Writing for your official members' magazine Dietetics Today can be a great way to gain some CPD, share some interesting news or insights with alomst 10,000 other dietetic professionals, or satisfy your creative urges!
Our articles are almost all written by our members and we’re always looking for new contributors and ideas. As a volunteer with the BDA, you’re bound to have some interesting experiences to share – which might also inspire more people to get involved.
So, the first question you will need to ask yourself is, what do I want to write about? Dietetics Today is the official membership magazine for the British Dietetic Association – but the breadth of topics we cover is surprisingly broad.
It could be:
- a write-up of a project you or your department have been involved in
- a review of literature on a topic you have expertise in
- a write-up from a trip or secondment
- a thought piece on the future of the profession
- a book review
- your experiences of working in an unusual or under-represented dietetic role
- your experiences as a member of an under-represented group within dietetics (eg BAME, LGBT, etc)
- an insight into volunteering, perhaps within your Specialist Group, Branch or as TU Rep
- how you have brought experiences from outside of dietetics into the profession
- how you have used your dietetics expertise outside of the profession
The list is endless, and you may have a new innovative idea!
Furthermore, it could be of (almost) any length – from a 200-word news piece about an award your team has won to a 3,000-word, fully referenced article on a specialist area for our Clinical Practice section.
Don’t worry if you have never written before. All articles are checked and proofed by an experienced journalist to make sure that they work in a magazine style.
The best thing you can do is:
- make sure you include the most important point you want to make as early as possible
- try to keep as close as possible to the word count
- keep the language as simple as possible – Dietetics Today has an intelligent readership, but if you can make the same point in simple language, that’s easier for everybody!
And don’t forget pictures – we’ll usually ask for a headshot of the author, but if you have any others that help to illustrate the story you are trying to tell, that makes for a much more engaging article.
So, what now? Have a think about your story and email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your idea. Explain what it is you are looking to say and whether it is particularly time-sensitive – it helps if we can plan content a couple of months in advance, if we can.
Think about what kind of article it is likely to be – a short news article, an opinion piece or an in-depth feature – and the editor can then think about a word count and a deadline. Don’t worry if you think you might not make it – just keep us informed as soon as you know so that we can look to make arrangements. Don't forget to promote your group or branch at the end of your article if relevant, which is always great free promotion!
Start thinking about what you want to say and you could see your work in print!
Editor of Dietetics Today