Writer's Guidelines
by Administrator

Writer's Guidelines

Guide is a Christian story magazine primarily for readers ages 10-14. The 32-page, four-color publication is published weekly by the Pacific Press Publishing Association. Our mission is to show readers, through stories that illustrate Bible truth, how to walk with God now and forever.


Each issue includes three to four true stories. Guide does not publish fiction, poetry, or articles (devotionals, how-to, profiles, etc.). However, we sometimes accept quizzes and other unique nonstory formats. Each piece should include a clear spiritual element. Standard feature-length stories are 1000-1200 words, but we also accept shorter pieces of 450 words and up. Payment is 7-10 cents/word upon acceptance for first serial rights.

Adventure. Guide adventure stories allow the reader to vicariously experience the excitement of making new discoveries while seeing character-building principles in action. These stories can take place anywhere (outdoors or even in an urban setting). Strive for a sense of mystery, action, and discovery.

Personal Growth. The Guide-age years (10-14) can be turbulent on many fronts. Young people often struggle with friendships, self-esteem, family members, peer acceptance, body changes, etc. Stories in the personal growth category provide guidance from a Christian perspective.

Christian Humor. Stories in this category use a lighthearted story line that goes beyond one-liners to expose a character-building principle. The key is to write what's funny to kids and keep it believable.

Inspiration. Possible topics in this category include answers to prayer, biblical narratives, mission stories, and examples of young people living out their Christian beliefs. Don't limit yourself to "traditional" themes. Show God at work in both the common and unusual circumstances of life.

Biography. In today's society, as much as ever, young people need good role models. Some stories we have printed in Guide feature Martin Luther King, Jr.; John Gutenberg; and Anne Frank. Please query first to make sure the topic has not been recently covered. Documentation required.

Story Series. We also run continued stories (two to 12 parts, with each chapter about 1200 words in length). The story line should maintain some degree of spirituality throughout. An adventurous slant always captures our interest—and the reader's. Please query first.

Nature. Carefully study past Guide nature stories before submitting. We desire creative approaches, not an encyclopedia-style rendition of facts. Include a spiritual application in the article or as a sidebar. Please query first to make sure the topic has not been recently covered. Documentation required.

Games and Puzzles

We are interested in fresh game concepts for Guide-age readers. We see far too many word searches, crossword puzzles, and matching or fill-in-the blank activities. Check out current puzzle books and Web sites to find new ideas. Puzzles don’t have to be based on a Bible text, but they should include a spiritual tie-in. Story length is 500-1300 words. Payment for adult authors is 7-10 cents/word upon acceptance for first serial rights. Guide magazine is also willing to accept stories from child authors in order to mentor them into the publishing ministry. Standards for child authors are not as stringent as for adult authors, and the pay is $25-$35 per story. .


We accept submissions for reprints, but payment is less. Please let us know when and where the story or game first appeared.

Bible Quotations

Our preferred version is the New King James Version. Please indicate the version for any Bible quotes that are not from the NKJV.

Submission Procedures

Submit your story online.

Or mail submissions with SASE to:

Guide Magazine
PO Box 5353
Nampa, ID 83653-5353

We prefer complete manuscripts rather than queries.
For queries, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

10 Writing Tips

  1. Study at least three issues of the magazine before submitting any of your work. (Download a sample issue or view dozens of past stories in our story archive.)
  2. Before writing any Guide story, we encourage you to ask for the Holy Spirit's involvement.
  3. Think true. We do not use fiction, but we want writers to tell a true story using their best short-story techniques.
  4. Choose a story line that hasn't been beaten to death. Save an element of surprise for your ending. Be creative.
  5. Keep your protagonists Guide-age. Regularly spend time around 10- to 14-year-olds. This includes working to understand various ethnicities.
  6. Use lots of dialogue and word pictures. Show, don't tell.
  7. Bring out a spiritual or character-building principle that the reader can put into practice in his or her life. Make your story make a difference.
  8. Write from a kid's perspective, not an adult's.
  9. Look for places to boost the energy level of your piece.
  10. After you've finished your story, set it aside for at least a few days. Then give it a final editing before sending it to us. We prefer receiving final drafts.