Is that blog post title a little too over the top? I know, I know. Drama queen, but seriously….. it’s true!
If you follow me on social media, then you already know my big, exciting, pinch me news, which is that I had an article published by Self magazine on Friday. Yes, Self as in the health and fitness women’s publication that’s been around for decades, that I used to read cover to cover when they still had a print version and was a longggggtime subscriber. If you want to read it, my story is here.
It’s also the most soul-baring article I’ve ever publicly shared. In the last couple of years, I’ve tip-toed around the fact that I have a chronic illness, including in this piece for Huff Post, but I’d never gone into as much detail…well, until now. For some one who for much of her adulthood has shared much of her life on the internet for people to see and read about, I’ve kept a pretty tight lid on my health. It’s not that I was ever embarrassed, but I’ve never wanted anyone to suddenly see me as only a medical diagnosis, or give me any type of special privileges or make exceptions because they think I’m “sick.” It’s only really since turning 30 that I’ve become a bit more up front about it all, and feeling a need to be a bit more open and honest about that side of my life. Because it’s not all rainbows, it’s always sunny, and sometimes it is really effing hard and scary. And I know there are other people out there who, while perhaps not in the exact same situation, can relate.
SO, now you know exactly the boat I’m rowing, and maybe that’ll be helpful to someone out there.
Now back to being published by Self. Writing for a magazine has been a professional goal of mine for a very, very long time. I mean, I’ve been a writer since I could hold a pencil, and would imagine myself working at magazines in New York back when I was in middle school. I got my first big break earlier this year, with Shape magazine' (I wrote an essay for their website), which was so exciting. Self, though, has been on my professional bucket list for-ev-er, because it was my favorite magazine growing up, and remains a health and fitness publication that I respect and personally am still a fan of. They had a revitalization in the last year as they went all-digital, and they share the stories that I don’t see covered elsewhere. They don’t do much in the way of fluff pieces anymore, and cover topics I can get behind — such as promoting a health at every size (HAES) approach. They also are dedicated to featuring women (including their workout models) that look like real people… not just tall, gorgeous ones with a six pack. So yeah, I consider this a life goal achieved, and a professional milestone.
This opportunity did not fall into my lap. I basically annoyed the editorial tema at Self until someone finally responded to me and agreed to have me write for them. It’s true what they say about success (at any level) — the only way to success is to try just one more time (thank you, Thomas Edison).
I don’t swim in the comparison lane very often, but I’ll admit I felt a teeny, tiny bit silly to be sharing this success on Friday when the article was published, because a voice in the back of my head tried to argue that Self isn’t the New York Times or some more “serious” outlet, and it’s not like I’m publishing my first novel or something else more major that maybe I “should” already have achieved at this point as a writer… but screw that mindset. I quickly shoved that negative self-talk in the trash because I’m damn proud of this article, as well as writing for this publication, regardless if no one is going to award me Pulitzer for it.
As for what’s next… well, I have no idea lol. The funny thing about freelance writing is that it seems like you’re really only as good as your last performance…. so no matter how excellent my writing skills may be or how well-received my article, I still have to pitch til I’m blue in the face to try and get another published (by Self or anyone else). That’s just how the biz goes (unless, I suppose, you have a close relationship with an editor at a publication).
Anyways, that’s enough rambling for today. If you read my article, please let me know what you think, and as always, thank you for reading! It means the world to me.