Contribute An Article


National Defense, published monthly by the National Defense Industrial Association, provides news and analysis on topics of relevance to national security government and industry professionals.

Areas of focus include Defense Department programs, defense industry trends, science and technology, and homeland security, military procurement, defense strategy and budgets. Because of the topical nature of National Defense, manuscripts are evaluated based on news content and timeliness. Opinion pieces and commentaries also are evaluated basedon content and relevance. The magazine prints only original articles. Generally, stories are accepted on a pro bono basis. We encourage contributions from a diversity of voices and communities in the national security field. Our news and analysis are aimed at informing defense professionals and stakeholders, as well as the general public. Stories must be written in a news-feature format. Scholarly pieces with footnotes and endnotes are not acceptable. Neither are product pitches or pieces written by unqualified writers. Contributors should be established experts in their field.

Our 94,000 readers are a mix of Defense Department military and civilian officials, government and industry experts from the defense and homeland security sectors, and various other technology-oriented business communities and national security think tanks. Our website is read by an additional 100,000 unique visitors per month.

Editorial material appearing in the magazine is copyrighted. Authors who are required to submit to government clearance procedures must do so before sending stories to the magazine.

Length, Submission Requirements

• Submissions should be between 1,000 to 2,000 words in length. A short biography of the writer is requested. Preferred formatting is Microsoft Word or any text-only format. In preparing your manuscript, keep in mind that the magazine’s readership is diverse. It touches technologists, acquisition professionals, systems operators, analysts, military officials and industry executives.

• Write your story in such a way that it will be comprehensible to a cross-section of readers. Articles should be detailed enough to interest our expert readers, but an author should define terms that would not generally be known by professionals in other industries.

• Manuscripts are subject to rigorous editing for clarity, consistency, and style.

• Language should be concise and clear. Use the active voice.

• Summarize the essence of the story in the first paragraph. Keep it short and direct.

• Avoid writing historical or anecdotal first paragraphs. Don't waste space on old news or information that is general knowledge.

• Articles should be written in inverted pyramid style: Give the reader the main points early on, then fill in the details.

• Avoid technical jargon. Acronyms should be avoided.

• The article should take the readers from one idea to the next in a logical, easy-to-understand way. Avoid long sentences, obscure references and tangential information.

• Use bullets and lists sparingly. Articles full of bulleted or numbered points are not acceptable.

• Anything that is common knowledge doesn't need to be sourced. But most of the story must be original information.

• Do not use footnotes, endnotes, acknowledgments, and esoteric symbols.

• All proper names should be complete, including titles or military ranks if applicable.

• Organizations should have their city, state, and country indicated.

• Authors are responsible for accuracy of all material reported.

• National Defense follows the Associated Press Stylebook.

• Artwork and other illustrative materials can be submitted in standard electronic formats.

• Copyrighted art will not be accepted unless the copyright owner’s permission is given.

It is magazine policy that once a manuscript is in the editing process, no outside perusal is permitted. Significant changes, however, will be discussed with the author. Edited manuscripts, thus, are not subject to a final review by the writer. All articles submitted for the print edition of National Defense must be received at least two months before the date of publication, which is the first of every month. Articles also can be submitted for online publication.

Interested writers and contributors can contact Stew Magnuson at (703) 247-2545