How to Write for Us

Journalists:

Shelterforce works with professional writers for some (but not all) of our content. If you have experience with the subjects of economic development, community development, housing, neighborhood revitalization, community organizing, or related topics and would like to pitch us a story or be considered for an assignment, please contact us at articles@nhi.org. Please be aware that we might not always have the budget to accept a pitch if it doesn’t fit within our upcoming themes.

We are currently particularly interested in stories relating to:

  • The intersection of health and community development
  • The intersection of arts and community development

Practitioners:

Shelterforce has always been written for and by practitioners. We invite submissions from people working in the field (plus academics, policymakers, and funders) that fit as many of the following as possible:

  • Contributes something interesting and engaging to the work of the field.
  • Tells an interesting story about your work that has implications or raises questions for the field—be specific.
  • Draws on your experience in the field to make a compelling argument about a policy, program, approach, or trend, whether for or against.
  • Is provocative and challenging, making readers think.
  • Is honest and vulnerable.
  • Is useful, providing concrete ideas or steps or suggestions that are not clichéd or common knowledge, or giving insight into a policy or regulation that will have an effect on the broader field.

We are not interested in:

  • Self-promotional pieces (e.g. “We released a new report!” “We opened a new building!” “We’re having a conference!” or “My business can help you with tax credit apps!”). Sometimes some of those things will be relevant to a larger, interesting point you want to make, but it should be secondary.
  • Pieces that reinforce very basic points like “we need more affordable housing” or “poverty isn’t the poor’s fault” or your organization’s basic mission statement without some new insight.
  • Pieces that try to take on too much at once. Pick one or two points at most. If you have a lot of opinions, break them into separate pieces.
  • Pieces on luxury housing or house buying tips (looking at you, PR firms).

If you would like to submit a blog post, or a post idea, please send it to: articles@nhi.org with a short description of your organization and/or experience.

Payment

We only pay professional writers to whom we have assigned stories or accepted pitches that involve original reporting and researching for us. Practitioners who have successfully had more than one article published, have accepted an invitation to commit to contributing on a regular basis, and are not doing so as part of a paid communications function may be paid a nominal honorarium in acknowledgement of their time.