Re-attach the word “rust,” left off of Belt Magazine’s name, and you’ll know the region this long-form digital pub covers. But there’s the literal Rust Belt (an area spanning the Midwest and the upper Northeastern United States), and then there’s the figurative one. According to editor in chief Martha Bayne, “conceptually it’s any place that has been profoundly affected by the loss of the manufacturing economy in the United States.”
It’s this identity that underpins the stories the pub puts out, whether they are about social and cultural issues, an arts group, or an author or artist Q&A–all areas Bayne would like potential freelancers to tackle.
The idea of economic destruction and turnaround of the industrial Midwest is at the magazine’s core. Not every story should be about the closing of a steel mill, but do keep in mind this is the thread that defines the region.
At the top on Bayne’s wish list are stories about current business initiatives or zoning issues — stories that depict what modern day life is like in the region.
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