Guide to Writing Letters to the Editor

Make it a habit to write a letter to the editor every month. You can be a voice for justice. Here’s how.

An important part of our legislative and election strategy is to educate the public about issues and candidates we care about. We need to continuously build and expand the number of folks who pay attention, and engage, educate, and activate them.

The guide below includes a brief description of how to write a good letter to the editor. There are four sample letters, followed by a list of the ten largest publications in the state with links and guidelines for writing letters to those newspapers. And finally, we list a number of smaller local newspapers and weeklies, again with guidance for submitting LTEs.


  • Stay within the maximum number of words listed by the media outlet and, once you have a LTE published, do not submit more letters than the publication allows. Most limit LTEs to monthly, some quarterly.
  • Focus on one issue and make your most important point in the beginning.
  • Start with a snappy lead sentence that grabs the readers’ attention.
  • If you have personal or professional experience on the topic, include it. How will the bill affect you, your child, your business, your community? Make it personal, tell a story. A letter that begins, “When my mother was diagnosed with cancer I learned how complex, expensive, and cruel our healthcare system is,” will get an editor’s attention, and a reader’s attention.
  • Include a reference to another LTE or Opinion piece you read if it spurred your LTE, e.g., “After reading Mr. Smith’s LTE, Fight Crime, (SFNM, 5/22/19, p.1), I want to add…” This is not necessary, but if you see another LTE that opposes a position you support and offers misinformation, this is an opportunity to correct that misinformation.
  • Support your point with evidence (research, personal story, recent events). For LTE’s on bills before the legislature, see our bill list for help, if you need it.
  • Submit your letter via the form provided by the media outlet on their website or by regular email; some accept snail mail if you lack access to email. See media list below.
  • Always include your contact info: name, address, phone, email address. If they can’t verify who you are, they won’t print your LTE.
  • When you add a signature, be sure to include your city, so readers know you are local.
  • Don’t be discouraged if your LTE isn’t published; they have many reasons that have nothing to do with your letter. However, they do notice how many they get on a single topic, which could spur them to write about it.
  • If they print your LTE about an upcoming event, send a short thank-you to the paper about the success of the event and tell them about other ways they can help….another event coming up?


Use these letters as guides, but use your own voice. Newspapers will not print letters when they receive multiple letters using the same language. Most of the LTEs below are topically out of date, but the format and approach is still germane.

Sample #1: Abortion rights (mission accomplished in 2019)

New Mexico needs to give women safe, legal access to reproductive healthcare. A 1969 anti-abortion law would become active if the US Supreme Court repeals Roe v Wade. Recent polls indicate that 70% of New Mexicans oppose the reinstatement of punitive anti-abortion laws and believe that women should make that decision for themselves. The US and New Mexico have some of the highest maternal and infant mortality rates among developed nations. Instead of forcing more women, especially poor women, to have more children, creating additional poverty for them and their children, we should focus on family planning. By increasing women’s access to reproductive healthcare, education, and job training, we can improve economic conditions for them and for our state as well as reduce the number of abortions.
127 words

Susan McGrew, Retake Our Democracy

Sample #2: PNM – Avangrid Merger

The more I learn about the proposed PNM – Avangrid merger, the worse it looks. This, despite a program of full-page ads by both corporations about how good the merger would be for New Mexico and the environment. PNM already has too much political power in the state through its lobbying and campaign contributions. The absence of transparency in details of this merger, especially concerning the degree of independence of a local board of directors, suggests intentional concealment of corporate intentions. (“Examiner: Avangrid, PNM letter must be made public,” June 29). If approved, this merger hands New Mexico’s future over to a mega corporation that prioritizes profit over people or planet. How is it possible that our Governor and Attorney General support this merger? Thank you New Energy Economy and Retake Our Democracy for exposing this sham. 137 words

Sample #3: In praise of Retake Our Democracy

Kudos to Retake Our Democracy for compiling and authoring the 2019 NM Legislative Report Card and now their 2022 Primary Election Endorsements! The Report Card praises legislators who worked tirelessly to pass critical legislation and exposes other NM legislators who blocked good legislation. It presents a shocking revelation of what goes on behind the scenes, who controls the bills slated for survival and those earmarked to be cast aside, buried alive, never to be heard before a committee. The fact that our bipartisan legislative leaders think it’s permissible to exercise their will, backed by corporate lobbyists, versus the will of the people, is an abuse and misuse of the power they have been entrusted with. It’s critically important to expose which Democratic lawmakers sided with Republicans to block, manipulate and predetermine the fate of advancing economic, environmental and social justice bills. Learn more about Retake Our Democracy at 149 words

Joyce Bogosian, Retake Our Democracy

Sample #4: Why I Support Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham

I have heard too many frustrated Democrats say they may not vote in November, they are so disillusioned with elected Democrats who have not consistently fought for progressive legislation. I grew so frustrated with the Governor’s climate policies, I was arrested for participating in a sit-in at her office. So, I understand frustration.

But we do not want to relive the 2016 national election in our NM Governor’s race. In 2016, when so many stayed home, Trump was able to eke out a win over Clinton. Just as there was a huge difference between Trump and Hillary; there is a vast difference between MLG and Mark Ronchetti. And we do not want Ronchetti as our governor. He would not have signed any of these bills into law: repeal of the abortion ban; Extreme Risk Protection Order to remove of weapons from homes with individuals deemed at risk of harming themselves or others; financial relief to immigrants; limiting the small loan rate to 36%; advancing the Health Security Act; increasing funding for early childhood; free college for all New Mexicans. Instead, he would eagerly sign a new abortion ban; block the Health Security Act; and send the National Guard to our border. In addition, during the pandemic, MLG took the heat and courageously shut things down and mandated masks, saving hundreds, perhaps thousands, of lives. Ronchetti would not have done that.

The choice in November is not a popularity contest, it is a choice between a somewhat disappointing, but largely reliable moderate Dem and a right wing Republican who would make it impossible to advance any progressive legislation. So, I am asking all you disgruntled Dems to not just vote a straight Democratic ticket, but to share this letter with others you know who are pondering saying home in November. Too much is at stake to not use your voice first and then your vote.
314 words

Paul Gibson, Co-Founder, Retake Our Democracy

 Inventory of Media Outlets

This list was developed in 2019, so please check with the outlet to verify rules are still unchanged. If you find that a publication has changed its rules, please send us an updated description to Thank you and, Write On!!

If a daily or weekly newspaper is published in your community, please write to and we will include it in this developing list. Whenever a newspaper requires an online submission form, we recommend crafting your letter or op-ed in a word processing program and then copying and pasting it into the form. To reiterate one of the primary points above, your personal reasons for supporting a bill are much more likely to be published and to have an impact on readers.


  • Albuquerque Journal.  350 words for letter to the editor, 650 words for my view. Letters must include writer’s signature, home address and telephone, and a daytime number. Though addresses and phone numbers are not published, they are needed to confirm authorship prior to publication. 

Santa Fe

  • Santa Fe New Mexican. The link takes you to a form to be used for submitting a letter (150 words) or My View (600 words).

Four Corners

  • The Daily Times. The Daily Times covers the Four Corners, including Farmington, Aztec, Bloomfield and the Navajo Nation. Send your 250-word (or less) letter to Have more to say? Write us a Local Voices column at a maximum of 500 words. Columns of local or statewide interest get first consideration.


  • The Gallup Independent.  Letters may not exceed 500 words. Letters may be edited for space and clarity. The Independent may choose not to print any letter for any reason. Letters may be mailed, delivered in person, faxed or emailed to: Editor, The Independent, P.O. Box 1210, Gallup, NM 87305, fax: 505-722-5750; email:

Las Cruces [updated July 10, 2022]

  • The Las Cruces Sun-News (website receives wide circulation in southern NM (including in Silver City) and appears daily. Letters to the editor appear in the Sunday edition. Instructions for submission are as follows: Letters should be limited to 300 words or less. All letters, including those sent via email, must include a daytime telephone number and mailing address so that we can confirm their origin. Addresses and phone numbers remain confidential. Mail: Letters to the Editor, Las Cruces Sun-News, P.O. Box 1749, Las Cruces, NM 88004. Email:   Fax:  575-541-5498 (please identify as a letter to the editor).


  • Roswell Daily Record.  The link takes you to a form where you can submit a letter. There were no word limits posted, but email and phone contact info was provided at this link where clarification can be sought.

Silver City–[updated July 10, 2022]

  • The Silver City Daily Press and Independent (website receives wide circulation in all of Grant County. It appears 4 days a week and publishes letters to the editor in almost every issue. Instructions for submission are as follows: The Daily Press welcomes readers’ forum letters, which can be mailed to Box 1371, Silver City, NM 88062, or emailed to Letters must be signed and, for verification purposes, must include an address and telephone number. We prefer short letters which are typed and double spaced, and less than 250 words in length. Longer submissions may be rejected or considered for publication as a guest column. Letters of a religious nature; those which could be libelous; those bearing multiple signatures; and those intended simply to say “thank you” to someone will not be accepted for publication. Letters supporting or opposing specific candidates for office will be published as paid advertisements at the classified ad word rate.
  • The Silver City Sun-News (website: appears only two days a week and contains no letters to the editor. To reach Silver City Sun-News readers (who have access also to the Las Cruces edition), submit letters to the Las Cruces Sun-News (see instructions here under Las Cruces).


  • Hobbs News-Sun. Covering Lea County and southeast New Mexico. For questions about letters to the editor in the Hobbs News-Sun, email the editor.

Carlsbad, Artesia and All of Eddy County

  • Carlsbad Current-ArgusServing as the local news source for Carlsbad, Artesia, Loving, and all of Eddy County, New Mexico, since 1889. The link above takes you to a page where letters and guest articles can be posted. 


  • Alamogordo Daily News. No guidelines were posted on the paper’s website, but contact information for the editor is: Duane Barbati, Editor. (575) 437-7120 ext. 7134.

Plus some additional NM Media Outlets

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