Articles

BETTER AFTER 50

 

In this “it’s all who you know” world, I was fortunate enough in 2011 to be introduced to two dynamic women who were leaving their careers in law and academia and starting a website dedicated to a newly redefined… and kinda fabulous niche…women over 50.  It has been my pleasure to find another perfect home for dozens of my musings…. BETTERAFTERFIFTY.COM. Having gotten in on the ground floor, I share their joy in seeing readership grow from hundreds to hundreds of thousands. As I continue to teach and share… continue to make choices…continue to keep on keeping on, I’m so lucky to still have an audience who continues to follow my journey.

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DISTINCTION MAGAZINE

 

Part of the Newsday Media Group, Distinction Magazine was a glossy monthly focused on elegant living, highlighting food, travel and culture on Long Island. Beginning in 1996, I was blessed with the plum of all freelance writing jobs…filling the back page of this beautiful publication with my thoughts and struggles and dreams. The topics were never censored…except by my family who were getting increasingly uncomfortable with having their lives used as fodder. My efforts...and their generosity… were rewarded with winning the Long Island Press Club Award for magazine writing every year I wrote that column.

 

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FEATURE WRITING

 

I was beyond fortunate to begin my writing career at a time when local freelance writers were courted, respected, and well paid. Newsday and the Long Island section of The New York Times were open to ideas. You could get the editor on the phone in an instant. Without any formal journalistic training I learned to cover the essential elements of who, what, when, where, how and why. I saw the worth of putting the most important things in the first paragraph, and remembering my "angle" - a way to focus the piece. My editors fostered a new respect for the FACTS, a higher bar than my creative non-fiction columns. And I learned the sanctity of getting my quotes 100% accurate.

 

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THE PERSONAL ESSAY

 

Writing essays gives me an opportunity to mine my life for intimately personal material in which I hope readers will discover a nugget of universal truth. I find I am interested in thinking about myself thinking about things. So are the writers of this craft I most admire…Joan Didion, Nora Ephron, Lena Dunham, Meghan Daum and Katie Roiphe. By aligning my experience with others, by finding the extraordinary in the ordinary, sometimes in the briefest of encounters, I’ve been rewarded by the attention and the empathy of a wonderfully supportive audience.

 

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THE WOMEN’S RECORD

 

The Women’s Record was the first monthly publication on Long Island advocating on behalf of numerous women’s issues. Headed by the indefatigable Jane Gitlin whose mission it was to take an injustice in the world and do something about it, the paper spanned the 80s, spearheading the first investigation into the high incidence of breast cancer on Long Island. As a columnist, then its editor, I learned I was most successful tackling the huge issues of the day if I tried emulating my writing guru, Erma Bombeck, and wrote honestly…and with humor…about what was happening under my roof. It was the best writing/learning experience of my life.

 

 

 

 

Read 
"THE BEST OF BYALICK"
as chosen by 
Jane S. Gitlin,
Publisher, 
The Women's Record

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