PSA2018 Post-Meeting Workshop

Pitching and Writing Philosophical Op-Eds


David V. Johnson

Time: 4 November 2018, 12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

This 3 hour workshop will take you through the complete process of OpEd writing — from conception, to pitch, to writing the initial draft, and to effectively working with an editor. In this practical workshop, we will review strategies for writing op-eds and landing them at major publications. What is the best way to approach a magazine or newspaper? How should you craft your pitch letter? What are common mistakes to avoid? In what style should you write, and how is it different from academic writing? How should you think about working with an editor? How do you build a portfolio of public writing? We will also review and discuss ideas, pitches, and drafts that you seek to publish, so come prepared! The workshop will be led by David Johnson, award winning journalist and editor, and Philosophy Ph.D.

David V. Johnson is senior editor of Stanford Social Innovation Review. He is a former philosophy professor turned journalist with more than a decade of experience as an editor and writer. Previously, he was senior opinion editor at Al Jazeera America, where he edited the op-ed section of the news channel’s website. Earlier in his career, he served as online editor at Boston Review and research editor at San Francisco magazine the year it won a National Magazine Award for general excellence. He has written for The New York Times, USA Today, The New Republic, Bookforum, Aeon, Dissent and The Baffler, among other publications. He has taught at Stanford University, the University of Michigan, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). David earned a Ph.D. in philosophy from Stanford University, a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, a master’s degree in classics from Cambridge University, and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and history from the University of California, Berkeley. He lives in Berkeley, Calif. You can find him on Twitter @contrarianp.


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