In Episode 39, we talk to beauty editors (and USC alum) Kamala Kirk and Lizzy Sherman about their website Spa and Beauty Today. We also chat about freelance writing and content creation, writing about your passions, pitching your work to editors, writing for digital vs. print outlets, doing social media copy, and carving out your own space.
Kamala Kirk is a University of Southern California graduate and has been an editor/writer for more than a decade. She is the editor of The Argonaut and has written for E! Online, Total Beauty, TravelAge West, Malibu Times Magazine, and many more. She resides in Los Angeles and is a proud pug mom. Follow her on Instagram: @kamalakirk.
Lizzy Sherman is an award-winning digital content writer/editor. She has been a featured guest speaker at Cal State University Northridge, Digital LA and The National Association of Audience Marketing Professionals. When she’s not writing, Lizzy enjoys yoga and playing guitar. Follow her on Instagram: @zillizy.
This episode was recorded on December 9. Because we recorded via Zoom, there may be occasional audio hiccups. Our theme song is “4 am” by Makaih Beats. You can subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher and follow us on Twitter @WritingRemixPod.
“It’s definitely a great opportunity that writers have to be able to explore new places, meet really interesting people, and ask them questions that the normal person wouldn’t necessarily be able to and just get to learn and explore while creating a profession.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“All these different opportunities come up that you maybe don’t think of at the time, but someone else comes across your content and wants to collaborate with you, or you end up discovering a new product that you write about…It’s been really fun just being open-minded and seeing what comes our way and trying different things out.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“If you’re committed and are willing to put in the time and the effort, and if you’re consistent, then you can make it happen.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“Try to get as many opportunities as you can. You’ll get a lot of no’s, you won’t hear from places, but all that matters is that one yes.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“There’s so many opportunities to self-publish online. Even if you don’t have a big audience yet, you can build your portfolio that way.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“If you’re thinking about sending that email, just send it.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“Sometimes you have to pick a goal, focus on that, see that through, and then [it’s] on to the next adventure.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“There’s a lot of mystery around spas…When we started the site, one of our goals was to make [the spa world] more accessible to everyone.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“With freelancing, it can be a wonderful thing. You can kind of create your own schedule and have more freedom. But…you have to be responsible. You have to be able to meet deadlines. You have to be able to sit down and write.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“You can be successful [at freelancing], but you have to look for the opportunities and keep pitching ideas.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“You have to be really persistent if you’re going to have a freelancing career…But overall, I love freelance writing and highly recommend it.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“What I’ve found has worked for me is being able to write a lot of different subjects…Have experience in a few different areas, so that if one area is slow or you’re not getting as much work, there’s still other areas where you can get more writing work.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“It seems like the opportunities in digital are just constantly increasing, so even if it’s not what you want to do as your ultimate goal, I think learning the skills to be able to [write] for digital too and learning about SEO and stuff like that is definitely somewhere that you can find opportunities while you work toward whatever your goal is.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet
“Just go for it. You never know what’ll happen, and you’ve just got to try…You’ll be pleasantly surprised, no matter where your path takes you.” -Kamala Kirk @spabeautytodayTweet
“Don’t be afraid. We all get rejected a few times. Just keep going until you get the yes. And eventually you will.” @zillizy16 @spabeautytodayTweet