If you’re looking to break into Highlights, one of the best tips I know is to analyze the magazine’s mission and make sure that your submission relates directly to something in the mission statement. The Highlights mission statement can be found on page 4 of every issue, and this is what it says:
This magazine of wholesome fun is dedicated to helping children grow in basic skills and knowledge, in creativeness, in ability to think and reason, in sensitivity to others, in high ideals and worthy ways of living–for children are the world’s most important people.
Let’s say you have a story about pirates–the real ones. By analyzing the mission statement, you would probably deduce that a story about pirates is not what Highlights is looking for. Why? Because pirates don’t exemplify high ideals, worthy ways of living, or sensitivity to others. Maybe you have an article about how to kick a soccer ball or a family that sculpts “story birds”, or becoming a backyard biologist–those ideas (all of which have recently appeared in the magazine) meet the magazine’s mission to help children grow in basic skills, creativity, and knowledge, as well as providing positive examples of worthy ways of living.
If you check your article, story, poem, activity, or idea against the Highlights mission and it fits, send it in! You’ll be a step ahead of the competition when it comes to making a sale.
For current needs, check out the editors’ list at www.highlights.com/current-needs.