Blog: Edible Manhattan Presents Get Schooled: Food Media 101
As a New Yorker, we are privy to some of the finest cuisine the world over. But while dining out, have you ever thought about getting into the food media and or blogging world yourself, perhaps influenced by the very website that you are currently perusing? Maybe you have taken the first steps by writing a quick Yelp review or taken a picture on Instagram. But if you would like to dedicate your career to the world of food media prepare to buckle in for some raw to medium-rare truths. On Wednesday evening, we made our way to the always fun Brooklyn Brewery to join the Edible Manhattan team as they presented “Get Schooled: Food Media 101.” It would be a panel where four of New York’s premiere female writers and editors would discuss the business of food blogging.
The main room of Brooklyn Brewery filled up extremely quickly with those who craved some insight into how to break into the business. After grabbing a delicious glass of the Brewery’s own “Sorachi Ace,” we took our seats and opened our ears and eyes. Gabrielle Langholtz, Editor of Edible Brooklyn and Edible Manhattan served as the moderator for the discussion and after a quick introduction she allowed the guests to launch into the stories and lessons on how they broke into the business. First up was James Beard Award winner Rachel Wharton, a contributing editor at Edible Brooklyn and Edible Manhattan and editor of Edible Brooklyn: The Cookbook. If you have ever opened the pages of Edible or attended one of their fantastic tasting events then you know her very well. Ms. Wharton wasted no time cutting right to the point. After several jobs that initially failed to satisfy her life goals, Rachel dove deep into the world of food writing by entering the bubble that was the Dot Com boom of the late ’90s to cut her teeth. From there it was an uphill climb for her to truly find her place in the business and to do that, she was forced into financial debt to get sufficient experience to become even remotely qualified for the Edible brand. Her energetic personality and initiative were delivered outwardly during her portion of the discussion amid sounds of fingering keys as the crowd on hand quickly wrote down large chunks of what she had to say. Wharton also explained that journalism school isn’t always necessary to become a journalist in food media, which was a refreshing take on the matter.
If you live in Brooklyn or like to read about what’s going on there this weekend, then you know Annaliese Griffin well as the Editor-in-Chief of informative website Brooklyn Based. Right out of the gate Griffin warned of the risks and intense work that newbies are forced into, simply to find their own voice. Making her way to New York by way of Portland, Griffin found it difficult to get her career started. She stressed writing about what’s important to you and focusing on that in order to find a comfort zone. Meanwhile, Gabriella Gershenson Senior Editor of Saveur and blogger at gabiwrites.com rounded out the outstanding panel of women in the business Gershenson truly nailed the overall theme of the event, speaking of the persistence one must have to succeed in the food media industry. By beginning in the business by writing columns for New York Press, she found a passion for writing which lit a fire inside her for bigger and better and as such she would constantly email and make phone calls to contacts at her dream jobs. Throughout her segment she made it clear to the hungry group of new food journalists that the writing can never stop as one’s craft can always be sharpened.
Listen, following your dreams is not going to be easy especially in this industry. You’re going to hit many speed bumps and false starts along the way. The goal is to never give up and be extremely persistent. These four women have been there and they are still going very strong. Take a page out of their notebook. Each line is filled with some of the best food writing going today.
- Jay Rubin