Writing for MomSense Magazine
MomSense is a quarterly magazine published by MOPS International. The purpose of MomSense magazine is to connect and encourage mothers of preschoolers with articles that inform and inspire on issues relating to being a mother and a woman from a Christian perspective. As a potential MomSense writer, you should study the magazine’s tone and style. You’ll find articles from the magazine online at MomSense.com.
Audience and Distribution
Our audience consists of more than 90,000 mothers of preschoolers (infants through kindergarten). Most of our readers are married women between 25 and 40, who attend local MOPS groups, although we welcome and encourage content for mothers outside these demographics.
MomSense seeks to meet the needs of every mom, moms with different lifestyles who all share a similar desire to be the very best moms that they can be. Moms who read MomSense may live in cities, suburbs or rural areas. They may be married, single, teen moms, older moms, working moms or stay-at-home moms.
Each issue of MomSense is theme-based, so the content you submit should be appropriate to that issue’s theme. However, we also accept articles that are not related to the issue’s theme but provide inspiration or practical ideas with either a mom-focus or a woman-focus. We typically receive many more mom-focused submissions and need more articles that emphasize topics that speak to our readers as women, including personal growth topics. See descriptions of themed and non-themed articles below.
Themes are decided annually in April and are available in mid-May at MOPS.org/write. MomSense is planned four months in advance, so please submit articles according to the due dates listed below. We don’t accept submissions for our regular columns (Raising Great Kids, Let’s Play, The View From Here, UpClose, Family Connections, MOPS in Action and Better Moms, Better World).
MomSense does not publish: devotions, product reviews, fiction, book reviews or individual opinions on controversial subjects that divide our readers. These include doctrinal, political and social subjects, as well as parenting issues that bring up strong emotions. While the decisions you have made for your family may come up in your submission, do not assume that all readers will see things the same way.
Article Needs for Each Issue
Intro to the theme article: An article written by a mom for mothers of preschoolers. The article explains what the theme looks like in everyday life. (450 words)
Theme-related article (woman-focus): A practical or inspirational piece related to the theme written with a woman-focus. We are looking for humorous, inspirational or thought-provoking personal stories or well-researched practical information appealing to a wide variety of women and informing them on subjects relevant to their lives. (450 words)
Theme-related article (mom-focus): A practical or inspirational piece related to the theme written with a mom-focus. We are looking for humorous, inspirational or thought-provoking personal stories or well-researched practical information appealing to a wide variety of women and informing them on subjects relevant to their lives. (450 words)
Non-theme article (woman-focus): A practical or inspirational piece not related to the theme and written with a woman-focus. We are looking for humorous, inspirational or thought-provoking personal stories or well-researched practical information appealing to a wide variety of women and informing them on topics including marriage, relationships, how-to pieces, nutrition, health, exercise and finances. (450 words)
Non-theme article (mom-focus): A practical or inspirational piece not related to the theme written with a mom-focus. We are looking for humorous, inspirational or thought-provoking personal stories or well-researched practical information appealing to a wide variety of women and informing them on topics including parenting, single-parenting, how-to pieces and other issues related to raising preschoolers. (450 words)
Real-mom article: A personal essay using real-life examples about how a mom overcame something, learned a life lesson or found a unique perspective about a relationship. (350 words)
Humor article: Humorous first-person pieces, including funny stories about family life with young children. (Maximum of 450 words)
• Use real-life mom examples that engage the audience.
• Include age-appropriate applications for kids (preschool age: infant through kindergarten).
• Write submissions from a biblical, but not doctrinal, perspective.
• Incorporate ideas that challenge and help women regardless of where they are in their spiritual journey.
• Avoid Christian jargon and use biblical quotes sparingly.
• Use the New International Version for most biblical references; note if another Bible version is used.
Submitting an Article
Submit a complete article in an electronic Word document. Articles should be double-spaced. On the first page include: author’s name, mailing address, email address, phone number and the word count of the article.
Most articles published in MOMSense Magazine are one page with 450 words. If accepted, articles will be edited by MOPS International editorial staff to fit the language, flow and size of MOMSense Magazine.
MOMSense buys first rights to material. This includes the right to re-use the material in a MOPS anthology reprint or in electronic form (online).
MOPS International may keep what you submit on file for up to two years to consider using in a future issue. We respond to most submissions within 12 weeks.
Please submit your two-sentence biography that includes previous writing experience and credits, if you attend a MOPS group, as well as the ages of your children, if applicable.
Please also include complete bibliographical references documenting sources you’ve quoted (if any).
All submissions are received on speculation. A contract is sent after the assignment is made or article is accepted, although we cannot guarantee publication. The writer receives a byline and bio on each article, along with copies of the issue and payment upon publication. Articles cannot be published without a signed contract and cannot be paid without an invoice that includes your name, address, email address, phone number, payment amount, magazine issue date and title of article.
MOPS International Theme for 2013/14
A Beautiful Mess: Embrace Your Story
Verse: Ephesians 2:10 (New Living Translation)
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Addressing the felt needs of moms through this theme:
Moms live in messes. The toys, crumbs, and spit-up are their natural surroundings. Moms often feel like a mess. They are exhausted, under-showered and hormonal. Their past and present circumstances and decisions can leave them feeling inadequate for God’s love and purposes.
A Beautiful Mess — reminds moms that beauty can come out of their difficult spots. The grime of preschoolers brings the beauty of motherhood. The bruises of life can bring God’s redemption.
Embrace Your Story — reminds moms that their past, present and future can be used for good. God knows where each of us has been, where we are today and has set in motion where we are headed.
Many of the article ideas below highlight a life principle; the articles that work best for MOMSense use a personal story to illustrate the principle, so the emphasis is on compelling story rather than teaching on a principle.
Nov/Dec/Jan – What’s My Story?
Big Idea: My story’s not perfect and that’s OK. Help readers to understand, recognize and acknowledge their stories.
- Permission to be imperfect.
- Acceptance. How to deal with comparisons and the past.
- What is a beautiful mess? Introduce the concept of self-acceptance
- I am shaped by my past, but I’m living in the present.
- Giving myself the courage to be who I am.
- Dealing with perfectionism and comparisons.
- Modeling apologizing to others when I’ve made a mistake.
- The art of self-forgiveness; forgiving myself for past mistakes.
- Letting your kids see your mistakes
- Every mom has a story: Becoming a student of me.
- Life Map — how to map my life story.
- Building resilience: Sharing my mistakes with my kids.
- Plastic people crack: How to be authentic.
- Why being perfect can hinder relationships with my kids and others.
- Dealing with circumstances outside of my control.
- How my pre-mothering self impacts my mothering.
Submissions due: June 14
February/March/April Redeeming Your Story
Big Idea: Beauty and Redemption: Redeem your story by sharing and seeing its beauty.
- Does my story matter?
- Am I OK? Worthiness: Am I enough?
- Sharing my story with others.
- The now of my story: the parenting element.
- Why is my story important? How does that impact my relationships?
- If my childhood felt out of control; I do have some control in my life now.
- Worthiness: Feeling that I am enough and that I matter.
- How to bring my past into my present; how God uses the layers of my past.
- The power of vulnerability: People earn the right to know my story, who to share with.
- The power of sharing stories: How to embrace and intentionally tell my story.
- Owning my beauty: body image perfection and cultural expectations.
- Knowing when to be vulnerable and how much is OK to share.
- My God story: How to share what God means in my life.
- Being myself, sharing my talents in the midst of mothering.
- The real wife: How to share my story with my husband.
Submissions due: September 13
May/June/July There’s Hope in My Story
Big Idea: Shaping plans for you and your family; living a better story. To have hope and be purposeful.
- Is there hope?
- What’s it all for?
- What’s my purpose and my family’s purpose?
- The intentional part of making some changes in my life, including my family.
- What are God’s plans for my future? Where is my story taking me?
- My hope: Living a better story.
- My story as a mom is more than my kids. I am not my children; my children are not me.
- Telling my family story and creating a family mission statement.
- Going beyond surviving as a mom to thriving.
- My life is more than just mothering.
- Since mothering isn’t forever, my plan for my marriage.
- What my past says about who I will become.
- Here’s what kind of mom I want to be.
- Being intentional about where I’m going as a mom and a family.
- This is who we say we are as a family; this is how we live it out.
- The legacy of my story.
- Helping my children shape and tell their stories in a tangible way, story books, fun crafts.
- Creating a new chapter with my family now.
Submissions due: November 25.
August/September/October: Organizing My Mess/Shaping Summer Fun
Big Idea: Practical ways to organize my mess, reduce stress and shape summer fun.
- Balance: I need structure, but I also need freedom to play.
- Don’t stress yourself out.
- Break the rules.
- I feel so overwhelmed with the day-to-day; I need practical tools.
- Relax, have fun and don’t be limited by the mess.
- Ways to organize my mess.
- Creative ideas to shape summer fun.
- How to host an organizing party.
- Keep it simple clean-out solutions.
- Top ten organizing tips for any family or any house.
- Taking control of my space.
- Stress reducer tips for mom.
- How to make moving easy.
- Practical cleaning tips for the real mom.
- Being responsibly irresponsible, let loose this summer.
- Making mothering priorities based on your personality type and identity – practically living out who you are in your mothering story.
Submissions due: March 8