degrees of research, interviews, etc.) usually start around $250