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How To Get Your Car In Car Craft

By , Photography by Car Craft Readers

"How do I get my car in the magazine?" It's the question most often heard by anyone even remotely associated with Car Craft. So much so that we'd be smart to reprint this article and carry it with us always.

We'd look like jerks if we answered the question by handing over a piece of paper and walking away, but we're pretty used to feeling like jerks when we're forced to tell some reader all the reasons his ride isn't exactly cover material. You might be able to avoid that disappointing conversation-or the bummer of sending stuff to Car Craft that never gets used-if you read this story. Learn it. And live it.

How To Get Into Readers' Pages
The easiest way to get into Car Craft is to have your car or letter in Readers' Pages. The single biggest reason people get their cars bounced out of contention for publishing is because their photos look like a bad acid trip. The "Photo Pointers" sidebar should give you a few clues. Beyond that, we're really not that picky. In fact, the lower-buck, the more average, the younger the builder, the better. Readers' Pages is for typical dudes and dudettes, not for stuffed-wallet, build-it-for-me slackers. However, we still keep the peeps open for the same clues in the "Top 10 Things We're Looking For" sidebar. We'd also dig it if readers got more creative with the photos-try action shots, get cruise-night photos, let's see some wheels-up homebuilt beaters. Got a wagon? Then stuff everyone you know in it and snap a shot. Send us outtakes from your wildest road trip. Upside-down, on fire-whatever. We just want a break from boredom. If you hadn't noticed that cars are for fun, you're holding the wrong magazine.

We'll never use your photos if you don't send 'em to us. We can use color or black-and-white prints or slides. Don't get fancy and send anything on disc. We can't use Polaroids, either. We're also too lame to accept photos over e-mail, so you're gonna have to whip out those dusty old postage stamps. Tell Uncle Sam to send it to:

Car Craft Readers' Pages
831 S. Douglas St
El Segundo, CA 90245

Photo Pointers

Big Glory: A Full Feature In Car Craft
Many readers aspire to have a full-blown photo spread on their car in Car Craft. How do you get it done? It's mostly a matter of luck and timing. Since we never have the budget to travel to your hometown to shoot the car, you'll have to come to us. That means attending an NMCA race (call 800/213-4883 for a '99 schedule) or one of Car Craft's own events (one in Panama City, Florida, in April '99 and another in St. Paul, Minnesota, in July '99-call 800/732-4227 to sign up). We also hit many independent shows throughout the country.

If we do cross paths at an event, we'll hunt you down and let you know if we want to shoot your car. We'll need about an hour of your time as we take you off-site to a photo location and shoot several rolls of film: We'll snap a few overall angles, plus the engine, interior, and other details. The less time you have to work with us while photographing your car, the less likely it is that it will appear in a future issue. Once the photo shoot is done, you get to keep the exclusive Car Craft license plate. You'll also need to fill out our lengthy tech sheet to tell us all about your ride. If you don't complete it thoroughly or don't get it back to us, you won't be in the magazine.

If it all comes together, you'll be a hero in the pages of CC. When? Good question. Some features are run soon after they're shot, others sit around for as long as a year before we use them. We never throw features away. You won't know until you see yourself in print.

Top 10 Things We're Looking For
1. Appallingly fast or killer-looking cars built for cheap.
2. Body styles and brands that aren't mainstream but that aren't too weird.
3. Wheelstands into the next zip code.
4. Super smooth bodywork with bright (not gaudy) colors, and no nekkid lady murals.
5. Stuff built by young people-not paid for by their dads.
6. The vintage look done right.
7. The latest trends done right.
8. Regular ol' street machines done right.
9. Violent stuff that really annoys people who don't like cars.
10. Daily drivers that have no right being daily drivers.

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