Once you’ve decided to write a column, take the following steps:
1) Write five or six sample columns to send to an editor or to more than one.
2) Start with the editor of your local newspaper. Most communities have several newspapers, including weeklies. Determine for which newspaper your column would be suitable.
3) Send your sample columns with a cover letter to the editor. Mention that you are interesting in writing a regular column and that you are willing to offer him five samples free of charge to determine public response. Tell him that if he gets a favorable response, you will then negotiate a mutually beneficial compensation plan.
4) Sometimes the editor will say that he cannot pay you. Be ready with your answer before you speak to him. Decide if you are willing to write for free or if you are not.
5) Keep all of your columns. Some day you may turn them into a book.