Now on newsstands

by Andrea Cooley

magazinesSome of you know that I was a full-time magazine writer/editor before I had Emerson and decided to stay home with him. I absolutely loved what I did, writing about home design and remodeling and working with incredibly creative people to make beautiful projects for magazines.

Here's a peak at a few of the stories I worked on last year that are finally out. One of the things that you have to get used to in publishing is that everything is photographed months in advance. Last summer I had 6 garden photo shoots that were all for this year. Interior projects don't have to be produced that far in advance, but sometimes they still are. I think one of my favorite things about working on a magazine is seeing your story in print. It never gets old! I know iPads and tablets are the next big thing, but I'll take a printed magazine any day!

indoor gardeningThis story about indoor gardening in the Early Spring issue of Country Gardens is particularly exciting because we photographed this image in our back room! Recognize the big picture window and jute rug? The room doesn't look like this anymore (I still owe you pictures) but we've always loves how sunny it is and it was a great place to take a picture of a pretty plant stand packed with plants.

DIY Keep the changeHere's a story I wrote for Do It Yourself about cheap decorating ideas. I especially love the herringbone stencil on the wall. Maybe I'll finally stencil a wall this year! I also wrote a story about clever handmade gifts in the issue.

2013 was a big year for me professionally. I had done freelance writing before, but this was the first time I was juggling that and being a mom and wife. There were times when I didn't know how I would get everything done (especially when I had long days of photo shoots and was still pumping for Emerson) and wished there were more hours in the day, but looking back I learned a ton!

Now I know more what to expect from assignments and have a better idea of how long something will take. I am also learning my strengths and my weaknesses. Some assignments I love and are easy even if they are a lot of work and some are hard no matter what. I am also learning that it is OK and even GOOD to say "no" sometimes.

I produced 7 stories last year for Country Gardens, Do It Yourself, and Garden Ideas magazines. When I produce a story it means I meet with the editors to plan the director for the story, order in any products to photograph, create projects and coordinate the photo shoot. It sounds glamorous and parts of it are a lot of fun, but it's also a lot of work! When that's all done, an art director lays out the story and then I write it.

I also wrote stories for Better Homes and Gardens, Kitchen and Bath Ideas, and Life: Beautiful. This year, my goal is to continue writing for many of the same magazines, but also to add some new titles to the list. I'll keep you posted!

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Andrea Cooley

  1. Get it, girl! I totally recognize the back room and would like to virutally high-five you for all you've accomplished professionally. You are amazing!

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