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Freelance Journalist Focus: Suzi Lewis-Barned

Freelance journalist Suzi Lewis-Barned writes on health and lifestyle, and her work has appeared on health related websites for patients and healthcare professionals.

This week, FeaturesExec caught up with Suzi to discuss her work, Rolf Harris, Bill Oddie and how she’d like to work with PRs.

About your journalism:

What do you write about?
Mostly health and lifestyle – I develop and write content for many health related websites but also cover conferences, write reports, ghost-write booklets and interpret surveys for PR companies to use in the media. Occasionally other projects come along; for example, I’ve recently written a financial services brochure and some advertorial for a large contract cleaning company!

Where are we likely to see your work?
On health related websites aimed at patients and healthcare professionals.

What’s the most memorable work you’ve done?
Recent memorable work includes two major pitches to pharma companies, working with agencies to devise the pitch and then going along to explain to prospective clients the importance of good web writing – and winning on both occasions.

Memorable work in the past includes working as a television researcher with some great characters – including Rolf Harris, Bill Oddie and George Melly. I also interviewed William Golding when I was a student.

What interview or feature would you love the chance to do?
Anything – as long as it involves a few days in a fabulous sunny tropical place!

About you and PRs:

Where do you source ideas for articles?
They are normally commissioned by PR agencies.

How can PRs be useful to you?
By remembering where I am when they are overloaded – even if it means phoning me on Friday evening when they need something by Monday morning!

How and when do you like them to get in touch?
Any time – by email or if very urgent by phone.

Do you find press conferences, trips, parties and other events useful or an interruption?
They’re always interesting but I can only afford to go if it’s for commissioned work. I’m too busy to take time away from my desk if I’m not being paid.

If you could make one change to the way PRs deal with you, what would it be?
Phone more often and think of me as an additional invaluable resource who will deliver good quality copy on time.

About you:

How would you pay the bills if you weren’t a journalist?
I’d try to do something to earn money from my other passion – horses – but unfortunately, as someone once said, the only way to make a small fortune from horses is to start with a large one.

If we gave you £1000, how would you spend it?
Buy a new Apple Mac.

What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Take your horse to the gallops and experience that speed and freedom.

What books are on your bedside table, magazines in your bag, or blogs on your screen?
Currently reading Alice Munro’s collection of short stories, Runaway. Magazines: Communicators Magazine, PharmaTimes, BD Dressage Magazine, Country Living.
[lnk||_blank|FJD: Suzi Lewis-Barned
[img|jpg|Suzi Lewis-Barned]