Editorial: Print & Online
Longreads: Soup for the Soul
An essay first drafted nearly a decade ago, this very personal piece touches upon the relationship between me, my father, food, cultural assimilation and rejection, and growing up "other." This exclusive was picked up by digg within one business day (!)
Fancy Something Familiar
In this nine-page feature spread for the Long Island Pulse, I tapped into the network of local chefs I'm fortunate enough to know for their top tips on how to gussy up a summer barbecue ... whether you fancy something familiar or WANT to fancy (up) something familiar.
My American Summer
I didn't have a "typical" childhood or upbringing ... but my family also had a typical American dream. Because of this, I get to live and grow from both experiences ... and write about it for the fascinating "Best of Summer" series for The Kitchn.
When (It) Happens To You
Well, this one was a doozy to write. For many years, I've written other people's stories, staying safely away from my own challenges. But this time, I peeled the layers back, showing an evolution from "ugly" to "understanding" as I out myself as a Spoonie for Folks on World Lupus Day, and earned >3.2k organic shares within two weeks.
Serendipity Knows Best
A deeply personal essay about what led to my sojourn in New Orleans, a city where I discovered myself, confidence as a female traveler, an ability to reinvent oneself, and the power of serendipity.
St. Pat's Around the World
A white-labeled advertorial for the TRAVELSAVERS consortia for Travel Impressions, this blog posts delves into the traditional history of St. Patrick's Day in Ireland, and other places around the world it can be celebrated with aplomb.
Shunned in Ancestral Homeland
Well, THIS was a doozy to write. The most personal piece I'd ever written, this essay digs deep into race, xenophobia, and travel ... and how these negatives can serve to empower acceptance.
What's Good for the Grape ...
... Is Good for the Grower. A fresh look at sustainable wine-growing in Long Island's acclaimed North Fork through the perspective of a sometime teetotaler. I love being a tourist in my own backyard and learning something new. During this intensive one-day "field trip," I took away something more important than information: inspiration and hope.
As my corporation's lead writer, I was delighted to have been granted the opportunity to helm the editorial column for the travel industry's most powerful trade publication. Although these are pieces are advertorial in nature, they are written from a first-person POV and draw upon real experiences and feelings stirred up by the incredible things I'm lucky enough to do.
International Award-Winning Feature
An intimate glimpse at the man behind the master, this profile of legendary Chef Alex Lee was nominated by a panel of 57 judges across 80 editions of Edible magazines as a top five finalist, and won the Reader's Choice award for Best Chef Feature for 2014.
An advertorial and ode to romance travel, this short piece was written in a warm, editorial voice and in third person to better inform the reader of Travel Impressions' dominance and expertise in this space, as well as sharing insight on why this sector is so important to the brand.
Edible Long Island Fall 2013
Full-length feature spread about local love and community in Sayville Village, New York in the print premiere issue of the Long Island edition of this award-winning, high-end magazine series. Begins on page 48.
An informational piece about Travel Impressions as a luxury brand for the World of Luxury special piece for travel trade journal Travel Weekly, this insert bridges the gap between advertorial and branding by sharing destination inspiration and reasons to partner with TI, all presented in a third person perspective.
Community Table: Oyster Bay
History takes the lead in this Community Table feature spread, which dives into the quiet and often overlooked village of Oyster Bay on the North Shore of Long Island's Nassau County.
Scenes from a Chinese Restaurant
A human interest cover story for the Long Island Press, this was one of the hardest pieces I've ever had to write. Deeply personal, I shared an insider perspective on the culture, attitudes and background of a typical take-out, an "accidental LI icon" as ubiquitous as a pizzeria or bagel shop, yet often depersonalized due to cultural and racial differences.
The Stuff that Dreams are Made Of
This traditional interview cover story was one of my most poignant assignments. I spoke with the Cvitanoviches of Drago's, the inventors of the famous charbroiled oyster, and found an inspiring story of a realized American dream.
Ghostwriting, ad writing and advertorial all had a place in this corporate print monthly newsletter, circulated to thousands of travel agents around the US. I played the role of managing editor, tasked with planning and layout from cover to cover, strategizing the flow of funded placements, gathering pricing, writing property/offer copy and ensuring legal compliance.
Dog Day Afternoons
An advertorial that highlighting pet hotels and boarding facilities around New Orleans, I worked off a list provided by my editor, conducting site visits and speaking with business owners, in order to better position the piece as a reference for recommended "staycation" venues for their beloved pets.
Wedding Party Spa Parties!
A chatty, informal and conversational feature story that suggests spa parties as a great solution for frazzled brides and wedding parties at their wits' ends. This article takes the reader on a tour of New Orleans' jazziest spas, and how they can help to plan the perfect bonding experience.
See the Light
A traffic light theme created the angle for this health, beauty and wellness advertorial for New Orleans' leading society glossy. From cosmetic procedures to trendy spa services and new technology, this directed article was crafted to read like true editorial.
The Lighter Side of Lent
Utilizing my extensive network of restaurateurs and chefs in New Orleans, I gathered and edited Lent-friendly, healthy recipes from around the city and positioned this period of observance as a fun challenge to get creative, with "light, fresh recipes" that will "have [the reader] looking forward to depriving [themselves]."
Parting is Such Sweet, Sweet Sorrow
My first full spread and restaurant guide spotlight for WYAT, this article is what turned my taste for the savory into a sweet tooth. For this, I visited some of the most commendable restaurants and hidden gems to find the best last courses in the city. Editing down was the hardest part!
Diary of a Wedding Cake
Researched remotely and delivered in a pinch, this story took readers on a journey through the creation of a wedding cake, from a crash-course in selection and options to a dissemination of the process, including fondant versus icing.
SoFAB, In More Ways Than One
For this article, I was one of the first to get the scoop on the Southern Food and Beverage Museum, which is now a Crescent City staple. An in-depth interview and well-edited sound bites made for a compelling story that helped the museum get off to a great start.
When Seeing Red Means Feeling Good
Another WYAT restaurant guide spread, this was a meaty assignment to take on. I curated a list of well- and little-known steakhouses throughout the Crescent City and was privileged to conduct tastings for this feature story, which showcased the best of the best in steak.
Modern Creole: For the Heart & Soul
A front-of-book feature with a pull-quote displayed in the table of contents, this article delved into the history of Creole cooking and how it is still in the evolution process and can be made to be heart-healthy. As an accompaniment, I also solicited excellent recipes from notable chefs and edited them to the style guide.
The Vicarious Food Whore
A fun blog I started on the premise of being able to "eat vicariously," this is a highly irreverent, tongue-in-cheek web site that shares my "epicurean adventures" in adjective-injected, experiential detail.
An avid Elite member of the Yelp community, I've had over half a dozen reviews highlighted as ROTD and been quoted in the LI newsletter multiple times. This is the best window into my stream of consciousness, from rave reviews to raving rants.
Home, Sweet Olive
This was my introductory post for the travel guide website PlanetEye, where I served as one of the original bloggers and as a member of the editorial Elite Squad. My voice was actually chosen as best practice for posting as the community grew, and helped to define writing guidelines for new Local Experts.