Article Submissions

General Information

  • We prefer submissions via e-mail to
    You may also send submissions (on disc or thumb drive) to:
    Parachutist-Attn: Managing Editor
    5401 Southpoint Centre Blvd.
    Fredericksburg, VA 22407
  • If you have an idea for a story, please contact us before you start writing so we can discuss a rough word count and the article’s applicability for the magazine.
  • We put together the magazine’s editorial plan two to four months before the cover date, and submissions are generally due about 45 days prior to the first day of issue month (e.g., January 15 for the March issue). If the article is not time-sensitive, we may hold it to run at a later date.
  • When possible, supply photos that relate to the article.
  • With the exception of historical articles, we do not accept articles for events that took place more than four months prior to the cover date (e.g. For the March issue, we won’t cover boogies that occurred prior to December).
  • Articles should be written in the third person. You may include yourself in the happenings, but please try to steer clear of first-person writing (in other words, please don’t center your articles around “I,” “me,” or “we” statements).
  • Event articles should include the journalistic basics: Who (the organization, person or group holding or involved in the event), What (the actual name of the event and whether it’s a boogie, competition, record attempt, fundraiser, etc.), When (the dates the event took place), Where (the DZ, or if not a DZ, the city and state or other location), Why (to choose a world champion, to raise money for a cause, etc.) and How (e.g.: an 8-round swoop meet, by taking pledges and selling T-shirts, etc.).
  • We pay a modest compensation to our authors for most submissions except press releases.

Parachutist DOES NOT accept:

  • First-jump stories, except in “How Skydiving Changed My Life” (see guidelines below).
  • First-person accounts of jumps or travelogues, except in “Tales From the Bonfire” (see guidelines below).
  • Obituaries, unless the deceased was a Lifetime Achievement Award, Meritorious Service Award, Regional Achievement Award or Hall of Fame recipient, or a former USPA Board or staff member. (We will, however, report on ash dives or memorial events in Five-Minute Call).
  • Biographies of specific people unless they are receiving a USPA award or Hall of Fame recognition.
  • Product reviews
  • Articles specifically about BASE jumping or wind-tunnel competitions

Feature Articles

  • Please contact Parachutist ( prior to submitting a feature article so we can discuss a word count, publication deadline and the article’s applicability for the magazine
  • Appropriate feature topics include:
    • How-to or safety articles written by experts (e.g., canopy control, packing tips, spotting, predicting weather, understanding your gear)
    • Historical articles (e.g., D.B Cooper, the first parachute jump, the Lake Erie disaster)
    • National or international competition coverage (local competitions are generally covered in Five-Minute Call)
    • World records
    • Large boogies or events (generally pictorials)
  • Feature articles generally range from about 1,000 to 2,500 words, with the exception of boogie articles, which are best kept to fewer than 500 words and accompanied by lots of high-quality photographs.
  • Longer event articles that are submitted without advance notice are often trimmed and run in the Five Minute Call section.

Five-Minute Call

  • Articles for the Five-Minute Call section (the shorter articles at the beginning of the magazine) do not require advance notice. However, submissions must be kept to about 200 to 500 words.
  • As news articles, Five-Minute Call pieces should be written in a journalistic style.
  • Appropriate topics for Five-Minute Call articles include:
    • Local boogies and events
    • Press releases (new gear releases, product recalls, new skydiving-related publications)
    • State records
    • Organization news (new DZ ownership, local awards, change of aircraft or staff)
  • Please provide one to three photos, when appropriate.

How Skydiving Changed My Life

  • Submissions to this section are as varied as our membership but center around the theme of skydiving changing life for the better—therefore, submissions should have an overall positive feel to them.
  • This is one of the few areas of the magazine in which we accept—indeed, prefer—first-person writing.
  • We accept submissions only from USPA member skydivers, and strongly prefer stories from those who have been in the sport for more than a year.
  • The final version should be between 500 and 800 words. Longer submissions will be edited to fit.
  • Please submit three to five photos to accompany the piece, at least a few of which were taken at a drop zone or while skydiving. Photos should be high-resolution, and please let us know who took each shot. (See “photo submissions” for more information.)
  • We will not be able to tell you immediately whether your story will be selected for publication. Stories are kept under consideration for one year, although pieces generally run in a magazine with a cover date of three to six months after receipt of the article.

Tales from the Bonfire

  • This is the section of the magazine that features first-person accounts of actual jumps. These should be exciting, unusual or interesting jump stories that would appeal to a licensed skydiver.
  • We accept “No s**t, there I was...” stories, but please don’t send us accounts of blatant violations of USPA or FAA regulations.
  • Entries should be anywhere from 200 to 800 words.
  • One or two photos may accompany the piece but are not required.
  • We prefer submissions from USPA member skydivers.
  • We will not be able to tell you immediately whether your story will be selected for publication. Stories are kept under consideration for one year, although pieces generally run in a magazine with a cover date of three to six months after receipt of the article.