|Dan Kois, senior editor at Slate:||Publish your writing somewhere. Your own blog or Tumblr or someone else's site that doesn't pay or whatever, a really funny Twitter feed. When the time comes that you have a great idea that is saleable, editors will want to see other stuff you've written to see if you have a voice or not, and the answer better not be "Well I haven't published anything anywhere yet." Good editors don't care where you've published -- they care how good your writing has been and how good your idea is. Also, when pitching, for god's sake pitch stuff that MAKES SENSE for the publication in question. Like, make it clear you read that publication, and explain why the piece is just right for THEM.