Submission Policies

American-Journal welcomes submissions from photographers and writers. The magazine is photography driven. Rarely are any submissions accepted for publication without accompanying images. Please read American-Journal to get an idea of the types of stories published. The magazine departments are described below.

  • Americana – Focusing on the icons, artifacts and activities that are typical of American pop culture.
  • People – Narrating the stories of the more than 300 million people who call the United States home.
  • Places – Portraying geographic locations and landmarks across the United States.
  • Culture – Highlighting various cultural affiliations throughout the United States, including those based on ethnicity, social class, political alliance and religious background.
  • Current Affairs – Illustrating how the news of the day is affecting the people, places and culture throughout the United States.


Writing Guidelines

American-Journal is a journalistic publication. We do not publish poetry, fiction or opinion pieces. We do publish well-written features that tell the stories of people and places throughout the country.

American-Journal adheres to Associated Press (AP) Style. AP Style is a set of formal writing guidelines used by the media industry to maintain consistency. More information about AP Style can be found at (See below for a list of AP Style tips.)

All submitted copy will be edited to conform to the rules of AP Style and the style guidelines of American-Journal. All copy will also be edited for spelling, punctuation, grammar and flow. Authors will have an opportunity to review edited copy prior to publication.


Photography Guidelines

American-Journal is a visual publication filled with compelling photography.

All photographic submissions should be sent as JPEG files and sized to 950 pixels on the long edge.

Focal Point Submissions: Attach the photograph and the accompanying article to an email, and send it to submissions [at] Focal Point articles should be no more than 500 words. Please include your byline as you would like it published.

Member Submitted Photo: Attach the photograph to an email, and send it to submissions [at] Also send a copy block including such information as what the photo is depicting, where and when it was shot and any other relevant information about the scene. Member submitted photos can be beautiful scenics, interesting portraits, wildlife images or quirky images of Americana. Please include your byline as you would like it published.

Feature Stories and Essays: Email a link to the images to submissions [at] Also send such information as what the essay is about, where it was shot and any other relevant information about the story. If a written story accompanies the images, please attach it to the email.

Top 10 Tips for AP Style Usage

Here are a few AP Style tips from Cub

1. Use a person’s full name and title the first time you mention him or her in an article. For example, write Don Swanson, professor of communication, not Prof. Swanson. Once people have been fully identified, refer to them by last name only. There are exceptions, so always check the AP Stylebook.

2. Spell out abbreviations or acronyms on first reference. For example, use Passaic County Community College the first time you refer to the college in a story. You may use PCCC on any references made after that. Another example would be to use DAR only after you have spelled out Daughters of the American Revolution on first reference.

3. Abbreviate months when used with days, and use numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.) not ordinal numbers (1st, 2nd, etc.). Exceptions are March, April, May, June and July — write them out, don’t abbreviate. For example, write Sept. 2, 2008, not September 2nd, 2008. But, when using only the month and year, spell out the month.

4. Generally, spell out the numbers zero through nine and use numerals for 10 and higher. Note, however, that numbers used at the beginning of a sentence are spelled out. Example: Five hundred twenty-four students attended. It is better, however, to rewrite the sentence so that it doesn’t begin with a number. Example: Attending the event were 524 students from local colleges.

5. But use numerals even for ages younger than 10. This is another exception to the aforementioned number rule. When used like an adjective, say X-year-old, including the hyphens. Otherwise, don’t use the hyphens. For example: the 5-year-old girl kicked her brother, who is 8 years old.

6. Spell out the word “percent” but use numerals for the actual number. Examples: Participation increased 5 percent. Nearly 28 percent of all students don’t like algebra. Exception: use may use the % sign in headlines.

7. To indicate time, use figures and lowercase letters (9 a.m., 6 p.m.). Put a space between the figure and the letters. Exceptions are noon and midnight. Do not say 12 noon or 12 midnight — it’s redundant.

8. Capitalize formal titles used before a name. For example, write Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Very long titles may be shortened or summarized unless they are essential to the story, but the shortened form should not be capitalized (for example, you may use spokesperson instead of Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications). Use lowercase when formal titles follow a name (e.g., Hillary Clinton, secretary of state). General titles, such as astronaut Neil Armstrong and actor Matt Damon, are lowercase.

9. Capitalize names of people, places or things to set them apart from a general group. These include proper nouns such as Mike, Canada, Hudson River, and St. John’s Church. But use lowercase for common nouns (i.e. nouns not coupled with a proper name), such as the river or the church. Also, put a word in lowercase when you have more than one proper noun sharing the word. Example: Ocean and Monmouth counties. Capitalize the first word in a sentence. Refer to the dictionary or AP Stylebook, if needed. When in doubt, use lowercase.

10. Do not use courtesy titles such as Mr., Miss, Mrs., or Ms., except in direct quotes or where needed to distinguish between people of the same name. Using courtesy titles may be polite, but it is not AP Style.

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