Freelance journalist Lucy McGuire tells us about her work for magazines such as Woman, Best and Now, as well as what she finds useful when coming up with ideas for articles…
About your journalism:
What do you write about?
I write real life features for national women’s magazines, Sunday papers and national newspaper supplements. I also regularly find case studies for journalists on the nationals and do in-house shifts for both real life features and celebrity desks. On top of this, I also enjoy writing lifestyle, entertainment and news pieces for online audiences. In the past I was a regional news reporter and have also had many travel and review pieces published.
Where are we likely to see your work?
Many of the women’s weekly magazines such as Woman, Woman’s Own, Reveal, Best, New! and Now, as well as Take It Easy and websites such as London Confidential.
What’s the most memorable work you’ve done?
Probably going to Barbados a couple of years ago as part of a travel piece for the Manchester Evening News when it was part of the Guardian Media Group. I was also regularly sent out of the office to do first-person features which had me learning to ski and playing the violin with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra. More recently I went nightclub hopping in Manchester as part of a piece on escorts who do business with footballers for the Daily Mail.
What interview or feature would you love the chance to do?
A first-person piece on a new London lifestyle trend (such as a Come Dine With Me event or new dating phenomenon), an interview with a celebrity chef, or perhaps the Mayor of London (he lives in my neighbourhood).
About you and PRs:
Where do you source ideas for articles?
Social networking sites, Response Source, StarNow and conversations with friends.
How can PRs be useful to you?
By sending me new statistics, real life case studies and invites to networking events or launches of new venues/products/services in London.
How and when do you like them to get in touch?
By email or phone during office hours.
Do you find press conferences, trips, parties and other events useful or an interruption?
They are generally useful.
If you could make one change to the way PRs deal with you, what would it be?
Perhaps only send me up to date information rather then press releases that have already been covered extensively.
How would you pay the bills if you weren’t a journalist?
I’d probably go into marketing or copywriting or failing that, busk with my violin!
If we gave you £1000, how would you spend it?
I’d want to do the sensible thing and pay off debts but would probably spend it on a flight across the world.
What books are on your bedside table, magazines in your bag, or blogs on your screen?
‘Eat, Pray, Love’, ‘The Secret’, ‘Cupcakes and Kalashnikovs’, www.Londonconfidential.co.uk and pretty much every women’s magazine you can think of…