For more than 30 years, Fine Woodworking has made a name for itself as a reader-written publication. That means we depend on material from real-world woodworkers like you to fill each issue of the magazine. But before you send in your proposal, here's what you need to know:

We concentrate on the how-to rather than the human interest. That means the articles tell you how to do things well, not about people who do things well. So we need the information from the horse's mouth -- not from journalists writing about someone else.

Top 10 tips for first-time contributors
1. We run three basic types of articles: projects, techniques, and tool tests. If you are a first-time author, a technique article is probably your best bet. The focus is narrow so there usually is less involved.
2. A technique article could focus on a power-tool or hand-tool technique, but also finishing or a helpful jig.
3. You need to have done the thing you are proposing more than once, and have a photo of the finished results.
4. You don't have to be an expert about all things woodworking--you just need a good technique to share.
5. We are not looking for the hardest things you know how to do--rather, we need techniques and projects that will be useful to a broad range of people.
6. You don't have to be a good writer--just give us the basic facts and we'll polish the words.
7. You don't even need to be a photographer--we'll visit your shop and get the shots we need.
8. We pay $150 per magazine page for first-time authors.
9. Your proposal should include:
a. a page or less of text explaining why your approach is a good one, what the steps are, and why. Please don't go to the trouble at this stage of writing a full manuscript.
b. some snapshots and/or drawings that let us see the final results, as well as some of the steps if necessary.
10. Send your proposal to: Betsy Engel, 63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470, or to

For more detailed information, read our author submission guidelines.

Got a tip?
Methods of Work is one of the most popular departments in Fine Woodworking. If you have an original woodworking tip, we pay $100 for a longer tip that needs a drawing (we do the final illustration), and $50 for a short tip.

Send your tips (including sketches or photos, if necessary) to: MOW Editor, Fine Woodworking, 63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470. Tips can also be sent by e-mail ( or fax (203-270-6753).