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Now Then is written by passionate local people with something to say. The door is always open to anyone who wants to pitch ideas to us.

Sheffield city centre from Clough Lane

At the heart of our approach to publishing is a belief that systemic change is needed to address the pressing social, economic and political challenges we face, both as a city and as a society.

We want to use our platforms to amplify marginalised voices excluded from mainstream media, shine a light on abuses of power, and share eye-opening perspectives on our city and its place in the world.

Opus, the company that publishes Now Then, is a social enterprise – so we work for the good of the city.

Note: We're still exploring how and when we can return to the printed edition of Now Then Sheffield post pandemic. In the meantime, all our efforts are going into this website.

For Now Then Manchester contributions, go here.

Contributors

We welcome new writers to Now Then, whether you have experience in journalism or just fancy trying your hand at it.

If you have an idea you want to explore, we'd love to hear from you. We suggest emailing us with:

  • A short introduction to yourself, your areas of interests and any examples of past writing.
  • What idea(s) you want to explore through writing for Now Then and why you think they're unique or important for Sheffield.

Keep it short – don't agonise over sending us the 'perfect pitch'.

If your ideas are time-sensitive (e.g. linked to an upcoming event or breaking news), let us know in your message.

We'll do our best to come back to you but please bear in mind that we're a small team.

Commissions

We currently have a limited pot of money to pay writers for more in-depth contributions to Now Then.

Sadly this means that we can't pay all writers at the moment, so our editors have to make a judgement about how best to allocate what money we do have. We can discuss this when you get in touch.

What we're interested in

  • If it's Sheffield-focused, well written and something different, there's a good chance we'll be interested. Our regular sections include: News & Views, Arts & Culture, Music, Food, Independent Business and Literature (including creative writing). Take a look at recent content to get more of a flavour of what we publish. Our articles tend to be news, opinion pieces, reviews or interviews – but we're always open to something 'outside the box'.
  • We're looking for fresh perspectives and new information. Whether it's on a well-known topic or something that will be familiar to most readers, your article needs to bring something new to the table. Think carefully about who will read it and what you want to say to them, as well as recent coverage of the topic in Now Then and wider media.
  • We're always up for exclusives and 'scoops' – but they're not essential.

Now Then is voluntarily regulated by IMPRESS. This means that all our journalism has to stick to the IMPRESS Standards Code, which seeks to balance the rights of the public, journalists and publishers. We also have whistleblowing and complaints policies as recommended by IMPRESS.

Representation

People from privileged backgrounds are more likely to be involved in the media.

We do not believe that being a community venture makes us immune to the effects of systemic racism, prejudice and marginalisation on our coverage and our contributor list.

Therefore we actively encourage contributions from people whose lived experience is not currently represented through Now Then as much as we would like: writers of colour, writers from LGBTQ+ communities, writers of marginalised genders, writers with disabilities and writers from working-class backgrounds.