The last year has truly turned me off to social media streams. I’ve gone a bit silent actually. However, I have learned that it continues to link me to others and opportunities I would have never dreamed of!
In September 2017, I received a direct message via Instagram from Michael Schachner @wineschach, of Wine Enthusiast Magazine. He asked if I’d be interested on writing a travel piece on the Sherry Triangle. We quickly confirmed details over the phone, and the adventure began! (Let’s just say I haven’t screamed while jumping up and down with such enthusiasm in years.)
Editors quickly looped me into their vision via email, attaching specific subjects and word counts, previous examples and timelines. My only previous experience working in journalism was on my high school yearbook my freshman year! For this February issue, I only had a month to get a thousand words of copy in by the October deadline.
Nothing gave me more excitement and pride than to reach out to contacts in Spain, and pour my heart out about this magical corner of the globe. I felt like an ambassador shining light on a small handful of people and places who have made an impact on my own sherry journey. From bodegas large and small, to travel experts, to even local photographers, I was determined to give them all the credit they deserve!
My biggest challenge was editing down each paragraph into the specified word limit. (If I used Twitter more often, I’m sure it would have been a piece of cake.) I am, however, an overachiever when it comes to meeting deadlines. My copy was turned in with a week to spare!
On December 1, I received an email with the final proof. I loved seeing how my words were polished into a voice resembling that of Wine Enthusiast Magazine without losing any content or intention. I loved seeing the familiar images all cropped around my text. Most of all, I was speechless seeing my name as the author!
I’m published! My article is live online and in print! When I first received the news, I couldn’t stop fist pumping the air or ease the tightness in my chest. I am published for writing about my passion, not only for sherry wines but also for the people who produce it from grape to glass. What a journey and experience this has been to partner with Wine Enthusiast Magazine. I can’t wait to do it again!